Purgatory Resort Lodging
THE MOUNTAIN MESSENGER
A Periodic Resort Lodging Newsletter
INSIDE THIS ISSUE:
Booking Summary 1
Spring Concert Schedule 1
Wedding & Events Update 2
Activities at a Glance 2
Trip Advisor Reviews 2
New Team Members 3
Marketing Update 3
VIEW ONLINE VERSION
OTHER UPCOMING EVENTS AT
Snowcat Dinner at Powderhouse
with wine pairings
February 9 & 10
VALENTINES DAY ACTIVITIES
Kids’ Night Out
Snowcat Dining Excursion
Night Rail Jam
February 23 -25
Locals Benefit Day
Uncle Clyde’s Run & Slide
RENTAL PROGRAM BOOKING SUMMARY
From John Miller, Director of Lodging Services and Lauren Gonzalez, Revenue Manager
The 2017/2018 winter has been challenging with only 47” of natural snow through February 2nd.
Sales and Marketing have been working every angle to make the phones ring in reservations. For
guests that had confirmed reservations in November & December we offered an opportunity to move
their dates to later in the season. This kept the rental revenue on the books for owners and better
accommodated guests. Long term and future guest satisfaction is an important focus as we align with
ski industry trends.
Current Winter Financials: Overall, in 2017/2018 we have increased paid room nights year over year.
While the margins are smaller, our team was very successful booking reservations and providing
a quality experience. The snow making team did an excellent job bringing new terrain online, as
quickly as possible and continues to strategically adapt to the conditions Mother Nature offers. We
have already seen an increase in occupancy year over year, with additional increases in Revenue Per
Available Room (RevPAR).
Thanks to the efforts of our Call Center and Group Sales teams, 2018 is shaping up to be a great year as
we plan for spring and winter bookings. Focusing on a more competitive pricing strategy has allowed
us to increase our rates during peak times, and increase occupancy and revenue overall. Summer
2018 is looking great! We have opened inventory to bookings much earlier than usual this year. This
has allowed more nights on the books and increased room revenue leading to a booking trend much
higher than this time last year. Summer bookings continue to be a focus for the resort as we prepare for
even more activities and offerings to bring new and returning guests to Purgatory in 2018!
SPRING CONCERT SCHEDULE - ALL SHOWS ARE FREE ENTRY
Visit the events page at SKIPURG.com for more info
Foxfeather - February 10th, 2:30pm – 5:30pm at Purgy’s
Coral Creek - March 3rd & 4th, 3:00pm – 6:00pm at Purgy’s
Back in Black - March 10th, 4:00pm – 6:00pm on the Beach
Aeromyth - March 31st, 4:00pm – 6:00pm on the Beach
“Great works are performed not by strength but by perseverance.”
~ Ralph Waldo Emerson
Page 2The Mountain Messenger
WHAT ARE GUESTS SAYING ABOUT PURGATORY RESORT ON TRIP ADVISOR? For full reviews, visit SKIPURG.com
“Sleigh ride was fun.” Reviewed by Stephanie K
“My husband and I have never skied before, but we loved the atmosphere and the sleigh ride offered at the village.”
“Best place to ski in Colorado.” Reviewed by Ron K
“I have skied a multitude of places from Colorado to Washington and love Purg the best. It has a small town feel that Crested Butte
used to but is not as isolated as Wolf Creek. It is still reasonably priced and all the staff are friendly and helpful. Even with limited snow
this season we had enough terrain to ski…”
“Awesome little ski resort” Reviewed by dina z
“Unfortunately it was the first year since 1976 this area hasn’t seen snow but we were still able to ski here. Loved this place. Even if you
don’t ski there are chairs set up so you can relax with the beautiful scenery. Music plays and various bars are set up in the snow.”
“Little snow, but the staff were excellent..” Reviewed by Adrian F
“Stayed here after Christmas, extending to New Years... about 20-22 trails were open (they opened 25 when we left). For beginners, it
was mostly limited to the lifts 7 and 9 (Columbine and Graduate)... the trail for Graduate was very crowded (except for New Year’s eve)
as no other beginner/greens were available in the upper mountain...”
Scenic Snowcat Tours
Have you ever wanted to ride in a Snowcat? Well now is your chance. Tours run every Saturday and
Sunday, plus President’s Day Monday. $50 per person.
Sleigh Rides by Buck’s Livery
Enjoy a picturesque mountain sleigh ride. Rides available 4:30pm, 5:00pm & 5:30pm
Cost is $25/adults, $15/kids. Call 970-385-2110 to make your reservation today.
Picasso & Vino
Give your artistic side a try. Unwind after a great day on the slopes by painting the unforgettable
Purgatory Mountain scene. February 17th , 5:00pm to 6:45pm, Hoody’s. $32 per person. Advanced Registration required
Tubing in the Columbine Base Area Friday through Sunday, Noon – 7pm.
$10 per tube, per hour. Buy tickets at Columbine Base Area.
Dog Sledding by Durango Dog Ranch
Dog Sledding Tours happen Fridays through Mondays, 10:00am to 3:00pm, every hour. A scenic winter wonderland trail
provides views of Engineer Mountain. Call 970-259-0694 to make your reservation today.
PURGATORY ACTIVITIES AT-A-GLANCE
Visit our website SKIPURG.com for more activities
WEDDING & EVENTS UPDATE
From Karlee Phippen, Wedding Sales Manager & LauraLee Wren, Director of Sales
With the increase in attendance at Wedding Expos and a new presence on The Knot (website for newly engaged couples and a lead
generator for venues), the team has increased wedding sales 40% from last year.
The average size of a Purgatory Wedding Reception is 120 attendees, and about 70% of these are considered “Destination Weddings”,
meaning the wedding couple and family members are from outside Durango. This will show a nice increase in overnight lodging
rentals, as families travel to Purgatory for an event that often extends over a few days.
In addition to traditional wedding ceremonies and receptions, there has been an increase in Proposals on the Mountain, as well as
Elopement Packages. Some couples love the idea of getting away for awhile, staying at the Resort for skiing or hiking…and getting
a marriage license at the same time. These elopements often turn into an intimate celebration with close family and friends. One
elopement this past December was a couple who had been visiting Purgatory for the last three years. They learned to ski while
creating an amazing relationship with a ski instructor, and decided they wanted to bring their kids to Purgatory for their elopement.
They now plan to make the 14 hour trip every year an annual family tradition.
Events • Menus • Tickets • Lodging reservations and more
HOA Meeting Minutes • Announcements • Financial Reports
Phone: (970) 426-7214 • Fax: (970) 385-2233 • E-mail: email@example.com
PO BOX 17000 • Durango, CO 81302
Page 3The Mountain Messenger
WELCOME NEW STAFF MEMBERS TO THE PURGATORY RESORT TEAM
John Wooters - Head Chef at Purgatory Resort
Chef John Wooters grew up in southern Arizona hunting and fishing. While in his early teens, he learned to work
with wild game and cooked camp meals using an open fire and local, wild ingredients. John’s interest in cooking
and food led him to Savannah, Georgia where he worked for two years in a culinary apprenticeship under a
European-trained chef at the Savannah Resort and Country Club.
John used his cooking skills to travel the country, working at the Resort at Squaw Creek, and the River Ranch
Lodge in Lake Tahoe, California. He also spent four years in Portland, Oregon working as chef at a historic café
on 23rd Street. John returned to his Arizona roots, where he was the executive chef at Tubac Golf Resort and
Spa in Tucson for eight years.
Chef John recently moved to Durango and is the new head chef at Purgatory Resort. Some of Chef John’s specialties include Elk
Ragout, Beef Pot Roast with Roasted Garlic Mashers & Braised Heirloom Carrots, Grilled Salmon with Butternut Risotto, and much
more. His focus is on comfort foods prepared with high quality ingredients that offer big flavor enticing guests to return and try
exciting new dishes.
LauraLee Wren - Director of Sales
LauraLee Wren joins Purgatory from the Pocono Mountains of Pennsylvania. A children’s book author on
the side, Wren has had a long career in hospitality. Most recently she was proud to be the first employee of
Kalahari Resort Poconos, tasked with building a dedicated team for the large Resort & Convention Center. Her
professional volunteerism with the Philadelphia Area chapter of Meeting Professionals International included
five years on the Board of Directors focusing on Leadership Development and Mentoring.
Free time was spent raising three kids who now reside in Summit County, CO. She also volunteered at Jack
Frost and Big Boulder ski areas. When not traveling to USASA Snowboard competitions with her kids, LauraLee
can also be found timing races o