Driving up to Park City after a "day visit" in Salt Lake City, we noticed how different the landscape looked from our travels in Colorado the same time last year. Utah has the Wasatch Mt., Range,which is west of the Rockies. Apparently the state does not have alot of evergreen trees. Colorado was layered in green, with beautiful trunks of aspen trees glistening in the reflection of the snow. Utah is layered in brown in October. Nonetheless, we were anxious to arrrive in Deer Valley, after our 10 day road trip "out West", and enjoyed the easy 30 min.drive.
We followed Garmin directions to the address of the St. Regis, and were extremely surprised to find out that we have to park our car at the "foot of the mountain", then take a funicular up the hillside to the hotel. Did not know this! Reminded me of when we were in Venice and had to take a boat to our hotel.
The building adjacent to the parking lot is a mini-replica of the hotel. They have two small lovely sitting areas, and a "front desk". The staff here was helpful and friendly. They helped us unload our suitcases, and directed us to the funicular, informing us that our bags would be brought up in a van. This was a very unique way to enter a hotel!
We walked past the bar, restaurant, and outdoor patio, then down some grand stairs to a gorgeous lobby. Since the hotel was practically empty, the hotel staff was "all over us" with superb service. Our bags were waiting for us after we checked in, and we took an elevator to our 3rd floor room. Should have requested a room on a higher floor, but didn't feel like complaining. We were told that it is a St. Regis Tradition to have a champagne decorking, with a sword, every evening at 6:30 P.M. We bundled up and headed for the outside patio. The bartender was standing on some lava rocks, bottle "in hand", and explained the history of the use of champagne for special ceremonies/events. The sword follows the seam on the label-POP! Then a glass of bubbly for the 6 of us in attendance.
By now it was about 8:00( we lingered outside, then had a cocktail in the bar) and we wanted to go into town for dinner. A van took us to the restaurant of our choice, dropped us off, then prompty picked us up when we called the hotel number. Very nice service.
The hotel lobby is grand, and has a huge fireplace in the center. Enormous glass windows view out to the ski slopes. This hotel looks almost like a replica of the Hyatt in Beaver Creek. There are smaller, more intimate rooms, and a library, adjacent to the lobby , which can be closed off with sliding doors for private parties.
Our room was very nice, but rather small. The view we had was of the front driveway, and two brown hills. Nothing to say "ahhhh" about. The bed was comfy, and the sheets soft. The bathroom had a soaking tub, and louvered shutters separating it from the bedroom. The mirror over the sinks had a television embedded in it. The toilet had a phone on the wall. Everything was clean and nice, but again, nothing extra special for a hotel of this stature.
Our second day was spent driving around the Park city area, in our rental car. We took the very fun, funicular down the hill to our car, and drove out to the Olympic Park Museum, after stopping for espressos and bread pudding at a small deli down the street. The museum was extremely interesting and we learned alot about the winter olympics.
Then we drove to the downtown Main St. area, and had a superb lunch at The Eating Establishment, found one liquor store(all gov't owned in Utah) to buy a bottle of wine, and headed back to our lovely St. Regis Hotel. We chose to have our car self-parked, so we were not charged for that. 'Back up" the hill to the hotel, with a fun view of some condos and ski slopes below. By now it was almost time for the champagne decorking, so we took our glasses of wine down to the ceremony, which we enjoyed again, and then sat and watched a beautiful sunset. The outdoor area has a "rock garden", and gas flames over an extended area, surrounded by a transparent fence-it was a magical evening. Clear skies, full moon, flickering flames, cozy bench seats, Romance galore!!
Our plan was to go back into town for dinner, but since we had a late lunch, and were very mellow, we decided to eat at the St. Regis, even though I did not want to. The menu was very limited, and I only saw two things I would eat-Gazpacho soup, and Feta/spinach pizza, and the prices were sky high. We were leaving the next day to fly to Florida, and still needed to pack, so we opted to stay at the St. Regis and eat there afterall.
The restaurant was beautiful, and the service impeccable. When I didn't see the Feta/Spainach pizza on the menu, the server stated that the chef had just changed the menu. All new choices were very heavy on meat, and fusion food. When I inquired about the pizza, the chef said he woud make it for me. It was very good, as was my salad, and our wine. The atmosphere there is stunning, and I felt like we had the entire place to ourselves. The service was great, and the food good. The menu needs to be expanded and tweeked to include more "veggie" dishes.
The only negative thing I can say about our stay here is that the morning we were to leave for the Salt Lake City airport, which was our last day at the St. Regis, we went downstairs to the business room to print our boarding passes and check our emails. The room key allowed us access to this room, but we had to pay $7.50 for 15 minues on the computer. The same "scam" as the JW Marriott in Vegas. Charging customers to use the internet is a real "low blow", and not professional.
We enjoyed our first stay at a St. Regis, and reveled in the luxury and great service.