Alterra plans $555 million in capital investments over next five years, including at Winter Park Resort | SkyHiNews.com

Alterra plans $555 million in capital investments over next five years, including at Winter Park Resort

The Zephyr Express chairlift at the base of Winter Park Resort will be replaced with a 10-person gondola in time for the 2018-19 ski season, according to resort officials. Once completed, it will be the first and -- so far -- only gondola at the resort, part of a multi-million dollar investment at the resort by its parent company, Alterra Mountain Co.

Alterra Mountain Company is looking to make a splash.

Less than a year after the company formed out of a joint venture of KLS Capital Partners and Henry Crown and Company, the Denver based ski conglomerate released plans to invest more than half a billion dollars into their 12 mountain destinations, including Winter Park Resort.

Earlier this week Winter Park Resort announced the addition of a new 10-person gondola to replace the Zephyr Express chairlift, part of a more than $28 million capital investment plan to renovate the resort over the following year. But we know now that the resort's parent company is just getting started.

Alterra plans to put $130 million back into its resorts for the 2018/2019 winter, and is eyeing $555 million in capital investments over the next five years.

"At our core, we are a ski company and we offer year-round mountain experiences to skiers, riders and summer visitors of all ages from all over the world," said Rusty Gregory, chief executive officer at Alterra. "Each aspect of our business plays a part in the guest experience that brings them back year after year, from a welcoming base area to an efficient ski school to exceptional services."

The lofty investments reflect Gregory's sentiments. The plan was created based upon the current needs and input from guests at each destination, along with proposed improvements and priority lists gathered from destination presidents. The $555 million in budgeted improvements will touch everything from technological advances like new chairlift, gondolas and snowmaking equipment to other needs such as base area development and food and beverage offerings.

Along with Winter Park's incoming gondola, the resort will also be equipped with a new snowmaking system and funding for increased lift maintenance, snowcats and 21 acres of logging in the Eagle Wind Territory.

Alterra also announced a list of improvements to sister resorts highlighted by the Bear River Restaurant renovation at Steamboat, the longest top-to-bottom zipline tour in North America coming to Mammoth Mountain, base area improvements at Big Bear Mountain Resort and a number of new chairlifts, retail spaces and snowmaking equipment.

Alterra is expected to announce other new projects this fall.

"It is our commitment to invest in each of our destinations in order to grow the sport, offer a variety of activities, inspire loyal guests and instill a love of the mountains in all that visit," said Gregory. "We do that through thoughtful and innovative capital investments that improves a guest's experience, while we continue to support and preserve the character and traditions of each destination."

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