Iconic Hotel Steeped in Western Traditions
The valley of Jackson Hole lies between the snow-capped Teton Mountains and the striated cliffs of the Gros Ventre Range. Rooted along the valley floor, the town of Jackson comprises a tiny pocket of development amid a prodigious expanse of wilderness. Due to its isolation, the town was a gambling hotbed during the 1940s–50s. The AAA Four Diamond Wort Hotel pays homage to Jackson’s freewheeling past with its Silver Dollar Bar, inlaid with row upon row of 1921 Morgan silver dollars. A few nights a week, the 2,032 profiles of Lady Liberty soak up spilled sips of specialty martinis and margaritas to the tunes of live bluegrass and country music.
Housed in a timber frame and stone exterior, the guest rooms reflect the hotel's 1941 origins and position on the National Register of Historic Places. Though The Wort underwent extensive renovations after a 1980 fire, the interiors look much the same as when the hotel was built 70 years ago. Lodgepole-pine furnishings receive guests with rustic comfort in Deluxe rooms where cowboys mosey across the custom-printed linens adorning down pillows and comforters.
Continuing the Old West theme, a hotel-wide collection of hundreds of oil paintings and bronze sculptures capture buffalo herds and rowdy saloons alike. When bellies grow jealous of the eyes' relentless feasting, the Silver Dollar Grill mediates with smoked game and other regional cuisine served beneath an original Wort Hotel roulette wheel. In the morning, chefs whip up breakfasts of grilled potato skillets and buttermilk biscuits in gravy.
Jackson, Wyoming: Hiking and Wildlife-Spotting Near Yellowstone
Around Jackson's town square, four white arches soar overhead at each corner, formed from a bramble of age-bleached elk antlers. Similarly, in every direction, the city limits of Jackson stretch toward dense wilderness and wildlife. During winter, ski slopes overlook elk, moose, and bison congregating in the National Elf Refuge. A sleigh ride (included in winter option) jingles through thousands of wintering elk and glides close enough for passengers to snap portraits or hang ornaments on antlers. Perched on a cliff overlooking the refuge, the National Museum of Wildlife Art pays homage to the Great West with a crafted menagerie by artists such as Rosa Bonheur and Georgia O’Keeffe.
In addition to bordering the Shoshone, Bridger, and Targhee National Forests, Jackson forms a gateway to the stony crown of Grand Teton National Park. To the north, the Tetons meet Yellowstone National Park, America’s oldest national park and home to Old Faithful.