Chalet USA owners Helen Gienke & Rob Brown stumbled upon Colorado, USA in 2001, whilst on career break from their UK Marketing jobs, skied there all winter & never looked back.
We wanted to share this fantastic USA ski holiday experience with other UK skiers, so we set up Chalets USA in 2004.
We live in Colorado, know the ski resorts and the accommodation and can give you advice of finding the right skiing holiday for you.
New terrain opening up all the time and lots more to report than before: On Golden Peak the River Bahn Express is now open with blue run such as Ranger Racoon, Ruder's Run, plus the Northwoods Express now running with access to black runs North & South Rim, First Step,, Prima, Gandy Dance & North Star. Also open off the top are Snag Park & Northwoods. Cascade Village lift is now operational for those who need access from Cascade Village and the Aria Club and Spa. On the Lionshead side lots more runs open including Simba, Bwana, Pride, Safari and Minnie's. From the Game Creek Express lift you can access The Woods, baccarat, Dealers's Choice blues and Lost Boy green run. From Wildwood Express try Kangaroo Cornice, Challenge or S. Look Ma black runs or blue Hunky Dory. With the Mountain Top Express open you can whizz down Whistle Pig, Expresso, Cappucino, Swingsville and Christmas. Wildwood express. Now a total of 78 trails and 14 lifts open.
For the advanced skier the T-bar has opened with black runs Pika, Ptarmigan and Forget-me-not and White Crown. Contest Bowl is also now ready for action. For intermediate skiers Breck has now opened Peak 7 with blue runs Pioneer, Monte Cristo, Angels Rest and Fort Mary B now open. On Peak 8 and 9 most of the blue and green runs are now open including Briar Rose blue run on Peak 9. Peak 8 also has most of its blue black runs ready for skiers. Overall 14 lifts are running with access to 46 trails, covered in new snow over the last few days.
In Beaver Creek a total of 14 lifts and 45 runs are now operational. Bachelor Gulch has Grubstake and Gunder's blue runs open plus green runs Sawbuck, Intertwine and Cabin Fever. 27 runs are open on the main Beaver Creek mountain giving green, blue or black run options for skiers. Open black runs include Fool's Gold, Addy's, Half Hitch, Double Diamond and Centennial Spruce and Willey's Face. Drink of water lift is open with green run Booth Gardens, Powell and Mystic Garden open in the Family Ski Zone. From the Rose Bowl lift black runs Cataract, Spider and Ripsaw are open along with blue runs C-prime and Stone Creek Meadows. The Nastar course is ready for those who want some race action!
Steamboat Springs, Colorado, USA
Steamboat has opened more lifts with the Thunderhead Express, 4 points and Storm Peak Express and now has 8 lifts running. From Thunderhead lift have a go at Vagabond or Betwixt blue runs. Bashor is open giving skiers and riders access to the Terrain Park, but not the Superpipe or Nastar course just yet. From the top of Storm Peak Express whizz down Buddy's Run, Calf Roper and Meadow Lane blue runs or try your hand at Storm Peak South black run. Try Cyclone or Hurrican blacks off 4 points.
Winter Park has now opened some runs on Mary Jane Mountain including Mary Jane trail and Lower Arrowhead. Winter Park mountain has most of its blue and green trails open including Lonesome Whistle, Whistlestop, Switchyard and Mock Turtle, which have just opened in the last couple of days, plus Tweedle Dee, Butch's Breezeway, Jack Kendrick and Jabberwocky. Overall 30 trails open and 12 lifts with the Olympia and High Lonesome lift now open on the Winter Park side and the Pony Express and main Super Gauge lift now open on the Mary Jane side.
Resorts opening new terrain - update December 2, 2009 Vail has now opened the Vista Bahn lift from Vail Village as well as the Avanti Express lift to access Avanti trail, mid Vail express trail and Over Easy. From Lionshead practice parkway is open to get to Ledges, Lodgepole and Columbine. The beginner area at Vail Village Gopher Hill is also now open for business. In total that's 9 trails and 7 lifts...
Beaver Creek opened for the 2009/10 season on November 25 and now has 12 lifts and 18 runs open including Centennial, Latigo & Red Tail.
Breckenridge now has 14 trails and 12 lifts running. Blue runs Cashire, Little Burn, Bonanza, Sundown & Columbia. plus some green runs are open off Peak 9. At Peak 8 there's a variety of green, blue and blue back runs to choose from.
Winter Park has now opened the Zephyr Express lift to access top to bottom terrain. White Rabbit, March Hare, Cheshire Cat, Jabberwocky and the ever popular Cranmer are now open, plus Norweigan black run. 14 trails, 1 terrain park and 5 lifts are now up and running.
Steamboat opened for the 2009/10 season on November 27 and now has the gondola, Christie Peak Express and Burgess Creek chairlift open. Among the 18 open runs are blue runs Vogue, Lightening, Rudi's Run and Heavenly Daze are on the go as is See Me black run.
It has been a long 7 months since the lifts closed mid April on the 2008/9 ski season, but now Summer is well & truely over and the lifts are opening.
Minor resorts in Colorado, Loveland and Arapahoe, who always fight to be the first resort to switch on their lifts, have been open since the first week of October.
This week it's the turn of the major resorts to get moving ready for the Thanksgiving crowd next week. Breckenridge opened last Saturday November 14, 2009, Winter Park opened November 18, 2009 and Vail opened yestereday Friday November 20, 2009.
Breckenridge currently has 6 lifts and 7 major trails open on Peak 8 including top to bottom runs from the Peak 8 lift. Breck doesn't just have green and blue runs open, they've also opened Dukes and Spruce blue - black runs and Callie's Alley a short fun black run, so plenty of terrain for everyone.
Winter Park has just a couple of lifts and runs on the go, but is working hard to get lower Hughes open this weekend with more terrain to follow.
In Vail the lifts from Lionshead are open - The Born Free Express (#8) is open for access to Born Free trail, and the Eagle Bahn Gondola (#19) for access to Chair 15 and the beginner area at Eagle’s Nest. The Marketplace at Eagle’s Nest will be open for lunch. There will not be skiing or snowboarding from the Gondola, only access to Eagle’s Nest and the Chair 15 area, with downloading required afterward. Guests will be able to ski or snowboard back to Vail Village from Born Free, but there will be no lift access out of Vail Village.
Each day more terrain is expected to open up and we'll be keeping track of the terrain and lift status on a regular basis.
We know you love the convenience of ski in, ski out accommodation - step out of your door, step into your skis and be on the slopes in no time and enjoy the luxury of cruising home at the end of the day. We are proud to offer new ski, ski out options in Vail and Beaver Creek to add to the ski in, ski out accommodation we already have in Breckenridge and Winter Park.
Plus we are running a fantastic ski deal - save 10% on Vail and Beaver Creek self-catered accommodation - see "Special offer" page for more info.
Lionshead center is our only ski in, ski out apartment in Vail and is right at the base of the Eagle Bahn gondola. In the heart of Lionshead Village mall above the shops, this condo is perfect for those who want to be right in the center of Vail.
Market Square condos , Beaver Creek are in a perfect location in the heart of Beaver Creek Village with ski in, ski out access. These 1-2 bedroom condos, sleep 2-6 people are just steps away from the ice rink and located above boutique shops & nightlife. These well decorated condos have a full kitchen, fireplace and internet access.
Townsend Place, Beaver Creek is great value for a ski in, ski out apartment and is close to the Village at Beaver Creek. This 1 bedroom condo has a full kitchen, common outdoor hot tub and lovely mountain views from the balcony. Perfect for those who want ski in, ski out access, but prefer to be a little further from the activity in the village.
McCoy Peak Lodge, Beaver Creek. These comfortable ski in ski out studio apartments are on the slopes by Chairlift 1 in Beaver Creek resort. A ski locker and storage cupboard come with these condos, so you can leave your gear right next to the slopes. You can also enjoy the mountain views in the beautiful lobby / lounge area of the lodge. The kitchenette comes with hob, fridge, mini dishwasher and espresso maker and the bathroom is surprisingly large with shower and jacuzzi bathtub.
Located near the Peak 8 lift, Northwoods chalet is built to the highest standards with decor and amenities which are sure to please those with the most discerning tastes. Space and comfort are in abundance in this chalet with its lounge / dining room with rock fireplace, plus separate media room, office area, gym & reading nook. Guests can relax after a hard day's work on the slopes in the outdoor hot tub.
Every detail is taken care of from the bathrobes, toiletries, hairdryers to the gourmet food & a courtesy van to shuttle you to & from the slopes (with catered option).
First snow of the 2009/10 ski season on the ski runs in Colorado today - Winter's Coming - time to book your next USA skiiing holiday! Visit http://www.chalets-usa.co.uk/ for catered chalets, self-catered accommodation, hotels and more in Vail, Breckenridge, Winter Park, Beaver Creek & Steamboat Springs.
Breckenridge ski resort is one of our most popular resorts, partly due to the fantastic skiing for every ability level, but also due to the character of the town. Breckenridge is a historic town with over 350 historic buildings and is a delight to explore with its many boutiques, art galleries, independent coffee shops, bars & restaurants and legendary nightlife.
We have had great success with our catered chalets in Breckenridge and now we have added fabulous new self-catered ski holidays for those skiers who like a little more independence. Skiers and boarders can now choose to cook for themselves with all the amenities of home or sample some of the many varied restaurants in Breckenridge.
The Village at Breckenridge is unique due to its location being ski in, ski out at the base of Peak 9 & being right in the middle of town. The Village combines the benefits of having your own apartment with your own living space / kitchen with all the amenities of a full service resort including pool, hot tubs, health club, ice rink, arcade bars & restaurants on site & the ski school right at the base of Peak 9.
Beaver Run Resort is another ski in, ski out full service resort with the Beaver Run Superchair only steps away. Beaver Run apartments include the amenities of a top hotel including spa, pool, hot tubs, sauna, gym, shuttle bus, bars & restaurants on site.
We have also added 3 more ski in, ski out options in Breckenridge - Trails End 1 bedroom condos and Cedars 2 bedroom townhomes, which are also just at the base of Peak 9 and very near the centre of town. For larger groups Saddlewood 3 bedroom townhomes are ski in, ski out from the Snowflake Run and sleep 6-10 people. These townhomes are beautifully furnished with superior decor and furnishings and have all the amenities of home plus a private outdoor hot tub.
For those who need a larger property to accommodate their groups we have 4 and 5 bedroom townhomes in Elk Ridge, which sleep up to 14 people and are perfect for 2 families. They have spacious living accommodation over 3 or 4 floors to give families a chance to spread out, a private hot tub and access to the Upper Village Pool.
Boulder Chalet is another option for large groups with its 6 bedrooms, sleeping 14 people. This is a new luxury chalet jsut 400 yards from Peak 8 lift in Breckenridge. Boulder Chalet has delightful space including open plan lounge / dining room, rec room with pool table & playstation, a cinema room, plus outdoor hot tub.
With the economy in mind, we have added a couple of affordable self-catered skiing holiday options: Der Steiermark has cosy 1 and 2 bedroom condos, which have the benefit of being right in the middle of Breckenridge. The 2 bedroom condos also have an open loft sleeping area, so can sleep 6 comfortably with another 2 on a sofa bed if necessary.
Los Pinos townhomes are another good value option - these 1, 2 or 3 bedroom townhomes are a short walk from the Snowflake chair and on the free shuttle bus route. They have high quality furnishings, all the amenities of home and a hot tub in the complex.
We are delighted to be able to offer our guests these new skiing holidays and give them the chance to experience everything Breckenridge has to offer.
1) Ski in, ski out
There are so many ski in, ski out opportunities in Breckenridge. There are clusters of accommodation around the base at Peak 9 like The Village at Breckenridge, Cedars townhomes and Trails End condos. Then just up the run is Beaver Run Resort right by the base of the Beaver Run superchair. Plus the runs have extended into the town and vice versa along the green Snowflake run to the bottom of the Snowflake chair and all the way into town along the long 4 O'Clock run.
2) Historic Mountain Town
Breckenridge was originally a base camp when gold was discovered along the Blue River in 1859. Nowadays Breckenridge contains over 350 historic structures, making it the largest historic district in the state of Colorado. The Town is a delight to explore with its many boutiques, art galleries, independent coffee shops, bars and restaurants. They even buried all the power lines a few years ago, so the town looks its picturesque best!
3) Within reach
Everything is close by in Breckenridge. The slopes virtually reach the town in many areas unlike many US resorts where the town & ski area is separated & the town is fairly compact. The new gondola has connected the town to Peak 7 and 8, plus there is a great free shuttle bus system to get you from peak to peak & into town if you need it.
Breckenridge is world famous for its nightlife and you certainly can party into the early hours if you so wish. Breckenridge has a huge variety of dining options to choose from. Try Breck's newest restaurant Modis on the main street, which serves an eclectic mix of bistro and asian flavoured fare or try "Steak and Rib" often recommended by locals. On the drinks side there is something for everyone from sports bars to micro breweries to wine tasting. If clubbing is your thing try Cecilias with "hot" DJs and occasionally a live band and a long long 6 hour "happy hour"...
5) The slopes
Breckenridge Ski Resort is a world famous resort so it goes without saying the skiing / snowboarding is fantastic and Breckenridge has the highest chairlift in North America. Peak 7 and Peak 9 are an intermediate's paradise with run after run of cruisy blues. For more advanced skiers try the wide open bowls off the T-bar or bumps on Peak 8. For those who like to experience rock and cornice drops head to Lake Chutes or to the back of Peak 9 for stunning tree skiing.
Chalets USA are proud to announce the addition of The Ritz Carlton Club at Beaver Creek to their portfolio of skiing holidays. The Ritz Carlton Club ski in ski out 2 and 3 bedroom condominium residences are decorated & furnished to the highest Ritz Carlton standards. In addition guests benefit from all the amenities of the adjacent Ritz Carlton Hotel including slopeside heated outdoor pool, hot tubs & state of the art spa & fitness centre. Ritz Carlton services include a ski valet to warm your boots & prepare your skis, concierge & nanny services. The Ritz Carlton Club is located at Bachelor Gulch in Beaver Creek Ski Resort.
Chalets USA have now been accredited by IATAN who give global recognition to members of the travel industry. "IATAN is committed to upholding the integrity of the travel industry" and we are proud to be associated with them, giving our customers even more peace of mind. For more info about Chalets USA see About Us page of our website.
Vail is a ski resort loved by the Brits mainly due to the huge amount of terrain on offer, which can easily keep them skiing all day long for a 14 night holiday. The nightlife, boutique shops & pedestrian villages of Lionshead & Vail Village only add to the attraction of this world famous resort.
Our catered ski chalets in Vail have been popular and now we have added self-catered apartments, condos & homes for those who like a little more independence. Skiers now have the choice of cooking for themselves or sampling the many varied restaurants in Vail.
Vantage Point (1-4 bedroom) & Lionshead Arcade (2 bedroom) condos are located in the heart of Lionshead Village, Vail and are within easy walking distance of the Eagle Bahn gondola with the shops, bars & restaurants on the doorstep.
Vail Trails (2 bedroom) and Vail Core (1 bedroom) condos are located in Vail Village just a short stroll from the slopes & nightlife.
All these condos include unlimited access to the Aria Club & Spa, Vail's most extensive workout facility & spa. Take advantage of the indoor track, tennis or squash courts, heated outdoor pool & hot tubs. Join a pilates or cardio class or work out with a personal trainer...
We've also added some more affordable condos for budget conscious skiers who to still want to experience the skiing in Vail: The Lodge at Brookside has 1,2 & 3 bedroom condos and is located in Avon about a 10-15 minute bus ride from Vail and very close to Beaver Creek ski resort.
We also now have a number of larger homes available for families and groups. Just tell us your requirements and we'll find you something suitable....
Group early booking discounts for 2009/10 ski season in Winter Park, Colorado, USA.
Want to get the perfect accommodation for your group and get a good deal? Take advantage of early booking discounts with Chalets USA:
Get great deals in Chalet Bluebell 3 and Sawmill Station 3 and 4 bedroom townhomes just off the main street in the town of Winter Park. Or try Hi Country Haus 1,2 or 3 bedroom apartments with indoor pool, hot tubs & games facilities, just a short walk to Main Street in Winter Park - perfect for the budget conscious skier.
We are now booking Vail's most luxurious hotel: The Arrabelle at Vail Square.
Located at the base of the gondola this ski in ski out hotel reflects the romantic heritage & ambiance of the European Alps. This premiere hotel offers endless amenities from the rooftop pool with stunning mountain views to the state of the art spa & fitness centre. The dedicated staff including ski valet, nanny & butler service are there to ensure you are looked after in every way.
Breckenridge is well known in the realms of skiing as a world class resort in the heart of the Colorado Rockies. Popular with Americans it also became a favourite for British skiers 10-15 years ago, when the word escaped about the town full of character and the superb skiing.
Skiing is a very popular sport in the UK, despite their decided lack of mountains and although there is some skiing to be had in Scotland, many Brits make the short trip to Europe to get their skiing fix. US skiing has however become increasingly attractive with the guaranteed snowfall and new direct flights from London with United adding to the number of seats already available on the British Airways from London to Denver.
Breckenridge in particular has become well known and loved by the Brits with Vail & Aspen following not far behind. Chalets USA which caters mainly to UK skiers now has new chalets in Breckenridge to cope with the ever growing demand. Chalet Chloe, Boulder Chalet and Eagle Lodge are just a few hundred yards from Peak 8 and offer skiing virtually on the doorstep with no hassle catered accommodation.
In addition Chalets USA now have introduced new self-catered skiing holidays for the 2009/10 ski season for those who want a little more independence and the choice of cooking for themselves or trying one of the many restaurants Breckenridge has to offer.
Breckenridge the town is perfect for meandering along the historic streets and browsing the many boutiques. Non-skiers & skiers alike can drop into the many bars & restaurants to celebrate & mull over the days skiing achievements. With lively nightlife, Breckenridge is one of the few ski resorts in Colorado that really caters to the pubbing & clubbing crowd, leading to superb skiing holidays all day & all night.
Breckenridge has the highest chairlift in North America & a great variety of terrain:
Most beginner trails are located off Chair 7 on Peak 8, including a portion of the 3.5 mile Four O' Clock run, which is the longest run in Breckenridge.
An intermediate's paradise, Peak 7 has added 7 new gently rolling more difficult runs, accessed by a six-passenger SuperChair. Popular with the locals, Claimjumper is located on Peak 8 in addition to Northstar and Crescendo. Two high-speed SuperChairs on Peak 9 access more than 10 intermediate trails for cruisy skiing & riding.
Duke's Run on Peak 8 offers both bumps & groomed terrain, so take your pick. Or take the T-Bar up to Pika, Ptarmigan, White Crown & Forget-Me-Not for wide-open bowls & stunning views. Peak 9's Peerless is a great place to try your hand in the bumps, while bump experts will appreciate 6-Chair, especially on a powder day. A quick ride up the Falcon SuperChair on Peak 10 wisks skiers and riders to three advanced intermediate groomers, steep & deep bump runs, & the legendary glades of The Burn.
Peak 7 offers vast steep treeless terrain at a 45-degree pitch. On Peak 8, experienced skiers & riders can enjoy amazing alpine vistas from the top of Horseshoe Bowl or Imperial Bowl at 12,998 ft via the new highest lift in North America. Hike to Lake Chutes for a 55 degree pitch, definitely extreme terrain, between 10 & 80 feet of cornice, rocks to jump & of course, fresh tracks. Peak 9 offers fantastic tree skiing: The Windows is an easyish hike (10 to 20 minutes) from the Patrol Hut at Peak 9. On the South Side of Peak 10 you'll find big fat bumps, hidden kickers and glades, but you won't see many other people.
Breckenridge celebrates its 150th Anniversary this year and has grown in stature tremendously since the early days as a Victorian mining town. Investment in the town continues at a strong pace with developments this year at the base of Peak 7 providing high end lodging and new restaurants. However the locals say the town has retained its character over the years and Breckenridge is still called "The Perfect Mountain Town" by locals and visitors alike.
Since the snow stopped flying at the end of last ski season, Chalets USA have been very busy adding new skiing holidays for the 2009/10 ski season both in our hometown of Winter Park and in some of the other fantastic resorts in Colorado, USA.Economic conditions have meant that Crystal Ski Holidays have pulled out of the ski chalet market in the USA and Canada and well known tour operator Ski All America has shut its doors permanently.We, at Chalets USA, want to make sure guests still have a chance to experience the fantastic snow conditions and service offered in USA ski resorts and so we have been expanding our range of accommodation options to make up for the reduction in supply from the other guys.Take a look at our new chalets in Breckenridge : Chalet Chloe can be booked by room or the whole chalet and Boulder Chalet is a brand new ski chalet with 6 bedrooms and is booked on a whole chalet basis.Blue Spruce Chalet is a great option for groups who want a luxury chalet in Vail and we have a new option in Winter Park Resort called Sawmill Station, which can be a catered or self-catered chalet. For the budget conscious skier we have introduced Hi Country Haus in Winter Park, which are 1, 2 or 3 bedroom self-catered apartments in the heart of the Town of Winter Park.For those who want total luxury and pampering Steamboat Springs is the place to go. New chalets this year include Friendly Fox Chalet which has 5 bedrooms, traditional living room, dining room kitchem, plus rec room with pool table & a separate family room with table tennis, a really fantastic place to play. River Queen Chalets are also a new addition. These 4 bedroom homes can be booked separately or together to accommodate groups of up to 23 people.These chalets can be self-catered or you can choose from 2 catering options. The full service option includes everything you could wish for - complimentary chauffeur airport pick up from Hayden airport, hors d'oeuvres, gourmet meals and an on call complimentary shuttle service to take you wherever you please and mobile phone to call them with. The economy catered service was designed for those who still want some pampering, but want good value in these troubled times and includes meals & shared chalet shuttle.Lots going on and lots more to come. We are currently working on new skiing holidays in Vail, so watch this space there's more to come!