The desire to breathe in fresh mountain air and get a break from the hustle of Las Vegas are what inspire a quick trip to Park City, Utah, for most of us. But what you will ultimately find in the picturesque enclave is modern hospitality, delectable restaurants and myriad ways to enjoy the great outdoors.
And while skiers love it here because of the 7,300 acres of navigable territory for all skill levels—at Deer Valley Resort and Park City Mountain Resort—there’s a lot of life in the summer, too. When the snow melts, the flora, fauna and rich animal life once again stake their claims to the land and warm-weather activities like fishing, boating, tubing and camping take over.
Take note of these seven ways that a Vegas woman can experience Park City to its fullest—no Sundancing required.
Fly to Salt Lake City Airport
Southwest Airlines offers multiple nonstop flights per day. It is a quick one-hour and 20-minute flight with a one-hour time change. The drive from the airport to town is about 45 minutes.
Check Into the Hyatt Place Park City
One of the newest hotels in Park City, this fresh spot with rooms ideal for sharing is located close to the action but doesn’t come with the price tag that the area’s luxury resorts are known for. A short distance from two ski spots and all the other riches of the city, every whim is a quick ride away via the complimentary skier/town shuttle. Inside the accommodations, the sleeping area, with a plush, signature Grand Hyatt Bed, is separate from the living area, which has a swiveling flat-screen 42-inch television and a sofa bed. Skin and hair products come from the KenetMD line and a morning cup of coffee in the room is always just the press of a button away. The hotel offers one suite with a spacious dining room area for conferencing or entertaining and a kitchen with a full refrigerator, microwave and sink.
Now here comes the free—as in Wi-Fi, parking and breakfast. Breakfast bowls are one of the hottest trends in morning dining right now, and Hyatt Place Park City offers a changing du jour menu with all the veggies and protein. Then add rich toppings such as tomato bruschetta and roasted Parmesan potatoes or make it a Burrito Bowl with roasted corn and black beans, sausage and potatoes, salsa and lime crema. On the sweet side, grab a bowl of Greek yogurt, and dabble in additions such as caramelized bananas. Open 24 hours a day, the Gallery Market provides nosh round the clock, with beverages, grab ‘n’ go salads and sandwiches, to even giant cookies. The Gallery Menu also serves heartier food selections such as pizzas and flatbreads, nachos and burgers, no matter the time. There is also an in-house ski shop, a 24/7 fitness center and an outdoor pool and hot tub.
Bring your Pomeranian along for the ride, as the hotel is pet-friendly—the city is like one big doggie adventure zone, with four adjacent dog parks. And if you are in a quandary about what to do in town, the hotel will provide a Gallery Host to set you off in the right direction.
Dine Around Town
Handle is an ideal stop for a pre-dinner drink and some appetizers, such as oysters and a simply dressed kale salad as the bar comes alive early with the shaking and stirring of craft cocktails. Or stay for a while and make a meal of the killer fried chicken with winter squash and maple butter. Plus, they strive for organic produce and make great strides to accommodate all types of diners including vegan. Up the road, Firewood is all about wood cooking, as the name suggests, and shows off Utah produce in every dish. Try the cauliflower and avocado mashup with spaghetti squash, cashews and wild mushrooms. And for the adventurous, the Juniper Spice Elk loin gives a true taste of the mountains.
Photos by Mike Stoner
The center of town has always been a retail hub, even dating back to the 1800s, when merchants catered to the miner clientele. There are more than 70 stores, ranging from unique odds and ends to boutiques such as the luxe Gorsuch, the kid-friendly Prospect, the ultra-chic Park City Mercantile and outdoorsy Kuhl. This is also where most of the bars and restaurants are.
Showcasing excellent hooch, High West Distillery gives complimentary tours of its whiskey operation and distillation process. Walk away with endless knowledge of the state’s obscure whiskey-making history, a deeper understanding of the brand and the magic that goes into making the spirit. High West has a saloon and restaurant in Park City proper and its distillery and tasting room are in Wanship, Utah. The decor, presentation and refined Old West vibe make this an enjoyable visitors’ experience, even for those who aren’t aficionados.
Take a Hike
From the easy to the more complex, Park City has a hike for you. For those looking for more of a stroll, the paved Farm Trail hike takes you by the historic McPolin Barn off of Highway 224 and stretches for miles. It is a postcard-worthy experience, so expect to stop for snaps of the grazing horses along the way. For the more experienced, the Round Valley Trail System sits on 700 acres of open space at 6,500 feet and has 30 miles of trails. Put it on the itinerary if you will be visiting in early spring or late fall, as there is limited shade, so it is definitely one to tackle early in the day.
Delicious cheese? Yes, please. Just 30 minutes from Park City lies the quaint town of Midway and the Heber Valley Cheese shop, dairy and creamery, which is an ideal stop for a tasting of the award-winning Vanilla Bean Gourmet Cheddar. This is udder-to-table at its finest, as all the milk comes straight from the farm. After you’ve had your fill of snacks, shop for well-curated objects and apparel at Fernweh, whose name means a longing for far-off places, and features vintage-inspired shirts, cool backpacks and cool kids’ pieces.