When Solaris Vail opened its doors, it quickly set a new standard in luxury lodging and also created a new town square of sorts for Vail Village. Originally developed for full ownership of its 79 spacious units, the property opened its one to six-bedroom stock for nightly stays and for purchase in 2011. Guests can find the comforts of the fanciest of homes with the amenities and services of a five-star resort – plus special packages that combine endless outdoor adventure options with expert guides and top of the line gear.
Introduced earlier this season, try challenging yourself with the "Bag Fourteener" package. What's a fourteener you might ask? It's one of the most ultimate hiking experiences where climbers summit a peak that measures 14,000 feet (or higher!). Colorado trumps the rest of the country with 53 of them throughout the state.
Solaris has made climbing a fourteener just a little bit easier with a weeklong prep course led by two-time Mt. Everest summiteer Ellen Miller. Once you've found your mountain legs, you'll be armed with a personal oxygen canister and a Camelback hydration pack for the ascent, which takes place on Saturdays.
Offered in conjunction with the Beaver Creek Hiking Center, an expert guide will gage your fitness level and find the best peak in the area to tackle. Expect a long day that starts before sunrise, breaks with lunch on the summit and ends in the late afternoon. The terrain usually varies from dense forest to open flower fields to rocky peaks.
Upon checkout, you'll receive a copy of 14,000 Feet: A Celebration of Colorado's Highest Mountains so you can show off your achievement via your coffee table at home. Solaris and your guide will give you the full rundown (and any gear you might have forgotten), but here's a few fourteener tips:
• Hydrate, hydrate and hydrate some more
• Lay off the alcohol and carbo-load the night or few before
• Break in your hiking boots in advance
• Clip your toenails (ew, but necessary)
• Dress in layers
• Hat and sunglasses mandatory
• SPF 50+
• Use poles
Weeklong package for two starts at $630 and runs Sunday-Sunday until September 29; 970.476.9000
· Solaris Vail [official]