Robert Redford founded the Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah in 1979. Since then it has grown to become the largest film festival for independent film makers in the world. Two years later Deer Valley opened. This grand ski resort was destined to became a 2002 Winter Olympics venue site. It was also honored by Ski Magazine as the #1 ski resort in North America for an unprecedented five straight years including 2012. For this article, we asked the top agents here why the Park City/ Deer Valley resort town has emerged not only as a great place to vacation but also to live.
Park City is considered to be one of the safest communities in the United States. According to Diane Rinehart, “It is a real town with real people; that’s what you want from a second home--you want it to be a home. It’s a small town where you feel you can make a difference”
With a population of under 10,000 people, Park City has a generosity of spirit that is unsurpassed. According to Dena Flemming, “There are over 100 non-profit organizations here. This is a place where second home owners want to participate in the community; it is not just a place to see and be seen”.
Although Park City/Deer Valley is known for having the “greatest snow on earth”, Tyler Richardson says, “The locals will tell you that our summers are far superior to our winters. We are truly a year-round resort with exquisite golf courses, mountain biking, blue ribbon fly fishing and boating”. There is a saying in Park City that sums it up, “I came for the winter; I stayed for the summer”.
Tyler, and his mother/business partner, Peg Marty, specialize in marketing both ski-in/ski-out properties in Deer Valley and gentleman ranches-equestrian properties just outside of town.Peg comments that “this is one of the few places where you can enjoy the year-round ski town lifestyle while owning fee simple, (privately held) property in town, in a rural setting and also on the mountain next to the lifts”.
Ann MacQuoid says, “The summer is all about recreation during the day and entertaining under the stars; it’s light until 10pm. At night there is something for everyone, from dining at one of 17 Zagat rated restaurants, to cocktail boat cruises on the Jordanelle Reservoir, to outdoor concerts".
“It is easy to get around town all year long by taking Park City’s free busses that come along just about every 20 minutes”, states Suzanne Harris. “This works out especially great in the winter for locals and visitors who want to experience the diversity, of the three major ski resorts, Deer Valley, Park City and The Canyons that are in close proximity to each other”.
As the summer season gained in popularity an interesting trend emerged. Heidi Gatch noticed that, “Many home owners who enjoyed being on the mountain for vacations are moving to town to be closer to local activities year-round. Some like Old Town properties that may not have as much land or square footage, but they are within walking distance of restaurants, art galleries and shopping.”
Others just like to walk! Carol Agle says, “With 150 miles of hiking and biking trails locals take fitness seriously.” She adds, “According to the Center of Disease Control our state is one of the healthiest (least obese) in the country".
Steve Chin explains that “One of the main reasons for the huge success of the Park City/Deer Valley area is its proximity to a major international airport in Salt Lake City. It is the only ski area in North America where you can take a morning flight from just about anywhere in the US and still ski for a half-day in the afternoon. In fact, if you present your boarding pass to any ski ticket window from your morning flight you can go skiing free for the rest of the day!”
Steve adds, “Deer Valley in particular offers an extraordinary skier experience. It is so civilized--all the fun of skiing without the hassle factor”. Mary Leader points out that “the Deer Valley Ski School is second to none. If you own a home on the slopes your instructor will meet you at your home for your private lesson”.
At Deer Valley the number of skiers allowed on the mountain is limited. This results in very brief lift lines. There is usually tons of dry powder yet mostly mild weather. Kelly Rogers points out that,”even at the peak, Deer Valley is at a lower altitude than most ski resorts. With meticulously groomed slopes, that means more endurance and more runs!“ When asked to sum up the skier experience at Deer Valley Karen Keating said, “More blue sky days, white glove service and groomed, velvet, corduroy powder runs”.