Colorado is one of the best ski destinations in the United States. If you choose to hit the slopes here, make sure you pick the right ski lodge to make the most of your trip!
Why You Should Visit Colorado
Colorado may have come a long way from the days when it was part of the Wild West, but the same wild scenery that impressed and frightened historic settlers draws visitors today.
Nature lovers flock to Colorado to enjoy vast prairie landscapes, eye-catching red rocks, and wildlife like you can’t find anywhere else. Perhaps the most famous landscapes in Colorado are the mountains.
The Rocky Mountains carve a swath through Colorado, creating dramatic landscapes, beautiful lakes and rivers, and more. In the summer, most Colorado residents spend their free time hiking or mountain biking, exploring the trails of their home along with tourists.
The mountains also come alive during the winter. Colorado is home to some of the best ski slopes, thanks to the Rocky Mountains.
The challenging slopes draw adventure lovers, while the après-ski culture in the high-end mountain towns draw lovers of luxury. The best way to experience all the charms of Colorado in the winter is to stay in a ski resort.
Ski resorts give you easy access to the slopes while allowing you to partake in the fun après-ski culture many Colorado towns have to offer.
The 15 Best Ski Resorts in Colorado
Colorado has many amazing ski resorts, but here are the best of the best, from high-end lodges to resorts with rustic charm.
1. The Lodge at Breckenridge
- Location: Breckenridge
- Average Price: $465 a night
The Lodge at Breckenridge is located in one of Colorado’s top ski areas, Breckenridge. People from all over the country flock here to stay.
The Lodge is a more affordable option than the ski resort itself and easier to book, but you still get to ski at the famous town’s resort and have a free shuttle to take you there.
After a full day of skiing, you can relax at one of the two hot tubs with mountain views on the property and enjoy the delicious food at the on-site restaurant.
2. Sheraton Steamboat Resort Villas
- Location: Steamboat Springs
- Average Price: $296 a night
Steamboat Springs is another Colorado location that draws many skiers. Sheraton Steamboat Resort Villas is a great option for accommodation as you explore the area, whether you come for skiing in the winter or cycling and hiking in the summer.
All guests stay in their own apartments, with enough space to truly relax after a full day of outdoor activities. You can enjoy shared amenities such as the sundeck and garden.
3. One Ski Hill, A RockResort
- Location: Breckenridge
- Average Price: $725 a night
One Ski Hill, A RockResort is a collection of resort apartments with amenities so good you’ll never want to go back home. The ski resort operates in tandem with the more famous Breckenridge Ski Resort access and even offers ski-in and ski-out access to the slopes of its more famous neighbor.
Once you are done with the mountain, you can enjoy amenities in the resort, such as spacious apartments complete with balconies and laundry facilities, on-site restaurants, and even a bar for mingling with your fellow ski bunnies.
4. Crystal Peak Lodge by Vail Resorts
- Location: Breckenridge
- Average Price: $656 a night
Crystal Peak Lodge is another fine option for staying in Breckenridge, operated by Vail Resorts, the premier operator of ski resorts in Colorado.
The lodge offers easy access to the Independence SuperChair Gondola, so you can ski right out of your apartment and hit the slopes.
Once you’re done skiing, relax in a huge apartment complete with a personal fireplace or meet fellow vacationers in the shared movie areas or game rooms.
5. The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch
- Location: Beaver Creek
- Average Price: $633 a night
If you truly want to ski in luxury, then you can’t go wrong with The Ritz-Carlton in Bachelor Gulch. Luxurious amenities at this resort include five restaurants, a sauna, a spa, and more. Rooms are massive with high-end details, such as marble bathrooms.
The Ritz-Carlton is a perfect place to stay year-round (if you can afford it). In the winter, ski out of the hotel and straight onto the mountain, and in the summer, enjoy activities such as the pool and golf course.
6. Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa
- Location: Beaver Creek
- Average Price: $684 a night
Another excellent resort in the ski area of Beaver Creek is the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa. The resort is perfect for all levels of skiers.
Advanced athletes can ski right out the front door and hit the slopes, while those who want to get started can enjoy the in-resort ski school that confidently equips them for a vacation on the slopes.
Other amenities at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa include a swimming pool, tennis court, and in-house dining options. Plus, the location is excellent, right next to picturesque Beaver Creek Village.
7. The Peaks Resort and Spa
- Location: Telluride
- Average Price: $613 a night
The Peaks Resort and Spa is perfect for advanced skiers because it is located right by the slopes of Telluride, one of the best mountains in the United States for skiing.
The resort is a ski-in, ski-out resort, meaning that getting to the mountain has never been easier. True daredevils can even go heli-skiing.
Of course, you might be tempted to forego the mountain altogether and enjoy the excellent amenities such as the indoor/outdoor pool, upscale on-site restaurants, and spa to shake off the après-ski soreness.
8. Ski Tip Lodge by Keystone Resort
- Location: Keystone
- Average Price: $270 a night
The Ski Tip Lodge by Keystone Resort is the perfect getaway for someone looking for a traditional, retro ski vacation. The picturesque wooden buildings and vintage décor make the resort feel cozy, but the amenities are also ultra-modern, including Wi-Fi.
Other amenities include a restaurant, terrace, bar, and patio where you can have drinks with one of the best views in the world.
9. The Arrabelle at Vail Square
- Location: Vail
- Average Price: $3,136 a night
Vail is one of Colorado’s most famous ski towns, and it is full of great places to stay. The Arrabelle at Vail Square stands out even among that crowded field.
The gorgeous chalet looks like a traditional Alpine lodge from the outside but inside features spacious modern design and luxurious touches such as marble bathrooms.
Amenities at the resort include fireplaces in each room, a rooftop pool, and hot tubs to soak in after hitting the slopes.
Of course, the focus is skiing, which is easily accessible from the resort’s front door. Plus, you have plenty of amenities, such as ski storage and pass vendors.
10. The Little Nell
- Location: Aspen
- Average Price: $1,474 a night
Aspen has many amazing ski resorts, but the Little Nell is definitely one of the best. Take in the atmosphere at this world-famous ski town with an upscale on-site restaurant and tavern, hot tub, and fitness center.
Little Nell is the perfect base for exploring the nature around Aspen.
In the winter, you can, of course, go skiing, and many ski lifts are just a few feet away from your front door. In the summer, the front desk will organize outdoor activities, including fly fishing and hiking for guests.
11. St. Regis Aspen Resort
- Location: Aspen
- Average Price: $778 a night
The St. Regis Aspen Resort is another luxurious resort in the fabulous ski town of Aspen. You’ll feel like you’re being whisked away to another world as soon as you step past the imposing brick façade and enter the beautifully decorated resort.
Amenities include a spa, restaurants, pool, and ski storage. Several of Aspen’s best ski lifts are just a few hundred feet away, and you can even rent equipment if you didn’t bring your own.
12. Aspen Meadows Resort
- Location: Aspen
- Average Price: $623 a night
If you want to stay in Aspen but are looking for a slightly quieter option, then the Aspen Meadows Resort is the perfect choice for you.
You can enjoy a quiet getaway in your own slice of the mountains and easily access the best ski trails and shops in Aspen, thanks to the complimentary shuttle.
Other amenities that make this resort shine include ultramodern décor and flat-screen TVs in every room, a swimming pool, and a fitness center if skiing is not enough of a workout for you.
13. Viceroy Snowmass
- Location: Snowmass Village
- Average Price: $351 a night
The Viceroy Snowmass is a great laid-back resort in Snowmass Village, just a few miles away from Aspen. You can easily head into Aspen or enjoy the excellent trails in quieter Snowmass Village, which you can ski onto directly from the entrance to the resort.
Guests at the Viceroy Snowmass enjoy excellent luxury amenities such as an infinity pool with its very own waterfall and a Latin American restaurant, so you can feel as if you are in a tropical destination after spending the day skiing.
14. The Lodge at Mountaineer Square
- Location: Mount Crested Butte
- Average Price: $326 a night
For dedicated skiers who want a comfortable experience but not one that distracts from the trails, staying in the no-frills town of Crested Butte is a great option. Even Crested Butte has a great ski resort in the form of The Lodge at Mountaineer Square.
To hit the trails while staying at the lodge, all you have to do is open up the front door and walk for five minutes. Other amenities at the lodge include a sauna, indoor-outdoor pool, and bar for connecting with other guests.
- Location: Vail
- Average Price: $719 a night
Located in Vail, Sonnenalp is one of the best resorts to stay in if you want to experience everything that this world-famous ski resort has to offer. Ski lifts such as Gondola One and Gopher Hill are just a five-minute walk away, making it very easy to hit the slopes.
After a long day of skiing, you can come back and enjoy the lodge’s many amenities, including a spa center, live entertainment at the on-site cocktail bar, and even other sports such as yoga, Pilates, and golf. The hardest part will be leaving.
Making the Most of Your Colorado Hotel Stay
Here are some other tips to help you make the most of your visit to Colorado:
Getting to the Hotel
The good news is that most major Colorado ski resorts, such as the Vail area, are actually close to Denver. You can fly into Denver International Airport, then take a bus or shuttle to your resort.
Bigger ski areas such as Vail and Aspen have their own regional airports that offer flights to and from Denver International Airport. Some resorts offer airport shuttles, so ask ahead before you book anything.
Crime and Safety
Although Colorado has a slightly elevated crime rate, this is confined to major cities such as Denver and Boulder. Ski towns such as Vail, Breckenridge, and Aspen see barely any crime (although you should still lock your hotel room and not leave valuables unattended).
The biggest danger comes from reckless behavior on the slopes. Always read posted warnings, and never go on trails that are above your level.
Here are some more tips to help you make the most of your Colorado ski vacation:
- Make sure that you plan your packing accordingly. You may want classy outfits for après-ski drinks, but bring plenty of layers and athletic clothing for skiing.
- Altitude sickness is tough on your body, especially if you are not used to the elevated heights in Colorado. Instead of heading straight to skiing, spend a day in Denver or another city to let yourself acclimate.
- Research which ski passes are included with your resort and which ones are not. You may have to pay extra for a ski pass.
Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some other questions fellow visitors to Colorado’s slopes had to ask:
What part of Colorado has the best skiing?
Colorado has a few popular ski areas that are world-famous for their excellent trails. Some of the best are Telluride, Vail, and Snowmass.
What resort has the best snow?
All ski resorts in Colorado get excellent snow. If you want more snow than you know what to do with, stay around Wolf Creek, which gets about 430 inches of snowfall a year.
Where do people go to ski in Colorado?
The Colorado Rockies have many towns and ski resorts that attract passionate skiers from all over the world. Some of the most popular are Telluride, Vail, Steamboat, and Keystone Resort. People go to Aspen, but more to see and be seen than to prioritize skiing.
What is the best time to ski in Colorado?
Colorado is blessed with a very long ski season, from October to April. Many people say that March is the best time to go skiing because the snow has had enough time to accumulate properly, it isn’t very cold anymore, and the crowds are less intense.
Is Aspen cheaper than Vail?
Both Aspen and Vail have a high-end reputation, but Vail has a few more budget options. Aspen is one of the most luxurious ski resorts in the world.
Why is Breckenridge so popular?
Aspen and Vail may be the most popular, but Breckenridge attracts many visitors at well. People are drawn to the beautiful history, the town’s sordid history as a mining town in the Wild West, and the luxury resorts as well as more affordable amenities.
So What Is the Best Ski Resort in Colorado?
Colorado has many excellent ski resorts, including luxury resorts such as those in Breckenridge, Vail, and Aspen, and more affordable ones such as Snowmass Village.
As long as you do your research about which one fits in with what you envisioned for your ski trip, you can’t go wrong. So what are you waiting for — book your trip to one of these idyllic resorts today!