Park City Blog

Spring Changes in Park City

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Jun 03, 2015

First Day Canyons Golf-0043 Canyons Golf Course

Spring has arrived in Park City and has brought with it some pretty big changes.

Vail Resorts has started its $50 million dollar improvement plan. Construction has begun on the interconnect gondola and the new Snow Hut restaurant and is proceeding apace. We are thrilled to see the astounding rate of progress and are ready to meet the change these evolutions will bring to Park City.

vail2 Construction on the new Interconnect Gondola

Canyons Resort has also opened its new golf course and is taking reservations. This new course is the latest major addition to the resort's already robust list of available amenities. Park City has become quite the golf destination and now boasts thirteen courses many of which have championship destination. The fairways are green and the weather fair--time to dust off the clubs.


Finally, Park City's new state-of-the-art library opens June 13. We are thrilled to welcome back our much missed literary hub. The new building seamlessly integrates the beloved brick facade of the old High School building and new contemporary features. The new space will feature a coffee shop, educational offerings, communal space, and more books!


In addition to these novel developments, Park City's usual summer offerings have begun. Be sure to check out:

Farmers Market at Canyons (Wed and Sat)

Park Silly Market on Lower Main St. (Sundays)

Deer Valley's Big Stars, Bright Nights Concert Series (Starts June 30)

Breaking News: Vail Resorts Interconnect Gondola Approved

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Mar 26, 2015

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Passing the final hurdle, Vail Resorts was granted approval by City Hall to establish a gondola, which when completed, will connect Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort. The result will be the largest ski area in the United States.

The City Hall vote was in unanimous support of Vail’s delivered proposal. In addition to the gondola, Vail’s other 50 million dollars of proposed improvements were green lighted by the city. While the gondola is the most critical infrastructure aspect necessary to complete the combined resort, Vail listed several very necessary improvements that will improve skier experience. On-mountain dining, lodging, and other aspects were named as significant priorities.

The gondola will carry eight-passengers and covers nearly 1.5 miles, and terminates right in the middle of The Colony, one of our exclusive development listings. This new super resort will allow skiers to explore most of the length of the Park City ridgeline.

Vail has brought a lot of excitement to our town and the ski industry in general this last year. It’s a perfect moment for existing residents and interested buyers to discuss the implications of Vail’s thunderous arrival and bold plans on the real estate market. BHHS Utah looks forward to helping the town manage the growth that will surely result—we feel strongly in both preserving the character of Park City and contributing to its evolution.


Upcoming Spring Skiing Events

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Mar 19, 2015

Spring skiing in Utah is a rite of passage. Locals greet the month of March with great enthusiasm in anticipation of Spring Gruv, Pond Skimming, and on-mountain Easter egg hunts. It’s an ideal time to ski with kiddos—the sun is out; the weather is warm; and, there are a variety of fun events.


Here are some spring events we look forward to every year.

Pond Skimming and Spring Gruv at Canyons Resort 3/20-3/29

Canyons Pond Skimming 2014-133

On March 21st, Canyons Resort will launch its 8th annual Spring Gruv, which includes 10 days of live concerts in the Resort Village as well as the much beloved Pond Skimming Contest. Locals and visitors alike flock to Red Pine Lodge to watch contestants wearing inventive costumes attempt to cross a 100-foot pond on skis or snowboard. The competition is kicked-off with traditional Swiss Horns (to convey the seriousness of this event ;) ) and is followed by a live performance. This year’s featured musical act is Nahko and Medicine for the People. Trust us, you don’t want to miss this one.

Pond Sliding-101

 Snowasis and PCMR Easter Egg Hunt 3/28-4/5

PCMR’s family carnival features 9 days of live music, avalanche dog meets, a movie night, and culminates in the much loved Easter Egg Hunt. The scavenger hunt for Easter eggs covers the entire ski area and anyone with a pass can join the search. Prizes include coupons for food, gear, tickets, and the golden egg holds a free season pass within. Younger kids can meet the Easter bunny and enjoy fun activities.

All three resorts have a pretty big blow out part on the last day of the season. Probably April 12th this season. Costumes and smiles are encouraged.

In Conversation with Vail

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Sep 26, 2014

Today, Blaise Carrig, President of the Mountain Division at Vail, joined BHHS Management and our agents for a discussion of Vail’s future plans.

Mr. Carrig gave an overview of Vail’s strategy with regards to mountain acquisition and growth, real estate development, growing appeal for winter sports, and running and operating resorts. The presentation was illuminating, and Mr. Carrig answered many of the remaining questions surrounding Vail’s recent acquisition of Park City Mountain Resort and the company’s immediate and future intentions towards its two local resorts.

A large part of the discussion revolved around the unique capital strength commanded by Vail. The business acumen of Vail Resorts allows the company to take a different and long-term approach to acquiring, maintaining, and growing its ski resorts.  In his explanation of the business structure of Vail Resorts, Mr. Carrig shared that the Mountain Division (ie. its ski operations) accounts for the overwhelming majority of Vail’s revenue. This is an important indicator of priority. While Vail does have lodging, retail, and real estate holdings, their main focus remains the successful running of ski resorts.

Vail’s interest in real estate stems from the company’s commitment to providing the best ski vacation experience, which extends to lodging. Mr. Carrig conveyed that Vail only develops real estate when it feels that additional lodging options are required (particularly around the base of a resort) to ensure quality accommodations for guests.

Beyond having the capital reserves to make a purchase along the magnitude of Park City Mountain Resort, Vail invests heavily into mountain maintenance and improvements.

Mr. Carrig reiterated that Vail’s first order of business will be on-mountain improvement at Park City Mountain Resort. While he indicated that Vail has intentions of rehabilitating the base at Park City Mountain Resort, the company’s primary focus will be enhancing the immediate skier experience at PCMR by addressing lifts, restaurants, and snow-making. A two-way lift connecting Park City Mountain Resort and Canyons Resort is intended to be installed next summer assuming approval by all necessary parties. The new combined ski resort, which will be the largest in America with over 7,300 acres of skiable terrain, will likely use Park City Mountain Resort as its lead brand.

Vail is committed to building on their already established reputation of community involvement. The company just launched their community-giving organization, Epic Promise, which will be active in Park City. As a community partner, Vail has traditionally focused on youth and environmental programs. Vail is also in talks with Deer Valley, Ski Utah and the Utah Office of Tourism to potentially create symbiotic marketing campaigns geared towards maintaining and increasing visitation to Park City and Utah.

Our takeaway: Vail runs a strong business and will be good for Park City.

For more information on Vail’s business performance last year, see their latest fiscal report.

Special Report on the Arrival of Vail and Park City's Real Estate

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Sep 22, 2014

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It’s hard to find anything negative about Vail’s acquisition of Park City Mountain Resort. The purchase removes the uncertainty surrounding the upcoming season and operations at PCMR, which has been a source of anxiety among local businesses, resort employees, residents, and visitors alike. Beyond solving the immediate crisis, Vail promises only good things for Park City and its commercial, development, and residential real estate.

As a publicly traded company with an impressive trackrecord of financial solvency and growth, Vail has the wherewithal and intention of improving upon both of its Park City resorts. Its Epic Pass is immensely popular and promises a new and international demographic of visitors. While international buyers have previously only accounted for less than 1% of our marketplace, Vail’s presence and its Epic Pass are likely to catalyze an influx of foreign visitors, investors, and home buyers that Park City would otherwise have a hard time attracting.

From a real estate standpoint, Park City will see substantial development activity in upcoming years as a result of this sale. There is currently over 4 million square feet of developable land at the Canyons: 2.7 million square feet at the base and 1.3 million square feet at Red Pine. At PCMR, there is 650,000 square feet of developable land on and around the existing parking lots.

Further, our listing of the Mayflower parcel at Deer Valley allows for the potential new construction of 2,400 units and a new commercial village. This newly listed parcel has the potential to double the size of Deer Valley Resort and its skiable terrain, providing yet another unique opportunity to be involved in a local resort's evolution. We look forward to seeing Deer Valley build upon its already established reputation as a the 5 time winner of the "Best Ski Resort in North America" according to Ski Magazine readers.

New builds, commercial centers, and cultural venues will bring fresh life to our town. Berkshire Hathaway Utah represents more developments than any other Park City real estate agency and looks forward to playing a role in the responsible growth of our town.

While we are thrilled to welcome Vail and the subsequent opportunities it brings, BHHS Utah remains committed to preserving the authenticity and local energy of our town. Any future developments should contribute to and support Park City's existing town structure and culture. As part of its campaign to grow and maintain relations with our town and its civic leaders, Vail has given support to numerous local causes and non-profits since its purchase of Canyons. We believe going forward, Vail will prove a considerate and generous community partner.

Vail: The publicly traded company

If share price is any indication of a company's real value, Vail is one healthy company.

Vail has a longstanding history of competitor out-performance in the financial marketplace. According to the latest Wall Street data, Vail has a market cap of $3.2 billion with shares up 17.2% year-to-date. Since the announcement of the Park City Mountain Resort Purchase, share prices have  jumped close to 13%. The company boasts 43.85% gross profit margin, which has increased from the same quarter the previous year. Along with this, the net profit margin of 21.71% is above that of the industry average. Further, the net income growth from the same quarter one year ago has significantly exceeded that of the S&P 500 and the Hotels, Restaurants & Leisure industry.

Vail: The Resort Operator

Vail has already proven itself a capable operator of ski resorts. With 11 resorts under its management, Vail has the capacity and experience to run a resort and run it well. In its first year operating Canyons Resort, Vail improved on-mountain offerings and guest experience. The Epic Pass has proved highly popular and will bring fresh visitors to Park City. This upcoming season visitors and locals will be able to enjoy joint passes to Canyons and Park City Mountain Resort--over 7,300 vertical feet of skiing! Vail has announced its intention to connect the two resorts via a new system of links, which would allow skiers to seamlessly traverse the majority of the Park City range.

Park City visitors and locals will now have the chance to ski legendary Deer Valley, with its proven quality mountain service, and the largest ski resort in America.

The Epic Pass

The Epic Pass is a multi-mountain, multi-destination ski pass that allows its owners to ski at 21 resorts in 5 different countries. Epic Pass holders have the opportunity to extend their skiing and riding adventures globally with up to five consecutive free days at the renowned mountain resorts of Les 3 Vallées, France (Courchevel, La Tania, Méribel, Brides-les-Bains, Les Menuires, Saint Martin de Belleville, Val Thorens and Orelle) and Verbier, Switzerland, and five consecutive free days at Niseko United, Japan.

The Epic Local Pass

The Epic Local Pass, which just added Park City Mountain Resort to its roster of included ski resorts, grants pass holders access to skiing and riding at Canyons, Breckenridge, Keystone, Afton Alps, Mt. Brighton, Arapahoe Basin, Heavenly, Northstar & Kirkwood, and Park City Mountain Resort. The pass also includes a total of 10 days at Vail and Beaver Creek with holiday restrictions. Between these two pass options, locals and visitors will have access to over 7,300 feet of terrain in Utah.

Park City’s Market post-Vail Purchase

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Sep 16, 2014

At BHHS Utah we are tracking the effects of the Vail purchase with keen interest. While it's too soon to predict all the implications from this major change, we feel comfortable in saying that Vail’s presence will be very positive for our marketplace. There are several plots of land now owned by Vail that are available for new development, which will add substantially to Park City’s future real estate growth potential.

We are not the only ones who see this acquisition as a beneficial thing.  Immediately after the sale was made public via press releases from both Vail and Park City, Vail’s stock shares jumped 12% in value. Stocks have continued to trend upwards, especially after it was announced that Park City Mountain Resort would be added to the Epic pass this coming season (2014-2015). Locals and visitors can now ski both mountains as part of the same pass, providing a uniquely affordable way to experience Park City’s legendary snow.

Going forward, we have begun to monitor our marketplace and in the future will have good idea as to how our market has been affected by this change and how it is likely to contribute to trends in the future. While Vail has yet to discuss or share its intentions with regards to new lifts, renovating the base of Park City Mountain Resort, or consolidating its Park City holdings, we look forward to seeing its vision for the largest resort in America.

We are hesitant to make any claims at this point with regards to real estate, but it is likely that property values will go up due to increased interest in Park City stemming from this newsworthy transition. Areas and neighborhoods that abut the two resorts have already garnered increased attention from buyers and are experiencing elevating median prices. In other words, now is the ideal time to invest in Park City real estate holdings. 

Want to know how the Vail purchase affects your property's value or real estate goals? Call your BHHS Utah real estate professional today.

PCMR Sells to Vail

By Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Utah Properties
Sep 11, 2014

Park City Mountain Resort Sells to Vail for $182 Million.

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Powdr Corp. has sold its Park City Mountain Resort to Vail Resorts, ending a tumultuous year for Utah's most popular ski destination.

"Selling was the last thing we wanted to do, and while we believe the law around this issue should be changed, a protracted legal battle is not in line with our core value to be good stewards of the resort communities in which we operate," Powdr CEO John Cumming said in a statement. "A sale was the only way to provide long-term certainty for PCMR employees and the Park City community. My family and I are extremely grateful to have had the opportunity to play a role in making PCMR what it is today, and we deeply appreciate the dedicated employees and all of the people who have supported us over the years."

The deal requires Vail Resorts to retain Park City Mountain Resort employees.

Powdr owned the Utah resort for more than 20 years, growing it into one of the most popular ski areas in North America.

According to Vail's Press Relesase, with the acquisition, all aspects of the previously disclosed litigation with respect to PCMR have been settled and this dispute will no longer pose any future threat to disrupt the operation of the resort.

"First and foremost, we are very pleased to bring a permanent end to this dispute and provide assurance to the guests and employees of PCMR, and to everyone in the Park City community, that they no longer have to worry about any disruption to the operation of the Resort. This has been a difficult period for everyone involved and I commend John Cumming and Powdr Corp. for helping to find a solution to this situation," said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts.

"Park City Mountain Resort is one of the most spectacular mountain resorts and iconic brands in the ski industry and I am proud to have the resort become a part of Vail Resorts. The acquisition will allow us to immediately bring Park City Mountain Resort onto the Epic Pass, which will now offer skiers from across the country and around the world access to 22 resorts. We look forward to working collaboratively with the entire Park City community, as well as city and county officials, as we chart the future for the resort, including how we can best bring the Canyons and Park City ski experiences together to create the largest mountain resort in the United States," he added.

Mountain operations of PCMR and Canyons will remain separate for the 2014-2015 ski season. However, the Epic Pass and Epic Local Pass will be valid at PCMR. All PCMR passes for the 2014-2015 ski season will continue to be honored and can be exchanged or upgraded for a season pass that will also be valid at Canyons. The majority of all lift tickets sold at either resort will be valid at both PCMR and Canyons.

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