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The Best Patio in Beaver Creek

February 6, 2013

It’s a bold statement, I know.  I would like to declare the patio of the Ritz Carlton in Bachelor Gulch the best outdoor lounging area in Beaver Creek.  Actually, I’m going to call it the best in the valley.  It might be the best at any mountain resort anywhere.

This might be the closest thing to a controversial statement I’ve made on the blog so far.  Everyone has their favorite outdoor apres spot – the Chophouse is great, Broken Arrow can be fun in the Spring, and Vail-ers might love Garfinkel’s or Los Amigos.  But to me, the Ritz can’t be beat.

The Ritz patio

The Ritz is situated right at the base of Bachelor’s Gulch, where your view is straight up the mountain.  And it is perfectly angled to receive maximum sunshine through most of the ski day.  Even on chilly days, the sun is warm enough to shed some layers comfortably.

View from the Ritz

And the scene?  Remarkably laid-back considering that you are at the Ritz.  Picture basking in the sun while lounging in adirondack chairs.

Patio Lounging

On weekends there is live music starting around 11:30 through the rest of the afternoon – think country, classic rock, Jimmy Buffet, Bob Marley, and more classic sing-along music performed in a non-cheesy way. (Especially when compared to some of the other apres performers in the valley, not to name any names…)

Ritz Sing-Along

The eats and drinks can be expensive, but there are ways to do the Ritz on the cheap.  They don’t seem to mind if you bring your own snacks to eat at the sunny picnic tables.  In fact, I saw a family pull what appeared to be an entire cold pizza out of their jacket pockets to lunch on last weekend.  Also, the outside bar offers select beers for $4, which is a pretty good deal for micro-brews enjoyed slope-side.  Options include Colorado Native and my personal favorite, New Belgium’s Sunshine Wheat.  The slogan on the can says it all.

Sunshine in the sunshine

Just make sure to order your beer at the outside bar.  A friend of mine didn’t want to wait in line at the bar last weekend and made the mistake of going inside and ordering what turned out to be an $8 beer.  Ouch.

On Sundays, they also do an awesome Bloody Mary bar.  You order a nicely-spiced bloody at the bar and then walk over to a table full of goodies to doctor it up with.  The near-empty jar in the picture below contains bacon on a stick.  It’s nearly empty because I had just made my bloody, which was a masterpiece that I neglected to photograph because I couldn’t wait to gulp it down.  They’re a little pricey, but totally fun and you can make yours into a snack by adding veggies and the aforementioned bacon on a stick.

Bloody Bar

The crowd is usually a mix of hotel guests (great people watching), locals and other sun-seekers.

Ritz Patio

Other highlights include a fire pit, very nice restroom facilities, the hotel’s adorable resident Saint Bernard named Bachelor and plenty of seating and sun.  If you’re feeling like a baller, there’s even a shellfish and champagne bar.  Glasses of bubbles start at $20, so I’ve always just admired this one from afar.

Bubbly Bar

So that’s where I’ll be hanging out on sunny afternoons for the rest of this season.  What about you – where is your favorite deck or patio?  Why is it better than this?  Argue with me!

Ritz Picnic Tables

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. Kim Gauron permalink
    February 10, 2013 9:51 pm

    Love your blog Lauren. So fun! And I agree, the Ritz deck is definitely one of my favorites in Beaver Creek!

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