The Editor's Guide to Aspen on a Limited Schedule

By Etta Meyer | January 9, 2018 | Lifestyle

Our guide to spending 3 days in Aspen.

Day One

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Fresh tracks on Aspen Mountain.

8:30am No time to waste as you get equipped for a day on the slopes. Renting from Four Mountain Sports allows for free overnight transfer of equipment between Aspen’s four mountains, but many choose to select their demos from Hamilton Sports, Performance Ski or Stapleton’s, all within a snowball’s throw of the gondola. Four Mountain Sports, 520 E. Durant Ave., aspensnowmass.com; Hamilton Sports, 520 E. Durant Ave., hamiltonsports.com; Performance Ski, 614 E. Durant Ave., performanceskiaspen.com

9:30am Grab a cappuccino to go at Victoria’s and hop on the free shuttle bus to Aspen Highlands, a pleasant 10-minute ride from town. Victoria+co, 510 E. Durant Ave., aspenespressobar.com; Rubey Park Transit Center, 450 E. Durant Ave., rfta.com

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Highland Bowl.

10:00am You’re on the piste, taking a few warmup runs on some lovely groomed terrain. For the experts, Highland Bowl opens at 10am. A powder cat takes skiers and riders part way up, and from there it’s time to climb. If the hike doesn’t get your blood pumping, the view certainly will. 199 Prospector Road, aspensnowmass.com

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Champagne on snow at Cloud Nine

2:00pm Schuss past Cloud Nine, which will be in full party mode seating its second round of reservation-only guests for lunch. If you’re joining them, cheers! Top of the Cloud Nine lift on Aspen Highlands, aspensnowmass.com

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The downtown scene.

2:30pm Try not to overdo it on the first day (too late). Head back downtown and stroll through a few expertly curated boutiques, (Pitkin County Dry Goods, Chequers, O2 Aspen Boutique, to name a few). Pitkin County Dry Goods, 520 E. Cooper Ave., pitkincountydrygoods.com; Chequers, 520 E. Cooper Ave., chequersaspen.com; O2 Aspen Boutique, 605 E. Cooper Ave., o2aspenboutique.com

4:00pm Wander back to the base of Ajax for a glimpse of the après scene outside at Ajax Tavern, or swing by the DJ downstairs at Chair 9. Ajax Tavern, 685 E. Durant Ave., thelittlenell.com; Chair 9, 675 E. Durant Ave., thelittlenell.com

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Matsuhisa celebrates 20 years.

7:00pm Dinner at Nobu Matsuhisa. The restaurant is housed in a Victorian cottage on Main Street with a grand dining space constructed underneath. Celebrating its 20th anniversary this season, Matsu has been cherished by locals and visitors alike for a generation. 303 E. Main St., matsuhisarestaurants.com

9:00pm Aspen is home to one of the most intimate, unique live music venues in the country, Belly Up Aspen. From DJs like Kygo and Thomas Jack to world music to country, it’s a gem. 450 S. Galena St., bellyupaspen.com

10:00pm Mosey over to the new Silver City, a mountain saloon, for craft cocktails and old-school classics pumping from the vintage jukebox. 220 S. Galena St., silvercityaspen.com

Day Two

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Snowshoeing with ACES.

11:00am Hire a naturalist from the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies for a private snowshoe tour up Castle Creek. Aspen is surrounded by wilderness with plenty of opportunities to spot game and learn about the geology of the mountains. End your tour at Pine Creek Cookhouse for a picturesque lunch. ACES, aspennature.org; Pine Creek Cookhouse, 11399 Castle Creek Road, pinecreekcookhouse.com

3:00pm Check in to Aspen Vida Medi Spa, a one-stop wellness shop on Main Street. The newly expanded 2,500-square-foot space offers acupuncture, a nail technician, massage and a new high-tech facial called the Hydrafacial, which leaves skin plumped with no splotchy recovery time. 420 W. Main St., aspenvidamedispa.com

8:00pm Fondue and a glass of Châteaneuf-du-Pape? Yes, please. Tuck in to La Crêperie du Village for a candlelit feast. 400 E. Hopkins Ave., lacreperieduvillage.com

Day Three

8:15am The gondola on Ajax opens at 9am, but if you sign up for First Tracks, you can go up early with a ski ambassador and be the first to tear up the corduroy or slice through last night’s powder dusting. Sign up 24 hours in advance, 970.920.0755 or in the Silver Queen Gondola Building, aspensnowmass.com

10:00am Be sure to make it to Bonnie’s Restaurant mid-mountain before 11am when it switches from serving breakfast to lunch. The oatmeal pancake gets that crispyon- the-outside, fluffy-on-the-inside thing just right. aspensnowmass.com

PRO TIP Local institutions like the Aspen Institute and the Wheeler Opera House host film fests, events, panel discussions and music yearround.



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Photography by: ASPEN MOUNTAIN AND HIGHLAND BOWL PHOTOS COURTESY OF THE ASPEN SKIING COMPANY BY
JESSE HOFFMAN; SNOWSHOEING PHOTO COURTESY OF ACES