"Alpine" Adventure at Four Seasons Resort Vail

Think luxury with a resort brand famous for its understated elegance and probably the most consistent five-star service in the world, throw in a world-famous destination where the glitterati rub shoulders with lesser mortals and, oh yeah, add some of the best skiing you’ll find anywhere in the world. The result? The best recipe for a luxury ski resort vacation ever, all at the Four Seasons Resort Vail.

Opened in December 2010, the property is located at the entry to the upscale environs of Vail Village and just a short stroll to the lifts and all the Alpine delights they promise, be it skiing, snowboarding, or a full menu of other winter sporting activities, including cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, dog-sledding, snow shoeing, sleigh rides and ice climbing. Guests can also cap off a day of rigorous fun on the mountain—or forget all about the mountain and spend the entire day relaxing and rejuvenating—in the resort’s luxurious and comfortable spa.

“True luxury will always prevail,” offers Hans Willimann, the resort’s general manager. “A person with all the money in the world can replace anything except time. Saving guests time and effort unobtrusively, rather than gilding the lily frivolously, is what luxury at this resort is all about.”

And guests get the first taste of what this property is all about as they approach the resort’s entrance located directly off the main Vail round-about on Vail Road, where their eyes will be immediately drawn to the legendary peaks of Vail Mountain and the contemporary alpine lodge with its peaked roofs and wooden beams outside and the elegance of natural hickory wood and limestone inside. Upon check-in, guests are happily assaulted with the Four Seasons tradition of service as they’re greeted with warmth and friendliness—another reminder from Four Seasons that a luxury stay with this brand doesn’t mean mixing pretentiousness with elegance or top flight service with snobbery. For those arriving and consumed by the adrenaline rush from viewing the awesome peaks of Vail Mountain, the resort service will even whisk them, via shuttle, within a few short minutes to the Vista Bahn Express Lift where, if they show the lift ticket office their airline boarding pass, they will give you a free lift ticket to ski the later afternoon away on a few runs prior to the mountain closing. Getting in a couple of runs prior to starting one’s vacation is a great way to get one’s legs and lungs ready for unlimited adventures and challenges that await. This is ski heaven, in fact, with more than 5,280 acres of skiing and more than 200 trails, not to mention the world-famous back bowls.

As would be expected, the resort’s 121 guestrooms, including 24 suites, are showstoppers—most with mountain and pool views—and offer a furnished balcony, gas burning stove, fireplace, extremely comfortable bedding and spacious bathrooms with free-standing oval tubs. All rooms have wide-screen HDTVs with all of the customary U.S. stations and many international stations designed to satisfy the many international guests Vail is famous for serving.

Complimentary services and amenities at the resort include all meals from the kid’s menu in the Flame Restaurant for children ages 5 and under; morning coffee, tea and muffins in the lobby; morning coffee, tea, sports drinks and fruit in the spa; Internet access and printing in the business center; and children’s toys for the room, pool and dining. Twice-daily housekeeping, with evening turndown service, personal coffee maker with gourmet coffee and tea, L’Occitane bath products and iHome docking station and clock radio with MP-3 adapter are provided in all rooms.

Even though the resort is not a true ski in/ski-out facility based on its off mountain location, it’s located close enough to the lifts, that guests can take a short, enjoyable walk through the village, or ride on one of the regularly running resort shuttles—both of those features, combined with the comforts of the ski concierge located at the base of the mountain in Vail Village, give visitors pretty much the same convenience and comfort associated with a ski-in/ski-out facility. Hotel guests, too, have exclusive access to the resort’s own ski concierge, located at the Vista Bahn chair lift. Indeed, the resort staff is so prepared to maximize guests’ comfort and enjoyment, they can take expert measurements and details in the resort lobby, and transmit them to the ski concierge facility. Overnight, perfectly fitted boots can be placed in a guest’s personal locker while skis are waxed to suit their needs and the daily conditions on the slopes. At the ski concierge, guests are greeted with hot cocoa and muffins and given secrets on the best runs of the day, based on conditions and grooming. After the last run, equipment is dropped off to be dried and prepared for the next day, and snow lovers are free to head to Vail Village’s apres ski scene or the resort’s own Flame Restaurant and Fireside Lounge.