Winter Park

Winter Park Introduction and History

The towns of Winter Park and Fraser are located in Grand County, Colorado, 67 miles northwest of Denver.  The high alpine elevation of this resort community is 9,110 and 8,550 feet respectively.  The Drive from Denver can be made through the scenic drive over Berthoud Pass on US Highway 40, the timeline for this drive commonly take 1.5 hours and by passes the 1-70 congestion which has adversely affected the ski resorts west of the Eisenhower Tunnel.  

Winter Park Resort is the closet major resort to the City of Denver.  It is the oldest continually operating resort in Colorado; it is one of the largest and most frequently visited ski resorts in the US, averaging more than a million annual skiers a year.

Winter Park Resort is currently owned by the City of Denver; in 2004 a partnership agreement was formed with the Canadian company, Intrawest Corporation, the foremost developer and ski area operator of the “village-centered” concept in the destination resort industry.  Currently Intrawest is working to finish New Village which offered 14 loft units luxury style properties along with the 20,000 square feet of retail services at the base of Winter Park.  The company closed 200 in the new Founders Pointe and Fraser buildings earlier this year with 32 left for sale.  

According to Colorado Home and Lifestyle, February 2006, there are 3 major opportunities to invest in the Colorado Real Estate and Resort Towns. They are Winter Park, Pagosa Springs and Crested Butte.

A few factors that Mountain Resort Buyers ask when searching for a second home is:
1. Amenities, does the area offer amenities to the overall population on a year round basis?  Shopping, Restaurants etc.
2. Affordability, how much do I have to spend to get what I want?
3. Proximity, how will tourist get there, what type of transportation is necessary to get to where you want to go, airport, train etc
4. Rental income, for an investor, is there a realistic expectation to make a profit, or is the profit tied to increase in value.
5. Additional Expenses, how much is all this going to cost?
 With averages in most resorts jumping in the high millions, not every town is seeing such growth, but with proximity to Denver, Winter Park area appeals to many buyers and investors who are asking “if only” mentality for those who missed other significant resort communities because the prices are now out of reach.  Barring any other unforeseen economic impact, dramatic increase in rates, the new increase of retiring baby boomers are now seriously looking at the next stage of their life and looking for more second homes and places to spend time recreating and enjoy the scenic beauty Winter Park has to offer.  

As one of the few last resorts in the Continental US that has not had significant development, it is now poised for some major development due to the Intrawest factor.  
The Market exposure Intrawest has created a slight tag-a-long mentality from other area developers looking to explore an opportunity to follow along where ever Intrawest has been associated.

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