• Women skiers, this is the place for you -- an online community without the male-orientation you'll find in conventional ski magazines and internet ski forums. At TheSkiDiva.com, you can connect with other women to talk about skiing in a way that you can relate to, about things that you find of interest. Be sure to join our community to participate (women only, please!). Registration is fast and simple. Just be sure to add webmaster@theskidiva.com to your address book so your registration activation emails won't be routed as spam. And please give careful consideration to your user name -- it will not be changed once your registration is confirmed.

Vail buys Okemo, Sunapee, Crested Butte & Stevens Pass

ski diva

Administrator
Staff member
#1
The Vail empire grows! The company just acquired Okemo, Sunapee, Crested Butte,and Steven Pass. This makes the 2nd and 3rd resorts they've bought in the east (Vail bought Stowe last year). What does this mean? Who knows. Okemo is my home mountain, so I'm wondering: Does this mean I can ski Stowe on my Okemo pass now, too?

So how do you feel about this? Is Vail the evil empire? Or is this a great business move? What effect do you think this will have not just on these resorts, but on eastern skiing in general?
 
Last edited:

RachelV

Administrator
Staff member
#3
I was just going to ask if this meant more Colorado trips for you, @ski diva :smile:

I really don’t like Vail Resorts but I’m slowly coming to terms with the fact that giant corporations who can spread out weather risk and make a lot of money year round are what it’s gonna take to keep skiing viable in our increasingly unreliable climate.
 
#4
The Vail empire grows! The company just acquired Okemo, Sunapee, Crested Butte,and Steven Pass. This makes the 2nd and 3rd resorts they've bought in the east (Vail bought Stowe last year). What does this mean? Who knows. Okemo is my home mountain, so I'm wondering: Does this mean I can ski Stowe on my Okemo pass now, too?

So how do you feel about this? Is Vail the evil empire? Or is this a great business move? What effect do you think this will have not just on these resorts, but on eastern skiing in general?
Boy, I would be pretty ticked if I were an Okemo passholder and weren't granted Stowe privileges! I bought the Epic Local pass for the 2018-2019 season since I figured I would be in Chittenden County and the Boston area to visit family, and I really have grown fond of Stowe. I tend not to ski/ride during peak holiday periods (no two-legged non-furry kids) so the restrictions on the Epic Local pass were perfect for me.

Unfortunately, I hear that Vail is making changes that will make Stowe less friendly to locals, e.g. running lifts from 9am instead of 7:30am on the weekends. So while I'm glad that Vail brought the cost of a Stowe pass down for me (previously it was unthinkable for me to get a pass there) and has made it attainable for me to take a wider variety of ski trips, I am a little sad to see that they will (not unexpectedly) be moving to catering to tourists instead of locals.
 

Jilly

Moderator
Staff member
#6
Interesting for sure. Maybe like the Alterra take over, you might not get it this year, but next.
 

diymom

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#7
I just got the email from Sunapee about this. I am curious if there will be any changes. I hope I still get the 50% ticket discount with my Wachusett pass.
 

diymom

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#10
So... on the Sunapee site they are still selling the Full Ride pass for $999, and the Blast+ for $679. The Full Ride is Sunapee and Okemo, and Vail owned resorts at 50% off. The Blast+ is Sunapee only and with restrictions. Compare that to what you get with Epic for $899 and Epic Local for $699. I hope they give people who purchase/ have already purchased a Sunapee pass the option for credit towards one of the Epic passes.
 

2ski2moro

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#12
Did you see the Disclaimer at the bottom of the Epic Pass page? Always be wary of the asterisk.

"*Disclaimer: Resort access and benefits at Okemo, Crested Butte, and Mount Sunapee are pending closure of the transaction to acquire Triple Peaks. Resort access and benefits at Stevens Pass are pending closure of the transaction to acquire Stevens Pass Resort. Both transactions are expected to close in Summer 2018."
 

Jilly

Moderator
Staff member
#13
On Facebook, Whistler is saying epic passes for these 3. But like the Tremblant sale to Alterra, have to wait for everything to be final.
 

2ski2moro

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#15
I just checked with Okemo. It is definitely not finalized and the Epic Pass will not be valid at Okemo, Sunapee, Stevens Pass or Crested Butte if the transaction is not closed.

I would be very upset if I bought an Epic Pass now and Okemo was not unlimited.
 
#16
I don’t have any inside info on this, but I surmise that they may be pushing for late summer closing to allow for enough time for customers to buy the Epic Pass before the season starts.
 

2ski2moro

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#17
I asked Okemo and they said that if I bought the Epic Pass and the transaction was not finalized, then it would be my responsibility to negotiate with Vail Resorts. No guarantees.
 
#18
Stevens Pass is so poorly managed (by some disinterested corporation), the food is so bad and infrastructure generally outdated that I think this must be positive news. It seems funny to think about such a big corporation buying a fairly funky 1,125 acre day use area but I'm sure they know what they are doing. The other Vail resorts don't seem to be a destination for Seattle area people (except for Whistler, which is less of a destination since they messed with the Edge Card), so they are probably trying to hook us all in. God I hope this means that even more people will go to Stevens and not Crystal. Of course it could mean the opposite depending on what happens with prices.

Viva Crystal Mt!
 

marzNC

Angel Diva
#19
Seems like Vail is taking advantage of a business opportunity as OZ divests itself of ski resorts that were bought from CNL as a package deal. Boyne Resorts could figure out how to buy back their six resorts. Perhaps the family who own Triple Peaks is thinking that a buy out from Vail is the better way to get the capital needed for upgrades and improvements. Three ski resorts is not quite enough to build on these days. Vail's purchase of the three ski resorts in the midwest worked out pretty well as far as I can tell.

Stevens Pass was picked up by CNL around 2011. The management team in place didn't change then although the operator of Mountain High in CA became the lease holder. Mountain High was already operating under a lease from CNL.
 

MilkyWookiee

Ski Diva Extraordinaire
#20
Okemo emailed customers today about the transaction, so I'd say it's a safe bet it'll go through. That said, after seeing the epic local pass is under $700, as soon as it is finalized I'm probably buying the pass. BUT werent okemo season passes selling for over a grand the end of the season? (Ski Diva and company, please correct me if I am wrong). They're going to need to offer some serious perks to ensure happy customers. Also curious if the single mountain season passes will drop in price? Okemo is my favorite mountain so I'll definitely be keeping a close eye on this!
 

Members Online

No members online now.