I was thoroughly impressed with the hospitality at Deer Valley Resort in Park City, Utah. I’ve often heard of Deer Valley referred to as one of the more luxurious mountains in the United States though I was not sure what exactly that meant. Below are some of the highlights.
During my three-day stay in Park City, I did not encounter a single Deer Valley employee who was rude or even indifferent. In fact, many employees went out of their way to say hello. Lift operators were enthusiastic about their work. Ski instructors gave a non-verbal “hello” even while teaching a lesson. Ticket window clerks were kind despite a never-ending line of eager skiers. Restaurant staff appeared out of nowhere and smiled as they cleared plates. As someone who has worked a number of service-oriented jobs, never have I seen such a high concentration of people who genuinely seem excited about their work.
Ski instructors are world-class. So much so, in fact, that nearly all of this year’s lesson opportunities are gone. With private lessons for 3-year-olds and a max of four people in all group lessons, it is easy to see how instructors can quickly get booked.
Free curbside ski checks. Yep, at the end of the day, you carry your skis twenty feet and hand them to an enthusiastic employee. Get an overnight $10 wax too. I did not utilize the gear check service but for $6/day, you can leave your boots and helmets overnight as well. Plenty of people took advantage of this opportunity as almost all the baskets appeared full.
Mountain Map Assistants. A term I made up but one that highlights the fact that at every on-mountain map, a Deer Valley employee is standing by to answer questions about navigating the 2000 acres of terrain.
Ski resort food is infamous for steep prices and average quality. Deer Valley lunches still have steep prices but the quality of the food is amazing. The highlight was definitely lunch at Royal Street Cafe. A bison burger and a heaping pile of garlic parmesan fries for $22 hit the spot.
I had an opportunity to ski with Heidi Voelker, Deer Valley’s Ambassador of Skiing, and former World Cup alpine ski racer and 3x Olympian. She was a wonderful host and happy to answer all of my questions about Deer Valley and elite ski racing. Heidi and other former elite skiers are available for half-day or full-day ski adventures.
I’ve heard the “Deer Valley Difference” slogan used as a joke. Yet Deer Valley truly is different when it comes to hospitality. They raise the bar for what service can be expected from a ski resort.