Vaccine will be needed to enter some of Aspen Skiing Co.’s indoor properties, but not for lift access
Masks will not be required in lift lines, but will be on gondolas and indoor on-mountain venues
Proof of COVID vaccination will be required this ski season for guests in certain indoor Aspen Skiing Co. venues and to participate in some activities, Skico announced Wednesday, but not for lift access.
The policy is in response to a growing number of COVID infections in Pitkin County and across the state and the country, Skico officials said in their announcement.
“Guests vaccines are required for all ASC owned and operated hotels, full-service seated restaurants, Powder Tours and additional experiences where prolonged close contact while unmasked might occur,” Skico said in a news release. “Proof of vaccination is not required for lift access, Ski & Snowboard School lessons, market-style restaurants, rental shops or ticket offices.”
Those 12 and older will be required to show proof of vaccination either with an approved vaccine card, photograph of a vaccine card or an approved vaccine verification application along with proof of identity when entering or checking in to the restricted facilities or activities.
“We put a great deal of thought in to this decision and feel that for the health and safety of our guests and employees this is a necessary step,” Skico President and CEO Mike Kaplan said in the news release. “We want to provide the healthiest environment possible in order to give us the best shot at remaining open for the season and providing a safe work environment for our staff and the community at large.”
Last month, Vail Resorts announced proof of vaccination will be required for guests ages 12-older at all indoor, on-mountain quick-service (cafeteria-style) restaurants, but the proof of vaccination requirement does not apply to fine dining establishments.
Skico vice president of communications Jeff Hanle said Thursday there were two main reasons why the Aspen resorts’ cafeteria-style on-mountain restaurants were not included in the vaccine requirement but the fine-dining establishments were.
One is the logistics of checking the sheer amount of people going in and out of those buildings, including the Sundeck at Aspen Mountain or Elk Camp at Snowmass. The other is many of those visitors are there for a short time, whether it’s a quick bite to eat or just using the restrooms.
“In the fine-dining and sit-down establishments you have people who are in there for an extended amount of time — an hour or two hours — and in close proximity and unmasked once they sit down to eat,” he said. “The other places people typically are in and out a lot quicker.”
All of Skico’s employees will be required to be vaccinated unless they have a religious or medical exemption. Those with an exemption are required to be tested weekly.
Pitkin County is currently under an indoor mask mandate, which was enacted in September and likely will continue into the winter unless case counts drop.
Masks will not be required in lift lines, and Skico likely will keep the “ghost lanes” in place, according to Hanle.
“Per the county (mandate), gondolas will be considered indoor space and masks will be required,” he said.
Full-service fine dining where proof of vaccination required prior to being seated:
Cloud Nine (including the outdoor deck area)
Alpine Room Restaurant at High Alpine
Sam’s Restaurant (for sit-down dining access)
Lynn Britt Cabin (indoor dining area)
Stays at Aspen Skiing Co. hotel properties where proof of vaccination required at check-in:
The Little Nell
Other instances where vaccination proof is required:
— All Skico hotel properties including Limelight and The Little Nell sit-down table service dining locations (required prior to being seated).
— Powder Tours (required at the start of the day).
— Aspen Mountain Club and Snowmass Mountain Club locker room and dining areas (required before entry).
— Equipment rental deliveries from Four Mountain Sports to homes or lodging locations (acknowledgment of vaccination at time of purchase and proof verified at delivery).
— Contained venues for large-scale events (required upon entry).
For a full list of locations and experiences visit http://www.aspensnowmass.com/covid19.
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The largest outbreak of COVID-19 in Pitkin County since the pandemic began in March 2020 occurred earlier this month in connection with hockey games played by both adults and kids.