Growing up, we took family ski trips where we’d hit the slopes by 9 a.m. and ski until the chairlifts closed. While I still love a great ski vacation, now I prefer a little more luxury, a little less intensity, and a lot more options for après ski. With that in mind, I chose The Little Nell- the one true ski-in, ski-out hotel in Aspen. As the only Five-Star, Five-Diamond rated hotel in Aspen, it is the perfect retreat for outdoor adventure, dining, shopping, and so much more.

Upon our arrival at the Little Nell, I was captivated by the lobby living room—a cozy space where guests gather by the fire and enjoy cocktails, lite bites and the Little Nell’s signature hot chocolate. Since we arrived at noon, we decided to get a bite to eat at Ajax Tavern next to the hotel. It’s a great lunch spot and a fun place to go for drinks around 3pm after a day of skiing. We feasted on their signature wagyu double cheeseburgers, cheese fondue and truffle fries. So delicious!

After lunch, we were excited to see our room. We had a mountain view with a large balcony overlooking the outdoor pool. There was a beautiful seating area in front of a fireplace, the most luxurious bedding, and a mini bar stocked with complimentary snacks and drinks. Equally decadent, the bathroom was filled with oversized plush towels, robes and vanity lighting perfect for makeup application! Then, there were the hotel’s signature First Track toiletries which were so good, I brought them home! 

After exploring the town and visiting the local shops, we headed back to the Little Nel for dinner at the Michelin Guide-recommended Element 47. We were excited for the menu of contemporary Colorado cuisine which featured rack of lamb and house-made pastas. The staff helped us pair our meal with a wonderful bottle of wine and we were as happy as can be. 

After a good night’s sleep, we headed down to rent ski equipment from AspenX at the base of the mountain right next to the Little Nell. This was not your ordinary rental shop. They have an espresso bar with delicious pastries, tarts, and beignets. Everything is so delicious; you don’t want to leave! We were suited up with the latest in ski equipment that felt almost brand new. Taking the experience to the next level, they brought our equipment up to the base of the gondola, so we did not have to carry a thing. This is how I like to ski!

We were lucky because it had snowed the night before and we had light powder the first day. We finished our last run and skied straight to the Little Nell ski concierge. We took off our boots, walked down the hall and realized our room was right there! 

Insider’s Tip:  Request a room on the second floor so you are on the same level as Ajax Tavern on one side and the ski concierge on the other. 

Let’s talk a little more about the ski concierge because it is so unique. They store your equipment, dry out your boots, tune your skis, and have everything waiting for guests in the morning. They even helped us put on our boots! And did I mention we changed out of our boots into our slippers because our room was right down the hall?

But the experience of the Little Nell goes far beyond skiing. When I travel, no matter where I go, I want an amazing spa experience. The Little Nell’s newly renovated spa offers rejuvenating treatments, steam showers, and infrared saunas. I opted for the Quick Fix treatment. First, I was treated to a delicious tea infusion served with freshly baked cookies. Next, I was brought to a room with a private steam shower and dual-action infrared halotherapy sauna stocked with a body scrub and soothing skin balm. The session left me feeling relaxed and renewed. 

On day two of our ski adventure, we went up to the AspenX beach club on top of the mountain by the gondola. This was definitely one the trip highlights. The beach club is open on Fridays and Saturdays from 12-3, you must be at least 21, and it’s a party. We ordered huge hot pretzels, charcuterie boards, and if you want to celebrate, each cabana offers bottle service. (You can take the gondola down if you decide to indulge in the champagne.) But the AspenX Beach Club isn’t just a lively spot to hang out with friends and dance, it is also the best place to create the most scenic Insta stories.

Our stay at the Little Nell was the perfect getaway. The hotel’s amazing Les Clefs d’Or-certified Concierge team booked our dinner reservations, snow mobile experiences, and took care of everything we needed. But Aspen is not just a ski destination. When the snow melts, there is plenty of hiking and biking and other outdoor activities. They even have yoga in the summer at the top of the gondola! In June, you can attend the annual Food & Wine Classic, considered to be one of the best culinary festivals in the country.

So, whether you’re a skier, a foodie, a yogi, an adventurer, or just love the mountains, The Little Nell ensures that every season is filled with unforgettable experiences.

The Little Nell; 675 E Durant Ave, Aspen, CO

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