ELLE Escapes: Aspen

Ah, Aspen. A place where the mountains are pristine, the scene is bustling from day to night, and the beer does indeed flow like wine—especially après-ski. Whether or not you hit the slopes is inconsequential in the lavish resort town nestled high up in the Rockies, as there’s plenty to do otherwise: post up by the fire at The Little Nell with a glass of wine in hand, dine out at award-winning restaurants (just make sure to make a reservation well in advance), and visit buzzy art exhibits—Andy Warhol: Lifetimes at the Aspen Art Museum recently caught Kendall Jenner’s attention. Here’s what else not to miss.

elle escapes aspen

Leah Romero

Aspen Art Museum: Andy Warhol: Lifetimes

andy warhol aspen art museum

Courtesy Aspen Art Museum

Even the most die-hard fans of the omnipresent yet famously elusive artist could learn a thing or two from this traveling exhibition, which originally started at the Tate Modern in London. Andy Warhol: Lifetimes zeros in on the lesser-known details of Warhol’s life, like how he came to embrace his queer identity and challenged conventions in both art and advertising.

Chanel’s Boutique Pop-Up

chanel aspen pop up

Courtesy Chanel

While there’s no shortage of shopping in downtown Aspen, Chanel’s new two-floor boutique is a must-see—even with a line down the block. With interiors that pay homage to Coco Chanel’s apartment at 31 Rue Cambon (think: white and beige with pops of black and gold), you’ll covet everything from the wool tweed couches to the gloves and goggles.

ASPENX

aspenx

Daniel Bayer

A far cry from your average rental shop, ASPENX, conveniently located at the base of Aspen Mountain (aka Ajax), has everything: designer skis (from the retailer’s limited-edition collaboration with Prada), brand-new gear, pastries and coffee to-go whenever you feel like it. A true luxury experience.

elle escapes aspen

Leah Romero

Ajax Tavern

ajax tavern

Courtesy Ajax Tavern

For a quick and satisfying meal after a day on the mountain, head to Ajax Tavern, a stone’s throw away from the Silver Queen Gondola. Offering bistro fare with a laid-back atmosphere (casual winter boots and sweaters are totally fine here), you’ll be in and out—and very full. Order the lamb bolognese with a side of people-watching.

The Snow Lodge

the snow lodge

Courtesy The Snow Lodge

The team behind The Surf Lodge in Montauk brings its cast of rotating DJs and hard-to-get-into door out west with The Snow Lodge, a new restaurant concept with a seasonally-focused menu inside the St. Regis. Apart from the after-dinner ambiance in the Red Room, the artist-in-residence program is worth checking out—a recent installation by multi-hyphenate artist Heart Evangelista includes a series of painted designer bags, including Birkins.

Campo de Fiori

campo de fiori

Stefano Bossi

Don’t let its downstairs location at the Mill Street Mall fool you: If you want good Italian in Aspen, Campo de Fiori is your best bet. One of the city’s lower maintenance but nonetheless delicious dining options, the dishes do not disappoint—especially the generously sized portion of frutti di mare. No frills, no fuss.

elle escapes aspen

Leah Romero

Snow Beach

snow beach aspen

Courtesy Snow Beach

Snow Beach is straight out of a Gray Malin photograph—literally. Inspired by the artist’s trademark aerial shots, taken everywhere from Miami to the Mediterranean Coast, the slopeside venue perched atop Ajax boasts sweeping views, cabanas, even bottle service. This is an experience that begs to be Instagrammed.

The Wine Bar at The Little Nell

the wine bar at the little nell

Courtesy The Wine Bar

Oenophiles, take note: The Little Nell’s world-famous wine program now has a new home. This is a solid choice for those who want to wind down and relax circa cocktail hour, though later on at night, the vinyl DJ booth and champagne trunk are out in full force.

Caribou Club

caribou club

Caribou Club

If you manage to snag an invite to Caribou, Aspen’s first private members-only club, you’d be remiss not to try it out. Before or after you eat, have a cocktail by the fire in the Great Room—an ultra-luxe alpine lodge that looks straight out of Twin Peaks—and relish in the fact that you’re seated at one of the most exclusive haunts in town.

elle escapes aspen

Leah Romero

The Little Nell

the little nell

Courtesy The Little Nell

The crème de la crème of resorts, The Little Nell is not only the premiere five-star, five-diamond hotel in Aspen—it offers ski-in, ski-out access, an outdoor heated pool and hot tub, three restaurants, and incomparable hospitality (truffles at turn-down service? Don’t mind if we do!). It’s no surprise that Beyoncé and Jay-Z, Justin Bieber, and Paris Hilton are all regulars.

The Limelight Hotel Aspen

limelight hotel aspen

Courtesy Limelight Hotel Aspen

The Limelight, which recently underwent a six-month renovation, is a great place to book if you want a central location, modern amenities, spacious rooms, a lounge with floor-to-ceiling windows, and a very impressive (and complimentary) breakfast spread. And let’s be real, who doesn’t?

W Aspen

w aspen wet deck

Courtesy W Aspen

In addition to its unbeatable views of Ajax, this ski season, W Aspen partnered with Select Aperitivo on the Select Slopeside pop-up, so guests can enjoy rounds of spritzes and live music by an open fire at their leisure. A bit of Italy in Aspen, why not?

elle escapes aspen

Leah Romero