USAFamily Travel

Falling for Park City's Grand Summit Hotel

The Grand Summit Hotel, a RockResort in Park City, Utah.
The Grand Summit Hotel, a RockResort in Park City, Utah.

Little kids whipped past me on the bunny slope. "They're smaller, so they don't fall as far," my snowboarding instructor quipped.

I was taking a private, half-day snowboarding lesson ($659 for three hours, not including rentals, and for up to six people), which I arranged through the ski-in, ski-out Grand Summit Hotel, a RockResort. 

Before the start of winter in 2017, the 212-suite property joined Vail Resorts' RockResorts portfolio and underwent a $15 million renovation that included an overhaul of guestrooms, lobby, cafe, spa and conference and meetings spaces. 

While my trip companion had skied and snowboarded since around the time she learned how to walk, she opted to take a lesson with me in order to learn correct form and pointers from a professional. For me, this was my second time snowboarding, and unlike the children around me, I was timid. 

But after a few more hours of falling down and getting back up, we took a ski lift up to a beginner-level mountain, and I proudly "shredded" my way down. Immediately after, we had a well-deserved lunch break of chicken tenders and fries at the Red Pine Lodge on the mountain, after which I retired my snowboard. 

On my next visit I will switch to skis, since debuting this winter is a dedicated learning area for beginner skiers and snowboarders called High Meadow Park at Canyons Village. A fun family activity, guests staying at the Grand Summit can take the Red Pine Gondola to High Meadow Park, where there's additional snowmaking to ensure ideal conditions for learning. 

On this trip, another activity on my itinerary, ideal for all ages and one of my highlights, was snowshoeing. Our guided tour began at the bunny slopes, where I had learned to snowboard the day before, and trekked to the high-end dining spot Lookout Cabin. Here, we took in views of the Wasatch Range and refueled with Rocky Mountain fondue, an 8-ounce wagyu burger and Alpine mac and cheese. 

Though there are 10 dining options at the Grand Summit Hotel and Park City Mountain Resort — the largest ski resort in the U.S., with more than 7,300 acres, 330 trails, 41 lifts and eight terrain parks — dinner off-property at Firewood is not to be missed. As the name suggests, all dishes are cooked over a wood fire in the open kitchen. 

Recover from the active family trip with a massage at the Grand Summit Hotel's RockResort Spa. Try the Therapeutic Leg Recovery ($170 for 50 minutes, $210 for 80 minutes), including a compress on your lower legs and full-body, pressure-point massage.

Grand Summit rates start at $195 per night. See

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