Posted on January 15, 2021 by Chris Klug
Happy Martin Luther King Weekend from Aspen Snowmass! This long weekend is sure to be great with snow showers in the forecast. Pitkin County Board of Health voted unanimously to put the county into Level Red, starting this Sunday. The biggest change to the health code is the cease of indoor dining at restaurants. Outdoor dining, takeout, and delivery are still permitted. Read on to find out how to make the most of this change, with great food and great outdoor views!
Now more than ever, picnics are the place to gather— safely within your household, per county health code (of course). There are plenty of fabulous places to picnic in Aspen and Snowmass. Each of our four ski mountains have outdoor dining tables scattered around with gorgeous views and plenty of social distancing. Three of our favorites are the top of Tiehack at Buttermilk Mountain, and Wine Cabin on Snowmass, located at the bottom of Sneaky’s run, and of course Tourtelotte Park on Aspen Mountain. Skin up or ski directly to these on-mountain locations! Some of the best in-town picnic spots include sun-drenched Wagner Park and Glory Hole Park, right behind the W Aspen. One of the most ideal picnic spots in Snowmass Village is Town Park. There’s a gazebo, playground, and huge open field. Did we mention amazing views of the entire ski area? This spot truly has it all!
Now, you know where you want to picnic, but you don’t want to create your own picnic from scratch. Aspen Snowmass restaurants offer great, and even inspiring, to-go options! Here are a few of our personal favorites. Meat and Cheese, located on Restaurant Row in Aspen, is famous for putting any of their cheese, chicken, and steak boards in an easy-to-eat to-go container. Big Wrap, right across from Gondola Plaza, has always been takeaway only. They have the routine down to a science. Be sure to try the Pesto Wrapture! If you’re up for nontraditional picnic fare, Taster’s Pizza in Snowmass is your ticket. Besides delicious pizza, they’re known for great subs and salads. The Crepe Shack in Snowmass Base Village has mastered the to-go crepe with their unique crepe cone. There are plenty of savory and sweet options to satisfy any craving. For the most up-to-date restaurant offerings, check out eataspen.com and eatsnowmass.com
Have a great weekend! Stay safe and healthy, and most importantly, have fun! Happy trails ahead.
Posted on January 8, 2021 by Chris Klug
Happy New Year from Aspen Snowmass! 2020 was an exciting year, and 2021 is shaping up to be great. If you are ready to come to the mountains, but want to avoid the hustle and bustle of President’s Day weekend and Spring Break, read on to find out why Aspen Snowmass is ideal in January!
The skiing in Aspen Snowmass is in awesome condition right now. All four mountains are open. Snowmass has over 75% open acreage. Aspen Highlands has 82% open acreage, including the famous Highlands Bowl. Aspen Mountain and Buttermilk are boasting the highest open acreages with 97% and 96% acreage, respectively. Snow conditions are great, and are only getting better with winter storms in the weekend forecast. Be sure to download the Aspen Snowmass app for the most up-to-date terrain intel.
January is a typically quiet month, but there are still ongoing weekly events. Some amazing events this season that are not to be missed include Snowmass Luminescence, FRIENDSWITHYOU Dancing Orbs at the Base Village Skating Rink, and the Friday Morning Uphill Club at Buttermilk. These weekly recurring events are outside, socially distanced, and kid-friendly. For more information and details, head over to AspenSnowmass.com
Winter X-Games, Winterskol, and Gay Ski Week are synonymous with January in Aspen. There is no doubt these events will look different due to Covid-19 restrictions. But as the theme of this year’s Winterskol states, “The Snow Must Go On”! This year, Winter X Games is celebrating 20 years in Aspen, Colorado. Winterskol is celebrating its 70th anniversary, and Aspen Gay Ski Week is still the longest running Gay Ski Week in America. The events will be mostly virtual this year. For information, check out their social media profiles @aspenco, @aspengayskiweek and @xgames.
Wishing you a wonderful weekend from Klug Properties! Stay safe and healthy, and have fun!
Posted on December 18, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Holidays from Klug Properties! It’s that time of year to be gifting. If you’re in a pinch, and have missed the shipped-by-Christmas deadline, this is exactly where you need to be. Read on for our shopping picks in Downtown Aspen for the gear-heads, hosts with the mosts, and fashionistas on your gift list.
For that gear-head in your life who seems to always have the latest and greatest toys in the great outdoors, there are three shops in downtown Aspen that can point you in the right direction for a memorable gift. Check out Ute Mountaineer in the Elks Building for everything outdoor; Hamilton Sports right across Gondola Plaza for you skier/snowboarder; and Hub of Aspen on Hyman Avenue for your year round biker. The friendly sales associates are also local experts, who can definitely point you in the right direction to wow your recipient or even help with a familiar and trusted brand.
Need a last minute hostess gift with some Aspen flair? Amen Ward on Main Street has the most fabulous home goods ranging from kitchen to bath to decoration and everything in between, literally. The store is also known for amazing gift wrapping. Gorsuch, located on Cooper Mall and in Gondola Plaza, is known for being ski chic. If you’re looking for something truly mountain memorable, this is your store. Their clothing selection is also amazing for indoor and outdoor wear.
While there are plenty of luxury designer stores scattered throughout Aspen’s downtown core, there are a few clothing stores that are truly Aspen. Pitkin County Dry Goods, located on Cooper Avenue, has been a local fashion staple for over 50 years. They’re known for their leather goods and annual sales, but have an awesome collection of clothing ranging from loungewear to formalwear and all of the accessories you need for both men and women. Another Aspen staple is Kemo Sabe, on Galena Street. This famous western store has the best selection of custom hats and truly Aspen pieces. There’s even a bar in the restaurant, creating the perfect shopping experience.
Most stores provide gift wrapping, but if you’re hoping to put your own touch on the wrap job head over to Carl’s Pharmacy on Main Street. Carl’s is the local and visitor’s go-to for everything, from shampoo to over the counter medicine to liquor and everything in between. Wishing you a healthy, safe, and happy holiday ahead!
Posted on December 11, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! Snow is expected throughout the weekend forecast, and we need it! The 2020 ski season here is different than years past with new pass options, social distancing requirements, and upgraded health and safety protocols. With our current snow pack, Aspen Skiing Company’s changes, and the long-awaited lift service anticipation, some locals have opted for other activities to get out and get active this winter season. Read on to find out what activities to do, where to do them, and where to find the proper gear.
Question: What winter sports can I do besides downhill ski? Answer: There are plenty of activities and sports to do in Aspen and Snowmass that are both outside and offer a plethora of social distancing. Some local favorites include fat biking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, and hiking with shoe spikes. There certainly aren’t any lines for these snow sports!
Question: Where do I find the proper gear for these activities? Answer: The local, and visitor, favorite outdoor store in Aspen is Ute Mountaineer, located in the historic Elks Building in downtown Aspen (UteMountaineer.com). Ute Mountaineer is the go-to for all things outdoors to safely play in the mountains. You can even book an appointment online for one-on-one sales support with one their experienced staff members! If fat-biking is you’re winter sport of choice, head over to the Hub of Aspen bike shop, 616 E Hyman Avenue in downtown Aspen. The Hub of Aspen staff are the year round bike gurus. For more, head over to HubOfAspen.com
Question: I know what I winter sport I’m doing. I have the gear. Where do I use it? Answer: Aspen and Snowmass offer great trail systems, for beginners through experts. The Snowmass Club and Aspen golf courses are great options for casual cross-country skiing, snowshoeing, and hiking with shoe-spikes. This trail is affectionately known as Labrador Lane in Snowmass because of it’s dog-friendly policy, just don’t forget a leash! Smuggler Mountain trail is a favorite for year round hiking and biking with the wide road and stunning views of Aspen Mountain. If you’re hoping for an excursion outside of town, Ashcroft Trails up the Castle Creek Valley are a must. Be cautious of the horse drawn sleigh heading up to the Pine Creek Cookhouse on the main Ashcroft trail.
Wherever and however you decide to recreate this winter, be sure to wear a mask and maintain social distancing. Let’s keep Aspen and Snowmass open and safe for everyone to enjoy. Happy Trails ahead!
Posted on December 3, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Ski Season from Aspen Snowmass! Aspen Mountain and Snowmass’s seasons are officially underway. Aspen Highlands will open for the season Saturday, December 12th and Buttermilk will open Friday, December 18th. Aspen Skiing Company has implemented new health and safety protocols, such as mask requirements, social distancing markers, and preferred chairlift and gondola riding. With current Pitkin County Health requirements capping all restaurants to 25% capacity, on-mountain dining is a bit different as well. Read on for a local’s guide to dining on the hill this season.
On-Mountain restaurants, like Sundeck, Elk Camp, and Bumps, fall under the current 25% capacity inside, with minimum 6 foot spacing between tables. 25% may seem small, however, most on mountain restaurants have outdoor dining options for those gorgeous bluebird days. New this year, restaurants operated by Aspen Skiing Company will also feature tents to provide more outdoor seating, ideal for those snowy powder days. There will also be more on-mountain warming huts, like Ruthie’s Restaurant on Aspen Mountain.
Craving that delicious Sundeck double cheeseburger, but nervous to go inside or not sure about table availability? Not to worry, Aspen Snowmass now offers the option to order right off of their mobile app. This option features the main menus at your favorite on-mountain dining spots, as well as a “grab and go” menu option. When you order, you can even set a pick-up time for accurate arrival. You can pick up your order at the designated area outside the restaurant with napkins, condiments and silverware ready to go.
Who doesn’t love gondola and chairlift picnics? If you’re Covid-cautious and want to avoid crowds, bring your sandwich, hot cocoa, and hand sanitizer to the lifts! Fuel up while you go up. Whether you’re diving in on your sandwich on the Elk Camp Gondola, or sipping on hot cocoa on Bell Chair, there are great to-go options in Aspen and Snowmass. Our favorite sandwich and hot drink spot in Snowmass is Fuel, right on the Village Mall. In Aspen, we love Paradise Bakery for hot cocoa, and Big Wrap for gondola grub. Be sure to check out the Pesto Wrapture! For more in-town to-go options, check out eataspen.com
For the latest updates on terrain, chairlifts, and on-mountain dining, check out AspenSnowmass.com or the Aspen Snowmass mobile app. Happy Trails ahead. Pray for Snow!
Posted on July 24, 2020 by Anne Grice, ASID, NKBA
There is nothing better than an inviting outdoor gathering or dining space for entertaining or just relaxing on a summer day. But where to begin?
If you already have an existing deck or patio, it’s a little easier. Make sure to carefully measure and draw it on a plan showing access to your home, any steps, etc.
If you are adding a deck or patio, you may need help from a designer, architect or builder. Once you have the layout on paper, be sure to mark it out on your lawn area to get a feel for the size.
- Make sure any materials or colors coordinate with the paint, stone or other materials on your home.
- Hardscape such as concrete or stone usually look best if it has some curves to it –unless a rectangle works better with your home and landscaping.
- ALWAYS get large and multiple samples to view with your home’s existing finishes
- This is very similar to your indoor dining layouts – allow 30” behind chairs
- Make sure chairs are comfortable – this becomes a hangout space as well
- Umbrellas – there are some great cantilevered umbrellas from Treasure Garden and Tucci that are easy to turn and tilt as needed for great shade. They make heavier ones (on wheels too) if you are in a high wind area.
- Table – think about the material. I don’t love the ones that have open metal work – what happens when you spill? And they aren’t so easy to clean, either! Textured tempered glass within a metal frame is my favorite.
Make your layout work with your space. This area has a low wall surrounding it. The umbrella rotates to work perfectly with the table without impeding the view. | Anne Grice Interiors
Firepit or Chat Area
- I love a round seating arrangement – great for conversation
- You can get a portable gas firepit (the canister is hidden) in many styles now
- If you don’t want or need a fire, you can have a low cocktail or “chat” table in the center
- Chairs should be more lounge type. Swivel and or tilt is nice. Not too low if you have a higher firepit.
- Cushioned chairs can be great for an area like this. Make sure they are made with outdoor filler and outdoor fabric. Higher priced ones actually drain and will not mold or mildew.
These Brown Jordan Parkway Lounge chairs make a great “chat” area. | Anne Grice Interiors
Low walls or Benches
- If your layout lends itself to low walls – this can be a great feature and you can incorporate built-in planters and/or benches here. Adding a cushion to your built-in benches adds comfort and an opportunity for color and texture.
If you have the space and the budget – an outdoor kitchen is a fantastic amenity that you, your family and friend will enjoy for years.
- Layout is important.
- Select your appliances first. There are some wonderful built-in grills and cooktops for outdoors.
- Make sure you think frost proof for any refrigeration in a climate that freezes in winter
- A pizza oven can be a fun and functional focal point for your outdoor kitchen. They can be contemporary or traditional like the one below.
This patio incorporates an outdoor kitchen with pizza oven, firepit, bench seating and dining | Anne Grice Interiors, Viking Construction, Johannsson Architects.
- Think investment, not expense. Quality outdoor furnishings can and should last for decades. Go with reputable companies or use a designer that knows quality.
- Materials are important – Teak can last for years but requires almost yearly (and costly) maintenance to maintain its color. Otherwise it looks very gray like an old park bench. All-weather wicker is great for pool or beachside.
- Weight of pieces – do you want to be able to move pieces around? Teak is heavy. Many chaise lounges have wheels. Aluminum is a quality choice and comes in many finishes.
The strong lines of this Sutherland Beachside Swivel Lounge Chair work great in larger areas.|David Sutherland
- Do you want to be able to lounge or nap? Chaise lounges with cushions are the ultimate luxury! You can also consider a hammock (these can be freestanding, too) or sofa.
- If your space is large, sectionals are great outdoor pieces.
This Sutherland Beachside sectional is not only a striking design but extremely comfortable.|David Sutherland
Faux wicker is a great waterside option. This MU modular lounge from Dedon is a lasting choice for chill-out. | Dedon
- Sling or cushions? Sling fabrics are durable, comfortable and quick drying. Cushions allow more options in outdoor fabric and are the ultimate in comfort.
This Tropitone KOR Relaxed Sling chair is a great quick-drying option for dining poolside or in an uncovered area. |Tropitone
- There are many options for outdoor rugs. These are great to add comfort and color or if you have an unattractive deck or patio finish.
- Fabrics – there are so many choices now. Be sure to go with fade proof, durable and easy to clean choices. Most can be cleaned with a bleach solution.
- Umbrellas – there are so many sizes and shapes now.
This Treasure Garden 10’ x 13’ Umbrella swivels, tilts and covers even a large furniture arrangement. |Treasure Garden
- Covers – don’t forget the covers! Much more convenient than taking in cushions. These keep the fabrics clean and extend the life.
- Lighting – an important part of any outdoor space
- Plants – decorative containers come in many styles. Make sure the style you go with works with your architecture.
Anne Grice is a residential designer based in Aspen, Colorado. Anne believes luxury is in the details and that good design should be lasting. Her firm, Anne Grice Interiors, located in Aspen, CO is in their 24th year and has won numerous awards from ASID (American Society of Interior Designers), NKBA (National Kitchen and Bath Association) and others in almost every category. They do work all over the US. Anne can be reached at email@example.com.
Posted on July 16, 2020 by Emilee Kelloff
This is one of the most well known trails near Aspen, and for good reason. At 3 miles roundtrip and with an elevation gain of 800 feet, this trail is a good hike for beginners and experts alike. Take in breathtaking views of Aspen from the Smuggler Mountain Overlook.
Sunnyside Trail is a moderate hike with rewarding views of Aspen, the surrounding ski areas, and the many peaks of the Roaring Fork Valley. At 4.8 miles roundtrip and 1,700 feet of elevation gain, this hike requires some planning and commitment, but is extremely rewarding.
Photo: Smuggler Trail
If you’re ready to break out your road bike and take down some miles, then the Rio Grande Trail is just the trail to be on. Stretching 42 miles of paved path from Aspen to Glenwood Springs, this trail is not only a great ride, but a great way to see every part of the valley.
The Snowmass Bike Park was designed with every level of biker in mind. With over 3,000 vertical feet of designated downhill trails, this park is a mountain bikers’ dream. The Roaring Fork Valley was recently named an IMBA Gold-Level Ride Center, one of only seven in the world.
Photo: Snowmass Bike Park
With Gold Medal Waters designation, easy access, stunning views and a wide variety of fish, the Frying Pan River is one of the premier fishing locations in the country. Located east of Aspen in the Hunter-Fryingpan Wilderness, it is easy to get to and its convenient location makes it easy to check out other nearby rivers and lakes.
Less than 2 miles from the town of Aspen, Maroon Creek is a great option for a short excursion or an all day affair. With a good variety of fish and stunning scenery, this spot is hard to beat.
Don’t forget to get your Colorado Fishing License before casting any lines in Colorado water.
Photo: Fishing on the Frying Pan River
Rafting/Stand-Up Paddleboard (SUP)
For an adventurous, rapid-filled day or a lazy float down the river, The Roaring Fork River has it all. Hop on your SUP or strap into your raft, this river will not disappoint. A great way to take in the Roaring Fork Valley while adding some adventure to your day.
Just 14 miles from Basalt, this expansive reservoir offers plenty of water sport activities. From speed boats and jet skis, to SUPs and canoes, this reservoir is a great day activity for everyone.
Photo: Kayaking on the Roaring Fork River
Located just a short drive from Aspen, this campsite offers great scenery, sounds of the nearby Maroon Creek and great privacy. Hop on the nearby trails for a day of hiking or horseback riding or fish the Maroon Creek.
In the heart of the Rocky Mountains, White River National Forest offers endless serenity and adventure. With eight wilderness areas and 10 peaks surpassing 14,000 feet in elevation, the lush forest is filled with scenic, winding rivers and beautiful wildlife.
Posted on July 3, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Fourth of July Weekend from Aspen Snowmass! We are so excited to celebrate our nation’s birthday this weekend. Even though the Old Fashioned Fourth of July Parade, Boogies Buddy Race, and fireworks are cancelled this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, there are plenty of ways to celebrate virtually and socially distanced with the same Aspen flare. Read on to hear about all of the exciting events!
The Buddy Program's annual Buddy Race is normally a downtown Aspen 5K race held on the morning of the Fourth of July. The event also includes a 1-mile family and dog friendly walk/run. This year’s race has gone virtual! Participants can join the Buddy Program from the treadmill, trail or sidewalk and run the 1 mile, 5K, or 5 mile race wherever they are from June 27th to July 4th. For registration and more information, please visit buddyprogram.org
Without the annual Old Fashioned Fourth of July Parade making its way through downtown Aspen during the day, you might think there would be a lack of patriotic spirit. However, there is plenty of celebration in the downtown core! The Aspen Chamber invited local businesses to decorate their windows and storefronts in patriotic fashion. This Independence Day, tour downtown Aspen to view all of the window displays.
If you’re not in Aspen for this holiday, but are craving some classic Aspen, check out the Aspen Music School and Festival free virtual patriotic concert. The Festival and School cancelled their summer season earlier this year. To make up for what would have been, there will be a rebroadcast of past Fourth of July concerts with the Aspen Festival Band. The celebration will begin promptly at 4pm mountain time. To stream for free, go to aspenmusicfestival.com
Have a happy, safe, and healthy Fourth of July weekend, wherever you are celebrating!
Posted on June 18, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Father’s Day Weekend from Aspen Snowmass! The official calendar start to summer is this weekend, and we couldn’t be more excited. This weekend also marks the opening of Snowmass Village for the summer season. The Elk Camp Gondola opens this Sunday, June 21st at 10am for summer service. Snowmass is known for its amazing winter resort and family-friendly atmosphere. During the summer, it is a mountain paradise, and still maintains the family-friendly atmosphere. Read on for all things summer in Snowmass!
Hiking is a favorite activity among locals and visitors alike. There are many trails in and around Snowmass Village, and quite a few are on Snowmass Mountain. Hike up the mountain, and take the Elk Camp Gondola down. Or take the Elk Camp Gondola up to explore even more trails. If you’re new to the area, book a local hiking expert for either a half or full day of exploring the Snowmass Rocky Mountains.
Biking has recently become one of the more popular summer activities. The Roaring Fork Valley is designated IMBA Gold Level Ride Center. There are only 7 of this kind in the world, and the only one in Colorado. Snowmass Bike Park is included in this, and offers something for every type of downhill mountain biker. There is over 3,000 vertical feet of trails. The Elk Camp chairlift is also open to hikers and bikers alike during the summer to easily access even more terrain to experience.
Instead of Farm-to-Table Tuesdays at Elk Camp Restaurant, Snowmass is offering Bonus Nights on Tuesday nights. This weekly will include a complimentary ride on the Elk Camp Gondola, Lost Forest activities (including the popular Breathtaker Alpine Coaster), Bike Night in the Snowmass Bike Park, as well as dining services and live music at Elk Camp Restaurant. There will only be seven Bonus Nights this summer, so plan accordingly for a memorable Tuesday night in the mountains.
For more details on any of these offerings, tickets, passes, and information on the COVID-19 policies, please go to aspensnowmass.com/our-mountains/snowmass/summer. Have a great weekend, and Happy Father’s Day!
Posted on June 12, 2020 by Chris Klug
Happy Friday from Aspen Snowmass! What a beautiful summer day we are having here. It certainly is quite the difference from earlier this week. We received about five inches of fresh snow on Monday night. Everything has melted away, and the trees are now super lush throughout the valley. The Food and Wine Classic is typically the start to summer in Aspen, but this year with the pandemic, The Silver Queen Gondola opening for summer activities feels like the official start to summer.
Aspen Mountain opens for summer service today, Friday June 12th beginning at 10am until 4pm. Passengers are required to wear masks upon entering and exiting the gondola. Lift tickets are also required. The Sundeck restaurant is open for summer dining service, with food and drinks specials Friday through Sunday. For more information, please visit www.aspensnowmass.com
The Elk Camp Gondola in Snowmass is opening for summer service next week, June 21st. This service runs through September. Snowmass summer operations offer bike trails, hiking trails, the Alpine Coaster, The Lost Forest, ropes course, climbing wall, Elk Camp restaurant, and amazing views, of course. Check out the farm-to-table dinners on Tuesday nights. Check out www.aspensnowmass.com/snowmass for all of the summer offerings in Snowmass Village.
Summer in Aspen is definitely different this year without music. With Jazz Aspen Snowmass and Aspen Music Festival being cancelled, it may feel like a quiet summer in town. Luckily, Aspen Skiing Company is hoping to bring back Bluegrass Sundays at the Sundeck upon completion of construction, and as public health orders allow. For updates, check back in with our blog or www.aspensnowmass.com.
Have a great weekend, and happy summer! Stay healthy!