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Not Just Another Pet-Friendly Hotel in Aspen

One of our favorite bloggers featured Hotel Aspen on her site!  Jillian Livingston is a family travel writer and storyteller, videographer and blogger.   This excerpt is from her blog featuring the Hotel Aspen on November 1, 2010:

Another Pet-Friendly Hotel in Aspen

 “Guess what,” I said to Wade, pouncing on him as he lay on our King Size bed, comfortably reading as the ominous snow clouds crept in. “Just lined up another staycation in Aspen for us. We’re going up tomorrow to stay at the Hotel Aspen.”

“Grrreeat,” he said in his best Michael Myers Fat Bastard impersonation. Wade does not like surprises and he also does not like to leave his beautiful home that he built with his bare hands, to pack up and head twenty-five minutes up to Aspen to stay in a hotel room. It’s a problem we have, after a week of working hard he wants to enjoy his home and after a week of working at home all day, every day, I need to get away. But I have a little whirlwind of support on my side, for the kids love to get away as much as I do.
And so off we went to stay at the moderately priced, pet-friendly hotel, located right in town. As the rain poured down, I silently worried about what we were going to do in Aspen in the bad weather during the off season. We could ski on the pass but without Wade that wasn’t happening. We could go swimming indoors but I need a prescription for Prozac before I swim inside in a public pool with thousands of other children. Then it occurred to me that sometimes it is okay to not have an agenda and I announced that we were going to go swimming outside in the snow and the rain and that we were going to like it.

We checked into the hotel and it actually was kind of nice to be self-sufficient. No lingering bell boy waiting for a tip, no lobby to reign my kids in. Brevitt found the cart and loaded up our bags and we traipsed off to find our room; bags, dog, boys and all.

The room was comfortable and clean with wood floors instead of carpeting, which I’m more partial to when dogs are part of the picture. We had all we needed; tv, pool, wifi and close proximity to Main St. Bakery, town and Paepcke park.

That wintery evening Muki pulled the boys on their skateboards around town and then we went to see the Warren Miller film, Wintervention. A half hour into the film I was exhausted and realized that my knuckles were white from gripping myself. Skiing through champagne, untracked powder while cool sweeps of snow caress my face is total Nirvana for me and I was getting all pumped up for the winter season to begin. This is not to say that I wouldn’t enjoy a few more months of perfect fall weather.

The next morning I took Muki outside into the dark and rainy morning and we played fetch amongst the majestic enormous Pines that appeared as though they were wearing white, frilly skirts from the snow. My little puffball attracted two women from Edmonds who came over to say hello. We stood in the rain connecting and I promised to call them before I embarked on my Pacific Northwest road trip with my boys this summer.

With a few more hours to kill before the “terrorists” woke up, as so dubbed by my good friend Stephanie, I went to read by the fire in the breakfast room upstairs. The room was cozy with big windows to let the scenery in and as I read Aspen Mountain slowly became dusted from the big, snowflakes that were slowly falling outside.

The families trickled in and I mingled with the parents as the children raced to the assorted pastries and Fruit Loops dispenser. I was slightly envious of the Italian couple traveling for three weeks with their two boys, taking off every few days to explore Colorado. Then there was Kim, the Dane, traveling to the States with his “NFL” friends to see the Dallas Cowboys game. Kim’s English was impeccable, a result of the importance the schools place on language in Europe.

My family finally materialized and the breakfast room became one big party, an international smorgasbord of kids, parents and football fanatics, in no hurry to go out into the weather.

After breakfast we put on our bathrobes and walked over to the sister property, the Molly Gibson lodge, to swim in their pool, since our pool was closed off for maintenance. We launched our best cannonballs and swam around like dolphins, having yet another incredible day of family bonding.

Sitting in the hot tub, I asked Wade and the boys to be silent for thirty seconds. “Close your eyes and imagine yourself in a far away place,” I said. When we opened our eyes we all told of where we went off to. I was in Hawaii in an emerald green pool, under a magnificent waterfall, Brevitt was in the shower, Wade on the toilet, and both Tucker and Axel in the bathtub. This is my life, where I gag on a daily basis and have a husband who seems to have walked straight out of a Saturday Night Live sketch, but their mine and I love them.

Throughout the weekend, I kept running into the same group of friends. We were on the same circuit moving from the last Saturday Farmers market to Arjuna Yoga to Jour de Fete to the Warren Miller film to O2 for more yoga and on to Peaches Café to load up on more caffeine and muffins. As much as I love living in the country, I could see how much livelier life could be living in town.

When the weekend came to an end and Wade and I collapsed back into our own bed, I snuggled up to him and thanked him for always being such a good sport and made a promise to wait another month before making him do it all over again.