Park Hyatt is probably my favorite hotel brand. I was fortunate enough to stay at the Park Hyatt Beaver Creek Resort and Spa near Vail, CO a few weeks ago right after ski season had closed. Rates for this hotel can reach over $900 per night during the winter months for a basic room. Thankfully, once the lifts close they drastically reduce those prices, (for good reason, but I’ll get to that) which meant I was able to book a room at $149 per night. This property is a Hyatt Category 7, so it costs 30,000 Gold Passport Points no matter what time of year you stay.
As a Hyatt Gold Passport Diamond Member, I was looking to redeem one of my confirmed Diamond Suite Upgrades at this property, which would have guaranteed me suite. Unfortunately, I learned that this is one of the properties that does not allow you to redeem upgrade certificates. Figuring that it would most likely be a slow weekend, I decided to roll the dice and hope to be upgraded on status alone. I’ve stayed at a number of Park Hyatt properties all over the world (stay tuned for those reviews), so my expectations were pretty high.
Like many of the resorts in this area, there is no self parking, so valet will cost you an additional $25 per night on top of the resort fee of either $25 or $50 depending on the season. After dropping off my car and heading inside to the very “lodgey” lobby, I waited at the front desk for 10 minutes behind another Diamond member. The front desk attendant and the other guest were talking relatively loud, so I overheard the two discuss a possible upgrade. I was surprised to hear the agent only offer a one category bump in the room type. I’ll admit, this made me a little nervous; however, I thought maybe I had a better chance since I was only there for one night. As I waited, I checked Hyatt’s website for availability to find every room type available, which included 6 out of 7 of their “Premier Suites.”
The young lady working the front desk was very nice and informed me that I had been upgraded to a Slope-side King, one category up from the room I booked. I asked very nicely if there were any Suites available since I would only be there for the one night. Knowing beforehand that they have 16 Fireside Suites in the hotel and as the place looked pretty empty, I figured my chances were fairly good. After some searching, she presented me with two keys to a Fireside Suite and showed me to the elevators.
Room 4038 was the suite that we were assigned. Admittedly, when I walked inside, I was a bit underwhelmed. The room looked like a suite at a Westin property and did not have the sleekness of every other Park Hyatt I’ve stayed at. Realizing that this was a lodge, I settled in. The room was equipped with a nice fireplace, though it didn’t provide much warmth, and a sectional sofa in the middle of the room. The sofa had a hide-a-bed inside, but was stained, worn out and quite stiff. There was also a Keurig coffee maker with about 25 K-cups on top of the wet bar and a standard closet near the door.
I was also a bit taken back by the bathroom. The tub/shower combo looked like it had seen better days and the tile/wallpaper were showing some obvious wear. Oddly enough, this Park Hyatt opted to provide amenities from it’s in-house spa and not the traditional Le Labo products. I’m a guy, so I don’t really care about that kind of thing, but my wife noticed, so I thought it may be worth a mention. There was also a private water closet off the bathroom, but I think toilet pictures are tacky, so I’ll let you use your imagination. It’s a toilet.
This Park Hyatt is still one of the few that will allow you to have breakfast in your room for free as a Diamond member, but we opted to eat in the restaurant hoping for more selection. Being the off season in Beaver Creek, there was only one waiter serving the 4 tables around us, but he was still very attentive. We had some freshly squeezed orange juice and superb cappuccinos to drink as well as Belgian Waffles and Eggs Benedict (which my wife didn’t let me take a picture of before eating). Both were very good.
The weather wasn’t amazing while we were in Beaver Creek, but we managed to get an hour outside to check out what we could have experienced had it not been 25 degrees. The resort is right at the foot of the mountain and within 100 feet of one of the lifts. They also provide a complimentary ski valet service, which is covered by the $50 resort fee, so you can just drop off your gear and pick it up when you’re ready to hit the slopes again. There are also a number of hot tubs and a full size pool onsite, which were open while we were there. The village itself was dead. 90% of the shops/restaurants are closed in the off season, so we didn’t see more than 4 other people during our hour long walk. As a side note, if you enjoy fly fishing like I do, there are a ton of great public waters to fish during the warmer months within 15 minutes of the hotel.
This property is currently for sale; however, the Manager did assure me that it will remain a Park Hyatt. Apparently, the current owners are looking to unload it after signing an agreement with Hyatt to keep it in brand for another 25 years! Overall, this is a great property, but you have to set your expectations correctly. If you’re a Diamond member and you book a basic room here for 4 nights during ski season, you are 9 times out of 10 not going to get anything more than what you booked, especially on points. Don’t expect the quality in service or stylish comfort of the Park Hyatt Vendōme or the Park Hyatt New York. Go to Beaver Creek to ski, hike or fish and you won’t be disappointed.