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Second homes: Head for the hills outside Aspen Печать E-mail
Новости - Зарубежные новости
Автор: Newsmaster   
03.01.2009 18:43
In 1967, a sleepy ski resort named Snowmass-at-Aspen opened with five chairlifts — and lift tickets for $6.50. Today, skiers would be lucky to find a $6.50 hamburger.

What hasn't changed in the intervening 40 years is that the resort has continued to live in the shadow of its sexier sister, Aspen — until now.

With its name shortened to simply Snowmass, the ski resort is one of four owned by Aspen Skiing Co. But while the other three (Aspen Highlands, Buttermilk and Ajax, aka Aspen Mountain) are in or around the vibrant town of Aspen, Snowmass is 8 miles down the road — and a world apart.

SKI GUIDE: Resort profiles, snow conditions, more
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Absent a town, deluxe hotels or fancy eateries but with ski-in/ski-out condos flanking its trails, Snowmass traditionally has been a family resort. Compared with posh Aspen, the nightlife was so non-existent that some called it "Slowmass." Still, it was always known locally as the best of the four ski hills and claimed to be the nation's second-largest — and bigger than the other three combined.

This winter, Snowmass enters uncharted territory. A new $2 billion, 80-acre base village features rental condos, restaurants, shops and arguably the finest children's facility in skiing. Under construction is a Viceroy hotel, a residential spinoff of Aspen's ultra-posh Little Nell hotel, an aquatic center and new gondolas. Millions of dollars more have been poured into on-mountain improvements.

"The new base village is a great boost," says George Huggins of Huggins & Co. Real Estate. "A lot of the infrastructure was 30 years old. We were losing people to places like Beaver Creek."

Snowmass has never been inexpensive. A small slope-side condo in a 30-year-old complex starts at about $385,000, and studios in the new base village begin at $535,000. There are entire neighborhoods of ski-accessed, single-family houses where nothing costs less than $10 million.

Snowmass buyers put a high price on convenience, Huggins says. "We've been known for ski-in/ski-out since Day One. We're not trying to compete with Aspen, but we attract families and large groups because they realize that it is a lot easier to go to Aspen for dinner than to drag all the kids and equipment here for a day of skiing."

A look at three Snowmass neighborhoods:

Base Village. This new pedestrian development is certified under energy- and eco-friendly standards. Three gondolas will connect the village with the main parts of Snowmass. Plans include 600 condos, of which 91 were just completed and run $865,000 to $2,775,000. Also on the market: 152 condos priced from $535,000 to $5 million at the new Viceroy hotel (korhotelgroup.com), still under construction but scheduled to open next December; and 27 luxury apartments from $3,125,000 and up in the Little Nell residences, scheduled for spring 2010.

Snowmass Club. This neighborhood (snowmassclub.com), anchored by a 40-year-old golf course and clubhouse with spa and fitness center, features single-family houses, townhouses and condos. The golf course becomes a Nordic ski center in winter. Condos start at $595,000, townhouses at $1.75 million. There is also a fractional ownership plan.

East Village. Consisting of two developments, the Pines and Two Creeks, East Village is the most expensive part of Snowmass. It has 102 large lots with custom homes, all ski-accessed, and 31 high-end, 3,500-square-foot townhouses. The least-expensive townhouse, priced at $3.95 million, is described as a "heck of a buy" by real estate agent George Huggins. Single-family houses are $10 million and up.

Budget Snowmass?

Head north. Basalt, 5 miles away, has condos starting at $295,000, says real estate agent George Huggins. In Carbondale, 8 miles farther north and becoming known as a culinary destination, single-family houses in the River Valley Ranch golf community begin at $569,000. And 12 miles farther, near Glenwood Springs, new houses in the Ironbridge Golf Club begin at $449,000.

Найдено в интернете: http://rssfeeds.usatoday.com/~r/UsatodaycomTravel-TopStories/~3/gwvMFeL-bU4/2009-01-01-snowmass_N.htm

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