Five Diamonds in the sky |

Five Diamonds in the sky

The Ritz-Carlton, Bachelor Gulch earned a Five-Diamond rating from the American Automobile Association, becoming one of only three hotels so honored in Colorado and the only one in the Vail Valley.

Yeah, the Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch is beautiful and the spa is incredible.But walk in the front door and try to wander around and see how far you get before someone offers to help you, to do something for you, to ask you if there’s anything else you can do for you.They do everything and judges from the American Automobile Association determined that they do it better than almost anyone in Colorado.It’s the staff that pushed the resort into the rarefied air of a Five-Diamond rating by the American Automobile Association, one of only three Colorado hotels so honored and the only one in Eagle County.

“We’re certainly thrilled to have received this honor,” said Steven Holt, the Ritz-Carlton director of public relations. “It’s the hard work of our ladies and gentleman at the resort that made it possible.”The Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch joins the Broadmoor in Colorado Springs and Little Nell in Aspen as Colorado’s only five-diamond hotels. The Broadmoor is celebrating its 30th year as a Five-Diamond property. Little Nell is marking its 15th year.AAA’s 5-Diamond status is awarded for service. The Ritz was a four-diamond resort the past two years. The resort opened Nov. 2002.”The Ritz-Carlton is dedicated to the tradition of service,” said Holt. “I don’t think any hotel has ever opened at a five-diamond rating. That’s something you aspire to attain and maintain.”Holt said the jewel of the Ritz-Carlton is the Bachelor Gulch spa, consistently rated the top hotel in the state. This spring, it’s open to the public without being a guest in the hotel.

The 26 lodgings and 19 restaurants in Colorado join a select group of AAA Four-Diamond winners. Only 3.25 percent of the estimated 31,000 AAA Rated lodgings and 3.21 percent of the estimated 19,100 rated restaurants are awarded Four-Diamond designations each year.”AAA Five- and Four Diamond winners understand the language of quality as they consistently deliver premier experiences, complete with superior personal service, first-class amenities and impressive surroundings,” said Tony DeNovellis, president of AAA Colorado.The Five- and Four-Diamond symbol will be included in each property’s and restaurant’s listing in the 2006 AAA Colorado/Utah TourBook guide released last month. Over 900,000 copies of the AAA Colorado/Utah TourBook are distributed to AAA member travelers each year. AAA’s 48 million members depend upon TourBook guides to assist them with their travel-related decisions. An establishment’s diamond rating is often the deciding factor when members choose a particular lodging or restaurant.AAA began field inspections of lodgings and restaurants in 1937. AAA adopted a formal rating system for TourBook guide accommodations that evolved into the current rating system in 1977 in celebration of AAA’s 75th anniversary. Evaluations and diamond ratings of restaurants began in 1986.Vail, Colorado

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