Destination Highlight: Aspen

Destination Highlight: Aspen

A glamorous high-altitude playground for jet-setters and celebrities the likes of Jeff Bezos and Rihanna, Aspen is a world-class ski destination with four revered ski resorts; Aspen Mountain (Ajax), Buttermilk, Highlands, and Snowmass. Ski season runs from late November to late April, although the former mining town is a popular destination anytime of year. Off the slopes it’s a creative powerhouse, offering a compelling mix of art, culture, and fashion. Aspen’s main thoroughfare, Hyman Ave, is home to a bevy of art galleries including the Baldwin Gallery, Aspen Chapel Gallery, Galerie Maximillian, plus the artist-founded Aspen Art Museum, a contemporary art museum that has exhibited the work of prominent artists, the likes of Yayoi Kusama, Teresita Fernández, and Rashid Johnson. Year-round the town plays host to a slew of high-profile annual events, including the Aspen Music Festival, Aspen Film Festival, Food and Wine Classic, Winter X Games, Aspen Art Week… there’s always something happening in Aspen. Luxury retailers have made their home against the backdrop of the picturesque mountains, from Louis Vuitton to Hermès and Bottega Veneta – plus, limited-time pop-ups have brought brands including MaxMara and FWRD to 8,000 feet elevation. 


The Little Nell is Aspen’s first and only five-star, five-diamond property – and only ski-in/ski-out hotel. Located at the base of Aspen Mountain (Ajax), the swanky historic hotel, originally a railroad depot, is known for its exceptional hospitality with amenities including a brand new spa and fitness center (opened December 2023), rooms equipped with gas-burning fireplaces and most with private balconies, and perks for snow sport enthusiasts including boots comfortably heated overnight. The onsite Element 47 restaurant is Michelin Guide-recommended, serving Colorado contemporary cuisine, while Ajax Tavern is the ultimate après ski destination and a hot-spot for people watching. 


Aspen boasts the chicest après-ski scene in the US. Visit The Snow Lodge at the St. Regis, the winter-time counterpart to Montauk icon The Surf Lodge, for its concert series that hosts of-the-moment DJs, including Diplo and Sofi Tukker. In the mood for a raucous good time? Cloud Nine Alpine Bistro, a former ski patrol cabin atop the Cloud Nine lift, is the spot for dancing on tables and spraying bottles of Veuve Clicquot. Alternatively, low-key Sundeck (high atop Aspen mountain) boasts views of 14,00 foot peaks from a spacious patio with a crowd-pleasing menu of soups, pizzas, sandwiches and more. 


Aspen may be a ski town, but its dynamic dining scene rivals that of many major US cities. Matsuhisa serves sushi across two stories in an old Victorian, try for a reservation for the super-exclusive “Nobu in Town” nights when the sushi master himself, Nobu Matsuhisa, steps behind the bar. Intimate Bosq has just 35 seats and features a menu by chef and co-owner Barclay Dodge that features local ingredients that he forages himself in the surrounding wilderness. For a Chamonix-adjacent dining experience, head to French Alpine Bistro for fondue and sweet and savory crêpes. Casa Tua Restaurant & Club was named one of the country’s most coveted reservations by Gotham Magazine, but you don’t have to be a member of the private club to enjoy the restaurant’s seasonal Italian cuisine.

Schubach Aviation