Park City resorts all make top ten list
Ryan Summerlin October 16, 2012
According to a Ski Magazine reader survey, for the first time in survey history all three Park City resorts ranked in the Top 10 Resorts in North America. Both Canyons Resort and Park City Mountain Resort ranked higher than in past years. Canyons taking the tenth position, a first for the resort, moving up six spots from the previous year. PCMR went from sixth last year to fourth this year.
Deer Valley Resort took second place according to the survey results, falling from a five-year stretch in the number one position. Whistler Blackcomb took first this year.
"We held the top spot for five years in a row, which no one had ever done before," said Deer Valley General Manager Bob Wheaton. "For Whistler, this is the first time they have been number one since 1999, but they were always in the top five.
"This past year, they had incredible, natural snow which resulted in record skier visits for them and still, being in this company – the top of the list – is quite the honor. We’re not going to quit shooting for number one."
Deer Valley Resort took the most subcategory Ski Magazine awards of any single resort, winning first place in six of 20 categories, which included first place for grooming, guest services, on-mountain food, lodging, dining and family programs.
"This survey says something about the three resorts," Wheaton added, "but it says something even stronger about everyone in town and how we’re regarded in the industry. Everybody contributes. That’s one thing we hear time and time again, how friendly and cooperative everyone is, and it really shows."
Park City was the only resort town to have three resorts fall in the Top 10, but the list included popular competitors such as Vail and Telluride, Colo., Jackson Hole Wyo. and Sun Valley, Idaho.
The annual list, which was released earlier this week, uses thousands of reader surveys to compile the rankings.
The surveys allow responders to rank up to six resorts and pull from 20 different criteria on the survey. Ski Magazine sent out 20,000 print surveys as well as another 20,000 through email. Roughly 25 percent of the surveys sent out are answered, said Ski Magazine Travel Editor Samantha Berman.
"Over the last couple of years, we’ve made our way – in rapid fashion – up the list," said Mike Goar, General Manager of Canyons Resort, in a previous interview. "Making it into the Top 10 was a benchmark that our employees, that everyone here, is quite proud of, and the employees really deserve the credit. We received very high marks on our customer service."
When Talisker bought the resort in 2007, the property’s score hovered in the mid-to-low 20’s. Last year, the resort moved up the list, ranked 16th in North American in a competition against resorts in the United States and Canada.
Canyons Resort made upgrades to the Resort Village and its on-mountain dining, as well as adding 300 acres of intermediate and advanced trails. The resort also boasts new lodging and dining properties this year and upgrades to its terrain parks.
PCMR also made upgrades to its terrain park, including a new partnership with Neff Headwear on the exclusive Neff Land Terrain Park, the latest addition to its award-winning "I Ride Park City," a popular youth program offered to skiers and snowboarders at the resort.
Deer Valley Resort spent $8 million on renovations that included a complete lift replacement of the Deer Crest Lift, a four-person gondola that starts near the St. Regis Deer Valley and drops skiers off at the peak of Little Baldy Mountain. The older lift was replaced with a new, high-speed detachable quad lift, the Mountaineer Express, which has the capacity to move 1,200 more skiers in a single hour, said Emily Summers, the communications director at Deer Valley Resort, in a previous interview.
Ski Magazine 2013 Ski Rankings