Charming Victorian-Style Inn 9,000 Feet Above Sea Level
Winter Park Chateau has a fairy-tale Victorian feel to it; there are spindle-work handrails on its porch, and its roof is covered in shingles shaped like half-moons. It’s located a fairly far-off place, too, standing at an elevation of 9,000 feet amid the Rocky Mountains. But it’s just 2 miles away from Winter Park Resort, and that makes the chateau a popular place for snowbirds to come back and unwind after some late-season skiing.
After a day skiing or biking through the mountains, families gather in the chateau’s elegant common area to play games or watch a movie on a high-definition television. You can also thaw out in an outdoor hot tub, which has gorgeous views of the scenery outside.
Even the eight guest rooms pay homage to the fantastic skiing nearby; each is named for famous Colorado ski spots such as Telluride, Black Hawk, and Breckenridge, and each has individual decoration. All of the private bathrooms feature jetted bathtubs, an ideal place to relax after a day skiing on late-season powder, hiking the many area trails, or power-lifting the maple furnishings. The Breckenridge room is light and airy with cream-colored walls that reflect the sunlight, and ornate Victorian trimmings are scattered throughout.
Between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m., you can smell coffee brewing in the main-floor sitting room during the gourmet breakfast. Among common options are egg dishes, breakfast meats, potatoes, and a choice of french toast or a breakfast soufflé. In the afternoon, you can enjoy a glass of complimentary wine and appetizers such as cheese and crackers, carrots and celery, and meatballs and hot wings.
Winter Park, Colorado: Skiing and Mountain Biking in the Rockies
Winter Park Chateau sits in the middle of downtown Winter Park, directly adjacent to the town’s Main Street. Walk down this strip to find 45 unique shops selling clothing, art, jewelry, handcrafted furniture, and outdoor equipment.
Just 2 miles from the inn is the Winter Park Resort, which is accessible via a free shuttle bus. With 350 inches of snowfall annually and 143 designated trails, the winter wonderland attracts skiers well into April. Be sure not the miss the Mary Jane portion, where mogul runs start at 11,000 feet above sea level.
More than 600 miles of mountain-bike trails wind through Winter Park and the Fraser Valley, a big reason why the town has been informally titled as the Mountain Bike Capital USA. Hop on two wheels to explore the mellow Fraser River Trail or the single-track adventure of the celebrated Tipperary Creek Race Course. Winter Park Resort also offers numerous other summer activities within easy reach, including climbing, bungee jumping, and world class fly fishing.