Winter playground


December 31, 2018

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Park City, Utah may only have 8,000 locals, but the old mining town boasts an impressive 2 million annual visitors. And for good reason. At an elevation of 7,000 feet, the town is a cold-weather playground for winter getaways. But it’s also got plenty for visitors year-round, whether you’re looking for outdoor adventure, Hollywood cred (Park City is the home of the Sundance Film Festival), or just to disconnect.

It’s no wonder Jetsetter named it the 2017-2018 No. 1 “Best Mountain Town in America.” Park City is the luxurious escape you’ve been looking for—with not a bad view in sight.


A trip to Park City wouldn’t be complete without staying at the Westgate Park City Resort & Spa ( Built in 2001, the four-star resort is located at the bottom of Canyon Village at Park City Mountain and offers ski-in/ski-out accommodations and access to America’s largest ski and snowboard resort, with more than 7,300 skiable acres, 300 ski runs and 38 lifts.

Westgate Park City has 488 rooms ($100-$200/night in the offseason, $400+/night in peak season), divided among four different buildings: Elk Lodge, Bear Lodge, Moose Lodge, and Bison Lodge. The Elk and Bear lodges consist of only timeshare suites and villas, while the Moose and Bison lodges make up whole ownership condos and bookable getaways.

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Inside the Elk Lodge—the building most easily accessible to all the resort’s restaurants and amenities—you’re surrounded by rustic and contemporary interiors. Whether you’re traveling with your significant other or a small group of friends, the Signature One- Bedroom Villa ($180/night in the offseason, $500+/night in peak season) is the perfect escape from reality. Pine hardwood floors and cozy, dark mahogany furniture complement the modern furnishings and artwork. But the best part is the outdoor patio, which promises a daily dose of breathtaking sunrises and picture-perfect, starry nights.

But you don’t have to be a skier to vacation here. The vibrant city, located in Summit County, offers visitors an extended hand in all seasons, from fall to summertime.

Want to lounge around? Westgate Park City has the state’s largest outdoor pool and an indoor adult relaxation pool (for ages 18+), which includes a steam room, sauna and waterfall feature.

For the active person, get your zen on at the resort’s yoga studio, rent a racquet to play on the tennis court, check out a basketball to shoot hoops, play arcade games at the Gold Mine, or head to the resort’s fitness center for your own workout.

Suffering from jet lag? Relax and rejuvenate at the resort’s world-class Serenity Spa. Within the 14 treatment rooms, you’ll be able to order everything from a hydrating facial treatment to a couple’s massage.

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Park City has a reputation for big-time adventure, and you’ll want to go all in. In the winter months, fresh powder activities include everything from skiing to snowmobiling, tubing to ice-skating.

For the skier or snowboarder, the Aloha Ski & Snowboard Rental will be your go-to spot to rent equipment (including mountain bikes in the summer), and store winter gear. As a guest of Westgate Park City, you’ll also receive complimentary ski valet.

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Ready to see some real Olympic talent? You’re in luck. Utah Olympic Park, the 2002 Winter Olympic venue, offers a multitude of activities including extreme ziplining and advanced-level ropes courses, and guided tours of the facility and museum. Since it’s the official USOC Training Site, you’ll often see Olympic athletes practicing their ski skills and splash landing into the park’s massive state-of-the-art training pool.

The excitement doesn’t have to stop there. Head out to experience Adventure Park, which has Utah’s largest alpine roller coaster on Park City Mountain, plus a relaxing alpine slide, and scenic chairlift rides.

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Try your luck out with fly-fishing on the Provo River with the Park City Fly Fishing Guides. This year-round activity is for beginners and even the most veteran fly-fishers.

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A fly fishing guide with clients on the Provo River near Midway, Utah.


There’s no need to stray far from Westgate Park City Resort & Spa, which has a dining experience for every taste. For a casual and relaxing gastropub atmosphere, head to the seventh floor of Elk Lodge to Drafts Sports Bar & Pub. Sit on the outside deck and fuel up on their over-the-top burgers.

For dinner, prepare for a cutting-edge dining experience at the resort’s Edge Steakhouse. Inside the swanky steakhouse, order a 7000 Blackberries cocktail or two, along with the 10-oz. Eye of Ribeye, paired with the Black & White Truffle Mac & Cheese.

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When it comes to going into town, don’t worry about paying for an Uber—the resort has its own complimentary shuttles, which take guests from the property to downtown Park City and Deer Valley, seven days a week.

With 150 restaurants to choose from in Park City, finding the best place to dine out can seem daunting. Try The Handle, an ingredient-forward, creative eatery located just off of Main Street. Serving up seasonal American small plates, we suggest ordering the General Tso Cauliflower, which is so popular that it stays on the menu all year long.

And if you’re in Park City during the summer or fall, make sure to try one of the many Main Street restaurants, which have dining decks built out onto the street, providing an enviable outdoor setting.

You can’t leave Park City until you’ve dined at Stein Eriksen Lodge’s Glitretind Restaurant, a Forbes four-star restaurant inside the state’s only five-star property. Since game is popular out west, try the Rabbit Porchetta—a delicacy of braised rabbit let, foie gras, carrots and mushrooms, and apple mostarda.

A few other outstanding foodie gems throughout the city include Deer Valley Grocery Café, a gourmet bakery; Vessel Kitchen, a chic cafe focusing on farm-fresh menu items; and Silver Star Café, a cozy space with a stunning patio offering New American fare with global accents.

Finish your evening soaking in the spirits at 350 Main with Alpine Distilling for an unforgettable gin tasting. Did we mention you’ll be creating your very own gin to take home by the end of the night?

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Planning your Park City getaway?

Consider these buzz-worthy 2019 events.

Sundance Film Festival (Jan. 24-Feb. 3)
The 10-day independent film festival that brought you Get Out and Little Miss Sunshine attracts more than 125,000 attendees each year.
FIS World Championships (Feb.1-10)
It’s the nation’s largest freestyle, snowboard and free-ski world championships event.
Savor the Summit (June 22)
Just call it Park City’s largest outdoor dinner party.
Utah Symphony’s 2019 Deer Valley Music Festival (June 28-Aug.10)
A festival that hosts a mix of musical genres and world-class headliners.
Autumn Aloft (fall 2019)
The annual hot air balloon festival is whimsical and visually stunning, followed by an evening candlestick celebration on Main Street.

park city, utah, travel, destination, southpark

Getting there:

Start your journey with a 4-and-a-half-hour direct flight from the East Coast to the nation’s second-largest Delta Hub at Salt Lake City International Airport. A 31-mile car ride is all it takes to arrive at your destination. Take a look around, you’re going to want to get used to the golden aspen forests and magical mountain views.


Photos courtesy of Visit Park City and Westgate Park City Resort & Spa

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