Vail Resorts Buys Crested Butte, Stevens Pass

Vail Resorts today announced it will purchase Triple Peaks LLC in a deal that also includes two East Coast ski areas. It will also purchase Stevens Pass in separate transaction.

The Epic Pass is about to get more epic with the expansion of the world’s largest ski resort operator.

Vail Resorts today announced that it entered into an agreement to purchase Triple Peaks LLC. The company runs Okemo Mountain Resort in Vermont, Mount Sunapee Resort in New Hampshire, and Crested Butte Mountain Resort in Colorado.

As part of a separate transaction, Vail Resorts will also purchase Stevens Pass Resort in Washington.

Vail Resorts Expansion

The deal follows years of bullish growth from Vail Resorts. Holders of the Epic Pass and Whistler Blackcomb Edge Card will get access to the new Vail acquisitions for 2018-2019.

Vail Buys Stevens Pass

The ski juggernaut already operates 11 mountain resorts and three urban ski areas. These include Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar, and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Perisher in Australia; Stowe in Vermont; Wilmot Mountain in Wisconsin; Afton Alps in Minnesota; and Mt. Brighton in Michigan.

The Deal: Vail Resorts Buys Triple Peaks

Vail will buy Triple Peaks’ resorts for $82 million, according to a press release. The deal requires Triple Peaks to pay off $155 million in leases that all three resorts have with Ski Resort Holdings LLC, an affiliate of Oz Real Estate. Vail Resorts will provide the funds for this transaction.

Over the next two years, Vail Resorts plans to invest $35 million in total capital across the four resorts.

It will buy Stevens Pass from Ski Resort Holdings LLC, who was advised on the sale by Houlihan Lokey, for a total price of $67 million, subject to certain adjustments.

Both transactions are subject to certain closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.

Resort Wars: Vail’s Growing Footprint

Recent years have seen remarkable consolidation in the ski industry. Consumers now have a few choices for single passes that include myriad mountains.

New for 2018, the Ikon Pass offered by Alterra Mountain Company gives skiers access to 26 resorts. This pass competes with Vail Resorts’ Epic Pass, which gives skiers access to up to 65 resorts worldwide.

“The acquisitions … will significantly enhance the Vail Resorts’ network of resort experiences, adding even more variety and choice for all of our pass holders and guests. Okemo and Mount Sunapee are terrific complements to Stowe in the Northeast, as is Crested Butte to our four Colorado resorts, and Stevens Pass for our Whistler Blackcomb and Seattle guests,” said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts.

The 2018-19 Epic Pass, Epic Local Pass, Epic Australia Pass, and Epic Military Pass will now include unlimited and unrestricted access to the four new resorts, with seven and four unrestricted days for the Epic 7 Day and Epic 4 Day passes, respectively.

Whistler Blackcomb Edge Card holders will be able to use any of their U.S. days at Stevens Pass subject to the restrictions on each card.

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By
Editor-in-Chief Sean McCoy is a life-long outdoorsman who grew up hunting and fishing central Wisconsin forests and lakes. He joined GearJunkie after a 10-year stint as a newspaperman in the Caribbean, where he learned sailing and wooden-boat repair. Based in GearJunkie's Denver office, McCoy is an avid trail runner, camper, hunter, angler, mountain biker, skier, and beer tester.
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