[su_heading]The Viceroy Snowmass Hotel -Winter[/su_heading]
One of my favorite hotels in Aspen/Snowmass to stay with the family, or hang out with girlfriends, is the Viceroy Snowmass.
My family and I were invited to stay at the Viceroy Hotels and Resorts’ Mountain Resort in Snowmass for the last weekend of the ski season, and what a weekend it was.
When entering a hotel with three boys, heaps of gear and a less than enthusiastic husband who would prefer to stay in the luxury of his own home, it is always the immediate reception we get from the staff that lets us know what kind of stay we are going to have. It has become our custom to let the boys enter the lobby while we unpack the car and run back out to give us their first impressions.
THE VICEROY SNOWMASS:
At The Viceroy Snowmass, unveiled on November 25th, 2009, Axel came running out to me with his eyes wide open, Mommy there is a huuugggge jar of your favorite candy in there. You have to come see it, this instant, he exclaimed. And indeed there was a jar filled with my favorite old-fashioned candy alongside a spread of homemade treats: cough drops, lollipops, snicker bars, pop tarts, hot chocolate and Gatorade, as if the hotel had been waiting all day for the arrival of a family with three young boys, and a mom who LOVES Mary Janes and Bit-O-Honeys.
I slowly walked through the lobby and my jaw dropped as I absorbed the sustainable chic decor designed by Jean-Michel Gathy, of the Malaysia based architectural firm, Denniston International.
The innovative organic interiors were soft and pleasing to the eye with changing wall coverings everywhere I looked. There were Birch Trees bound in leather, rising up above the magnificently elongated yellow leather coach in the lobby. In the dining room, Eight K, named after the elevation of Snowmass, there was a wall of blended panels of mahogany, steer hide, and steel strips on the fireplace surround. Gathy has become my new idol. If only I had a budget for our new home!
The Viceroy, committed to achieving LEED-Silver certification, is now one of only two hotels in Colorado to get this certification and one of only eight in the United States. The task seems daunting with a hotel that offers 173 guest rooms and residences with galley or full gourmet kitchens, two restaurants, a full service spa, a fitness room, a boutique, a heated pool, two hot tubs and a 9,000 square foot event space.
Interior Design Magazine gave some great insight into The Viceroy Group’s sustainable practices, “Green credentials were chalked up in several innovative ways. All dirt removed from the construction site was saved and reused. Construction workers were transported to the site by bus, reducing fuel consumption and vehicle emissions. The Viceroy also provides reusable and washable water bottles, hand towels, and shampoo and conditioner bottles. A saline pool creates its own chlorine through the use of salt and electrical current. There’s even a gratis on-site electric car charging system.”
After checking out all of the amenities the boys were happy to rest a bit before Baddy came over from work. We went up to the room and they promptly dove onto the pillowtop mattress and feather duvet, wrapped themselves up in the soft faux fur blanket and turned on one of the three flat screen televisions. I went back to the lobby to get a better feel for the staff and hotel clientele.
As luck would have it, good friends were spilling in to attend the Aspen Country Day annual fundraiser that was being held in Eight K. Naturally, I began to take photos. From Aspen Travel Writer to Aspen Paparazzi. A cocktail waitress came by with a tray of hors doeuvres and a glass of wine. I decided to stay a bit longer and pulled up a seat at the 87 foot long glass-topped apres-ski bar, lit up with neon blue strips. I was just beginning to charm the room when three shaggy boys, dressed in nothing but flip flops and Quick Silver bathing trunks, came in to the dining room to bust my cover and drag me out to the pool.
We swam under the stars in the outdoor heated pool and warmed up by the gas fire pit in our own private Cabana, designed by renowned tastemaker Kelly Wearstler. I’ll tell you what, The Viceroy does not falter when it comes to luxury! I kept searching for the Cabana boy to fan me with grape leaves while massaging my feet. Instead, we were entertained by our oldest son as he danced around the flames.
That night we slipped into our 100% Egyptian cotton bed linens, but of course, and drifted off into a luxurious sleep.
The next day, wearing our ski boots we clunked into the elevator. A voice announced that we were heading up to the lobby that was located on the fourth floor of the hotel. Always getting lost in hotels, I appreciated the help.
We walked out the door, locked into our skis and took off, stopping often to dunk into the pool. Gotta love it when there is a Viceroy slopeside to add to Spring Festivities.
Hootie-Hoo and I quit early to reside at the pool after hitting the Sweet Life candy store located in the base village. I had my eye on those striped lounge chairs and was all too excited to sprawl out in the sun while the rest of the family whooped it up on the slopes.
As I mixed and mingled I met Jeff David, the General Manager of the hotel. Jeff strolled around the party, the man about town, making sure that everybody was happy and inviting hotel guests to a champagne and tequila buffet dinner party in the private dining room of Eight K.
We showered off in the magnificent bathroom and kept the momentum going by dining at the sunny hotel cafe, Nest and had a delicious buffet of rib eye, elk and sushi, from the made by the celebrity sushi chef, Francis Mo. Baddy and I toasted the hotel and its guests with bubbly and tequila shots, finishing off with scrumptious desserts.
The next morning Jeff and I met and ate a delicious breakfast in Eight K. Rob Zack, Culinary Chef of the restaurant, provides a simplistically creative and clever menu using local, sustainable and organic ingredients. Eclectic entrees include Mexico City Street Tacos and French Onion Soup Dumplings. A creative children’s menu is also available.
I asked Jeff to tell me the intricacies of The Viceroy Group philosophy and I quickly became impressed by his seemingly effortless ability to manage a hotel whose goal is to deliver luxury and excellence combined with mountain fun and casualness.
I had read the hotel brochure and was in agreement with their statement that, the Snowmass Viceroy focuses on anticipating and accommodating the needs and wishes of the guests in an innovative and individual way. Jeff went further by saying, “We train our staff to promote helping by instinct thus providing ‘intuitive service’. If a guest is sitting alone at the restaurant we provide them with reading material. We are Corporate with an extreme open mind,” as evidenced by the attached and above photos that were taken for a staff slide presentation Jeff put together.
Photo courtesy of The Viceroy Hotel Group
Photo courtesy of The Viceroy Hotel Group
Leaving for home the next day, I told Jeff that a weekend was not enough time to experience all of the amenities that the hotel had to offer and so he invited me back for a full service SPA treatment in the incredible 7,000 square foot SPA with an acoustic ceiling of bent mahogany and blankets as soft as butter.
The next day I drove to Denver and back to pick up our new puppy, Muki. She is a sweet and wise little girl but nevertheless, after a few weeks of the boys vying for her love I know I will be in need of taking Jeff up on his offer and visiting the SPA to melt into the decor and let the incredibly peaceful atmosphere sink into my being.
*Disclaimer – Yes, rooms were comped for this review, but all opinions are my own, and completely honest – and I stand by them 100%.