It has always been puzzling that a world-class resort destination like Lake Tahoe has never had a world-class resort hotel. That alpine-level oversight changes December 9, when the Ritz-Carlton Highlands opens slopeside within the Northstar resort ski area near Lake Tahoe and Truckee.
Comprised of a series of linked pavilions tucked into the contour of the hillside, the $300 million hotel, the first new-build resort development in the region in decades, was created in the tradition of the great mountain lodges of the early 20th century. The hotel features 170 guestrooms averaging 480 square-feet in size, each boasting an eco-friendly gas-burning fireplace, goose-down comforters, LCD flat-panel televisions, iPod docking stations and internet access. Other options here include 23 private Ritz-Carlton Residences and 25 Ritz-Carlton Club fractional ownership units.
Resort highlights include a 17,000 square foot spa, a restaurant helmed by San Francisco celebrity chef Traci Des Jardins, ski-in/ski-out access and sweeping views of the surrounding forest and ski slopes. A mountain concierge will also be on-hand to check guests’ boots and skis when they arrive on property, help them with putting on their ski gear, make recommendations on ski runs and escort skiers to the snow.
Adding to its appeal, The Ritz-Carlton Highlands is also offering up some excellent deals for the opening. Through April 11, 2010, the “Woods and Water” spa experience includes accommodations, a one-hour guided snowshoe tour through the surrounding forest from the terrace of The Ritz-Carlton, a Pinyon pine nut massage for any resultant aches and pains, and a body scrub and rain shower. Prices start from $575 per night which includes valet parking and resort fee. The Sneak Peak ski package, available from opening day to Dec. 18, includes a room for three nights and two 3-day adult lift tickets for Northstar Resort from $349 per night, which also includes valet parking and resort fee nightly. From Jan. 4 to April 11, the price increases to $399. Reservations: 800-241-3333 or ritzcarlton.com/laketahoe.
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