ALTERRA MOUNTAIN COMPANY UNVEILS LONG-TERM CAPITAL
IMPROVEMENT PLAN TO IMPROVE THE GUEST EXPERIENCE
$555 Million Budgeted at 12 Mountain Destinations Over the Next Five Years
$130 Million Budgeted for 2018/2019 Including New Gondola and Three New Chairlifts
DENVER, Colo., March 12, 2018 – Alterra Mountain Company reinforces its commitment to growth and investment in its family of 12 mountain destinations by announcing its initial capital improvements, with an investment plan totaling more than half a billion dollars over the next five years, spending $130 million for winter 2018/2019.
Alterra Mountain Company, created in 2017, is comprised of 12 mountain destinations spread throughout five states and three Canadian provinces: Steamboat and Winter Park Resort in Colorado; Squaw Valley Alpine Meadows, Mammoth Mountain, June Mountain and Big Bear Mountain Resort in California; Stratton in Vermont; Snowshoe in West Virginia; Tremblant in Quebec, Blue Mountain in Ontario; Deer Valley Resort in Utah; and CMH Heli-Skiing & Summer Adventures in British Columbia.
In keeping with Alterra Mountain Company’s tenet to empower its leaders to be decisive, creative, and bold, destination presidents proposed their improvement priorities for the next five years. Plans for each destination were based on current needs and input from guests that will enhance the on-site experiences, while retaining each mountain’s authentic character.
“At our core, we are a ski company and we offer year-round mountain experiences to skiers, riders and summer visitors of all ages from all over the world,” said Rusty Gregory, Chief Executive Officer, Alterra Mountain Company. “Each aspect of our business plays a part in the guest experience that brings them back year after year, from a welcoming base area to an efficient ski school to exceptional services. It is our commitment to invest in each of our destinations in order to grow the sport, offer a variety of activities, inspire loyal guests and instill a love of the mountains in all that visit. We do that through thoughtful and innovative capital investment that improves a guest’s experience, while we continue to support and preserve the character and traditions of each destination.”
The $555 million budgeted improvements will be invested broadly to elevate the guest experience and introduce innovation and technology through new chairlifts and gondolas, snowmaking, food & beverage offerings, base areas development and access, and new adventurous summer experiences. Additional capital improvement projects will be announced in the fall.
Highlighted Improvements for 2018/2019
Zephyr Gondola and Increased Snowmaking at Winter Park Resort, Colorado: Accessed from the Village at Winter Park, and replacing the Zephyr Express quad, the new Zephyr Gondola will improve the guest experience by expanding uphill capacity to 3,200 guests per hour, decreasing wait times by 15 minutes during peak season, and providing faster service to the Seven Territories of the mountain and the Lodge at Sunspot.
Winter Park Resort’s 42-year old snowmaking system will be upgraded with state-of-the-art energy efficient systems. Given the mountain’s base elevation of 9,000 feet, with quality snowmaking the destination has the ability to extend season operations to enhance early season offerings.
Canyon Lodge & Summer Activation at Mammoth Mountain, California: Canyon Lodge sees 60% of Mammoth Mountain’s visitors and will receive an innovative redesign over the next two years, positioning it to become the Day Lodge of the future. An enhanced guest arrival will include new retail space, user-friendly access to rentals and ticket windows, innovative food and beverage services, and a redevelopment of the popular snow beach area.
A new summer adventure sport offering will be available for fall 2018 at Main Lodge at Mammoth Mountain, complete with adrenaline-pumping thrill experiences, including the longest top to bottom zipline tour in North America, in the combination of the two spans, plus a via ferrata rock climbing experience suspended on the mountain face, and junior ropes courses.
Bear River Restaurant, Steamboat, Colorado: Steamboat’s most popular slopeside après ski destination is getting a complete overhaul and new design, including new kitchen, enhanced menu options, and the enclosure of a portion of the outdoor space to increase seating capacity by 72 seats.
Snowbowl Chairlift at Stratton, Vermont: The new Snowbowl Chairlift will replace the 31-year old fixed grip quad with a high-speed detachable lift that will increase beginner skier accessibility, alleviate mountain choke points, and will enhance the guest experience with a quicker ride to the summit.
Lowell Thomas Chairlift and Increased Snowmaking at Tremblant, Quebec: The Lowell Thomas Chairlift will be replaced with a high-speed 4-passenger detachable chairlift, increasing uphill capacity by 33%. Energy-efficient snowmaking capacity along the upper portion of the Algonquin Trail will be increased by 50%, offering visitors earlier access and more reliable snow conditions.
Base Area Improvements at Big Bear Mountain Resort, California: Development at Bear Mountain will include enhancement to existing facilities, common pedestrian areas and the learn to ski area.
Snowmaking Overhaul at Snowshoe, West Virginia: Snowshoe’s current snowmaking system will be replaced with a state-of-the-art system that will increase snow making capabilities allowing for significantly more trails to open in early December, and drastically reduce electricity usage.
In February, Alterra Mountain Company unveiled its debut season pass product for winter 2018-2019, the Ikon Pass, offering visitors access to over 63,000 skiable acres at 26 destinations, including 14 partner destinations, throughout North America. Passes are on sale now at www.ikonpass.com.
Featured Alterra Mountain Company Announces Long-Term Capital Improvements
Really happy to see the upgrade to Winter Park's woefully inadequate snowmaking system. It's so frustrating during lean early seasons like this year when the crowds are there but only 1 or 2 lifts are running. It seems like they can only make snow on one trail at a time.
The Zephyr gondola will be a big help too, especially for a couple hours in the mornings.
Edit: here's an article with a few more details on the Winter Park projects:
https://www.skyhinews.com/news/just...ress-to-be-replaced-by-new-10-person-gondola/Last edited: Mar 13, 2018tball likes this.
I'm really excited about this:
"Logging operations will also be conducted over 21 acres of Eagle Wind Territory improving the gladed skiing experience in the area while also contributing to the overall health of the forest by removing dead and dying timber that will promote forest vegetation," resort officials stated.Beetle kill has been fantastic for WP/MJ tree skiing.
And the snowmaking is long overdue. It will make an enormous difference early season when WP has gotten its butt kicked in getting terrain open prior to natural snowfall.Chris Walker likes this.
I have been having this argument with my dad for my entire adult life. He says building more highways only attracts more traffic and I say traffic is coming anyway so you may as well have enough lanes to accommodate it. Who knows who is right.
My last line agrees with your last line. Not saying it definitely will get worse, but rather I’ll withhold judgement on if I am excited about it in a few years.
It is a delicate balance to keep ecosystems stable. And humans tend to be really bad about maintaining that balance.
On a side note, WP seems big enough to me to handle more people, but man does it seem like most people stick to a few areas on the front side that make getting to the base hairy at times.
I get what you are saying but this could be the inflection point from which other resorts decide to make similar investments, bringing all the resorts up.
Or could be the point at which those resorts that do no make investments and improvements become less and less desirable and thus go out of business.
Investing in lifts, snowmaking, lodges, ski schools, rental shops, dining offerings,...is a good thing. Often a needed investment due to the extreme wear and tear cause by skiers and the weather. Sometimes its due to new safety legislation. Often, it is done on the back of having consulted with their guests to see what their guests want and how their experience can be improved.
Of course there are two sides to everything in life, but that is life. It's not just the ski industry. If movie theater put in recliners and stadium seating and surround sound then it would be "foolish" (perhaps unrealistic is a better word) to see it as a negative because more people will now be coming to see movies there.
Maintaining is one thing, upscaling another. I don't fault Alterra for doing what they are doing, I am just not necessarily ready to celebrate it and am a little concerned about the direction.
But there is no doubt that even something that would seem to be nothing but positive - such as a gondola - can indeed cause issues. If they install a gondola but do not fix any issues with overall skier traffic patterns, potential safety concerns at the base or drop off, impact on trail access/flow... it can come back to bite them.