By Roger Cox, Editor
Located in Brush Creek Valley, 12 miles west of the town of Aspen, the Snowmass Club comprises an 11-court tennis complex, golf course, spa, fitness center, a restaurant; and privately owned 2- and 3-bedrooms residences and a few 4- and 5-bedroom townhomes. however, the wings that once contained the rooms at the lodge have been replaced by private residential club comprised of 2- and 3-bedroom units each with multiple owners (a variation on vacation timeshares). In the meantime, guests can stay either at the condominiums just across from the Club or elsewhere in Snowmass.
All of the club's extraordinary recreational amenities remain operational. Its year-round facilities include a state-of-the-art fitness center, two heated outdoor swimming pools, and two indoor tennis courts. In summer, guests have an 18-hole golf course designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay, 9 outdoor tennis courts, and access to mountain bikes. In winter, shuttles deliver skiers to the downhill slopes of any of the region's four areas. Cross-country skiers have 30 kilometers of groomed track virtually right outside the lodge door.
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With a large local tennis membership, the Snowmass Club remains one of the premier places to play in the valley. Although the courts are open to the general public, for obvious reasons members and those staying in the Residences have first priority—a bigger issue for the indoor courts, especially in winter. With so many courts outdoors, however, non-members can generally be accommodated. The weekly calendar lists a variety of activities, including clinics, power drills, men's and women's round robins, a variety of junior clinics and summer junior camps, and private lessons. There is also a large summer tournament. Given the state of the lodging, even more of these activities than usual are geared to local members; however, the staff has always been good about integrating guests into the whatever is going on.
Tennis Staff. Scott Dorais heads up the program. Part of the Aspen community for the last two decades, Dorais had been the head tennis professional at the nearby Maroon Creek Club and tennis director at the Aspen Club.
Tennis Programs. He inherits a mature program that varies between indoor and outdoor seasons but revolves around drill clinics and men's and women's doubles groups for adults and three levels of junior programs that range from beginners up to advanced tournament training.
Courts & Fees. There are 9 outdoor hard courts and two indoor hard courts. Court fees: Outdoor, $16/hour for guests, $20/hour for public; Indoor, $24/hour for guests. Non-Prime Time (1-7 p.m.), $12/hour.
Altitude Caveat: The Snowmass Clubs stands at just over 8,000 feet above sea level. High-altitude balls can only partly compensate for the elevation difference (you'll need to prepare early for every shot). More important, the danger of sunburn is extreme, so use plenty of sunblock and wear a hat or visor.
Golf Courses. Snowmass has a 18-hole course designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay
Spa & Fitness Center. The Spa supplements the usual massages (therapeutic, Swedish, sport) with body treatments—like hot stone massages or body buffing—and a variety of facials. The fitness center has rooms variously outfitted with Cardio and weight-training equipment as well as a selection of classes, including yoga, Pilates, and spinning.
And ... The club has a year-round salinated lap pool and both adult and family outdoor pools. There are organized hikes roughly twice a week in summer and roughly weekly guided single-track mountain bike tours. In winter, the club offers cross-counry skiing or snowshoeing on the golf course.
The fully-equipped residential units range in size fro 2 to 5 bedrooms. Fractionally owned, they are nonetheless available for rent when not occupied by any of the owners.
The Sage Restaurant and Patio serves lunch and dinner focused on local, organic, and sustainable ingredients, as does the Sage Bar & Living Room, both located within the Snowmass Club. The Black Saddle Bar & Grille at the golf clubhouse adds another option for lunch. All three have a selection of Colorado craft beers.
If you like the sound of the Snowmass Club, compare it to:
The Club has 1-, 2-, and 3-bedroom villas all with full kitchens, fireplaces, and complimentary access to the fitness center.
Visit the website for current rates