The state of Vermont attracts skiers of all types, including those who prefer cabins and travelers who like quaint New England bed and breakfasts. But Vermont is also home to an upper echelon of ski resorts that cater to people who enjoy a taste of luxury while hitting the slopes.
Places to Stay
Topnotch Resort and Spa (topnotchresort.com) is one of Vermont's highest-regarded places to stay. Located in the heart of the Green Mountains, Topnotch is set on 120 acres just outside the village of Stowe. Nearby is the luxurious Stowe Mountain Lodge (stowemountainlodge.com), a six story structure that features Alpine architecture. Also nearby is the Trapp Family Lodge (trappfamily.com), run by the descendents of Maria von Trapp of "The Sound of Music" fame. Further south, the Equinox (equinoxresort.com), nestled in the village of Manchester and the former home of Abraham Lincoln's granddaughter, offers luxury and access to both Stratton and Bromley ski areas.
Guests at both Topnotch and Stowe Mountain Lodge have access to Stowe Mountain Resort on Mt. Mansfield, the tallest mountain in Vermont at 4,395 feet. Beginner skiers can take lessons and then practice in the Toll House area, while advanced skiers can be challenged by the mountain's double-black diamond trails. Guests of the Trapp Family Lodge can easily access Stowe, and the resort is home to cross country skiing. More than 60 miles of trails are available to skiers of all levels and the resort's Nordic center sells and rents skis, snowshoes and other gear. For guests at the Equinox, Stratton Mountain offers both downhill and cross country options while Bromley Mountain was voted first place by "Ski Magazine" for family skiing.
Guests at Topnotch can indulge themselves in the 35,000 sq. ft. Topnotch Spa, indoor tennis courts and indoor pool with hot tub and waterfall. For those who choose Stowe Mountain Lodge, a traditional yet luxurious experience awaits them as well as whirlpool soaking tubs and stone fireplaces. Fulfill your Julie Andrews fix by checking out a weekly screening of "The Sound of Music" at the Trapp Family Lodge, where you can also enjoy its Austrian decor and regular wine tastings. Wander around the quaint Manchester Village after a day on the slopes and then relax at the Equinox's spa. For something completely different, enroll in a course at the resort's British School of Falconry, the first of its type in the United States.
Each of these top resorts also include fine dining experiences. Norma's at Topnotch features locally grown and harvested ingredients such as Vermont lamb and handcrafted cheeses. Solstice Restaurant, picked as one of the best restaurants in New England in a 2010 issue of Boston Magazine, features an ever-changing menu of seasonal delights. The Dining Room at Trapp Family Lodge features a fusion of Austrian and local cuisine featuring herbs and vegetables grown on-site. Guests at the Equinox have a choice of five dining options including the steakhouse Chop House, New England fare at the historic Marsh House as well as other more casual options.
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