When most Coloradans hear “Vail,” skiing often comes to mind immediately. But for those of you looking for a bit more, Vail is truly one of the greatest mountain towns in Colorado for everything else! Not only is Vail my favorite mountain town, I prefer it in the summer. Let’s dive into the do’s (because there aren’t any don’ts) of Vail, Colorado!This
The Four Seasons is by far my favorite place to stay in Vail, and they are in the midst of upgrading all of the rooms which are already amazing. In my opinion, the best rooms overlook the pool/mountain. The views are incredible of both whether it’s spring, summer, fall or winter and it’s so nice to leave the balcony door open to get some fresh air. Each room also comes with a gas fireplace which I pretty much run the entire time I’m in the room … yes, even in the summer. But let’s talk about the bathroom! I could seriously live in the bathroom if forced to. The wak-in showers are luxurious and the tub is a must. I love soaking away catching up on my reading. Oh and did I mention the closets are also walk-in with oodles of storage. Even if I just stay a night, I love to unpack in order to completely utilize the closet.
Even better? They are super dog friendly. Marcuccio and Emma came up with us last year and were treated to dog bones, water dishes and their very own beds. And, the staff if available if you need a little assist with a walk.
Probably the biggest draw to the Four Seasons, other than the service and rooms, is the SPA! It is simply world class. I’ve done it all … facials, massages, soaks and scrubs and they are all to die for especially with a visit to the relaxation room afterwards. They have a full snack area with desserts from the kitchen, occasionally coconut water and tea which is divine all within a cozy lounge with a huge fireplace. The hot tub grotto in the locker room and steam room should not be missed either before or after a treatment. With close access to the pool, lounging and swimming are also easily checked off on the list.
Do yourself a favor and have a drink at The Remedy Bar and try to snag a seat outside by one of the three fire pits. Not only are they cozy areas to catch up with friends, but the views … and photo ops are awesome.
The Sonnenalp is seriously the best of Vail and one of the most magical spots. Fashioned after the original Sonnenalp hotel in Germany, the architecture takes you to another world. The staff all wear customary German uniforms which is just another piece of the magic. The hotel features 112 luxury suites, and since the architecture is so interesting throughout the hotel, you will be hard pressed to find two rooms that look the same. This past winter I stayed in one of the two-story suites on the top floor which was a treat … especially with the snow.
The spa is located off of the lobby and centered around a large open air fireplace lounge area. The pool area is swim in/swim out, perfect for the winter months and features two hot tubs nestled under the trees next to Gore Creek. There’s something about hearing the creek while hot tubbing that is just perfect.
But, let’s talk food! The Sonnenalp is home to some of THE BEST restaurants in Vail. First up, Bully Ranch boasts a ranch aesthetic and the burgers are out of this world. The Swiss Chalet is a fondu restaurant which is a must – I celebrated my last birthday there and am still dreaming about it. But my favorite? It has to be Ludwig’s for breakfast! Half of the restaurant is covered in wood paneling and old wood floors oozing with German appeal and the other half is in a glass atrium that can be opened up in the summer. No matter where I stay I always schedule time to have brunch here. You can either order off the menu, but do yourself a favor and just do the buffet. With fresh made Belgian waffles, sausage, bacon, eggs, pastry stationer, full oatmeal bar with every berry and nut you could ever want topped off with fresh honeycomb, this is the spot! Not only is the food out of this world, but the china gets me every time. The hand painted service ware is not only gorgeous but elevates the dining experience. I cannot say enough about the mugs! They hold a ton of coffee and are just gorgeous. They no longer sell the mugs, but I am the lucky owner or a set that I just adore.
The Sonnenalp is quite possibly the most amazing lodging in the state of Colorado. Do not miss out on this spot, even if you end up lodging elsewhere. Oh, and did I mention they have a golf course? Yep, they seriously have it all!
I’ll start by saying Vail is being very COVID conscious. One of the things I love most about this mountain town is how they care for their residents and vacationers. So, it does not come as a shock to me that they want to keep things closed for the safety of their visitors and employees. That being said, here are some of my favorite restaurants you can visit once they reopen!
Pro Tip: I love visiting Vail during the shoulder seasons (either side of ski season) … right at the end of Fall before the slopes open up and Mud Season in the spring when the slopes have turned to mud before they have dried up ready for hiking in the summer. The reason I love going up during the shoulder seasons is the hotels are heavily discounted because tourism is down. The difficulty is that many of the restaurants and shops are closed, but everything on my lists are open year round! It’s the best of Vail without the crowds and you can save a bit to shop at The Golden Bear ; )