Hotel at a Glance: Crystal River Villas
While the Rockies’ distant peaks create a beautiful backdrop for the Crystal River Villas, mountains aren’t the only natural wonder to see on the resort’s grounds. A babbling river cuts through the property, creating an ever-changing natural water feature right at its center. Guests can enjoy these sights and more from the warmth of their villa living rooms or, on warmer mornings, sit out at the resort patio area to enjoy nature with their morning coffee.
- Table for two: Enjoy a romantic evening dinner at the historic Redstone Inn, which is within walking distance of the resort.
- Soak yourself: About five miles down the road are the Avalanche Ranch Natural Hot Springs, which feature naturally heated pools and a three-foot waterfall.
- Dine in for a night by cooking yourself a meal in the in-suite kitchenette.
- Head to the mountains: The Avalanche Creek Trail, the Lily Lake Trail, and the Placita Trail are all popular for hiking in the area.
Redstone, Colorado: Historic Swiss-Style Town in the Rockies
Redstone is about 200 miles west of Denver, but the place looks like it was airlifted in from the Swiss Alps—in fact, the buildings are modeled after European mountain chalets. The entire town was the brainchild of entrepreneur John Cleveland Osgood, who built it in order to house the employees of his coal-mining operation. While he lived there, his tudor-style Redstone Castle hosted guests such as John D. Rockefeller, John Pierpont Morgan, and Teddy Roosevelt; today, you can take a public guided tour of the house or dine like a Rockefeller yourself at the historic Redstone Inn, which, like the rest of the town, is on the National Register of Historic Places.
Since it’s surrounded by the Rocky Mountains, Redstone has no shortage of outdoor activities. The 2.3-million-acre White River National Forest is crisscrossed with trails for hiking and snowmobiling, and Avalanche Ranch boasts natural hot springs about 5 miles north of town.