MILL VALLEY, Calif.—Auberge Resorts Collection today announced that it has signed a deal to operate a planned ultra-luxury boutique hotel and penthouse residential development in historic downtown Ketchum, Idaho, the commercial and cultural heart of the legendary Sun Valley Resort. This will be first new lodging project built since the early 1990s in greater Sun Valley, America’s original mountain resort.
The 155,000-square-foot mixed-use project, Auberge Resort Sun Valley, will comprise between 80 and 90 hotel rooms and penthouse residences, a full-service restaurant and bar, spa and fitness facilities, and technology-driven meeting and conference space, in addition to other amenities. The hotel’s project owner and sponsor, Trail Creek Fund LLC, is led by Ketchum-based Managing Member Jack Bariteau, developer behind prominent residential and mixed-use real estate projects in Ketchum, including The Shops and Residences at the Colonnade, The Christiania Building, and 600 Second Street East.
“Sun Valley has the enviable legacy of being the first winter destination resort in America, and it has a rich history as a magnet for residents and affluent guests from both coasts,” said Craig Reid, CEO, Auberge Resorts Collection. “It’s a vibrant year-round destination that has been under-serviced by the luxury hotel market. We believe that Sun Valley is a perfect destination for the Auberge brand, with its focus on crafted luxury, engaging guest experiences and unique adventure programs.”
“My family has a long history of visiting Sun Valley, and I have a deep appreciation for its scenic beauty and character,” said Mark Harmon, founder and managing partner, Auberge Resorts. “I couldn’t be more delighted with this opportunity to help create a resort that will showcase the personality of Sun Valley and introduce this special place to new generations of families.”
“This is a momentous announcement for the Sun Valley marketplace and a mutual long-term commitment to excellence,” Bariteau said. “Our affiliation with Auberge Resorts will have an enormously positive game-changing impact on Sun Valley. While we considered many four- and five-star hotel operators for this project, Auberge’s reputation for creating exceptional luxury hotels is unmatched in the industry, and it’s especially meaningful that the team has a personal connection to Sun Valley. We’re confident that this project will further support Sun Valley’s reputation as an iconic all-seasons American resort destination. The Auberge commitment, following on the heels of new regional non-stop service on Delta from Salt Lake City and on United from San Francisco and Denver directly into the Sun Valley Airport, provides unparalleled ease of access to both coasts. There are now more than 30,000 new seats annually, with more to come.”
Located in a historically significant neighborhood at the gateway entrance to downtown Ketchum, Auberge Resort Sun Valley will be conveniently located within easy walking distance to the town’s diverse attractions, advanced high-speed lift and gondola access to Bald Mountain. Guestrooms will offer views of the mountain’s east-facing ski runs and Sun Valley’s forested topography. Hotel amenities will include a casual bar and grill, fitness amenities, heated outdoor swimming pool and sun terrace, full-service spa, and meeting facilities.
Fourteen for-purchase luxury residences on the hotel’s upper floors, including six fourth-floor penthouses, will offer direct unobstructed views to the top of Bald and Dollar Mountains. Ranging from 1,750 square feet to 2,400 square feet in a single-level plan, the residences will be accessible by private elevator with two-car underground parking and storage and will offer full access to Auberge hotel services and amenities. The hotel, fully entitled by the City of Ketchum, has been designed by San Francisco-based hospitality architectural firm Hornberger + Worstell, AIA.
The project is scheduled to break ground in late spring 2015 and welcome its first guests in the summer of 2017. Construction employment is anticipated to generate 100 full-time worker positions in the building cycle and upward of 80 hotel jobs once opened.