Posts Tagged Afton Alps
I received the following message from Vail Resorts through their Employee Newsletter. Interesting new acquisitions. I’m wondering how you make these into “feeder” resorts beyond including them in the Epic Pass? We’ll see.
This time next year, could you be skiing on the same pass as your friends in the Midwest? Last week we welcomed two premier urban ski areas in the Midwest, Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mount Brighton in Michigan, to the Vail Resorts family. Both ski areas serve major snow sports markets in the Midwest with more than 468,000 active skiers and snowboarders in the nearby Minneapolis-St. Paul and Detroit metropolitan areas. Read the full story.
Afton Alps Facts:
- Located on the St. Croix River south of Afton, MN.
- Has a 350 feet vertical drop
- Has 48 trails and 18 chairlifts
- During the summer runs an 18 hole golf course and a mountain bike trail.
Mt Brighton Facts:
- The ski area has a 18-hole golf course called The Jackal, added in 2001.
- Mt. Brighton made a national appearance in the 1993 feature-length film, “Aspen Extreme.” The movie was filmed on location at Mt. Brighton and also in Aspen, Colorado.
- Although in the movie it’s indicated that Mt. Brighton was built on top of an existing land fill, it was actually created with excess road debris from the construction of Interstate 96 and US 23.
Vail Resorts to Acquire Two Ski Areas in Midwest, Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mount Brighton in Michigan
* Acquisitions Join Guests of Premier Urban Midwest Ski Areas with Vail
Resorts’ Seven World-Class Mountain Resorts
BROOMFIELD, Colo.—Dec. 6, 2012—Vail Resorts, Inc. (NYSE: MTN) announced today that it
has entered into agreements to purchase two premier urban ski areas in the Midwest, Afton Alps
in Minnesota and Mount Brighton in Michigan, for total cash consideration of $20 million. Both
ski areas serve major snow sports markets in the Midwest with more than 468,000 active skiers
and snowboarders in the nearby Minneapolis-St. Paul and Detroit metropolitan areas. Vail
Resorts plans to upgrade and enhance the experience at each resort and create opportunities to
connect guests from each of these ski areas to its seven world-class resorts in Colorado and Lake
Tahoe through season pass and other lift ticket products.
“We are thrilled to welcome Afton Alps and Mount Brighton to the Vail Resorts family. These
acquisitions are part of a new strategy for Vail Resorts to drive season pass sales and build
broader guest loyalty by looking at premier smaller ski areas located near major urban markets.
We plan to bring state-of-the-art racing, terrain parks, coaching and technology to the guest
experience. We also will connect these urban ski areas to our world-class resorts in Colorado,
California and Nevada with new season pass offerings, providing the chance to experience the
best skiing and riding locally and in the West,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive
officer of Vail Resorts.
“Afton Alps’ great terrain and strong heritage built by the Augustine family make it an ideal ski
area for our entry into the Minneapolis-St. Paul market. Similarly, Mount Brighton is a great
area for beginners and advanced skiers alike in the Detroit, Lansing and Ann Arbor markets
with a strong snow sports tradition built over decades by the Tippett and Bruhn families. We
plan to honor the important legacy of each ski area for their loyal guests while investing to
enhance the experience in the years to come.” Katz added.
Vail Resorts plans to enhance both the on-mountain and base area experience at each ski area.
These enhancements will include redesigned and updated terrain parks, best-in-class coaching
and instruction for all levels of skiers and riders, dedicated racing programs, expanded dining
and entertainment options at the base area, and integrated technology and social media
programs like EpicMix, EpicMix Photo and EpicMix Racing. The Company also will invest in
each ski area’s infrastructure to improve snowmaking, parking and access to provide a more
consistent experience throughout the season. Finally, the Company will be reviewing
opportunities to add new summer activities. The Company will be outlining its plans in the
coming months and meeting with the local communities to seek their input.
Nearing its 50th anniversary, Afton Alps is the largest ski area near a major city in the Midwest
with 48 trails on nearly 300 acres, 18 lifts, four base areas, night skiing and riding, tubing and
an 18-hole golf course. Afton Alps is located 33 miles from more than two million people and
more than 161,000 skiers and snowboarders in the Minneapolis-St. Paul metropolitan area.
Open since 1960, Mount Brighton features 26 trails on 130 acres, six lifts, night skiing and
riding and an 18-hole golf course. The ski area is located 43 miles from Detroit and is within
reach of more than four million people and more than 307,000 skiers and snowboarders in the
Detroit, Lansing and Ann Arbor metropolitan areas.
Vail Resorts is planning season pass products for both Afton Alps and Mount Brighton in time
for the 2013-2014 season pass sales period, beginning in March 2013. In the meantime, to
welcome both ski areas into the Vail Resorts family, Afton Alps and Mount Brighton season pass
holders will immediately receive a 25-percent discount off of the window rate on lift tickets at
Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone, Heavenly, Northstar and Kirkwood this season.
For more information, visit http://www.aftonalpsisepic.com and
The Company expects to complete the purchase of both urban ski areas within the next month;
closing is subject to certain conditions.