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The C&TH Guide to Aspen

Where to eat, drink and stay in America's classic ski resort...

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John Denver wrote Annie’s song after it came to him on the Ajax chairlift in Aspen, Colorado, and we’ve been loving this old mining town-turned-ski resort ever since. If you only hit the slopes in America once in your lifetime, make it Aspen Snowmass. 


Clark’s oyster bar, one of the latest openings in Aspen, serves oysters from Washington, Maine, Prince Edward Island and Massachusetts. Also on the menu are lobster rolls, crab and fruits de mer.

Dance off those ski legs

Aspen’s first supper club, 1908, is a restaurant, bar and nightclub all in one. Head chef Byron Gomez spent 13 years working in New York, including several Michelin-starred restaurants, and the resident DJ Bryan Normand knows exactly how to get the wild crowd dancing on tables.

Slope to scale

It’s not so much downhill as uphill these days in Aspen, join the 100 or so locals who ski-tour up the mountain every morning before the lifts open. It’s on-trend right now across the world, and nowhere more than in this fitness-mad ski town.

Test yourself

The snow is always good in Highlands Bowl so boot pack 45 minutes up to the peak at 3559m, take a snap at the top sitting on the chair and pick your gnarly route down. The steepest is Go-Go Gully, 48 degrees.

Entertain the kids

Take them to the Wapiti Wildlife Centre at the top of Elk Camp Lift in Snowmass, where they can learn about the different animals living around the resort — from Elk to bobcats. Free and a great break from skiing (and to warm up).

Spa bunny

It’s not exactly a spa, but start your ski day with a $10 yoga class in Sundeck at the top of Aspen mountain overlooking the Elk Mountain range. Strip off your ski wear and get your warrior on, the perfect way to warm up for skiing.

Adrenaline junkie

Take a private helicopter to ski Colorado’s legendary Silverton Mountain. It’s a 45-minute flight to Silverton, over the San Juan mountains, and when you land in Silverton there are 26,000 acres to explore — and non-skiing clients are welcome to join, too.

Hotel to bag

Hotel Jerome, while not on the slopes, is the most historic in Aspen. Opened in 1889, it was the favourite hotel of Hunter S Thompson, and the “Aspen Crud” was invented here at the J-Bar during the prohibition.

The outfit

Gear up with Colorado-brand Spyder’s 2019/20 FallLine GTX Infinium Down Jacket (€700), and Winner GTX Pant (€300).



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