Vail designer brings Beaver Creek, Lech-Zurs to Colorado governor’s mansion |

Vail designer brings Beaver Creek, Lech-Zurs to Colorado governor’s mansion

Krista Driscoll
Well-known Beaver Creek entertainer Helmut Fricker and interior designer Carol Moore Mink show off Fricker's alpenhorn before putting it on display in the library of the Boettcher Mansion.
Steve Sokolik | Soko Photo |

If you go …

What: Tour the Governor’s Residence at the Boettcher Mansion.

When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. daily through Sunday, Dec. 18.

Where: Southwest corner of Eighth Avenue and Logan Street, Denver.

Cost: Free.

More information: Find parking and tour information at

DENVER — The Governor’s Residence at the Boettcher Mansion in Denver is now dressed in its holiday best — with a little help from an Edwards interior designer.

For the fourth year in a row, the American Society of Interior Designers was invited to decorate the mansion, and Carol Moore Mink, president of the society’s Colorado chapter and owner of Edwards-based Carole Moore Interior Design Inc., along with the society’s communications director, David Rote, landed the job of decorating the home’s library.

Building upon the theme for this year’s holiday decor — Colorado’s Sister Cities — Moore Mink and Rote put together a motif highlighting the sister city relationship between Beaver Creek and Lech-Zurs, Austria.

Attention to detail

“It’s a great way for the public to get to see the governor’s residence, so we try to make it look pretty and inviting.”Carol Moore MinkCarole Moore Interior Design Inc.

To gather input for the room’s design, Moore Mink met with representatives from Beaver Creek Resort Co. and visiting officials from Lech-Zurs during Oktoberfest, with many at the meeting contributing personal elements to the final design.

“We decided to make the library the Ski Club Arlberg Lounge,” Moore Mink said. “The Ski Club Arlberg is the oldest ski club in the world. It was started in 1901.”

Standing guard at the entrance to the library-turned-lounge is a pair of vintage skis and official Ski Club Arlberg lederhosen on loan from restaurateur and Beaver Creek ambassador Bryan Nolan.

Elements borrowed from longtime Beaver Creek entertainer Helmut Fricker add an alpine feel to the wood-paneled room. The first is Fricker’s alpenhorn, an addition proposed by Liz Jones, director of administration for Beaver Creek Resort Co.

“When Liz Jones suggested that we borrow Helmut’s alpenhorn, I thought, what are we going to do with that? It’s so big; it’s 11 feet long,” Moore Mink said. “We put some stanchions around it so the governor’s son wouldn’t be playing with it.”

In the opposite corner of the room, a towering Christmas tree is decorated with special ornaments with logos of Beaver Creek and the Lech-Arlberg region, as well as a slew of hats, also on loan from Fricker.

“I had pulled a concept form Frontgate catalog of a Christmas tree that was decorated with top hats. I thought if we had someplace that we could get a bunch of Bavarian hats, we could replace the top-hat theme with the Bavarian hats,” Moore Mink said.

“I saw a picture of Helmut Fricker in one of those hats and I asked him, ‘is there a chance you have a few of these hats?’ And he said, ‘I have several; they are very dirty, heavily used, filled with perspiration and full of pins.’ We put those around the tree. So it was more authentic than it would have been otherwise.”

Moore Mink supplemented existing furniture with a table from her own home, made by Peter Menzel, a Bavarian craftsman who made a lot of furniture in Vail in the early days.

“The ambiance of the room makes you want to sit down and lounge in there. We rearranged the furniture to make it much more open and inviting,” Moore Mink said.

“That is the only room in the house that has quarter-sawn white oak that Claude Boettcher put into the house in 1927, which adds a lot of warmth to the room. It gives you the feeling of the Bavarian chalets that you find on the mountain,” she said.

Finishing touches

Moore Mink and her team started decorating the Boettcher Mansion library the Monday before Thanksgiving and finished the composition with a few details.

“There are photographs around the room that are comparisons of Lech and Beaver Creek, and nighttime, twilight pictures of Lech and Beaver Creek — similar images of the styling, so you can see the similarities between the sister cities,” Moore Mink said.

Beaver Creek Resort Co. loaned a few items to the project, including the large cowbell that was a gift from the Doppelmayr Corp. in 1980 for providing the first chair lift in Beaver Creek, as well as the resort’s signature Oktoberfest beer steins.

Also on display is the legal proclamation of the sister city relationship between Beaver Creek and Lech-Zurs, presented to Ludwig Kurz, then-director of community relations for Beaver Creek Resort, who orchestrated the sister city relationship between Beaver Creek and Lech-Zurs in 2001.

Tours of the Governor’s Residence at the Boettcher Mansion are being offered this weekend, providing an opportunity to see the final product firsthand.

“It’s free and open to the public today through Sunday from 10 to 2, no reservations, just show up, and they have people from the historical society who will give tours and talk about the history of the mansion,” Moore Mink said.

“It’s a great way for the public to get to see the governor’s residence, so we try to make it look pretty and inviting,” she said.

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