8 Great Après-Ski Hangouts

Posted in Magazine Features, Planning Tips & Advice

8 Great Après-Ski Hangouts

There’s no argument—the best part of a ski day is the time you’re taking turns on the mountain. But regardless of how awesome your day turns out, the cherry on your ski sundae is how you celebrate. Whether you like to take it slow while watching the afternoon crowd from the sunny deck, or prefer to party like a rock star into the night, we’ve got your star selection of après and night spots to put on your dance card.

Garibaldi Lift Company

Whistler, British Columbia

Garibaldi Lift Company Bar and Grill dining photo credit Paul Morrison

Garibaldi Lift Company Bar and Grill dining photo credit Paul Morrison

People pack in at the GLC (learn the local nickname) because the deck looks out onto the mountain, so you can watch the late-afternoon skiers charging down at the end of the day while enjoying a brew and nachos. The music is the other reason this bar is a hotspot. With DJs spinning everything from funk to house, how can a good après go wrong? (whistlerblackcomb.com/events-and-activities/the-village/restaurants/glc.aspx)

 Umbrella Bar

Squaw Valley, California

Umbrella Bar photo credit Nathan Kendall

Umbrella Bar photo credit Nathan Kendall

Start your après off right on the mountain at Squaw Valley with a great brew, some breathtaking views and a dip in the huge hot tub at High Camp (elevation 8,200 feet, but who’s counting?). It’s not somewhere to linger later into the evening, as you’ve got to get moving when the lifts close, but the spot is perfect for winding down your day of sweet spring skiing. (squaw.com/things-to-do/dining/on-mountain)

High West Distillery and Saloon

Park City, Utah

High West Distillery and Saloon exterior

High West Distillery and Saloon exterior

Park yourself on Park Avenue (the center of town) at the High West Distillery and Saloon, Utah’s first legal distillery since the 1870s, which also conveniently sits smack at the end of Park City’s Quittin’ Time ski run. It’s not quite set up so you can snag a tumbler of whiskey before you get out of your bindings, but it’s the next best thing. Want to see how your booze is made? Take a behind-the-scenes distillery tour. (highwest.com)

Belly Up

Aspen, Colorado

Belly Up Manufactured Superstars 2012

Belly Up Manufactured Superstars 2012

Hang in through après, and if there’s a good band playing at the Belly Up, do yourself a favor and get a ticket. The small club hosts world-class talent, but it feels like it could fit in your pocket, allowing views that feel like front row from nearly anywhere in the building. Here’s one reason to follow the locals and don’t ask questions—they usually know what’s good. (bellyupaspen.com)

The Rose

Jackson Hole, Wyoming

The Rose interior photo credit Rich Goodwin and David Agnello

The Rose interior photo credit Rich Goodwin and David Agnello

Sexy snow bunnies and snowboarders with trucker hats gather at The Rose, a swanky citified, low-lit bar that serves vintage and modern cocktails with fun names. Many of the libations change with the seasons, but there’s always something for everyone—from beer to wine to bubbles, and of course, the killer cocktails. This bar could easily be plunked down in New York City, but the mountain spirit makes it extra special. (therosejh.com)

Snowflake Lounge

Boyne Falls, Michigan

Start the evening off with a bang at the Snowflake Lounge, perched on the third floor of the Clock Tower Lounge. Drink highlights run from warmers (like the Snow Cocoa) to shooters (a favorite is the Dirty Girl Scout XX) to elaborate signature cocktails. Don’t worry, it’s not just drinks. Live entertainment keeps you moving, so don’t forget to tally up your beverages as you go. (boyne.com/boynemountain/dining)

Wobbly Barn

Killington, Vermont

Created from pieces of barns across New England, this popular steakhouse draws hungry skiers and riders at the end of a long mountain day. After dinner, climb upstairs to the nightclub for adult beverages and partying into the night. If you overindulge on Friday and Saturdays, grab a ride on the Wobbly Wagon, which runs up and down Killington Road during ski season. (wobblybarn.com)

The Rack

Sugarloaf, Maine

When you’d prefer not to jump around from place to place after a hard ski day, head down the road to The Rack. Set in a barn-style building, the place seems to have it all. Start with budget-priced beer for après (you know you love PBR), get a rack of slow-roasted ribs with coleslaw and corn bread for dinner, and then hang around into the night for some live music or basement arcade games. All in one is often the way to go. (therackbbq.com)

−By Jill K. Robinson