While Park City, Utah, is a destination most famous for its snow-filled months and Sundance Film Festival, summertime is this western locale’s best-kept secret. Warmer temperatures allow for outdoor activities such as hiking, biking and alfresco concerts. And when it comes to hospitality, Park City shines in that department as well, seeing as how it’s the home to Forbes Travel Guide Five-Star Stein Eriksen Lodge and Four-Star hotels Montage Deer Valley, Waldorf Astoria Park City and The St. Regis Deer Valley. Read on for a full description of how you can enjoy all of this and more during two idyllic days in Utah.
With two nights booked at The St. Regis Deer Valley, begin day one with an early breakfast at the hotel’s signature restaurant, J&G Grill. The stunning space affords pristine views of the slopes on the Wasatch Mountains, and the breakfast menu features a variety of offerings, including housemade yogurt with berries and granola and an egg white frittata with market vegetables. After you eat, head out for your late-morning hike at Deer Valley Resort. Take one of the chairlifts (Silver Lake Express from the bottom or Sterling Express from mid-mountain) and explore the various trails out in the fresh air. Grab lunch at Deer Valley Resort’s Royal Street Café — and sit outside on the patio — for options such as tuna tacos, grilled chicken quesadilla or Asian grilled chicken salad.
Once you’ve traversed the trails and grabbed a bite to eat, head on over to Utah Olympic Park that’s just under a 20-minute ride away. As the site for many of the competitions at the 2002 Winter Olympic Games, the park is home to activities such as freestyle zip-lines, summer bobsled rides and adventure courses. If you’re lucky, you may spot current Olympians or hopefuls for the 2014 Sochi Games training year-round for the luge, skeleton or freestyle jumps.
Regroup back at The St. Regis to witness the popular nightly sabering ritual (a St. Regis tradition) outside at the fire pits — you’ll receive a complimentary glass of champagne to toast to the night. There are a number of great restaurants to choose from around town, but we recommend grabbing an outdoor table at Silver Star Cafe, which overlooks a golf course and provides fantastic sunset views of the mountain. When it comes to the American West-influenced menu, order sharing plates such as steamed black mussels or fiery pan-seared green beans, and pick from entrées such as grilled Pacific salmon with warm orzo and grilled zucchini.
After a good night’s sleep at your hotel, start day two with breakfast in town at Washington School House. This unbelievably charming boutique hotel — which served as an actual school house until the 1930s — strikes a perfect balance of rustic and glamorous with 16-foot ceilings, antique chandeliers and custom-made furniture. Nosh on morning bites such as homemade granola with fresh berries, vanilla yogurt and honeycomb or scrambled eggs with thick slices of maple bacon.
Once you’ve finished breakfast, venture out to Main Street — downtown Park City’s historic main drag — and peruse the various shops and art galleries. Make a stop at Mountain Town Olive Oil Co. for flavor-infused varieties including blood orange, basil or chipotle olive oil, black cherry, fig or pomegranate balsamic, as well as white truffle, lavender or habanero specialty salts. Beauty haven Mountain Body is an enchanting shop filled with signature products such as lavender floral water, citrus mint salt scrubs and Dead Sea mud face masks.
Continue on Main Street, taking a few moments to notice the historic storefronts from the town’s early mining days such as Meyer Gallery (originally The First National Bank that dates back to the late 1800s) and The Egyptian Theater (opened in 1926 and inspired by King Tut’s tomb, which was discovered in 1922). Make your way to the Kimball Art Center and walk around the different galleries, where an upcoming exhibit includes The Simple Life by photographer James Winegar (August 2 to September 8). Once you’ve worked up an appetite, grab lunch at actor and Sundance founder Robert Redford’s elegantly communal restaurant Zoom for dishes such as grilled salmon salad or blackened halibut fish tacos.
Go back to The St. Regis to relax and freshen up (don’t forget to grab a light jacket) before your evening concert at the Snow Park Outdoor Amphitheater. Take the funicular down from the hotel, which will drop you off mere steps from the entrance to the amphitheater. Deer Valley Resort hosts a summer concert series with a wide range of artists, from world-famous musicians such as Natalie Maines to local bands and unique joint performances such as Arturo Sandoval with the Utah Symphony. You can buy tickets for actual seats, which are closer to the stage, or purchase tickets for the lawn area (bring your own chairs or blankets), and gourmet picnic baskets for dinner. The delicious meals are sold by Deer Valley Resort at the concert and come with tasty options such as chilled filet of beef or smoked salmon, alongside an assortment of cheeses and fresh fruit.
Photos Courtesy of Deer Valley Resort, Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide and Mike Tittel