November 2008

Snowmass Village Hopes For More Snow By Thanksgiving

Snowmass Village Hopes For More Snow By Thanksgiving

Snowmass Mountain Manager, Steve Sewell says that there is enough snow, both natural and man-made to begin skiing at Snowmass this Thanksgiving.  Current predictions are that skiers will ride the Village Express lift to the mid-station and ski from there unless we receive more natural snow and or cold nights that allow for snow-making.

Current, preseason snow conditions are twenty inches at the top and eight to ten inches at the Midway Station.

SkiCo will be opening two significant mountain improvements this season.  The old Sheer Bliss chair has been replaced with a new, high-speed lift that will service more the the Big Burn and the new Sam's Smokehouse restaurant on top of Sam's Knob is expected to open for business on December 19.

David Perry, SkiCo's Senior Vice President of the Mountain Division reports that there are fourteen percent more airline seats coming into Aspen's Sardy Field this season making it easier and less expensive to fly into Aspen/Snowmass.

Gary

 

 

Posted by gary on November 18, 2008 in
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Aspen's Real Estate Sale of the Week Ending November 7, 2008

Aspen's Real Estate Sale of the Week Ending November 7, 2008

8720 Castle Creek

Navratilova Lot Split

Four Bedrooms/Four Baths

3226 Square Feet

Seller: Aspeneyes LLC

Buyer: Double R Creek Limited

Price: $6.6 million

Posted by gary on November 18, 2008 in
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Off Season Dining

Off Season Dining

Before the holiday rush of visitors swarm into Aspen, it is the perfect time to take advantage of off-season specials or prix fixe's offered and fine dining restaurants throughout the Roaring Fork Valley.  Often these specials offer 2-3 couse meals for a set price.  Some include a glass of wine or beer.  Below are a few options advertised this year:

689 in Carbondale: 2 courses for $26.89

Buenos Aires in Aspen: 2 courses and a glass of wine for $20

Elevation in Aspen: 2 courses for $32, and 50% off all wine on Sundays

Lulu Wilson in Aspen: 3 courses for $32

Wild Fig in Aspen: 3 courses for $29

Montagne at the Little Nell: Offering 20% off coupons for your next visit

 

Posted by rebecca on November 14, 2008 in
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Early Pass Deadline is Friday, November 14th

Early Pass Deadline is Friday, November 14th

Friday is the last day to purchase season passes for Aspen's four ski areas at the early bird rate.  All passes from the premier to the foot pass will go up in price starting Saturday morning.  For more information on Aspen snow conditions and season pass pricing, visit the Aspen Ski Company website at www.aspensnowmass.com

 

Posted by rebecca on November 13, 2008 in
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Cooper Street Pier Finally Closes

Cooper Street Pier Finally Closes

Finally, an Aspen institution in desperate need of being 'put out its misery', has been closed by the Pitkin County Court.  For decades, Cooper Street was quintessential Aspen.  A place for locals and visitors to meet for drinks, food and mingle.  The bar occupied two floors.  It bas one of those Aspen locations that was used as a directional aide.  "The store you are looking for is across from Cooper Street".

Unfortunately, the past few years have not been kind to Cooper Street.  As one of Aspen's remaining 'local bars', a seedier crowd took over.  The Aspen Daily News wrote "The bar was on its way out for years, following a highly publicized drug bust several years ago, high staff turnover and changes in management".

The current owners have approvals to demolish the building and construct a mixed-use project that would likely see a bar and restaurant in the lower level formerly occupied by Siamese Basil, a high end retailer on the street-level and several free market condominiums on the upper levels.

For more information about the future upper level condominiums, please contact me at 970-205-2222 or gmf@rof.net .

Gary 

  

 

Posted by gary on November 13, 2008 in
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Joshua & Co. - Aspen's Exclusive Christie's Great Estates Affiliate

Joshua & Co. - Aspen's Exclusive Christie's Great Estates Affiliate

Being the exclusive affiliate of Christie’s Great Estates  for Aspen and Snowmass means our firm is among the world’s leading real estate firms handling distinctive properties. In order to become an affiliate, Joshua & Co. met Christie's stringent standards and was reviewed and approved by their advisory board.

Christie's standards require that Joshua & Co. brokers dominate the high-end market in the Aspen and Snowmass areas, have long-standing records of business professionalism, and have solid reputations for conscientious client service. Being a Christie’s Great Estates affiliate means Joshua & Co. has earned a reputation for meticulous service to clients buying and selling important properties.

Posted by gary on November 10, 2008 in
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A Slice of Tuscan Life I Grabbed

A Slice of Tuscan Life I Grabbed
I'd like to share an opportunity with you involving a one-of-a-kind property in Tuscany, Italy. For those of you who know me well, I do not normally rave about real estate, especially since Aspen holds what I believe is some of the most desirable property in the world. But Castello di Casole captured my eye as well as my dollars (euros, in this case.)
Castello di Casole is being developed by Timbers Resorts, which has established itself in ten years as the leader in exclusive, five-star residence clubs, boutique hotels and resort property development. Its 4,200 acres in the heart of Tuscany is authentic in every way, and when complete will offer restored, 4,000-7,000 square-foot fractional and whole-ownership farmhouses; a villa-style private residence club; a 41-suite, boutique hotel with all the associated amenities; and a winery with vintner's club to take advantage of the acres of vineyards on the property. Regarding this last component, if you know the "Super Tuscans," then you will recognize the name Sassacaia. The grandson of the makers of Sassacaia, Piero Incisa della Rocchetta, will be responsible for the vintner operation and wine-making.
The restored, 17th century farmhouses, known as casali, are what sealed my commitment to this property. Spread throughout the 4,200 acres, the 31 casali are each secluded and surrounded by vast Tuscan acreage. The one in which I was fortunate to stay afforded me the most private and relaxing vacation I have ever had. While some of the casali are nearer to the hotel, opening in 2010, the one I will call my home-away-from-home, Casale Pietti, is a very short walk to the charming hilltop town of Mensano.

This past August I had the rare opportunity to attend Mensano's Feast of the Assumption dinner. At long tables, I sat side-by-side with the town's 80 citizens as they drank wine from bottles without labels; dipped crusty bread in olive oil from the neighboring hills; and indulged in plates of fresh pasta! It doesn't get more authentic than this, other than the night we made our own pizza in the original forno oven of our restored casale.

There is much more to learn about this incredible property. If Tuscany stirs a similar feeling in you, I direct you to Amy Feldman at either 970-963-5004 or 970-948-1046, afeldman@timbersrealestateco.com. Yes, she is my wife, and she has worked with Timbers Resorts for six years. After visiting most of the Timbers Resorts properties, all amazing, this is the one to which I finally said "yes." And, if you believe that the euro is weakening and the dollar is strengthening, then now would be good timing to grab that slice of Tuscany.
Posted by rebecca on November 10, 2008 in
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Independence Pass Closes For The Season - A Local's Perspective

Independence Pass Closes For The Season - A Local's Perspective

It happens every year around this time.  Independence Pass closes due to winter driving conditions and won't open again until Memorial Day, 2009, eliminating one of only two roads in and out of Aspen.  Known as "Aspen's back door",  Independence Pass is a 40 mile shortcut to Denver via Leadville and offers some of the most panoramic mountaintop views in North America.

What the annual closing really means to Aspenites is that the ski season is about to begin.  The same snowstorms that close the pass dump fresh powder on Aspen Mountain, Highlands, Buttermilk and Snowmass.  By the end of the ski season, Highway 82 along Independence Pass will be buried more than forty feet deep in spots.

In early May, 2009, the Colorado Department of Transportation will begin the herculean task of trying to find and plow the narrow, winding road before the Memorial Day holiday.

To Aspenites, the closing and opening of Independence Pass is as regular as the changing seasons.

Gary 

 

 

Posted by gary on November 06, 2008 in
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Aspen Real Estate Enters Rare Buyer's Market

Aspen Real Estate Enters Rare Buyer's Market

Every real estate buyer knows what a seller's market is.  Buyers competing for homes in a tight market drive the prices higher.  The same is true for Aspen real estate except that our normal market conditions would be classified as a seller's market.  The world's most affluent people chasing a finite supply of Aspen real estate resulting in increasing home prices.

In twenty-five years of selling Aspen real estate, I have seen only four market conditions in Aspen that could be described as buyer's markets.  Once during the 1980's; once during the 1990's; once after 9-11 and the current market.   What makes an Aspen buyer's market different from others around the world?  I define an Aspen buyer's market as prices going up but not as fast as during an Aspen seller's market.  Aspen buyer's market conditions normally do not last long and can be described as a window that is closing.  Once it has closed, the market resumes its upward trend.

In a traditional buyer's market, asking prices drop dramatically.  Not so in Aspen.  In most cases, sellers do not reduce their asking prices until an offer is presented.  At that time, they may be more willing to negotiate.

Is this a good time to buy Aspen real estate?  The answer is a simple yes.  While not all sellers are highly motivated to sell, there are certainly unusually good deals being made favoring buyers.  Can you take advantage before the window closes?  Yes. If you have been thinking about purchasing in the Aspen area, this may be the best time in decades.

Call or email me for a consulatation.

Gary

Posted by gary on November 05, 2008 in
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Let it Snow

Let it Snow
The Roaring Fork Valley received it's first big dump of snow last night and it is still coming down today.  Forecasters are calling for more snow tonight and into tomorrow morning.  With opening day for Aspen and Snowmass Mountains just 3 weeks away, the is a welcome site for locals and ski area managers. 
Posted by rebecca on November 05, 2008 in
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