Park City, Utah

By Alona Abbady Martinez

South Floridians are blessed, pampered, and downright spoiled with our beautiful beaches, temperate year-round climate, and laid-back fun vibe. Which is why, when choosing the ideal cold weather escape, Park City, Utah is the first and only spot that should come to mind. Nestled 7,000 feet up in the craggy Wasatch Range, this charming mountain town is home to some of the finest ski slopes, bustling restaurants and craft beverage scene, along with luxurious hotels and spas. 

LAST CHANCE TO
HIT THE SLOPES

Park City is a prime ski destination throughout the winter, and those traveling in April will catch the tail end of the season, which ends April 7th. No worries if you arrive after the first week in April, though, there’s always plenty to see, eat, and shop for in this quaint, historic mining town.

Park City Mountain Resort

With over 7,300 acres, 341 trails, 41 lifts, and seven terrain parks, Park City Mountain Resort is the country’s largest ski resort. Opened in 1963, it garnered center stage in 2002 when Utah hosted the Winter Olympics. The resort feeds into Canyons Village, a network of shops and restaurants steps away from the Grand Summit and Red Pine Gondola.

Deer Valley Resort

Consistently ranked #1 in guest service among ski resorts in North America, this resort has gone as far to trademark the term “the Deer Valley Difference” for its notable success. It is one of the few resorts with a skiers-only policy, i.e., no snowboarders allowed. 

WHERE TO STAY

Waldorf Astoria Park City
For those close to Park City Mountain Resort, this is the place to call home. Those here for the slopes will enjoy that, among other perks, this luxurious hotel offers a Ski Butlers delivery service, bringing ski rentals straight to your hotel room. A quick cross of the road and the gondola awaits to take skiers to Canyons Village base area. Of course, after a tough day (slopes or shopping), nothing is better than quality time at the spa. This 16,000-square-foot respite glows with contemporary mountain design and fireside lounges, and offers services such as Ashiatsu, where therapists use overhead bars for balance, performing the majority of this massage with their feet. 

One Empire Pass

A part of the Deer Valley Resort, this exclusive upscale community features 27 private residences ranging from two to four bedrooms, all containing the most modern amenities as well as broad window walls and see-through balconies. Each home is serviced by a private elevator entrance as well as a concierge to attend to individual needs. A common area offers snacks and breakfast, for those not wanting to cook. There’s also a kids’ room outfitted with assorted arcade and board games as well as an outdoor jacuzzi area.

WHERE TO DINE

The Farm

Park City Mountain’s seasonally-driven restaurant, aptly called The Farm, is a favorite for its focus on farm-to-table meals and thoughtful wine list. Dishes with a gamey twist like espresso rubbed venison with braised red cabbage, sunchoke purée, apple paper, and a cocoa demi-glace or spätzle with apple, pickled asparagus, gruyere, emmenthal and house-made elk sausage are big draws. Seafood lovers will enjoy the diver scallops with smoked eggplant, roasted pumpkin, and crispy wild mushrooms. The rustic chic vibe, complete with an enclosed patio area, makes for good lingering.

Murdock’s Café & Pizzeria

Food options are plentiful while on the slopes with casual favorites like Murdock’s Café & Pizzeria serving breakfast selections like the biscuits and gravy bowl or roasted veggie quiche. For lunch, enjoy a burger and a beer on the second floor patio of Red Pine Lodge while watching skiers race down the slopes (note, be sure to wear sunblock as it’s easy to burn!) 

Royal Street Café

A favorite among Deer Valley skiers (where you can literally ski up to the front door) Royal Street Café offers a versatile menu with dishes like the Dungeness crab tower with wasabi, ginger-soy, and sweet chili or yellowfin tuna tartare with arugula truffle oil and lemon salad. Heartier fare includes Deer Valley’s turkey chili as well as their award-winning maple bacon BBQ bison burger. There’s plenty of beer and cocktails like the blueberry mojito, which will take whatever edge you may have off.

Firewood

The custom-built 14-foot-long wood stove serves as the restaurant’s focal point and pride. Ask for a table in the main dining area where all that separates you from the grill are a double-set of antique paneled glass windows. Almost all menu items of the elegant-chic eatery kiss the flames of the fire, with notable favorites like clam and chorizo served with shallots, savory herbs, heirloom carrots, and cabbage, elk with parsnips, sweet potato mostarda, and Brussels sprouts, and acorn roasted squashwith onions, cashews, blue cheese, and pomegranate seeds.

MAIN STREET

Park City Museum

Park City has a long history dating back to 1868 when prospectors discovered silver in the area. Mines would go down hundreds of feet and consisted of a labyrinth of tunnels and intricate pulley systems. The museum’s two-story mine model mill and aerial tramway give a better understand of just how intricate and treacherous such mines where. It’s all about hands-on here with a visit to an original basement jail and the opportunity to climb aboard an antique mining car.

Egyptian Theatre

This theatre, housed where the popular Dewey Theatre (built in 1899) once stood, opened in 1926. Inspired by the recent discovery of King Tut’s tomb, the project was supervised by an Egyptologist who ensured that all the lotus leaf motifs, scarabs, and hieroglyphics were historically accurate. Today, the theatre remains the city’s heartbeat of cultural life, hosting a variety of theatre, comedy, musical acts, special events, and community functions. 

Shop

Put the cell phone on “Do Not Disturb” and simply meander along Main Street to shop. With over 100 independent stores, there’s a bit of everything from art galleries, jewelry, artisanal goods, boutiques, and even a proper bookstore. 

DRINK UP!

Alpine Distilling Gin Experience

Rob Sergent, founder of Alpine Distiller, has an enthusiasm for gin that is infectious. Perhaps it’s the numerous jars of botanicals and spices he has lined up at the bar or his palpable zeal for spirits (something he attributes to his bourbon-making Kentucky ancestors). By the end of the evening, you’ll find yourself as smitten with the gin process as he is. Set in a micro-distilling location on the ground floor of 350 Main restaurant, Sergent relays the history of gin with the charisma of a beloved college professor, all the while guiding guests through the sensory experience of creating their unique blend. Guests then watch their creations cook in copper stills as they partake in a four-course dinner and gin-pairing under the tutelage of 350 Main’s Chef Matt Safranek. Goody bags include their unique bottle of handcrafted gin. 

Wasatch Brew Pub

Perched at the top of Main Street, Wasatch Brew Pub has the distinction of being the first in the state to begin brewing craft beers since the prohibition. The cozy eatery offers elevated pub fare like tater tots with bacon-jalapeño dipping sauce, pizza with spicy chicken and chimichurri, and the Devastator Burger: a classic burger topped with pastrami-cheese sauce served on an asiago-herbed bun. Everything pairs well with their award-winning beers bearing memorable names like Wasatch Polygamy Porter, Haze Craze, and 1st Amendment Lager.

Wine Tasting At Stein Eriksen Lodge

Named after Norwegian Olympic Gold Medal skier Stein Eriksen, this European-styled hotel boasts a wine collection of over 10,000 bottles, valued at over $1 million. Inconspicuously hidden in the basement next to one of the parking garages, wine aficionados will be left speechless upon entering the cellar and being greeted by the vast collection and custom-made tasting table tucked away in the back. Led by an in-house sommelier, the tasting is varied, informative, and lots of fun.

High West Distillery and Saloon 

High West Distillery is the world’s only ski-in distillery and is located at the base of the Town Lift. High West offers tours of their distilling operation that teach visitors how to make whiskey and vodka, they also offer a full service bar with a tasting room and alpine-inspired cuisine. 

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