Thursday, February 13, 2014

Happy Valentine's Skiing

Snowballs are heart-shaped at Big White, BC
Sundance: Utah's rustic, romantic resort
Valentine's Day is being celebrated worldwide this weekend with romantic assignations. My hubby and I have already had ours in advance though, when we stayed last week in the secluded cabins at Sundance Resort, Utah. With lusty log fires and decadent, down-duveted beds, the cabins are so cozy we almost didn't want to go out skiing! However, by now you know me well enough to be sure that we put in a solid six hours on the snowy slopes each day in order to earn our luxurious leisure time.

Later, when we wandered down for drinks at the Owl Bar, the romance continued. The prettily lit pathway meandered down past cute cabins tucked away in the pine and aspen forest and over a bubbling brook to the rustic resort village. If you were a fan of Westerns like me, you would love the Owl Bar which was the actual saloon frequented by the Hole In the Wall Gang back in the late 1800s. It was originally in Wyoming but was dismantled and rebuilt at Sundance after Robert Redford took over.


For romantic resorts in the Rockies, check out the Banff Lake Louise Valentine's Day promo video from 2009: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixUX6MQz5e0. You might recognize some of the "actors"!

Panorama Resort in British Columbia today



Good news for snow lovers in Canada - lots of snow falling and more forecast for the weekend. Panorama got 40cm overnight Thurs - the most in one night for ten years! Looks like Whistler Blackcomb got it first, with 35cm overnight Wed followed by Red Mountain 10cm, Kicking Horse 12cm, 14cm at Fernie and then Lake Louise which was doused in 15cm of fresh on Thurs. Great news for my March trip to Canada - keep on snowing!


With snow and skiing the ideal Valentine's gifts, ski resorts all over North America celebrate Feb 14 in style. Here are some ideas for ski lovers:

Lake Louise Romantic Torchlit Descent
Valentine's Day Torchlit Descent Feb 14 at Lake Louise. Starting off with music and munchies at mid-mountain Whitehorn Lodge right after skiing, everyone then gathers for guided skiing back down to the village. If you've never tried night skiing, this is a must - a surreal experience which challenges your senses with speed and perspective seeming to evaporate in the darkness - or maybe that was the effect of the Whitehorn wine? Anyway, it is a signature event, followed by a fabulous dinner and more dancing at the lodge. Tip: keep a change of clothes in the lodge so you don't have to spend all evening in your ski gear.
Speed Dating with Cupid at Banff Mt Norquay



High-speed dating at Banff Mt Norquay:
I wonder how many ski or snowboard fanatics have met their future partner - or clinched the deal - on a chairlift? Mt Norquay, Banff's nearest ski hill, is actively trying to make this happen with its Lifts of Love Valentine's event Feb 14. A new spin on high altitude speed dating, it starts at 7pm with chairlift hook-ups for the next two hours. Next is the Après Ski Mixer in the Lone Pine Lodge from 9pm - when hopefully nobody will be either lonely or pining! Night skiing and tubing are also a regular Friday and Saturday night feature at Mt Norquay. For bookings, call 403-762-4421 or email sales@banffnorquay.com




Intimate fireside après ski at Sunshine Mountain Lodge


The remote and secluded Sunshine Mountain Lodge is perfect for a romantic rendezvous for Feb 14. Start with aperitifs by the fire at Chimney Corner Lounge. And then there's a special feature menu in the elegant Eagle's Nest Restaurant, with award-winning California wines and plenty of Veuve Clicquot bubbly.


Valentine's ski outfits at Alta, Utah
Alta Lodge, Alta, Utah is a lovely cozy spot to cuddle up. It would be a great place to meet like-minded skiers, too, as it has an innovative dining system - a bit like European chalets or CMH's heliski lodges - where anyone can sit with anyone. Actively encouraging socializing, hook ups start in the hot tubs where everyone is very chatty. The conversation then moves on to the Sitzmark Club bar and lounge and later people form impromptu eating groups for dinner. Collins Grill on the hill is the ideal Valentine's lunch venue with a special "Heart of Darkness" cup cake to seal the deal.
Needles Lodge at Snowbasin, Utah
Needles Lodge is where the wooing's happening at Snowbasin, Utah this Friday. There's a special Sweetheart Dinner planned which sold out early. Couples are whisked 2317 vertical feet up the mountain by gondola for a five-course feast complete with roses for the ladies.


Wearing your heart on your sleeve at Whistler Blackcomb



Whistler Blackcomb, BC has a "kissing booth" planned for Feb 14. A photographer stationed right by the new Harmony 6 Express chair will take pics of cuddly couples. 

And later on love will be in the air with the Superfly Zipline evening dinner tour. Take your love to new heights with a romantic snowcat ride, tandem ziplining under starlit skies, and gourmet dinner by Bearfoot Bistro in a mountain top yurt. Extra touches include roses and complimentary photos. Call Superfly at 604-932-0647 for bookings.




In love with Copper Uncorked 
The Copper Uncorked and In Love event runs all weekend, from Feb 14 – 17, to take in Presidents Weekend as well. It features affordable wines ripe for tasting from across the globe, while chefs from around Copper Mountain compete for best pairing during the Wine-n-Wing Challenge on Sat, Feb 15. A Moonlight Snowshoe Tour runs afterwards, traversing frozen creeks and wooded trails, leading to a romantic meadow lit by the full moon. Call 970-968-2318 ext. 45861 for reservations.



Valentine's Gondola at Big White, BC
Big White, BC does Valentine's Day in style, with bullet chair speed dating, gun barrel coffee cocktails, aphrodisiac tapas and candlelit, petal strewn gondola rides.

Romantic rides on the Gondola of Love include champers, chocolate-covered strawberries, candles and Lionel Richie love songs. This comes for free with a dinner reservation at Kettle Valley Steakhouse. Email concierge@bigwhite.com for bookings.


Speed dating at Big White, BC
Couples in condos get to watch sunset over the Monashee Mountains from private hot tubs on their decks, sipping local Okanagan wines after a day on the snow-swathed slopes.


The Gunbarrel Grill specializes in setting Gran Marnier alight and pouring it down a gun barrel into a glass of brandy. Afterwards coffee or hot choc and whipped cream are added to the fiery concoction. Aphrodisiac tapas include oysters with champagne cocktails, tabletop smores, and a Mr and Mrs table quiz at the Globe Café. Singles tables get a free bottle of wine to get the conversation flowing - for bookings, contact activities@bigwhite.com
Snowboard dating at Big White
Mountain Matrimony at Loveland


Well-named Loveland, Colorado has gone a step further and organized actual weddings for Valentine's.

One hundred couples are going to tie the knot or renew their vows there on the 23rd Annual Valentine's Day Marry Me & Ski Free Mountaintop Matrimony event.

Looks like ski lovers will do anything for a free ski ticket!



2 comments:

  1. How fun!! Valentine's Day is one of my very favorite holidays and it's cools to see some places in Utah featured on here too! This remeinds me of one of our favorite little getaways which is at http://www.brightonchalets.com near Brighton Ski Resort.

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