Whether you’re going to finish out the last of the winter season or you’re headed there for a little spring skiing – here is my insight into a little place called ASPEN! For me, Aspen wasn’t what I expected, it was so much more. The western charm of the town still shines through even among the glitz and glamour of the high end shopping, the world class restaurants and the over the top night life. . This was our second year in a row to ring in the New Year in Aspen. It really is the most beautiful winter wonderland, and on top of that the party never stops. Winter, Spring, Summer or Fall, in my book a trip to Aspen is always a good idea.
Getting to ASPEN
Fly into Aspen: This is the easiest choice but it is a small airport and the weather can cause travel issues. This is also the most expensive option.
Fly into Denver: We took the Denver route this year, its about a 3 ½ hour drive and not bad at all! Just make sure you map out the correct driving route and don’t take the route towards Independence Pass.
Where to STAY
Where to SKI
It’s always a good idea to reserve your rentals and lift tickets ahead of time (for a discount). Our Favorite Place for rentals and storage is INCLINE SKI SHOP, the guys here are so sweet and their storage is just steps from the Silver Queen Gondola and bus stop! Wether your skill set is beginner to expert, they can accommodate all your gear needs here!
Aspen Mountain: In the heart of dowtown Aspen. Proficient, very experienced skiers – There are mostly black and blue mountain runs, right in the heart of Aspen. If you are willing to take on Ajax, it is really fun and skiing down for lunch at AJAX tavern is a must.
Aspen Highlands: Intermediate skiers, hop on a bus. We always go to Highlands on the day were eating lunch at Cloud Nine (12,000 ft) and you must have skis on to get to the restaurant.
Buttermilk: Beginner to Intermediate skiers: We had a big group with us this year and starting out at Buttermilk was perfect. Half pipe for the more experienced and easy green runs for the beginners in the group.
Aspen certainly isn’t a wake up early kind of place. People don’t start skiing until around 11 am, most take a long lunch around 1 pm, and then go back for a couple runs and then head to Apres Ski around 4:30.
What is Apres Ski? I asked myself that question the first time I went to Aspen. At 4:30 pm everybody comes off the mountain and gathers in different spots around town to party in their ski clothes until about 7:00. In true Aspen style, champagne is flowing, music is blaring and people are dancing.
Where to EAT
Before I get to the list let me say one thing – DO NOT MISS Cloud 9 Alpine Bistro but you will need to make reservations a year in advance. This year on New Years Eve Will Farrell and Leonardo Dicaprio were at the 2:00 seating and things got CRAZY! Book the 2 o’clock seating if you can and get ready to dance on tables and spray $150 bottles of champagne on your friends, this is probably the most expensive and insane lunch you’ll ever have. Someone sprayed a $10,000 bottle of champagne during our seating.
Breakfast: Peaches Corner Café – a quick and lovely breakfast with the locals.
Lunch & Dinner: White House Tavern – must order chicken sandwich and french dip.
Lunch Break on Aspen Mountain: Ajax Tavern – perfect for a mid-day ski break!
Lunch & Dinner: Creperie du Village – very romantic and european feeling.
2:00pm Lunch: Cloud 9 Alpine Bistro – get ready to spray champagne make reservations months a head of time!
Dinner: Matsuhisa – Head downstairs for swanky sushi, last year we sat next to Kris Jenner and Melanie Griffith.
Drinks: Jerome Hotel – Perfect place to cozy up for some delicious cocktails!
Nightlife: Belly up – Make sure to check the calendar for a great line up.
Where to SHOP
Shopping and Art Galleries: The shopping in Aspen is probably one of my favorite activities. The tiny town is packed with some of the best shopping I’ve ever seen, from Ralph Lauren to Dior and J.Crew to Intermix. Stop in the amazing art galleries showcasing some of the finest art in the country.