Tucked away on the western slope of Colorado’s rocky mountains lies one of the most sought-after ski locations in the US. Aspen, named after the abundance of aspen trees that grow on its mountains, is the go-to place for anyone looking to enjoy the slopes in style. An oasis of true natural beauty, the town has become known for its remarkable year-round landscapes, from its snowy slopes to its desert plains.
With its regulars including the likes of Jeff Besos and the Dell family, it comes as no surprise that the town has plenty of luxurious experiences on offer. An indulgent array of exquisite restaurants combined with hosting the Food and Wine Classic annually in June has earned the town a reputation as a culinary destination. Of course though, for most visitors, it’s the snow that draws them to the rocky region. Make sure you get up to the top of Buttermilk and Snowmass mountain for the best skiing the town has to offer.
For more inspiration
Here are our top picks for what to do when you find yourself in the celebrity-frequented Colorado town.
Where to Stay in Aspen
Choosing where to stay is an ever-important factor in your getaway experience, but, in this mountain town, your hotel choice can affect more than just where you rest your head at night. Indeed, your choice of Aspen hotel will determine which spas and dining amenities are available to you, which, let’s be honest, is as important as the skiing itself.
Now part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, Hotel Jerome has enjoyed a renovation by interior designer TAL Studio that will “bring guests back to the glory of Aspen’s silver mining days”. First opened in 1889, the hotel is proud of both its rich history and its breathtaking views of Colorado’s iconic peaks. Make sure to try the innovative craft cocktails at the Bad Harriet bar and indulge in a salt stone massage whilst you’re visiting this iconic hotel.
The rooms in the St Regis will make you never want to leave. Featuring bespoke Ralph Lauren designs and marble bathrooms, each one of the suites provides intimate luxury you crave in the mountains. Try their signature bloody mary at the King Cole Bar or take a dip in the year round pool.
Where to Eat
Warm, cosy meals are all part of the charm of a snow filled holiday, and are essential to fuelling the active days spent on the slopes. Aspen boasts a wide variety of restaurant experiences, from exclusive fine dining, to lively apres locations that are all about the party.
Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro
Looking for somewhere to enjoy aprés? Head to Cloud Nine at around 2pm to climb on the tables and join in with their notorious champagne spraying.
Serving fresh Tuscan flavours with a hint of Southern Italian, and offering an impressive wine list, Casa D’angelo is an essential when visiting Aspen. And, with its private dining room accommodating up to 20 guests its an excellent spot to get together with friends and family.
Located inside The Little Nell, Element 47 is one of Aspen's best fine dining restaurants. The chefs focus is on seasonal produce, fresh ingredients and they specialise in the local Wagyu Beef.
What to do:
Though it’s the skiing that brings most people to visit Aspen, for those who aren’t big fans of the slopes (or those wanting a change of scenery for the afternoon), there’s still plenty to explore and enjoy. Off-season visitors can also experience the memorable scenic location which is ideal for hiking or mountain biking in the warmer months.
Aspen Art museum
Enclosed in a woven, wooden facade, the Aspen Art Museum is worth a visit for the building alone. The museum is currently hosting exhibitions of Andy Warhol and Precious Okoyomon’s work. Don’t forget to visit the rooftop cafe afterwards for some impressive views.
Enjoy the outdoors
Other than skiing, the Aspen Landscape is the perfect place for hiking nature trails and long cycling trips to enjoy the scenery. Take a look at the Grottos trail for some unusual rock formations, Castle Creek Road to catch the yellow trees or trek along Lost Man Trail for some stunning views.
Wheeler Opera House
Catch a show at the Wheeler Opera House. Whether you’re after comedy or music, this is the hotspot for the arts in Aspen. Book ahead of time to ensure you don’t miss out.
Where to Shop
Increasingly becoming known for its shopping, the amount of luxury shopping that can be found in town is on the up. Whether you are after high fashion brands, or you’re more interested in bringing home some one-of-a-kind antiques from your travels, there are a plethora of shopping options available.
Galena Street and Cooper Avenue
Home to both the Gucci and Prada stores, Galena Street is the place to be for designer shopping in Aspen. Head up to Cooper Avenue where you’ll find the Ralph Lauren store and enjoy a spot of indulgence.
Bringing some extra treasures home with you will be hard to avoid after a visit to Daniel’s Antiques. Known for his unique and valuable finds, you can discover anything from Louis Vuitton trunks to 17th century rifles in this Aladdin's cave.
Meat and Cheese
With the restaurant being a firm favourite for many locals, it’s no surprise that the recent addition of a farm shop to this popular eatery has been a roaring success. The perfect place to pick up all of your deli favourites.