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Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

Ann Arbor
Level Contributor
8 posts
97 reviews
Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

My husband can ski, but our 9-year old daughter & I have only skied once. We're planning a trip Dec 17-22 and are excited to take some lessons & have fun as a family. As a college student, my husband skied Park City, Utah. He thought that might be a good destination for us. Some friends take their young children to Snowmass every year & rave about it. There are so many destination options - what suggestions do you have for us?

Park City, Utah
Destination Expert
for Utah, Winter Sports
Level Contributor
21,130 posts
451 reviews
1. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

You can't go wrong with any of the three resorts. My best advice, though, is to book a nice ski-in/ski-out hotel or condo given that you're early season and prices will be super low.

At Deer Valley, Black Diamond is a great spot at the Snow Park Base. At Park City Mountain Resort, either Marriott Mountainside or Snowflower - also Silver Star. At The Canyons, any of the base hotels including the Grand, Sundial, etc.

Have fun.

Ann Arbor
Level Contributor
8 posts
97 reviews
2. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

Thanks so much for the advice!

alvinut
Level Contributor
271 posts
2 reviews
3. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

I'll take Tumbleweed's advice one step further - you really can't go wrong with any ski town in Utah or Colorado. Aspen/Snowmass, Vail/Beaver Creek, Steamboat, Telluride, Breckenridge/Keystone, Park City - all excellent options with fun towns and great skiing.

Park City's biggest advantage is the location - only 30 miles from the Salt Lake airport. But once you're at any of these places, you'll definitely have fun wherever you choose.

Edited: 31 October 2010, 17:42
Miami
Level Contributor
306 posts
36 reviews
4. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

Given the fact that your travel week is early season, There will be man-made snow to some extent. Deer Valley has best snowmaking and just invested in even more new machines. Pricing is good that week for rentals, so you can get a nice unit for less.

I like Tumbleweed's recommendation of Black Diamond Lodge. Right at Snow Park Lodge where the ski lessons originate. Great place to stay.

Have fun.

Ann Arbor
Level Contributor
8 posts
97 reviews
5. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

Excellent point - a four-hour drive to Snowmass CO after a four-hour flight (versus a 30 minute drive from Salt Lake to a Utah destination) is definitely something to consider!

Ann Arbor
Level Contributor
8 posts
97 reviews
6. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

Thank you for the recommendation of Black Diamond Lodge. We'll check it out!

Colorado
Level Contributor
13,111 posts
16 reviews
7. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

RE: Snowmass -- you can fly directly into Aspen/Snowmass. No need to drive. Most lodging properties provide free shuttles from the airport which is only a few minutes away.

8. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

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Edited: 04 November 2010, 22:05
Miami
Level Contributor
306 posts
36 reviews
9. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

I think if you have never been to Park City, you should come here. We have a place in upper Deer Valley and have had many of our friends stay with us who have visited other ski areas. Without exception, they all want to come to Utah for future ski vacations. They are also coming during the summer months, too.

Black Diamond Lodge is a perfect location on the lower Deer Valley mountain base area, next to the beginners slopes and ski lessons. I would recommend that location. There are other rentals in that same area. It is known as Snow Park. I do not know your budget. Black Diamond is not inexpensive. However, there are other locations at the base of Snow Park that are significantly cheaper but still nice. Such names include the Lodges, Comstock. You might try vrbo.com and look at lower Deer Valley area. Most properties include pictures. You should be able to get a deal since it is already November and your ski period is before the crowds come. Some of the other posters may have other suggested rentals in that area.

I once stayed in a townhouse at next to the base of Deer Valley called Lakeside. It was roomy. Many have been renovated. The townhouse included garages. You should also find some of these units on vrbo.com. You can drive from there to Snow Park parking area in thirty seconds. Also, there is free ski storage at Deer Valley. Lots of great lodging choices tat Snow Park area.

I really highly prefer Deer Valley during early season over the other local resorts. Once the snowpack arrives, all three resorts are excellent. But, you are coming early and DV will likely have the best snow. Have a great time.

Park City
Level Contributor
10 posts
38 reviews
10. Re: Where to take a family of beginners to learn to ski?

I don't know if you've found anything yet and there are a lot of replies recommending Deer Valley, which is a great location. However, don't rule out Park City Mountain Resort and lodging near there. If cost is at all a factor, you can get some great deals at Snowcrest Park City, Copper Bottom Inn, and other locations at the base of Park City Mountain Resort which are walking distance to PCMR as well as on the free shuttle bus stop and close/walking distance to Main Street. This area of Park City is known as "Old Town" which is where most of the restaurants, shopping, and night life happens in Park City. Main Street is not be missed. But no matter where you choose to stay in Park City, it is an absolutely fantastic choice for your family.