Page 1

Take Meetings to New Heights in Vail or Beaver Creek Colorado Meetings + Events When they debuted in 1962 and 1980 respectively, Vail and Beaver Creek quickly became ski resort icons. But now that the snow is gone, you’ll discover that they are also extremely popular as summer playgrounds. Drawn by the snow-capped peaks of the Gore Range, “escape-the-city-heat” temperatures and proximity to the Front Range, meeting and event planners ​ find these mountain towns excellent choices for companies and organizations looking for an altitude adjustment. Both on I-70, Vail is located 100 miles west of Denver and 30 miles east of Eagle, while Beaver Creek is 110 miles west of Denver and 20 miles east of Eagle. Out-of-state attendees flying into Denver International Airport can easily travel by shuttle or rental car. Those able to fly directly to the Eagle County Airport shave off about 90 minutes in highway time. Options Galore The Vail Valley has eight distinct parts of town to host small- to medium-sized meetings, events and corporate retreats. Among those are East Vail, Vail Village, Lionshead Village, Golden Peak and Cascade Village. Three primary settings—Beaver Creek Village, Bachelor Gulch Village and Arrowhead Village—comprise the lodging and meeting space options in Beaver Creek, with additional lodging and event space choices in nearby Avon and Edwards. The Vail Valley has something for everyone—inviting weather, as well as activities from gondola- hopping and cultural events to river rafting and browsing art galleries,” says Chris Romer, executive director of Vail Valley Partnership. “We also have accommodations for all group sizes and budgets, yet our towns are small enough to make the experience memorable.” Area in Action Echoing Romer’s enthusiasm for the region is Andrea Stumpf from Jeppesen’ office in Germany. Held last year in Beaver Creek, the firm’s CONNECT 2010 conference was attended by 252 guests and 40 spouses who represented 35 different countries and 92 organizations. There also were several VIP guests and keynote speakers. “Beaver Creek was selected for its picturesque scenery and closeness to Denver,” explains Stumpf, manager of aviation marketing. “The Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort & Spa was specifically chosen for its conference center layout, guest amenities and unique mountain setting, which allowed us to attract a diverse audience.” DCT Industrial was so impressed with the accommodations and guest service that the firm is returning to The Arrabelle at Vail Square for the third time this summer. Based in Denver, the industrial real estate company, with properties in the U.S. and Mexico, books 60 rooms for the three-day event. “We chose The Arrabelle for its location and European personality,” says Jessica Virgo, executive assistant. “We have gone back because of the hotel’s exceptional service, and we enjoy utilizing the Great Room and its outdoor patio for group check in, receptions and each day’s breakfast.” Highlights of the group’s retreat were an awards dinner in the ballroom and a gathering Thursday evening at Game Creek Club, whose American-French cuisine and spectacular views make a visit to the mountainside restaurant special. The Colorado Educational Services and Development Association selected Beaver Creek for its annual gathering last summer. Back for the third year in a row, the organization is mindful that its attendees are

coming from up and down the Front Range. “This organization’s annual conference attracts people from different parts of the state, including the Western Slope and southern Colorado, but the majority are from the Denver metro area,” says Eric Nissen, former conference chairperson for the organization. “We always try to make it in a unique, beautiful, scenic and fun venue.” The event, which traditionally attracts between 50 and 75 participants, runs for two days, but not everyone stays for both days, so the organization was looking for flexibility from a resort. “People in our profession don’t have a ton of money to attend a conference, so the rate had to be reasonable,” adds Nissen. “We try to balance as nice a place as we could find with affordability, and the Westin was certainly offering us both.” With young to middle-aged attendees, the group also appreciated the hotel’s kids care program and dogfriendly policy, which opened up the event to a wider audience. Amusements Planners considering the Vail Valley for their group’s summer meeting should note that there are 12 golf courses. Resort guests can play Beaver Creek Golf Club, Red Sky Golf Club, Cordillera and Sonnenalp Golf Club, while Gypsum Creek, Eagle-Vail and Vail Golf Club invite public play. With Bravo! Vail Valley Music Festival performances running from June 26–Aug. 3, Jazz at Vail Square free concerts occurring Thursday and Sunday nights July 7–Sept. 1, Vail International Dance Festival running July 31–Aug. 13, and Vail Soul Music Fest taking place Aug. 19–21, attendees can enjoy outdoor evening concerts and ballets all summer long. If your conference happens to coincide with when the USA Pro Cycling Challenge professional bike race is in the Vail Valley on Aug. 25 and 26, conferees can watch cycling a la Tour de France. Or they can jump on a bike and ride on more than 300 miles of mountain biking trails and nearly 60 miles of paved paths between East Vail and Eagle. River rafting, rock climbing, horseback riding, hot air balloon rides and flyfishing add to the fun in fairweather months. When the snow returns, more than 190 marked trails at Vail and 149 runs at Beaver Creek give planners incentive to arrange conferences and meetings with winter fun on the agenda. With 7,000 rooms, two distinct shopping villages, easy driving and flying accessibility, and postcard-worthy scenery, Vail and Beaver Creek are marquee destinations for groups. GET CONNECTED VAIL VALLEY PARTNERSHIP // 970.476.1000 Bookmark/Search this post with:

Colorado Meetings Magazine  

Take Meetings to New Heights in Vail or Beaver Creek