Eagle Point is the new Elk Meadows Resort
November 17, 2010
Eagle Point is Utah’s newest and 14th ski resort. Formerly Elk Meadows near Beaver, Utah, the owners are shooting to open mid-December.
Elk Meadows made headlines last year for being on the auction block for only a few million plus the cost of its debts. It was sold in December 2009.
The new owners ran the hedge fund that put it up for auction after foreclosing on the old operators. Shane Gadbaw, Terry Leighton and Joe Clough outbid other interested parties as individuals and plan to reopen next month, Gadbaw explained from New York.
The purchase price was $1.58 million, he said. The debt obligations they had to pay before it was free and clear, as well as the cost of renovations was "multiples of that," but he wouldn’t say how much.
The three new owners were in a tough position, Gadbaw said. It had already been eight years since the slopes were maintained and no one was sure how long they’d need to continue waiting before they could recover their money. Lacking a better option, they decided to make a go of it themselves.
"We believe it will be a magical resort destination. We want to be the guys to finally make it work. It was part gut instinct, part perverse desire to take on a challenge that eluded many before us. We’ve studied the issues, think we know why it didn’t work, and know how to make it work," he said.
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One lodge has been completely remodeled and another was partially redone. Five lifts are now certified.
Gadbaw’s own brother is a high-end chef in New York City and will help create luxury dining options. There are several condominiums and cabins on the property owned by outside parties as well as the new owners. Everyone has agreed to be part of a rental pool giving guests the opportunity to stay in one of 120 residences ranging from one bedroom to 7,000 square feet. In total, there are over 250 beds for rent at Eagle Point. The town of Beaver is also close by.
Eagle Point will have competition from Brian Head near Cedar City, but Gadbaw believes his locale gives him the edge. Only 30 miles further, Eagle Point will be attractive to skiers from Las Vegas because of its elevation at 10,000 feet with access to 12,000-foot peaks. The backcountry all privately owned by the resort, will win over locals and destination skiers alike, he added.
Eagle Point is not trying to compete with Utah’s other 13 resorts. Gadbaw believes the property is unique and will attract destination guests in both winter and summer. Its food, lodging and recreation options just need to be discovered for the resort to be successful, he said.
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