Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch Opens with Flair
The luxury resort chain Ritz-Carlton opened up their newest destination in Beaver Creek’s Bachelor Gulch this past Thursday, upping the ante for opulence in the Vail Valley.Many prominent Eagle County residents were on hand to witness General Manager Todd Harris cut a leather ribbon branded with the Ritz-Carlton logo with scissors hand-delivered by a cowboy on horseback. A giant bottle of champagne was popped, and guest were invited into the 237-room hotel, modeled after the grand lodges built in the American West around the turn of the century.”This is day when the baton passes from the owners and developers to the operators,” proclaimed President and Chief Operating Officer of Ritz-Carlton Simon Cooper.According to director of public relations Kristin Yantis, the logs used to build the structure were culled from dead-standing trees in Wyoming and would stretch a distance of seven miles if placed one after another onto the ground. The logs and Colorado stones used are part and parcel of the old West architecture, titled “parkitecture” after the lodges in national parks such as Grand Teton, Yellowstone, and Yosemite.Inside, the jewel of the hotel is clearly the 21,000 square foot spa, complete with 19 treatment rooms and three rock-lined grottos. Two of the grottos are gender specific, while the third and largest is the co-ed grotto, built to imitate an underground natural cavern. Thirty people can sit in the warm, simulated river contained in the grotto, while enjoying a drink and winding down from one of the many spa treatments available.Upstairs is an aerobic and workout facility that will host yoga, aerobics, and mat pilates classes this winter, along with providing personal trainers. Just outside on the deck is the heated pool and three hot tubs.The Lodge provides several different eating options for guests. Remington’s, open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner offers colorful Colorado cuisine presided over by Executive Chef Stephan Schpbach and inspired in part by the original Remington’s cookbook from 1901, the first cookbook, according to Ritz-Carlton employee Dave Ryan, to instruct upon the preparation of wild game.In addition to Remington’s, express service is provided by The Daybreak Deli and The Mountainside Terrace, while lighter fare can be obtained in The Lobby Lounge, Great Room, and Fly Fishing Library, which looks exactly like it sounds. Further personality is provided by the Buffalo Bar, which features a buffalo head and buffalo-related artwork.It’s the details which make the hotel a cut above luxurious, according to Ryan, who explained how guests preferences are noted and recorded by the staff to increase the level of comfort and enjoyment. For instance, if a guest likes five olives in his martini, the bartender will write it down and the next time the guest comes into the bar and orders a martini, it will have five olives in it. The same goes for the type of pillow a guest prefers, and so on and so forth.Guest can even make use of several animals at the resort. The first is Bachelor, a Labrador retriever that guests may rent to take on hikes in the summer through the Loan-a-Lab program. The other animals are the horses underneath the hoods of the Mercedes-Benz 600-series automobiles that are available through the “Key to Luxury” package offered by the resort.Rooms in the Ritz-Carlton Bachelor Gulch range from $475 a night to $5,600, and according to Ryan, the resort is already 90 percent booked through March.