Trailhead Lodge condos in Steamboat up for auction |

Trailhead Lodge condos in Steamboat up for auction

A sign outside the Trailhead Lodge directs potential buyers to a place to park their cars while they check out units and obtain brochures. The unsold units went to a live and Internet auction May 6 at a downtown Denver hotel.

— Thirty-nine of the remaining unsold condominiums in Trailhead Lodge in Wildhorse Meadows near the base of Steamboat Ski Area are scheduled to go on the auction block May 6 at starting bids ranging from $110,000 to $425,000.

Rhett Winchell, president of KW Auction Group, a division of the real estate investment firm Kennedy Wilson, confirmed Friday that his company will conduct the auction with a live event in the ballroom of the Denver Marriott City Center and through live online bidding.

"From our experience, we expect great demand because there's such a variety of floor plans, from studios to three-bedroom units," Winchell said. "What we expect to see is 30 to 40 percent of the (bidders) who have already been to Trailhead Lodge and the rest, people who have come to see it and get registered over the next four to five weeks."

He said several preferred lenders are in place to offer financing on auction purchases.

Trailhead Lodge in Wildhorse Meadows is on the opposite side of Mount Werner Circle from the base of the ski area and is linked to Gondola Square by a public people-mover gondola that was built by the Trailhead's original developers.

The property is managed for short-term rentals by Wyndham Vacation Rentals. Amenities at Trailhead Lodge include a large outdoor pool, a rock hot tub grotto and exercise and game rooms. There is a large seating area in the lobby. Access is offered to ski valet service and food and beverage service in the Wildhorse Meadows Alpine Club at the base of the ski area.

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The starting bids, not necessarily the reserve price, represent prices that are a fraction of those contained in a revised price list that was publicized in December after Salt Lake City company SilverLeaf Financial acquired the six-story building and the remaining 58 unsold condos through foreclosure proceedings. SilverLeaf purchased Trailhead Lodge's outstanding debt of $57 million from Bank of America for $28 million.

SilverLeaf notched its first sale under the restructured price list with the $715,000 sale of a three-bedroom unit in December 2011. Encouraged, the new owners put another unit on the market for $800,000, but the sales effort carried little momentum into the new year, and activity has been very quiet since.

Trailhead Lodge, originally developed by Resort Ventures West, made a big splash in July 2007 when, with the project under construction, it held a sales event in Denver. During a span of six hours, Resort Ventures West reported putting 62 of the 86 units in the project under contract for an aggregate value of $56.6 million.

Prices for the fully furnished condos began at $430,000 for studio units and climbed to $2.25 million for three-bedroom units. The developers said the contracts were secured by "hard money," but by the time the project was completed in 2009, the economy had turned, and not all of those pending sales closed.

Records on file at the Routt County Courthouse reflect that in summer 2009, one- and two-bedroom condominiums at Trailhead Lodge that had been under contract for a couple of years when they closed were selling for $600 to $1,000 per square foot, depending on where they were located in the five-story building.

A 656-square-foot, one-bedroom condo sold for $575,000 — or $622 per square foot — and a larger one-bedroom sold for $838 per square foot. A 1,139-square-foot, two-bedroom, two-bath condo sold for $1.14 million, or $1,000 per square foot, and a slightly smaller unit sold for $834 per square foot.

The price list released last December ranged from $220,000 for a 461-square-foot studio to $325,000 for one-bedroom units and $725,000 for a 1,572-square-foot, three-bedroom unit.

Kennedy Wilson is staffing an auction information office from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily in Trailhead Lodge Unit 4105. The auction takes place at 1 p.m. May 6. Online bidding is available only to qualified registered bidders. The auction will be broadcast live over the Internet with real-time audio and video. For more information, visit

To reach Tom Ross, call 970-871-4205 or email

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