where to stay in Whistler, BC?

Whistler, BC is an all-season resort. A world-class ski destination in winter, Whistler will host the alpine events for the 2010 Winter Olympics. In summer, Whistler is an outdoor wonderland that offers even more to do. Whether you enjoy hiking, mountain biking, kayaking, or golf, consider a summer vacation in Whistler. Convenient to Vancouver, BC, there are major improvements underway on the Sea to Sky Highway, and when complete, the hour-and-a-half drive will become even easier.

Where to stay? During a brief visit to Whistler, I made site inspections of the two Virtuoso hotels. The Four Seasons and the Fairmont are adjacent properties in the Upper Village, and each features a short walk to the slopes. The picture above is of the Fairmont and was taken from a balcony from a room at the Four Seasons.

Four Seasons Whistler is a four year old resort. Typical of Four Seasons properties, the hotel features large, comfortable rooms -- starting at 500 square feet -- with large bathrooms with separate tub and shower. Deluxe rooms have a balcony and a spacious sitting area that includes a Queen sofa bed; Premium rooms provide a direct mountain view. In suites, doors between the bedroom and living room create two private sleeping areas. Four Seasons Deluxe Executive Suites have two full bathrooms for the ultimate comfort for a family of four. While in Whistler, I highly recommend having a meal at Fifty Two 80, whether you're a guest at the Four Seasons or staying elsewhere. We had a great dinner there.

Something special for families. Consider a stay in one of Four Seasons' Private Residences. Located in a separate building, these are individually owned residences, available in 2, 3, and 4 bedroom configurations with beautiful gourmet kitchens (Viking ranges and Sub Zero refrigerators). Four Seasons can provide a Chef to prepare meals for your family in your own kitchen, a great idea for a special holiday dinner in Whistler. Rates are comparable to booking the same number of bedrooms in the hotel.

The Ski Concierge service provides the ultimate in convenience for skiers. Upon your arrival at Four Seasons Whistler, all of your ski equipment will be taken by hotel staff directly to the Ski Concierge facility located immediately at the base of the slopes. Just a five minute stroll from the front door of the hotel, you can put on your boots and skis here and step right onto the chair lift; the entrance is immediately to the right of the facility pictured here. At the end of the day, the process is reversed; leave your equipment with the Ski Concierge and walk back to the Four Seasons. Upon check-out, all of your equipment will be delivered to the hotel entrance for your trip back home. Enjoy all the convenience of an ski-in, ski-out experience!

Fairmont Chateau Whistler sits at the foot of the slopes, literally a ski-in, ski-out location. Offering very attractive pricing (with a further discount for Virtuoso guests), the Fairmont provides comfortable 400 square foot guest rooms. Fairmont rooms look south across the village of Whistler to the mountains beyond; Fairmont Deluxe rooms look toward the ski slopes. For a step above, consider the Fairmont Gold floor. With its own concierge and private check-in, rooms on the Gold Floor offer very attractive contemporary interior design, fireplaces, and a large bathroom with separate tub and shower and double vanities. The Lounge has an omelette chef in the morning and offers hors d'oeuvres every afternoon.

How to get free internet at Fairmont. Here's a tip from the sales staff of the Fairmont Chateau Whistler. Join the Fairmont Presidents Club, the chain's frequent guest program (there's no charge!), and enjoy complimentary in-room internet.

For the best values at these properties, or at over 740 hotels and resorts around the world, simply book through a Virtuoso luxury travel consultant. You'll enjoy the benefits of negotiated pricing, complimentary daily breakfasts, a room upgrade when available at check-in, and extra amenities that can include discounts on spa treatments or complimentary cocktails.

Whistler, BC (search here on Google)

copyright (c) 2007 by David J. Ourisman. All rights reserved. If you have comments on this column, or questions about booking travel, email me or visit my website.

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