Aspen Snowmass, Colo.
This hill is nirvana for families. Check out: 1) All-day daycare and ski school at the Treehouse Kids' Adventure Center; 2) Alpine gourmet dining on-mountain at the Lynn Britt Cabin, where you can while away a three-hour lunch as kids enjoy above; 3) New terrain park with a superpipe and a mini-pipe, where older kids can get their ya-yas out.
Everything from bunny hills to "extreme" double blacks. Lots of long, wide, groomed cruisers make it easy on old knees and young tots. But challenges abound too: Snowmass has the most vertical feet of all U.S. hills, with 90 trails served by 23 lifts.
A $17-million project opened in 2007, the Treehouse Kids' Adventure Center is a 25,000-square-foot snow school headquarters, rental and retail facility, family-après entertainment centre and daycare for children ages 8 weeks and up. Themed rooms and activities cater to specific ages, and there's a large family-friendly climbing room.
APRÈS FOR KIDS
The Sweet Life, a locally owned ice cream bar and candy store in the Base Village, features a s'mores table and outdoor fire pit. (Good enough for Tom Cruise and family.)
APRÈS FOR ADULTS
The Eight K Restaurant and Lobby Bar in the luxury Viceroy hotel, which opened last season, has fine-dining options all day so après can begin any time. Cozy up in a fireside leather club chair and peruse a library of books and magazines.
$99 basic lift (reduced rates available with packages); kids 6 and under ski/ride free.
WHERE TO STAY
The Snowmass Inn offers economy lodging for serious skiers. It's 50 metres from the slopes and right next to the Village Mall. Included: continental breakfast, fridge, coffee maker, free wireless Internet. Rooms from $131.
In March and April, free ski and stay for kids 7 to 12 with adult purchase of lodging and lift tickets (minimum four day/five nights) at Snowmass Inn. From $1,868 for five nights for two queen beds, lift included; 888-649-5982.
For its wide range of services and entertainment for kids of all ages, plus pampering and activities for adults of all appetites (and budgets), Snowmass rates a Triple A. aspensnowmass.com
Special to The Globe and Mail