Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Mad River's Schuss Pass Ski House

Today is "Roll Back the Clock Day" at Vermont's Mad River Glen.  They're rolling back lift tickets to the 1948 price of just $3.50 to commemorate their opening that year;  today is really the day to ski it if you can!  So, the Ski House of the Day is this ski house  at Mad River Glen.  It's been a few years since I was there, but from what I recall this house looks typical of the few ski houses tucked into the woods around Mad River.  With a street address like Schuss Pass, and a location right next to Mad River's Lower Antelope Ski Trail and steps from the lifts, this house is made for skiing.

Anyone who's been there knows that Mad River is one of the more unique eastern ski areas with its origins based on a pristine, non-commercialized skiing experience, its abundance of natural snow and its reputation for tree skiing, telemark skiers, its famous single chair, and of course, its prohibition of snowboards.  And that leads to one little feature that signifies this as a true ski house;  check out the great ski rack in the garage -- it looks large enough to fit anyone's entire quiver of skis, but not a single snowboard:

Monday, January 30, 2012

Tiny House

Many ski houses are spacious and well positioned on a mountain, just waiting for the powder to blanket them.  This tiny ski house is neither spacious nor well positioned on a mountain...but it just might see more powder than any other ski house because it's on wheels so it goes to where the powder is...wherever that may be!  The Ski House of the Day is the Tiny House.

This house is a project of Outdoor Research (OR) in which a group of skiers, living in the tiny ski house, are on the road following the best powder, and documenting the best skiers they encounter along the way.  (It seems that this interesting Seattle-based outdoor gear company relies heavily on user feedback, so the tiny ski house appears to have the combined goal of promoting their company while conducting market research for product ideas -- marketing genius!  On their website OR claims that they "do weird well"  and based on the tiny traveling ski house, I would have to agree!).

So, back to the ski house itself...according to the tiny house blog it is a compact 112 square feet, with a front porch, kitchen (but no bathroom), electricity, a battery, generator, propane stove for cooking, and an artistic stairway leading to a sleeping loft.  And as you can see, the bright interior wood finish and multiple windows make it very attractive!

It also features a tiny but pretty French wood stove which came from an old Colorado mining town.
The Tiny House's humble hearth. Photo: Tiny House Blog

The tiny house is absolutely one of the most unique ski houses imaginable!  And it's certainly not for everyone.  But, if you (or someone you love) is living or dreaming of the ski bum lifestyle...this one's for you.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Hot Tub for 16 at Warm Springs

Today I went to a Hot Tub Show in a large Expo Center not far from home.  It was, well, rather disappointing.  It turned out to be nothing more than one manufacturer's temporary showroom, with an overabundance of salespeople and not much else.  (It was like diving into a tank where the sharks were circling before we even hit the water).  On the return drive my mind drifted back to some of the fantastic hot tubs there are at many ski houses.  Sometimes the ski house is all about the hot tub, as is true with this one.  The Ski House of the Day is this Warm Springs Ski Home with private hot tub. While this Sun Valley house has many nice features, and is only a few minutes from the Warm Springs lift, here's the real thing about this ski house...it has a hot tub for 16 people!

I think that's all I need to know about this ski house.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Sun Valley Luxury Home with Something for Everyone

If you've ever gone on a ski trip with a large group of friends or relatives, only to find that everyone has scattered in different directions to find activities they like, then take a look at this large luxury house near Sun Valley, Idaho.

It's a seven bedroom seven bathroom house that starts with the warmth of logs and a pleasing fireplace with western decor in the family room.....

Beautiful!  But the next thing you know...you discover it also has several more fireplaces, its own gym, game-room arcade, spa, and even its own private massage room (plus a pool, but that's for another season)!

What, are you kidding me?  Talk about "something for everyone".......

I usually prefer outdoor hot tubs, but this isn't your ordinary indoor hot tub...it's fantastic!

This house has so much going on that while you're out on the slopes, the non-skiers in your group will be here having just as much fun as you!  Because it really has something for everyone, this Northwood Luxury Estate is the pick for Ski House of the Day.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Taos Chalet

The Taos Winter Wine Fest starts today...a long weekend full of skiing and wine.  Sounds like the place to be if apres-ski involves a glass of wine for you, as it does for me.  The Wine Fest includes wine-tastings and other events at various locations throughout the weekend.  One of the events that sounds most inviting to me is the casual ski-in ski-out apres-ski tasting at the Bavarian Lodge....and here's a ski-in ski-out chalet that's just down the trail from that apres-ski wine tasting venue.  Can't get much more convenient than!

The Ski House of the Day is Alpenglow Chalet...a perfect spot to combine skiing, nice views...and ski-in ski-out wine tasting!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Architect's Own Ski House in Mammoth Lakes

Here's a beautiful house, designed by skiing architect, Richard Landry, specifically for his own family ski getaways...and it shows!  Perfectly situated on a snowy slope in Mammoth Lakes California, taking full advantage of the views, with lots of glass to let that view shine in, a bunk-room for eight, and many more details that skiers can appreciate, this lavish house (described in the NY Times) is a place that any skier would love to return to after a few runs.

I love the wrap-around deck and its clear railings which allow for unobstructed enjoyment of the view;  in fact the railing seems virtually invisible. And speaking of the deck, I would absolutely love to put my tired feet up on that stone fire-pit on the deck for apres-ski enjoyment!

With all its skier-designed features, fantastic mountain views and soaring windows to let those views in, the Ski House of the Day is this architect's own Mammoth Lakes ski home.

Monday, January 23, 2012

Chinese Ski Villa at Yabuli

Since today is Chinese New Year, I wanted to find out what a ski house in China looks like.  The first thing I found out is that it is difficult to answer that question.  Whether there simply aren't many ski houses in China, or there simply is not much information available about them, I'm not sure.  In any event, in honor of Chinese New Year, the Ski House of the Day is the villa at Sun Mountain Yabuli, in China.  (For some opinions and sights of skiing Yabuli from a skier who's done it, check out global-gal's pics of Yabuli.).

While the interior of this ski house looks a bit minimalist for my taste, the gigantic windows are very nice; and its wide-open space makes the villa quite inviting.  The sleek (creatively polished?) photos of the villa from their website leave but one question remains in my mind...does this place actually exist, or is it an idea whose time has not yet come?

........Happy Chinese New Year!

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

For Skiers Only

While some of the massive spectacular ski houses make me wonder if anyone actually skis there, here's a refreshing reality check...this ski house is for skiers only.  Really...there is no road access in winter.  Not only is this a "ski-in-ski-out" house, you must ski-in in order to get there!  And that is its unique appeal.

The Ski House of the Day, is Mountain Belle, a simple, basic but unique cabin tucked into the remote mountains between Silverton and Ouray, Colorado...(just getting to that area is an adventure in itself!).  You can stay in it this winter, if you can ski to it, according to Ski Huts.com.  Backcountry skiers won't be surprised to learn that this ski house offers no cleaning/services, no linens, no water, no phone, no cell service, no refrigerator, no services of any kind...all part of its appeal.  But to backcountry skiers, a ski house of any kind could be considered a luxury.  Everyone in this place must be a skier...an adventure-loving, skilled skier...the ski house of the day is truly one for skiers only!

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Mitt Romney's Deer Valley Ski Lodge

With Mitt Romney poised to win the 2012 GOP nomination for president during the current ski season, it seems timely to have a peek at his ski house.  According to the Huffington Post  it was on the market a couple of years ago, so by now it is presumably his former ski house.  Nonetheless, it is something to behold!

This spectacular 9,500 sq. ft. multi-level log mansion is situated slope-side in Deer Valley, Utah. That this house is located in Utah means it is in the place for powder skiing...and presumably for Mitt Romney the fact that it is right around the bend from the Salt Lake City center of the Mormon Church, is probably equally important.

Maybe it takes a house that is the size of a village to handle those international (Olympic) Games...

...but this image of his sprawling ski house, drenched in shiny, golden light came to mind when I heard Mitt Romney's recent references to the Ronald Reagan "shining city upon a hill" speech. (Sorry, I guess it's the "politics of envy"...but, what skier wouldn't be envious of the owner of this spectacular ski house?).

This home is so beautiful that I can hardly imagine skiers returning here after a few runs, with those big clumps of packed powder falling out of their icy boots.  But I'll assume that there really are actual skiers in there, and that those beautiful floors really do catch the occasional snow clumps...maybe.

Top Celebrity Homes has even more on this luxurious ski house (in case you want to drool a little more). Check out its rocky mountain bathroom:

(I see no evidence of any car elevators at this house...but I guess one could be added at any time).

With its spectacular massive logs, huge stone fireplaces, detailed stone work, gleaming hardwoods, granite surfaces, towering picture windows, gorgeous views, impeccable western decor and more, Mitt Romney's Deer Valley ski lodge is the Ski House of the Day.  It is absolutely magnificent!

Update:  Mitt Romney's New Ski House - On the Trail:  Success or Last Chance?

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Live the Dream at Stowe

For all of us who tried but didn't win the 2011 HGTV Dream House in Stowe, Vermont last year, here's our chance to live the dream!  UPDATE 2013:  This fabulous ski house (the one I longingly looked at every day on my computer screen during the sweepstakes) is available!  According to the Huffington Post, the house is on the market ($2.9 million) as of Feb. 2013.

I am a fan of the HGTV Dream Home contest...and I so wanted to win this one!!!

A local real estate agent described the home as a multi-million dollar supremely special mountain getaway designed in the style of the Adirondack Great Camps.  Its interior features are a bit sleek for me to consider it to be of an Adirondack Great Camp style (as wonderful as Adirondack style is); but this house looks like a spectacular place to spend a ski vacation!  

The Ski House of the Day is the fabulous 2011 HGTV Dream House in Stowe:

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Room for One More in NH

The Ski House of the Day today is this New Hampshire ski house for 11 as described on Boston.com :

There are two things that really struck me about this ski house.  First, it was designed specifically to accommodate lots of guests...and anyone with a ski house will probably agree that the whole experience is more fun when you have room for one more of your friends or family to join you!  The other thing I think is brilliant in this ski house is their tiny bunk "room" that is tucked beneath the staircase.  This clever little trick is a gift to that eleventh guest, offering them cozy sleeping privacy and keeping them off the living room couch!New Hampshire ski house for 11

Friday, January 13, 2012

Ski-in Ski-out Condo at Owl's Head

One of my all time favorite places to ski is Owl's Head, in Quebec's quaint and beautiful Eastern Townships.  While it's not the largest or most challenging of mountains, the trails are great fun and the view is hard to beat - anywhere!  It's really a hidden Canadian gem just minutes from Vermont.  With this condo's spectacular view of Lake Memphremagog (check out the view from the living room),

a cozy fireplace,  vintage wooden skis on the wall, and a location that allows me to click into my skis on the front deck, I think it's perfect.

The first Ski House of the Day is this ski-in ski-out condo on Owl's Head.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

First Tracks

My first posting on Ski House of the Day!  It's a big white empty canvas...something like standing on top of the mountain waiting to carve some first tracks.

I became a skier as a teenager…more years ago than I’ll admit.  I’ve skied most of Vermont’s ski areas, plus numerous others in Colorado, Utah, Montana, New York, New Jersey (yes, NJ does have skiing), Pennsylvania, West Virginia, and Canada.  From the beginning I’ve been in awe of the impressive houses, inviting ski lodges, unique chalets, and well-positioned condos that I’ve seen along the ski trails, as well as those that I’ve discovered through my extensive ski vacation research.  It’s always important to me to find precisely the right house for every ski trip because I feel that the ski house, in many ways, defines the experience almost as much as the mountain does.

I am not a designer, nor a realtor, nor architect, nor home builder…I am a skier.  And I am mom to two other skiers.  So, I see each ski house through the lens of a skier’s goggles.  Every time I catch a glimpse of a ski house I immediately consider its access to the slopes, or its fireplace for thawing my frostbitten toes, or its bunk-room for all the kids who might be skiing with us, or how I might soothe my aching muscles apr├Ęs-ski in its hot tub, or its potential mountain views, or all of the many other skier-specific amenities it might have.  I also know first-hand the joys and challenges of owning a ski house.  Every ski house that I encounter inspires a new narrative…I envision skiing from it and enjoying life in it.  I love to ski, I love to discover unique, appealing, interesting houses, and so, I love to imagine my own skiing experience in each unique Ski House of the Day.

So here goes,  first tracks...to the Ski House of the Day!  Hope you'll enjoy the run as much as I will.  Thanks for sharing in the adventure!