Vail Chamber and Business Association: Getting ready for busy winter season
As things wind down in Vail after a busy summer season, albeit one that was a little slower to start than last year with the snow the third week in June, there is a lot to look forward to in the upcoming fall and winter.
With the close of summer operations on Vail Mountain, hotels across town have started the transition from wedding season to corporate group season. Our work and travel students have left us to travel across the United States before heading back to their home countries to return to school. And planning is already well underway for the winter ahead. There’s a lot to be excited about on that front.
After-work bike rides up Vail Mountain throughout the summer gave me a first-hand look at the progress and magnitude of the snowmaking project, which is moving along nicely. It’s one thing to hear about Vail Mountain’s most ambitious snowmaking project ever, one that was several years in the making. It’s another thing entirely to see what goes into laying 19 new miles of pipe up the mountain and installing 421 new snow guns.
The expansion will allow visitors and locals alike early season access to more than 200 acres of new snowmaking terrain and bring Vail Mountain’s opening man-made coverage to more than 500 acres of skiing and riding. The added terrain will allow skiers of all levels the opportunity to get out and enjoy more of the mountain earlier as well as extending the quality of the skiing experience at the end of the season. The snow nerd in me can’t help but be a little giddy thinking about how cool it’s going to be when all of the new gear on the mountain starts doing what it’s designed for.
Down in the town, The Vail Chamber and Business Association has been hard at work partnering with the town of Vail and Vail Resorts Human Resources to further the work done last winter to pilot the Mountain Hospitality Ambassador program. This new program provided more than 200 local employees with opportunities to gain important town knowledge, access to discounts for locals and fun recognition events to foster a sense of belonging in the community.
These resources were provided to seasonal and year-round workers in the town of Vail throughout last winter and participants in the 2019/2020 winter season will have access to even more. The chamber will work with the Colorado Snowsports Museum and Hall of Fame to kick off town tours in the season ramp-up. These tours will arm participants with important information visitors to Vail will need across the coming winter and details on the history and legacy of our mountain and town. Ongoing employee events and spiffs throughout the season will be the spoils of those who participate and commit to elevating the guest experience over the upcoming winter.
Of additional note for the upcoming winter is the special focus on driving new traditions around the Thanksgiving holiday. To augment Vail Resorts’ investment in the early season skiing experience, the town of Vail recently committed considerable funding to market and promote special events during this period. Daily activations are being planned to create memorable experiences for our guests during their time off the mountain.
Information on everything above and more will be available at the upcoming Vail Chamber Business Association Winter Update Meeting taking place Nov. 7 at the Vail Marriott. We hope to see you there!
Zach Meyers is General Manager of The Arrabelle at Vail Square and is a Board Member of the Vail Chamber and Business Association.