By Shawn Cunningham
© 2017 Telegraph Publishing LLC
According to the press release, Aspen Skiing Co. owns and operates four mountains in Aspen, Colo., – Snowmass, Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands and Buttermilk – as well as hotels, retail and rental locations in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley and in Ketchum, Idaho.
KSL Partners is a Denver-based private equity firm that specializes in the hospitality industry and owns the Squaw Valley-Alpine Meadows resort in California.
The partners will gain several ski areas in addition to Stratton, including Tremblant and Blue Mountain in Canada, Snowshoe in West Virginia and Steamboat in Colorado. Intrawest, which was bought in a leveraged buyout by Fortress Investments in 2006, owned other resorts — including Copper Mountain in Colorado and Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia — but had to sell a number of properties to service a large debt load.
“We are excited to work with Aspen and KSL,” said Intrawest CEO Thomas Marano in the company’s press release. “Our new partners bring additional financial resources and a shared passion for the mountains and our mountain communities. Both Aspen and KSL are committed to helping Intrawest accelerate our plans to bring more value to our guests, more opportunities for our employees and more investment into our local communities.”
Local reaction was swift. “I want to welcome Aspen Skiing Company and KSL to Vermont,” said state Rep. Oliver Olsen in an email this morning. “Stratton is a key component of Vermont’s tourism industry, and plays a vital role in the economy of Southern Vermont. A new ownership structure brings new opportunities for Stratton … I look forward to learning more about future investments in Stratton, and stand ready to assist Aspen Skiing Company and KSL as they look to enhance the value of this important economic asset.”
Intrawest’s press release says that passes for the 2017-18 season that are currently on sale will continue to be honored.
Filed Under: Business & Personal Finance
About the Author: Shawn Cunningham has written a number of subjects -- from food and wine to film, history, politics, zoning and development -- for the Baltimore Sun, the Washington Post, Museum News, The Westsider, The Chelsea/Clinton News, Menckeniana, Films in Review and the East Village Eye.