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Vacation TellurideTelluride Rides Again
There’s a saying in Telluride: “It isn’t easy to get here, but it’s even harder to leave.” Telluride is the family destination that you’ll return to again and again, making this a favorite stop on your family retreats. It’s the kind place where you’ll start out by staying in a hotel, but eventually buy a condo or, if you’re lucky, a gorgeous Telluride home of your own. You’ll be here summer, spring, winter, and fall, all of which are the perfect time to take in this Rocky Mountain high.
Telluride caters to the elite, yet still exudes a laid-back vibe. With its authentic country-western charm and warm welcome, this is as historically cultural as the US gets.
Check into The Peaks, which is the go-to family hotel. With its stunning mountain views and ski-in, ski-out right onto a green run, it’s the most full-service hangout for those with young children. If your kids are a little older, try Hotel Madeline Telluride, a more elegant, and better-appointed boutique resort.
Skiing is the most evident draw to Telluride, with some of the best runs targeted to beginners and intermediates. Make your base at the central Mountain Village, which offers easy access to the resort’s family activities. Right next to the gondola are ski rentals and lessons, where you can set the kids up for ski school. For lunch in town, head to La Cocina de Luz, which serves quality organic Southwestern cuisine. You really can’t go wrong with a quesadilla, or their homemade guacamole. Save room for dessert at The Sweet Life, an old-fashioned ice-cream parlor and candy shop that would put Willy Wonka to shame.
With your sugared-up kids, explore the country-western downtown by moseying on over to Gravity Works, where you can burn off some of that energy on the rock-climbing wall. Or, hit the slopes again with the family, skiing until the last runs at 4pm. Après-ski with the kids means heading back to Mountain Village, and refueling over a crêpe from the La Creperie in the main square, preferably after you do some bouncing at Bungee Trampoline.
For dinner, splurge at 9545 Restaurant at the Inn at Lost Creek. Here, in an upscale family scene, your child will table-hop and catch up with newfound friends. Later, return to the hotel and post up in the living room for game time until you all drift off to dreamland.
The days in Telluride are a leisurely combo of skiing, lunch, and other fun family activities. For something quick and easy, feast on tacos and burritos at La Tapatia Taco Truck, next to Telluride Bistro. Top it off with a hot chocolate at the Steaming Bean or, to be really indulgent, at Telluride Truffle. If the kids want a mellow afternoon, or the conditions are too cold to ski, head indoors to the Historical Museum, on Colorado Boulevard. Afterwards, kick back at the Telluride Public Library, and spend the afternoon visiting foreign and pretend lands through their very respectable collection of books. In the early eve, catch a movie at The Golden Nugget, a historic building that now houses the local theater. Ease into the evening at Rustico and enjoy rich pastas in a rustico setting.
Telluride is best enjoyed at a relaxing pace, over the course of a week or more, but if you’re only here for a long weekend, plan to ski again on the last day with the kids, having fun on the green runs and very good blues and blacks for your daredevils who have moved up to the next level. Later, tuck into the best pizza on the mountain at La Pizzeria, and then hit Mountain Village Ice Rink for family skating.
For your last supper in Telluride, pull up a chair at La Piazza, where you’ll be treated like you’re part of their family. Or, take your own family up to Allred’s, for a last look at the stunning Telluride – the perfect setting for planning your return trip. You may have to leave, but you won’t be away for long.