Colorado needs no introduction when it comes to ski credentials. Magnificent mountains and towns which enjoy up to 300 inches of snow each year make for a well deserved reputation for being a top ski spot in the USA.
Colorado is also home to towns which have a strong sense of community, notable cultural hubs and a spirit of welcome that makes them incredibly attractive places to make a home. As we emerge from the pandemic, more and more people are beginning to reassess their lives, and make changes that help them build a lifestyle that truly makes them happy, and a home in the mountains seems to be a big part of these changes.
Where could I live in Colorado?
The options are seemingly endless - Colorado is home to some of the US’ most famous mountain towns and many are close to Denver too, so it’s easy to snap up a slice of city life.
The three towns featured each offer something different, and it goes without saying we’ve some incredible ski property for you to choose from, and our property alert system makes it easy to keep on top of what’s available.
How about a home in Breckenridge?
First up is Breckenridge. Like many Colorado ski towns it started life as a mining hub, and enjoys streets filled with charming Victorian buildings as well as a distinct Old West feel. The population hovers around the 5000 mark, and it’s a town that holds year round appeal for visitors and locals alike.
In terms of skiing, Breckenridge has 5 ski areas, all numbered from 6 - 10 and offering 187 trails. Famous runs include snowbowl offerings like the Boneyard, but there’s a good range of less daunting options too. The season is long too, and at nearby Arapahoe Basin you can take to the slopes right through until June.
As you’d expect, Breckenridge has high appeal for anyone who loves an active lifestyle. Outside ski season there’s the usual mountain biking and hiking to keep you enjoying the great outdoors, and a stroll along the Blue River is a treat enjoyed by young and old.
The gondola is free in summer, so you can get up to the mountain tops with ease. Breceknridge has an urban feel, and attracts many young professionals, with an array of coffee shops, bars and restaurants. It has a good choice of highly rated public and private schools, as well as a college that specialises in culinary arts. There are numerous local festivals, including the renowned Hogfest - a celebration of bourbon and bacon that is hard to beat.
There’s a variety of ski property available in Breckenridge, like this magnificent Jon Gunson designed home complete with wine room and theatre, or this beautiful home with incredible views on Hamilton Lane. The historic district has some stunning traditional homes too, like this four bedroom home on French Street.
How about a home in Durango?
Durango offers something a little different to other Colorado ski towns. Way down towards the bottom of the state, it’s surrounded by the San Juan mountains, and it’s nearest city is Albuquerque in New Mexico. This location means Durango is somewhat less crowded with tourists than other resorts, and has a year round population of around 18,000 people. Despite being a little more off the beaten track, especially when compared to ski resorts on Denver’s doorstep, Durango is surprisingly accessible, with daily flights to many major transport hubs, and it has a distinctly metropolitain feel.
In terms of making a home in Durango, what makes this small city stand out is its culture. It’s known for excellent restaurants, good nightlife and regular festivals that embrace everything from classical music to month long events celebrating Pride. Durango has numerous art galleries as well as the Durango Arts Centre, renovated by the community in 1997 and home to a diverse range of exhibitions and performances.
Durango is a great place to raise a family too, with a choice of 13 public schools as well as private options, and there’s an array of family focused activities, as well as all the fun of the slopes in winter and numerous outdoor activities through the summer.
Ski wise Durango enjoys a dry white powder that makes for excellent runs. There are three main ski areas, with Purgatory Resort being the largest, and Chapman Hill being great for beginners. You’ll also find over 300,000 acres of backcountry skiing. Reliable weather conditions and 300 days of sunshine make Durango a glorious place to enjoy the mountain lifestyle. Properties in Durango include options like this beautiful 3 bedroom home in Blue Sky Ranch or this 2 bed condo overlooking the Animas River.
How about a home in Aspen?
Aspen needs no introduction - its A-lister status means it ranks as one of the best known and best loved ski resorts in the USA. It’s a town that mixes designer shopping and top quality restaurants with some of the most amazing skiing and incredible scenery. The skiing features famed runs like the thrilling descents of Highland Bowl, as well as the gentler pace of Buttermilk. There are 336 ski trails with a range to suit all abilities and the slopes draw thousands of visitors each season.
There’s a little more to Aspen than being the must-go place for those who like to be seen though. Following the “quiet years'' of the thirties, when Aspen was the kind of place where people moved into the local hotel because they couldn’t afford to heat their home, a vision of a new Aspen emerged. Walter Papcke and Friedl Pfeifer sought to create “a magnet for great minds” and so The Aspen Institute was born. It still exists today, attracting such luminaries as the Dalai Lama, and is a seat of learning and inspiration for artists, intelligentsia and leaders from across the globe.
Aspen became home to a unique counter-culture. Hunter S.Thompson ran for sheriff in 1970 - and this subversive, art focused appeal means the rich and celebrated mix with ski-bums and local workers giving Aspen a truly unique character.
All this of course means property is incredibly sought after - Aspen is somewhere that people want to visit, and has a draw that makes them want to stay. Property includes masterpieces like Summit House, regarded as one of the most magnificent homes ever built in Colorado, and this wonderful home in Aspen’s West End. As well as these majestic mansions you’ll find more conventional options like this smart one bedroom property close to the centre of town or this three bedroom house in Aspen Mountain.
How to choose the perfect home in Colorado
If you’re looking to make your move to the mountains more permanent, then understanding the community you’ll become part of is even more important than when you’re looking for a holiday home or investment opportunity. You need to consider how your family will adapt and integrate, as well as how the town will work for you outside the main ski season.
Getting a good understanding of schools, healthcare provision and infrastructure is essential, and many Colorado towns have useful relocation advice that offers a wealth of useful info.
In terms of finding the right property, using SnowOnly is a great choice. Because we’re a property portal we have access to homes from agents and private sellers across the globe, so you can see exactly what’s out there without having to trawl countless sites. Tools like our property alert system and s detailed search facility make it easy to stay ahead of the game, and easy to find your ideal home in your ideal Colorado town.