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Vail Resorts buy Swiss ski resort

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Scooter in Seattle wrote:
No idea, but it isn’t a stretch to think that VR is awash in cash, and if true, they need to put it to work. This may sound speculative, especially to you who know Andermatt (I don’t), but to me this does not sound crazy, especially if there’s a real estate play involved. Or maybe the CEO‘s mother-in-law lives in Switzerland!


The weird thing is that the press release seemed to imply that Vail are only getting in on the on hill stuff not the town real estate (separate companies). Of course there might be kickers based on operational performance or revenues that they are not revealing yet (not least because operational performance has not been VR's strong suit recently).

I suspect it's pretty much the cheapest they could have got significantly into a decent sized European ski resort (the burghers of Ischgl or St Anton or VDI would hardly have been offering up the golden goose) because the builders of that pricey real estate now need an international reputation and client base to keep the tills ticking and justify phase 2.
ski holidays
 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Dave of the Marmottes, I guess rossyl's "in advance" hunt doesn't go far enough in advance then. Laughing Laughing
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
@rossyl, someone that skies is by definition a "skier". There are plenty of "holiday skiers" that do a yearly 1 week trip that's all about spas, views, and good food with a bit of skiing on the side. I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

Quote:

Even heavily discounted is $804 for a week. So not sure where the £423 quote has come from.


It's what a 7 day epic pass for next season costs. I'm guessing you could have got a similar deal if you bought in advance for this season.

Quote:

- if I want to ski here for a week it costs near x3 the cost of 3Vallees


3 valleys 6 day pass is £270.
Epic 6 day pass including all resorts is £374.

So nowhere near 3x. Change it to two weeks and it becomes £579 for 13 days at 3 valleys and £478 for an epic local pass with unlimited skiing. So yes, if only skiing 1 week Vail will be more than Europe, but longer trips it becomes cheaper - it's two different models. I could argue that you get more for your money in n America due to all the controlled in bounds off piste, but you could counter that Europe offers far more extensive piste skiing, really depends what you want.

Also you can absolutely go to Colorado without skiing Vail. Right now A-basin has 3 midweek day tickets for £180. Loveland has some days next week with £55 day passes. Silverton is a bit of a drive but unique and lift pass is £75 per day. Or if you don't want to pay for a lift pass plenty of good touring options!

Quote:

- Food on the mountain is atrocious and expensive. $25 for chicken nuggets and chips. Also, it's not nice.


This isn't a Vail issue. It's a North American ski resort thing. If you are expecting cheap or gourmet food you are going to be disappointed. You either suck it up and pay or bring your own - many n American resorts have lodges with excellent free facilities such as boiling water so the option is there to bring coffee/hot chocolate sachets and not pay and BBQs as mentioned above. If eating at nice on mountain restaurants is a big part of your trip, stay in Europe.

Quote:

Putting up ski instructor salaries, is a band aid situation for the real problem - housing.


There is a lack of affordable housing in most ski towns in n America, and it's been a problem long before the epic pass. I was in Whistler the year before it became epic and housing crisis was the main story in the pique most weeks. There was even talk of people renting out their bathtubs at the busiest times. Look at the situation in Jackson hole now, housing has went through the roof there - again nothing to do with Vail/epic. I want to do a season at Chamonix but the housing options are way more expensive than what I can get in Canada so I definitely don't think all n America housing is more expensive than all Europe.

The irony is thanks to cheap passes from epic and iKON making it more affordable, more people are doing more days skiing, which means higher demand for accomodation and increased prices.

Quote:

Everywhere we go, staff complain about Vail management


I've had friends that worked at resorts all over n America. They all complain about all of them. Most ski resort jobs are minimum wage dead end jobs people put up with in exchange for a free pass and making ends meet while getting to live in the mountains. I'm not saying the ski resorts don't treat their staff badly (I can give you plenty examples of them doing that), but put anyone in a poorly paid dead end job and they will likely complain about it regardless if they are in a factory in UK or a ski resort. Sure Vail need to do better, but you could get the same reaction in most places.
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boarder2020 wrote:
@rossyl, someone that skies is by definition a "skier". There are plenty of "holiday skiers" that do a yearly 1 week trip that's all about spas, views, and good food with a bit of skiing on the side. I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season,...


I'm proudly a Euro skier. I didn't previously know we were a defined group. Do we have a flag? Very Happy

I might ski 2 weeks or 3 weeks a season, in different resorts, in different countries.

I'm yet to go to a spa whilst on a ski trip.

If skiing 90 days a year, results in skiing no longer being about the views, that's a disappointment.

I like to eat lunch, that isn't freezer food warmed up. Vail quality used to be considerably better, they're blaming COVID.

I'm on holiday. I don't even take a packed lunch to work

Doing enough research? I don't plan where I'm going to ski a year in advance.

boarder2020 wrote:

... and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.
.


If they're American Ski problems. Then what's wrong with mentioning a problem. So that others are aware of problems.

Particularly when the point of this thread is wondering what the effects might be of a Amerocan ski operator owning a European resort. The differences and problems of each are surely the point of the discussion? Will Vail bring American problems to Andermatt?

boarder2020 wrote:


Quote:

Even heavily discounted is $804 for a week. So not sure where the £423 quote has come from.


It's what a 7 day epic pass for next season costs. I'm guessing you could have got a similar deal if you bought in advance for this season.

Quote:

- if I want to ski here for a week it costs near x3 the cost of 3Vallees


3 valleys 6 day pass is £270.
Epic 6 day pass including all resorts is £374.

So nowhere near 3x. Change it to two weeks and it becomes £579 for 13 days at 3 valleys and £478 for an epic local pass with unlimited skiing. So yes, if only skiing 1 week Vail will be more than Europe, but longer trips it becomes cheaper - it's two different models. I could argue that you get more for your money in n America due to all the controlled in bounds off piste, but you could counter that Europe offers far more extensive piste skiing, really depends what you want.



How far in advance do you need to book to get those prices?

I don't plan a year ahead. As whwre I go is dependent on a number of things and it's nice to mix things up.

abc wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes, I guess rossyl's "in advance" hunt doesn't go far enough in advance then. Laughing Laughing


I'm guessing your spot on.
I'm also probably not "advanced" enough to be able to get the "advanced" prices. Toofy Grin
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Quote:

I'm proudly a Euro skier. I didn't previously know we were a defined group. Do we have a flag?


I'm European too. I'm just pointing out many Europeans on their first trip to n America don't do adequate research and make the same mistakes i.e. not buying a lift pass pre season and getting stuck with expensive day passes. N Americans coming to Europe make mistakes too. If you've never been to the other before it can be difficult working out the other system and how things are done.

Quote:

Doing enough research? I don't plan where I'm going to ski a year in advance.


For the cheapest passes in n America you need to buy pre season. This is the compromise you make. Buy early and it's cheaper. Wait till last minute where you might be able to find better snow and you pay more (which is true for aspects of skiing in Europe too). To be fair an epic pass covers great resorts in BC, Utah, Colorado, and Europe so you'd be hard pressed to not find somewhere with decent conditions worth skiing.

Quote:

I'm on holiday. I don't even take a packed lunch to work


I'm there to ski, I don't have time to waste sitting around in a restaurant NehNeh but seriously if eating is a big part of the experience for you stay in Europe. Look at any thread on snow heads about n America Vs Europe and food is always bought up. A bit of research prior to going and you'd have known this (and maybe not picked to ski in n America). Or maybe even embrace the n American way of fast food, pocket bacon, jacket pbj etc.

Quote:

Doing enough research?


Yeah, it helps. If I came back from st Moritz complaining it was a bit pricey I'd expect someone to tell me "well duh you should have worked that out before going". Same if someone went to Chamonix and complained there wasn't enough beginner terrain and it's too disjointed. By all means just wing it and pick a random place without looking into it, but don't complain when it doesn't fit what you are looking for and could have been easily avoided.

Quote:

If they're American Ski problems. Then what's wrong with mentioning a problem. So that others are aware of problems.


As said there are countless threads on USA Vs Europe ski trips in terms of pros and cons. You made out all the issues were Vail issues, when they are just the norm in n america. Tbh I'm not even sure they are specific to n America are there many European ski resorts with affordable accommodation? Even with the cost of more expensive flights a season in Canada costs me way less than a season in Europe, I can't even get close due to much more expensive season passes and accomodation in Europe.

Quote:

If skiing 90 days a year, results in skiing no longer being about the views, that's a disappointment.


Ok we can be pedantic if you want. My point is I'd rather people that ski more days get subsidised than those that ski a few. You can define those two groups how you want. As I said I'm completely bias as a ski bum who likes a cheap pass. You are welcome to disagree, clearly the euro model of cheaper 1 week passes and more expensive for longer visits suits your style of ski trips more.
ski holidays
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You'll need to Register first of course.
rossyl wrote:

If they're American Ski problems. Then what's wrong with mentioning a problem. So that others are aware of problems.

Particularly when the point of this thread is wondering what the effects might be of a Amerocan ski operator owning a European resort. The differences and problems of each are surely the point of the discussion? Will Vail bring American problems to Andermatt?

Except you didn't even know what's typical of North American ski operation style. So your so called "American problem" isn't even relevant!

Your characterization of Vail is also rather far off the reality. Vail isn't at all "exclusive". Vail is viewed as the Walmart/McDonald of skiing by North American skiers.

Quote:

How far in advance do you need to book to get those prices?

I don't plan a year ahead. As where I go is dependent on a number of things and it's nice to mix things up.

According to the information @boarder2020 presented, the sale of Epic Day Pass only ends in December!

That's about the same time many ask their manager for time off in January or February (or March/April)!!!

Quote:

Doing enough research? I don't plan where I'm going to ski a year in advance.

Not "a year in advance", just a few months!

You clearly didn't "do enough research"!!!

Quote:
If skiing 90 days a year, results in skiing no longer being about the views, that's a disappointment.

I don't ski 90 days a year, not even half of it. Yet skiing for me isn't about the view! It's only part of the many "side attraction". rolling eyes So clearly the two are not related. Skiing more days doesn't detract from the enjoyment.

That said, I've gone to spas during my ski holidays. Laughing Laughing Laughing
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@rossyl makes some entirely respectable points about the question of what Vail is intending to import into Europe. What can they actually improve?

Food - unlikely
Pass pricing - unlikely for the 1 week holidaymaker
Mountain ops - not with their current record
Infrastructure - well their cash might pay for more chondolas etc or Prinoths

Maybe because Andermatt is already a company town they think they can creste a ski school monopoly and make huge mark ups on low qualified instructors.

Maybe they can offer loaded chilli dogs noodle bars and pizza with big gulp sodas in mtn cafeterias.

I guess they could drive the likes of me to Andermatt if I like the idea of some skiing in Europe and a trip to Whistler or Tahoe or Colorado in the same season.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
Well…interesting to-ing and fro-ing re how best to buy a pass, and interesting re the rise of resorts like Whistler.

Andermatt has changed - a lot. See:

https://amp.theguardian.com/travel/2014/nov/08/andermatt-skiing-switzerland-alps-sedrun

Now, I regret the loss of some things - like the rope tow behind the Petit Paradis in Bluche, where Grom1 had her first turns. And the loss of the Aminona lift, which cut out some good access. But I like the new(ish) gondola at Vercorin, funded by the people of the village, which has really improved the skiing there and is paying for itself - a gamble but it worked. The new cafe was built at the bottom as a result - and it’s nice. Small scale development, consistent with environmental development (few people are going to fly from North America to ski in Vercorin).

However….

Andermatt is different. This is the strategy - sell on exclusive access to Swiss ownership at sky high prices, to foreign investors in far away countries. The land at Andermatt was sold for a very low price. That’s fine…but look what impact that has locally. And for me it harks of a global financial development model which we cannot sustain if we care for the environmental impact.

https://www.homejournal.com/en/article/Andermatt-Swiss-Alps-Launches-New-Property-Silva-to-Asia-Investors/

Oh the irony….Swiss restricted foreign purchase of property for a number of reasons not least to keep prices low for local young people. Now the proprty companies are controlling which nations can purchase a given property from plan. But to maximise profit. Profit is fine - Vercorin needs a surplus to maintain the finance on the new lift. Nax needs a surplus to run its ancient chairs. But don’t just think about lift pass prices - think of what the full implications are for us and the planet.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
Wowsers!
Maybe there's a lot less squabbling in Europe as well Smile That's a light hearted joke - as its seems to have gotten a little serious.

The conversation has seemed to boil down to:
- Buying passes in November for skiing in April.
- Food on mountain.

Buying passes in November.

Looking at this entirely personally - Brits weren't even allowed into the USA until mid-November.


Food on Mountain

It will never be as good as Europe. However, as mentioned, it is not as good as it used to be.
Vail are blaming COVID.


Vail being the McDonald's of skiing?
What does that make the other resorts?
Beaver Creek - KFC?
Breckenridge - Dixy Chicken?
Copper Mountain - The Dollar Store?

Once again, its a joke. But, having skied those three resorts, I would say in many ways they are cheaper than Vail.

Also, given a house just sold for $32m in Vail, the mind boggles at what the prices must be at resorts that can be compared to an actual restaurant. Unless McDonald's was actually complimenting Vail! Again, that last bit was a joke.

Maybe the solution is a to put a McDonald's on the mountain and to have a coupon system.
Buy a Big Mac, get a half price lift ticket. Again a joke!

Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
@rossyl makes some entirely respectable points about the question of what Vail is intending to import into Europe. What can they actually improve?

Food - unlikely
Pass pricing - unlikely for the 1 week holidaymaker
Mountain ops - not with their current record
Infrastructure - well their cash might pay for more chondolas etc or Prinoths

Maybe because Andermatt is already a company town they think they can creste a ski school monopoly and make huge mark ups on low qualified instructors.

Maybe they can offer loaded chilli dogs noodle bars and pizza with big gulp sodas in mtn cafeterias.

I guess they could drive the likes of me to Andermatt if I like the idea of some skiing in Europe and a trip to Whistler or Tahoe or Colorado in the same season.


Indeed, all good points.

Looking forward to Pop Tarts for breakfast, more Chicken Nuggets for lunch and Pizza Pockets for dinner. This again was a joke Smile
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
[quote="boarder2020"]I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

[quote]

You sound like an elitist back bottom.
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 snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
snowHeads are a friendly bunch.
[quote="luanb"][quote="boarder2020"]I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

Quote:


You sound like an elitist back bottom.


There are 2 main models of lift passes right now. The iKON/epic which works out extremely cheap for those doing lots of days and the Euro style where season passes are much more expensive. The cheap n American season passes (and considerably cheaper accommodation out there) have allowed me to spend seasons as a ski bum that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford. So yeah I prefer that model, as I've said before I'm bias - it's best for me. If you only can ski 1 week a year I understand why you prefer the euro model.

I'm sure the Heli ski crowd and people dropping more $ on 1 week trips than a month of skiing costs me would enjoy hearing I'm an elitist. I'm basically a dirtbag ski bum sleeping in hostels and living a really basic lifestyle. My argument for the cheap season passes is that it gives more people like me that are not wealthy the chance to do a season - which imo is kind of the opposite of elitist.
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
[quote="boarder2020"][quote="luanb"]
boarder2020 wrote:
I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

Quote:


You sound like an elitist back bottom.


There are 2 main models of lift passes right now. The iKON/epic which works out extremely cheap for those doing lots of days and the Euro style where season passes are much more expensive. The cheap n American season passes (and considerably cheaper accommodation out there) have allowed me to spend seasons as a ski bum that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford. So yeah I prefer that model, as I've said before I'm bias - it's best for me. If you only can ski 1 week a year I understand why you prefer the euro model.

I'm sure the Heli ski crowd and people dropping more $ on 1 week trips than a month of skiing costs me would enjoy hearing I'm an elitist. I'm basically a dirtbag ski bum sleeping in hostels and living a really basic lifestyle. My argument for the cheap season passes is that it gives more people like me that are not wealthy the chance to do a season - which imo is kind of the opposite of elitist.


There's more to being an elitist than money. The idea that you are a "hardcore skier" and therefore other people, with jobs, families, responsibilities, who can't afford to be away for more than 1 week a year should subsidise your hobby is completely elitists.
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 So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
luanb wrote:
There's more to being an elitist than money. The idea that you are a "hardcore skier" and therefore other people, with jobs, families, responsibilities, who can't afford to be away for more than 1 week a year should subsidise your hobby is completely elitists.


It's just a fact that the people who ski more pay less per turn than the more casual - no different from any other hobby or recreation. That's not particularly elitist - the gym addicts are subsidised heavily by the "I really ought to use my membership some day" crowd but you wouldn't say they are elitist. The US season pass model is simply the gym model.

It's easy to be a bit snobby about how much skiing people do - I'm aware of at least 1 forum that distinguishes between skiers (those for whom it is a signioficant part of their life) and people who ski (those who might do the odd week or weekend but not necessarily even an annual commitment) - but it's not relevant to this discussion other than if you a person who skis you'll likely pay top $ if you decide you simply must spend your week at Vail. M
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:
It's easy to be a bit snobby about how much skiing people do


But not as easy as being snobby about spa use! So I like a swim and sauna after skiing? Just kill me now rolling eyes .
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
[quote="luanb"][quote="boarder2020"]
luanb wrote:
boarder2020 wrote:
I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

Quote:


You sound like an elitist back bottom.


There are 2 main models of lift passes right now. The iKON/epic which works out extremely cheap for those doing lots of days and the Euro style where season passes are much more expensive. The cheap n American season passes (and considerably cheaper accommodation out there) have allowed me to spend seasons as a ski bum that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford. So yeah I prefer that model, as I've said before I'm bias - it's best for me. If you only can ski 1 week a year I understand why you prefer the euro model.

I'm sure the Heli ski crowd and people dropping more $ on 1 week trips than a month of skiing costs me would enjoy hearing I'm an elitist. I'm basically a dirtbag ski bum sleeping in hostels and living a really basic lifestyle. My argument for the cheap season passes is that it gives more people like me that are not wealthy the chance to do a season - which imo is kind of the opposite of elitist.


There's more to being an elitist than money. The idea that you are a "hardcore skier" and therefore other people, with jobs, families, responsibilities, who can't afford to be away for more than 1 week a year should subsidise your hobby is completely elitists.


Suspect this is a case of skint ski bum with loads of time on his hands struggling to empathise with why busy family guy booking 1st US ski trip I hadn’t done an exhaustive study on US lift price models.

When I first went to the US I also just rocked up and was knocked out by the cost of lift passes
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 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
[quote="luanb"][quote="boarder2020"]
luanb wrote:
boarder2020 wrote:
I'm personally happy for them to subsidise skiing for the "hardcore skiers" trying to rack up lots of days.

You sound like a euro skier that didn't do their research - got screwed over by not buying an early lift pass pre season, and complains about all the things that are just well know typical n America skiing problems.

Quote:


You sound like an elitist back bottom.


There are 2 main models of lift passes right now. The iKON/epic which works out extremely cheap for those doing lots of days and the Euro style where season passes are much more expensive. The cheap n American season passes (and considerably cheaper accommodation out there) have allowed me to spend seasons as a ski bum that I otherwise wouldn't have been able to afford. So yeah I prefer that model, as I've said before I'm bias - it's best for me. If you only can ski 1 week a year I understand why you prefer the euro model.

I'm sure the Heli ski crowd and people dropping more $ on 1 week trips than a month of skiing costs me would enjoy hearing I'm an elitist. I'm basically a dirtbag ski bum sleeping in hostels and living a really basic lifestyle. My argument for the cheap season passes is that it gives more people like me that are not wealthy the chance to do a season - which imo is kind of the opposite of elitist.


There's more to being an elitist than money. The idea that you are a "hardcore skier" and therefore other people, with jobs, families, responsibilities, who can't afford to be away for more than 1 week a year should subsidise your hobby is completely elitists.


What terms would you prefer me to use? I have friends that are "serious" runners doing 5 runs a week and others that are more "recreational" that just do a parkrun each week. They are clearly different. If someone tells your their friend is a "hardcore" gym user you are going to assume they go quite a lot.

It's pretty much the case that anything that offers an "annual pass" those that can use it more get the best value and those that just use it a few times are basically subsidising the cost for the regulars. Again I'm telling you I'm bias, it's the model that works best for me, if you don't like it feel free to stick with euro model where those buying more expensive season passes are helping to subsidise cheaper day and 1 week passes.

I gave up a good career to be a ski bum, and have made sacrifices in other areas too. Sure there are some people that have legitimate reasons they can't spend more time in the mountains - e.g. caring for elderly relatives. Other things imo are kind of excuses - e.g. having kids was a choice you made and you had to know it would limit opportunities in other areas of life. I would describe "hardcore" skiers as people that sacrifice other aspects of life to maximise ski time. I'm not saying that this makes them any better than people that just ski one week a year, but clearly there are differences. The truth is most people could do a season if they really wanted - but they value other things more (career, buying a house, having kids etc.) and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.

Edit: could have done a season. By the time you have kids probably too complicated until they are grown up - although some do manage it!


Last edited by Poster: A snowHead on Wed 6-04-22 15:59; edited 1 time in total
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
boarder2020 wrote:
The truth is most people could do a season if they really wanted - but they value other things more (career, buying a house, having kids etc.) and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.


This. The idea that doing a season or skiing a lot is a special level of privilege is slightly bizarre. As is the idea that there isn't often a financial penalty for maintaining flexilibility in late booking/commitment - lots of things have advantageous early bird pricing.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
boarder2020 wrote:
The truth is most people could do a season if they really wanted - but they value other things more (career, buying a house, having kids etc.) and there's absolutely nothing wrong with that.


This. The idea that doing a season or skiing a lot is a special level of privilege is slightly bizarre. As is the idea that there isn't often a financial penalty for maintaining flexilibility in late booking/commitment - lots of things have advantageous early bird pricing.
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I try to hold down a good job and ski a lot. On reflection, I can probably ski a lot because I hold down a good job.
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
My take away is that euro skiing and us skiing are different. I like and do both for different reasons. I hope vails buy doesn’t make andermatt (a place I have visited twice) change much because I like both. I ski in vail multiple times per year for the last 20 years so I’m not a vail hater. I will go to andermatt again so long as buy doesn’t change things much. I don’t think it will at least for awhile because the parts of us skiing that I enjoy less than euro skiing are going to be difficult for vail to impact because they won’t have the same economic power over the entire experience as in the us. Here they control the entire ski area by my means of their lease with us forest service and much of the lodging base through their economic control of much of the real estate either directly or indirectly (control of the reservation system). That will be difficult to replicate in Switzerland. Coming from an american, it’s counterintuitive that it is more difficult to impose a monopoly or oligopoly in Europe than the us but that is my conclusion in this instance and I hope it is correct. Vive le difference! May it continue
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rossyl wrote:


Vail being the McDonald's of skiing?
What does that make the other resorts?
Beaver Creek - KFC?
Breckenridge - Dixy Chicken?
Copper Mountain - The Dollar Store?

Once again, its a joke. But, having skied those three resorts, I would say in many ways they are cheaper than Vail.

Keep digging!

The more you try to justify your mis-characterization of Vail, the more it shows how pathetically you misunderstood American skiing. You’ve only skied 3 other mountains in the US? If so, that explains your ignorance then.

Vail “exclusive”? Have you been to Aspen? Telluride? Or Big Sky? Deer Valley? (Ok, before it got sold to Alterra) Or even Sun Valley? I’m leaving out Yellowstone Club as you need to be invited to be a member to ski there.

Beaver Creek “cheaper” than Vail? In what way? It’s the same lift price. The food cost the same, yet the quality is actually better. Perhaps that’s your definition of “cheap”???

After all, how “exclusive” can Vail be if you, rossyl get to ski there! rolling eyes rolling eyes

Laughing Laughing Laughing
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
abc wrote:
rossyl wrote:


Vail being the McDonald's of skiing?
What does that make the other resorts?
Beaver Creek - KFC?
Breckenridge - Dixy Chicken?
Copper Mountain - The Dollar Store?

Once again, its a joke. But, having skied those three resorts, I would say in many ways they are cheaper than Vail.

Keep digging!

The more you try to justify your mis-characterization of Vail, the more it shows how pathetically you misunderstood American skiing. You’ve only skied 3 other mountains in the US? If so, that explains your ignorance then.

Vail “exclusive”? Have you been to Aspen? Telluride? Or Big Sky? Deer Valley? (Ok, before it got sold to Alterra) Or even Sun Valley? I’m leaving out Yellowstone Club as you need to be invited to be a member to ski there.

Beaver Creek “cheaper” than Vail? In what way? It’s the same lift price. The food cost the same, yet the quality is actually better. Perhaps that’s your definition of “cheap”???

After all, how “exclusive” can Vail be if you, rossyl get to ski there! rolling eyes rolling eyes

Laughing Laughing Laughing


Wow. I was joking.

I even took the time to point it out.

Arguing that Vail is the McDonald's of skiing is frankly absurd, and you know that. Yet you are getting more and more ridiculous, aggressive and confrontational to justify your comment.

If you hate Vail so much, why stand up for it?

Cheer up. Grow up and stop taking yourself so seriously.

Maybe go skiing in a Super Dooper Exclusive US Ski Resort, if you can afford the lift ticket!


Also, a tip, laughing at your own jokes - it's not cool.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
The Vail Resorts = McDonalds analogy isn't crazy. They are both trying to be global brands and market leaders in their space with a highly centralized mgt structure. They are also bringing franchisees ( = Epic partner resorts) into the family and trying to trade off global ubiquity and familiarity.

The difference is that McDonalds haven't tried to be faux upmarket for a relatively ordinary offering.
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
@Dave of the Marmottes, …we were just sitting in SMS offices discussing vertical integration in ski resorts - where a company tries to control everything from lifts to ski schools and equipment hire. It seldom seems to bring benefit, and can lead to a hollowing out of local communities. While economies of scale can offer some small benefits but overall there seems to be loss of the benefits of natural checks and balances of a mixed local economy.
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Dave of the Marmottes wrote:

The difference is that McDonalds haven't tried to be faux upmarket for a relatively ordinary offering.

One needs to distinguish Vail the corporation vs Vail mountain in Colorado.

Unlike McDonalds, Vail properties aren't uniformly identical. Vail Corp actually owns many mountains that are just local hills families learn to ski. There's nothing "up market" about those mountains. Vail mountain in Colorado is however the flagship of Vail Corp. So yes, within the Vail sphere, Vail Colorado is the up market resort. And in some ways justified to be viewed as "faux upmarket".

The notion of Vail as McDonald has more to do with the fact Vail Corp buys up all the local resorts in a single geographical region, much the same way McDonald drives out local restaurants in small towns so people had no choice to be eat in the only McDonald, or ski in Vail owned mountains.
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@Dave of the Marmottes, …we were just sitting in SMS offices discussing vertical integration in ski resorts - where a company tries to control everything from lifts to ski schools and equipment hire. It seldom seems to bring benefit, and can lead to a hollowing out of local communities. While economies of scale can offer some small benefits but overall there seems to be loss of the benefits of natural checks and balances of a mixed local economy.
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
@valais2, It has a similar effect to certain resorts being run by local cartels in Europe such as St Anton, it took New Gen years to get established there and last time I looked ski hire was 2 or 3 times as expensive as French resorts. Monopolies are never good.
Compagnie des Alpes are certainly spreading their wings in France into Travel Agents, Estate Agents (rentals and sales) and they have just bought a controlling interest in Evo2 ski school, luckily they generally only have a licence to operate the lifts they do not own them. The local Mairie and other interested parties direct their activities.
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So if you're just off somewhere snowy come back and post a snow report of your own and we'll all love you very much
@chocksaway, interesting…
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
valais2 wrote:
@Dave of the Marmottes, …we were just sitting in SMS offices discussing vertical integration in ski resorts - where a company tries to control everything from lifts to ski schools and equipment hire. It seldom seems to bring benefit, and can lead to a hollowing out of local communities. While economies of scale can offer some small benefits but overall there seems to be loss of the benefits of natural checks and balances of a mixed local economy.


Vertical integration and monopoly power is the reason the N American ski industry is so fecked. Just that people don't really see it yet. Lessons are priced outrageously at name resorts yet the instructors see cents on the dollar and need a second job or a pension to provide their real income. There's limited incentive to provide quality F&B. And in 20 years time there will be a big tail off in skiing population as millennials & Gen Z fail to replace the dead or dying boomers and Gen Xers, because they've never had the opportunity to get hooked affordably.
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@Dave of the Marmottes, …right on the button I think…

There are some nice stories of small resorts being re-commissioned by local groups.

But….as I mentioned - people were dead set against the Swiss restrictions (democratically determined) on foreign buyers (in place to keep property prices low to allow young people to stay in villages and keep them alive) but blind to big companies restricting sales (without any accountability) to certain nationalities and regions.
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Poster: A snowHead
Quote:

And in 20 years time there will be a big tail off in skiing population as millennials & Gen Z fail to replace the dead or dying boomers and Gen Xers, because they've never had the opportunity to get hooked affordably.


Skiier numbers are definitely dwindling. Cost is a factor - but perhaps a little overrated, it's not like skiing has traditionally been a cheap hobby.

For example someone living in Denver can get a deal at Loveland - 3 half day lessons and a season pass for £500 (less than a first timer in UK can probably get a ski week for). For someone looking to try it out a day pass at echo can be as low as £43. It's not like Vail is the only option.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
rossyl wrote:

Wow. I was joking.

I even took the time to point it out.

Arguing that Vail is the McDonald's of skiing is frankly absurd, and you know that. Yet you are getting more and more ridiculous, aggressive and confrontational to justify your comment.

If you hate Vail so much, why stand up for it?

Cheer up. Grow up and stop taking yourself so seriously.

Maybe go skiing in a Super Dooper Exclusive US Ski Resort, if you can afford the lift ticket!

Also, a tip, laughing at your own jokes - it's not cool.

Why don't you name one such "Super Dooper Exclusive US Ski Resort" then? I've already offered up a list, all of them I've skied. But those don't seem "Super Dooper" enough for you?

I don't hate Vail. Why would I? I have one of their super dooper cheap season pass and had been skiing it all winter long! However, I don't pretend I qualify for such "exclusiveness" you seem to suggest Vail stands for.

Nor did I "stand up for" Vail. I was however pointing out all the misconception you offered to lambast Vail by.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Quote:

Also, a tip, laughing at your own jokes - it's not cool


WTF Shocked
Since when?

Laughing
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