The ink now dry on the deed, East West Partners and Aspen Skiing Company are well down the line with their plans for the completion of the next phase of Base Village in Snowmass. John Calhoun, director of sales and marketing for East West, met with our office recently and assured us that the day after the ski season ends on April 17, we’ll definitely see at least a “dude with a shovel” out on the gondola plaza, soon to be followed by a huge construction crew getting started on four different projects. By summer, big cranes will be visible from throughout the Village; and, by fall, we’ll see all the buildings going vertical. Certainly, by next ski season, our visitors will be well aware that this long-delayed development is back on track.
Here’s what will be underway soon:
The centerpiece of the construction activity will be the Snowmass Limelight Hotel, a 99-room lodge patterned after Aspen’s highly successful Limelight, with 11 free-market/for-sale condominiums on the top floor. One of the striking architectural features of this Limelight will be a five-story, glass-facade elevator, adjacent to which will be a three-lane, five-story climbing wall, easily visible from the plaza below. The climbing wall is being designed by a Boulder firm considered one of the best in the country and will be open to the public – and likely endlessly fascinating to onlookers wandering around below.
In front of The Limelight will be a plaza, featuring a dual-purpose ice rink (winter)/grassy area (summer) for kid play, informal soccer games, and outdoor performances. Multiple sun/shade studies were done to ensure the plaza will serve as a social engagement area that attracts people to it and makes it easy for them to linger and loll about there. Fire pits and stone stair steps from which to watch the action will be scattered around the area. Most of the restaurants planned for the buildings around the plaza will have outdoor patios which spill out into the community spaces, creating a lively vibe. So important is this area to the developers that they’ve come to describe this part of Base Village as the “Snowmass living room.”
Also planned for construction this summer around the plaza is what is still being called Building 4, a small, low-scale building immediately to the east of the Elk Camp Gondola base that will include three spectacular residences, unlike anything else in Snowmass. These will be flats, 2500 to 3500 sq ft in size, featuring contemporary design, lots of glass, and open floorplans. It’s very possible these three special homes will be presold this fall. If you have any interest in knowing more about what we’ve been told will be some of the most extraordinary condominiums in Snowmass, contact us right away. We expect these will be reserved quickly.
The fourth building to undergo construction this year will be what is called the Discovery Center, hopefully the future home of the Snowmass mastodon/mammoth gallery which is presently on the Village Mall. This building’s construction is required by the Town of the developer, but it will ultimately be the Town’s asset to manage and fill with something wonderful. Both East West and Skico hope it will be a natural history museum, since the archeological find at nearby Ziegler Lake remains the finest high-elevation Ice Age fossil site in the world, giving Snowmass a deep and meaningful past not typically associated with ski resorts.
In the very near future, we’ll see 20 of the Viceroy Hotel condominiums, which have never been sold, come on the market at astonishing prices, from what we’ve been told, ranging from $200,000 for a studio to $3M for one 3-bedroom penthouse. The developers plan to split the closing costs and the 2% transfer tax with purchasers. Construction of the second Viceroy building is down the road a few years.
Coming to market, likely in November, will be the 11 Limelight condominiums, as well as 41 condominiums in Buildings 7 (the Arrival Center) and 8 (the formerly-planned Little Nell Hotel). Among other state-of-the art design choices, expect to see rooftop, infinity-edge pools. Over the course of the summer, we’ll see the fake facades and rebar which have blighted these two buildings for the last eight years come down.
All the developer’s negotiations with lenders and capital partners has been completed, and by November 2018, we should see an exciting, completely transformed Base Village which is sure to be the heart of the community we had all imagined it would be a decade ago. We cannot tell you how excited we are to be back on track in Snowmass.
So, an exhilarating time for Snowmass and many opportunities for buyers and investors in coming months. East West, the half of the partnership responsible for marketing, will have their own sales team, and they’ll be working with our office cooperatively. Contact us for further information about any aspect of Base Village that has piqued your interest, and look for many more details to emerge in coming weeks. Also, visit the developer’s website at snowmasselevated.com.