It's a magical time of year in Aspen, as the first big storms lay
generous amounts of powder to the season's existing base ahead of annual
theme weekends - think X Games and President's Day, that's usually the
busiest weekend of winter. In Aspen, there's change in the air with ambitious developments like W Hotel Aspen and The Limelight Snowmass on the horizon. Meanwhile, St. Regis revamps its culinary offerings with new Velvet Buck serving modern Colorado cuisine while Mountain Social brings mixology and small-plate fare to the hotel's lobby-lounge scene. JetSetReport's favored property, The Little Nell,
is also fresh off the heels of an all-new renovation that touched each
of its guest rooms with lighter, brighter silhouettes by designer
Alexandra Champalimaud who gently reinvents the country's most iconic
You'll find a handful of new restaurants and bars that are luring snow bunnies away from their usual stomping grounds. On the mountain, Cloud 9 (pictured) goes as upmarket as ever with a new 30-day reservation policy and early bookings that make its late-seating champagne showers on weekends strictly for local VIPs. Gwyn's High Alpine is a decent back-up plan with their rustic chalet dining room that's more about vintage wines than champagne showers. Also in Snowmass, look for Toro by Richard Sandoval in the former space of Eight K at the ever-changing Viceroy Snowmass. Back in Aspen, Bosq goes strong into its second year as one of the town’s top epicureans with its adventurous, globally inspired menu that’s a lovely compliment to Element 47, Cache Cache and Caribou Club that are considered the best in the city.
In terms of nightlife, Hooch and Bootsy Bellow continue to dominate the mixology bar and club scene with rumors swirling about forthcoming The Nice Guy that promises to bring even more celeb-fueled LA influence to town. In terms of DJ headliners, look for the X Games to bring in all the heavyweights to Belly Up with headliners from LCD Soundsystem to Martin Garrix and Methodman over the last weekend of January that's now considered Aspen's premiere party weekend. And if you need a reprieve from all the party action, opt for a mid-week visit that usually means mountain runs almost entirely to yourself and restaurants that don’t need a reservation.