If you’ve been on a Ski Aspen Tour, you’ve more than likely crossed paths with a guy named Nick Farr. No doubt you’ve skied, laughed and possibly cried with him. So here’s a Q&A with the man himself on the world of Nick Farr and his Ski Aspen…
1. Nick Farr – How did it all begin?
I first went to Aspen in 1991 and was hooked. I was immediately struck by how different it was to what I’d expected. The typical headlines you read about Aspen are all about movie stars, the glitz and glamour and how expensive it is. Easy headlines by lazy journalists because the real Aspen is nothing like that. It became my mission to work out a way to get back each season. In 1995 Aspen Skiing Company said “Yes” to our proposed ski tours and we were away. Our first tour in 1996 had 9 guests! 22 seasons later and we’re privileged to still be showing people the real Aspen.
2. After 21 years of Ski Aspen Tours – What’s new for 2017 and why?
We now offer basic, mid and luxury level options. Our past guests have been asking for this for a while but we needed to get the locations and facilities right. Thanks to Frias Properties of Aspen, we’ve been able to assemble a great range of units that cater for all budgets and tastes.
In 2017 the Ski Pros of the Aspen Ski School will begin assisting in the running of our on-snow program. There are some incredible instructors working in Aspen and we’ve selected the best of the best so we’re very fortunate to have access to this level of experience and expertise. It’s a little ironic that we then have to train our new instructors on how to deliver our unique on-snow format. One of the keys to our success is that our program actually doesn’t run like ski school so we need to stay true to that.
FREE Hotham/Falls Creek season passes and FREE skis
We’re always working on ways to offer more value. Our early bird deals are popular because people save $. But our new partnership with Mt Hotham has allowed us to provide everyone who books (irrespective of when they book) with a 2017 Hotham / Falls Creek season pass. If you’re from interstate you can elect to receive 2 X 5-day lift tickets instead. Working with Hotham has also enabled us to host events throughout the year where our loyal Aspen guests/family can get together during the Aussie winter.
We’ve also taken our partnership with Aspen Sports to the next level. Everyone that joins our Aspen tours now gets a free demo ski day and 50% of any rentals. This is hands down the best ski rental deal being offered anywhere in Aspen. People that join our tours for 20 days (or more) get a free pair of skis and bindings from Aspen Sports with unlimited demo days so they can be sure of finding the right ski for them.
3. The Nick Farr top 5 reasons people choose Ski Aspen?
(i) The 4 Aspen mountains (Aspen Mountain, Aspen Highlands, Snowmass and Buttermilk) and incredible variety of skiing terrain they offer will always be the main reason people choose Ski Aspen. We know our stuff and run a great program but if the ski experience isn’t awesome people won’t keep coming back. We have plenty of guests that have joined our tours more than 10 times.
(ii) The social nature of our tours is probably a close second. When you join a Ski Aspen tour you get an entire social network from the minute you arrive. We ski all day and après often. We host a variety of après events, parties and social gatherings which are extremely popular. We even include food and drink events courtesy of Frias Properties of Aspen, Aspen Sports and Aspen Skiing Company. Our tours are perfect for singles, couples and groups looking for people to ski and mingle with.
(iii) Our on-snow program is the cornerstone of what we do. It’s not like joining ski school. We ski lots of miles with a daily learning focus. We’ll work and work on that one or two things for mile after mile. People improve their skiing – guaranteed – with lots of miles and the right thing to focus on. We have a 21 year history to prove it. Our on-snow groups are small and personal which ensures everybody gets plenty of individual attention. Add to this specialty days focusing on whatever the guest wants to improve (i.e. bumps, steeps, carving, powder) and you’re on your way to some serious improvement. Our video analysis sessions are also a big hit – especially given we critique these in a fun and informal way over some drinks and snacks after skiing.
(iv) Our relationships (in Aspen & at home) have allowed us to develop a product with special inclusions. Things like free membership to The Aspen Club and Spa, free ski demos, a free Hotham/Falls Creek season pass, plenty of après events with free drinks and food and exclusive retail offers are just the start. We stay in fantastic units close to everything – we don’t like walking in ski boots either! Our intimate knowledge of Aspen means we can take you places on and off snow you’d probably never find yourself. Our social program ensures you’ll make new skiing friends for life. Ski Aspen is not just a ski holiday.
(v) Snow quality, quantity, great weather and no lift-lines. If you don’t believe me just check our years of photo galleries and videos. We might have been able to fake it over one or two seasons but not 21!
Thanks to Nick Farr for taking the time to answer our little Q&A.
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