Breckenridge, Colorado has almost too much going for it. First off, it’s one of the closest ski areas to Denver, which means skiers and snowboarders heading to Colorado are always tempted by a Breck pit stop on their way to Vail or Aspen, simply because it’s (roughly) on the way. But Breckenridge is more than just a stopover ski town; it’s a luxury alpine escape without the four-hour car ride from the airport. It’s also a place where you can find high-elevation skiing, rare spirits, and an impressive art community all in the same town. Here, the Departures’ guide to a luxury stay in Breckenridge, Colorado.
Skiing in Breckenridge
Breckenridge Ski Resort is smack dab in the middle of one of the most popular Colorado ski regions in the country. An hour outside Denver, 40 minutes from Vail, and less than three hours from Aspen, it’s a well-trafficked ski town visited by winter sports enthusiasts making a day trip from the city or combining the resort with an Aspen or Vail stint. With just shy of 3,000 skiable acres and an elevation of 3,400 vertical feet, one of Breckenridge’s claims to fame is the sheer amount of alpine terrain; 40% of the trails are in alpine territory. Breckenridge Resort is part of the Vail Resorts network and is on the Epic Pass—which also grants Epic Pass holders priority reservations here. Breck is an all-in-one ski area, boasting 1,400 trails, the longest of which is 3.5 miles.
Where to Eat and Drink in Breckenridge
At the base of Peak 8, Robbie’s Tavern sits inside Grand Colorado Resort and offers the extra cozy, boozy hot chocolate kind of atmosphere you crave after a particularly frigid day on the slopes. Serving “upscale comfort food” alongside an expansive wine and cocktail program, Robbie’s has a mountain-facing deck where you can dine at their open-air fireside tables.
Cool River Coffee House
We’re firm believers in the principle that charming coffee shops go hand in hand with ski vacations. There’s nothing like starting your morning with the perfect espresso in a space that warms you to your core, then taking to the slopes. Pick up at locally owned Cool River Coffee House, on Breck’s Main Street, which serves coffee, breakfast, lunch, and homemade pastries.
This on-mountain restaurant is a great late lunch/early dinner spot when you wrap up your day on the slopes and are looking to indulge. Sevens serves elevated bar fare and amazing fried chicken—you can also grab that chicken at The Coop at the Sevens Express window, right across from Independence SuperChair.
If you didn’t visit a craft brewery, did you really go to Colorado? Breckenridge Brewery is a small-scale craft brewpub that, this season, will host a Winter Wonderland Farm House Beer Garden, complete with a skating rink, sledding hill, and local beers on tap.
Après Libations is the high-end cocktail bar of your luxury ski vacation dreams. Their handcrafted cocktails and rare whisk(e)y selection is part of what makes the Breckenridge vibe so alluring. Even when you can’t visit the inside of this craft tasting room, you can pick up innovative cocktails and homemade bitters to go.
Non-Skiing Culture in Breckenridge
Breckenridge Arts District
As BreckCreate puts it, Breckenridge Arts District is the “region’s newest epicenter of creativity, bringing together studios, galleries, performance spaces, historic landmarks, public art, restaurants, cafes, and other creative businesses that animate and populate a vibrant cultural corridor in downtown Breckenridge.” The one-acre space has cabins for kids’ crafting workshops, studio space for artists, art galleries visitors can wander through, performance venues (for when live theater resumes), and places to purchase ceramic, prints, paintings, and glasswork.
Highline Railroad Museum
The Breckenridge Heritage Alliance runs a collection of historically rich museums in the area, many of which are currently closed. However, the Highline Railroad Museum has an open-air park and playground that kids love in any season. Bundle up and bring the family to see the historic railroad and train at the themed playground.
Public Art Garden
Under the BreckCreate umbrella, you’ll also find Breckenridge’s innovative (and al fresco) display of public art. Interspersed through town, the public art displays are part of a permanent collection that shares the area’s rich history and creative spirit with visitors.
The Spa at Breck
Whether you spend your days on the mountain or working by the lodge fireplace, you’ll want to schedule an après-ski massage at some point during your trip. Visit The Spa at Breck, next to Snowflake Chairlift, for massages, facials, and body treatments inspired by the rugged mountain surroundings.
Where to Stay
Recently opened in the heart of Breckenridge, Gravity Haus is part luxury lodging, part social community. Affectionately known as “Breck Haus,” the property has a SoHo House meets European alpine lodge feel. It has 60 rooms outfitted with design-forward accents and is just a short stroll from Main Street.
One Ski Hill Place, a RockResort
Nestled at Breck’s Peak 8, One Ski Hill Place, a RockResort is a ski-in/ski-out luxury condo hotel just a short walk from five Breckenridge chairlifts. One Ski Hill Place has big alpine lodge energy, with exposed natural wood and stone accents, mountain views, and of course, their Rejuvenation Center Spa.