A Global Guide to Après Ski
Sip on Haute Chocolate: St. Regis Aspen Resort
Looking for something sophisticated to do post skiing? The latest offering at this newly redesigned resort is just your cup of tea, er, hot cocoa. The program features a flight of three kinds of hot chocolate, created by Vosges Haut-Chocolat exclusively for the resort (Australia lemon myrtle, lavender flowers, vanilla and white chocolate, anyone?)—plus gourmet grilled-cheese finger sandwiches. For those who still want a little booze après ski, go for the Spiked Flight.
Head to the “Beach”: Ski Beach at Canyons Resort in Park City, UT
This mountain hot spot—located between the base terminal of the new direct-connect gondola and the “Orange Bubble” enclosed heated-seat chair lift—comes complete with beach chairs, lifeguard stands, and fruity drinks (courtesy of The Farm restaurant). Sure, there’s no ocean, but if you use your imagination, that snow will start looking like sand in no time.
Relax at a Spa: The Spa at Stein Eriksen Lodge in Park City, UT
The only Forbes Five-Star spa in the state offers a treatment that is the perfect antidote to mountain-weary legs. The 50-minute Ski Boot Relief treatment begins with a foot scrub, followed by a steamed-towel wrap and a reflexology session. Everything from your knees to your toes will thank you.
Ride the Waves: Pump House Indoor Waterpark at Jay Peak Resort in Jay, VT
A big hit with kids, this new waterpark makes it easy to forget the freezing temperature outside. There are a variety of pools (whirl, wading, and plunge)—not to mention the Double Barrel surf wave, perfect for those who prefer attempting Winter X Games-type stunts in the water instead of on the mountain.
Hit the Dance Floor: Public in Verbier, Switzerland
There’s après ski, and then there’s après après ski. For those who want to party late into the night, head to the brand-new club Public. Set in a New York-style industrial space and open from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m., the club hopes to repeat the success it has found in London (where it recently won “Best New Club” at the London Club and Bar Awards), featuring the self-proclaimed “infamous” photo book and dressing up box, plus made-to-share drinks like the Jagerbull Mousetrap and Mojito Pyramid.
Listen to Slope-side Live Music: KT Base Bar in Squaw Valley, CA
Opening Dec. 17, this après ski spot has all the makings of a great mountainside party: outdoor fire pits, live music and killer views of the iconic KT-22 peak. It also features what they’re calling an “industry first”: K-banas, an on-mountain take on cabanas from which to eat, drink, and watch the skiers take on KT-22 (then toast when they join you on the deck).
Harness the Power of Mud: Sport-Wellnesshotel Bichlhof in Kitzbühel, Austria
Located in one of Austria’s most highly regarded (and largest) ski resort towns, this wellness hotel offers the perfect post-ski treatment: the “Kitz Moor Power.” Guests are covered in mud sourced from nearby Lake Schwarzsee and wrapped in a sheet before relaxing in what the spa calls a “water flotation tank” for 40 minutes. What’s more, the mud is also said to have special healing powers.
Check Out Some Ice Sculptures: Niseko Village Snow Caverns at Niseko Village, Japan
The installation artist Hirohiko Takenaka—the son of an ice sculptor—is hard at work on this new outdoor sculpture project at the Niseko Village Kids Area.Come Christmas, guests will be able to explore his domed caverns, traversing them through interconnecting snow tunnels. The caverns will look even more stunning at night (5 p.m. to 8 p.m), when they’ll be lit up from within.
Learn About Mountaineering: Espace Tairraz at Chamonix-Mont-Blanc, France
Forgo the typical boozy après scene with a visit to this new interactive discovery center featuring “L’Espace Alpinism,” an exhibit on mountaineering. You’ll go on a virtual excursion—from the mountain hut, along mythical alps summits, to base camps—and you can even test your skills at the world’s first climbing simulator. Open until 6 p.m.
Get Slope-Side Spa Treatments: Daily Pop-Up Spa at The Sebastian Vail
First there were pop-up restaurants and art galleries—now there’s a pop-up spa. This daily relaxation station can usually be found at The Sebastian Basecamp (weather permitting). Just put your name on the list (there are no reservations), order a cocktail, and enjoy a foot, hand or shoulder massage and an oxygen treatment for $2 per minute.
Brooke Porter is an associate editor at Travel + Leisure.