Steamboat's visitor numbers expected to decrease this weekend

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— Steamboat Springs’ lodging capacity is projected to reach 69 percent with 9,500 visitors Saturday, according to the Steamboat Springs Chamber Resort Association’s weekly lodging barometer. That number of visitors would be a decrease from the corresponding weekend in 2010, when lodging reached 89 percent capacity with 12,300 people coming to Steamboat.

Last weekend saw 67 percent capacity and 9,200 people during Winter Carnival, compared with 70 percent capacity and 9,700 visitors for Winter Carnival weekend in 2010. The projected dip in capacity continues into next week, as well — the Chamber is forecasting 45 percent capacity and 6,500 guests for Feb. 16, compared with the 59 percent capacity and 8,200 guests for the corresponding mid-week date in 2010.

Last year, however, Presidents Day fell on Feb. 15. This year, Presidents Day is Feb. 21, which coincides with an uptick in the numbers. Lodging capacity is forecast to reach 81 percent with 11,200 visitors that weekend, compared with 65 percent capacity and 9,000 visitors on that weekend in 2010.

Comments

Don Little 3 years, 5 months ago

I think Ski Corp's continuing inability to invest in the mountain's infrastructure is finally starting to significantly erode the Steamboat franchise. You can only slash costs for so long before it finally catches up. Maybe not in Steamboat, but nationally the recession is much improved, skiers have seen their portfolios rise dramatically, and the skiing industry is seeing much higher numbers virtually everywhere except Steamboat.
During the 15 years since the LBO of Steamboat by ASC, other ski mountains have continued to invest in restaurants, chair lifts, new terrain and anything else that could create a better skiing experience for guests. SSRC has basically sent those same millions and millions of dollars to banks to pay interest and pay down debt that was created to enrich a few hedge funds, who leveraged the company and took the cash off the top to split it up among themselves in the form of huge bonuses. Now this lack of investment is catching up with us in the form of losing market share. Steamboat needs a HUGE capital infusion to invest in catching up with the competition, but sadly unless we have a change in ownership again, it just is not going to happen. It makes me sick!

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Scott Wedel 3 years, 5 months ago

I think they have also lost their brand. SB used to be the premier FAMILY resort. We would get modest scores for terrain and so on, but we finish in the top few overall in the magazine reader surveys. Now we are just another large ski resort and we only finish in the top 20 in the reader surveys.

The ski mountain infrastructure in terms of lifts and snow making is not bad.

I think the far bigger issue is that SB went after rich tourists and trying to extract as much money as possible from them.

The SB ski area instituted a pay extra to start early and be the first the ski powder. They could have created a program were kids get a free early start and all get a run with ski instructors and patrol to be introduced to the mountain without the pressure of faster adult skiers and maybe get some encouragement. No, the new SB attitude is kids don't have the money and families have tight budgets so cater to older wealthy adult skiers.

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sodacreekpizza 3 years, 5 months ago

No doubt there is plenty to debate about the direction of the business in the valley, but sometimes the simplest explanation is the one that is right. The reason lodging is down is that the weekend that lines up for comparison was Presidents Day weekend last year.

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