Hotel at a Glance: Listel Hotel Whistler
A portion of the 2010 Winter Olympic ski events took place on the powdery slopes of Whistler Mountain. While the area is probably known best for its world-class ski runs, it’s also popular in fall, when crimson-leaved maples and wildflowers color the trails. The Listel Hotel Whistler is not far from Whistler Mountain, and it’s conveniently located if you want to hike or bike through the mountain scenery.
- Experience eternal winter at the Ice Room, which is constantly kept at a frigid -32 degrees Celsius, and houses a selection of 50 vodkas from all over the world. Guests are provided with a Canada Goose goose-down parka. With this deal, you have the option of enjoying a vodka tasting each night of your stay.
- Warm up in the bistro area, which has art from Vancouver artist Stewart Stephenson and live piano music.
- Wine cellar: Beneath the dining room, there’s a cellar stocked with more than 20,000 bottles of wine.
- Play chess in the lobby, which has a stone fireplace and overstuffed leather stools.
- Modern guest rooms come with flat-screen TVs and wireless Internet access.
Whistler, British Columbia: Olympic History at North America’s Largest Ski Resort
Connected to Vancouver—about 80 miles (130 km) south—by the scenic Sea to Sky Highway, the Whistler Blackcomb Ski Resort spans two mountains, each more than 7,000 feet in elevation. Since the resort contains more than 200 ski trails and more skiable terrain than any of other resort on the continent, it makes sense that Condé Nast Traveler readers ranked it the No. 2 North American Ski Resort in a 2011 poll.
Before ski season starts, many people rent kayaks or take zipline tours, in which they can get a close-up view of the mountains when they’re not blanketed in snow.
The mountains gained worldwide recognition in 2010, when they served as the setting for the alpine skiing, bobsled, and luge events of the Vancouver Winter Olympics. The Whistler Museum tells the stories of those games with exhibits of athlete memorabilia, including the uniforms of local gold medalists and an Olympic torch you can hold yourself.
Although skiing and snowboarding are the main draws (visitors usually number more than two million annually), the area is also well-suited for snowmobiling, ice climbing up frozen waterfalls, and dogsledding across the Soo Valley Wildlife Reserve. For a break from the outdoors, peek inside the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre, which celebrates the cultures of two peoples indigenous to the region via displays of their goat-wool weavings, dugout canoes, and rock paintings.