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October 21, 2006 — A dazzling addition to Beaver Creek two seasons ago – especially for those who remember its former faded façade – is the stylishly redone Beaver Creek Lodge. The 72-room, all-suite property actually unveiled its new-look, sumptuously appointed rooms to rave reviews in time for the holiday rush for the 2004-05 season, but now phase II – the completion of the resort’s hottest new eatery, Rocks Modern Grill – is generating even more buzz.
Rocks and its new chef John Trejo, formerly of Elway’s and Kevin Taylor in Denver, has injected a dimension of upscale modernity into the Beaver Creek dining scene with a casually classy lounge-like atmosphere punctuated by a private wine room, booths and outdoor seating around blazing fire pits. The menu is filling (fresh seafood, steaks, prime rib) but mindful of its athletically inclined clientele (light on sauces and replete with best-of-both-world dishes such as the elk flank-steak salad). Perhaps more importantly for Beaver Creek, Rocks has the feel of instant gathering place, a watering hole that eschews the lodge look in favor of skiing’s new-millennium, “mountain-chic” mood.
Such styling was apropos for the resort’s silver-anniversary season. The Beaver Creek Lodge first opened in 1984, just four short years after the dramatically under-funded new ski area first cranked up it lifts with visions of grandeur but a base lodge inside an inflated tennis bubble. What a difference 25 years makes. In every way Beaver Creek is a world-class resort first and a wonderfully varied ski area second, where sliding on snow need not be synonymous with suffering. Robert C. Kessler understood that when he purchased the Beaver Creek Lodge in August of 2004, adding it to his impressive quiver of mostly Florida-based boutique hotels known as the Kessler Collection.
Kessler’s first foray into the Rocky Mountain ski scene is an unqualified success. Location alone makes the Beaver Creek Lodge the ideal ski-in/ski-out luxury destination – a skier bridge depositing spent snow riders at the property’s front doors. Recuperative amenities such as a heated outdoor pool, fitness center, steam room and sauna await. And 500-square-foot suites, each with a gas fireplace, LCD TV, leather sleeper sofa and deluxe kitchenette in the living area, will coddle even the most devoted alpinist. While separate bedrooms with pillow-top mattresses, down comforters and flat-screen TVs almost demand an après-ski nap.
Having fully revived sore muscles, perhaps even indulging in a treatment at the nearby Allegria Spa, all the upscale shops, galleries and restaurants surrounding Beaver Creek Plaza are mere steps away, as is the state-of-the-art Vilar Center for the Arts and its full slate of classical concerts, Broadway musicals, contemporary dance, comedy acts, rock and jazz shows. In the most civilized of ski-resort settings, the Beaver Creek Lodge stands out, setting the stage for an era of urban-mountain-chic ambiance – altitude with attitude, if you will - for the next 25 years
Beaver Creek Lodge, 26 Avondale Lane; 970.845.9800, www.beavercreeklodge.net.
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