Apart from being highly regarded for its skiing Deer Valley has carefully built a reputation for brilliant service standards in a country which is generally renowned in any case for its service standards. In other words it aims to provide the 'crème de la crème' of on and off-slope service and facilities, and if the independent skier surveys in US publications is anything to go by, it succeeds in this aim.
Deer Valley normally makes the number one slot in this category, year in, year out and is often top 5 'overall' for US resorts.
Following the 2002 Olympics, Utah and particularly Park City is arguably the world's top skiing boom town. No other can claim to have three international-calibre ski areas on its doorstep - Deer Valley, Park City Mountain Resort and rapidly expanding 'The Canyons'.
The combined terrain of these three areas gives Park City one of the largest ski areas in the world, and the fact that all three have separate ownership means that the competitive nature is there, which can only benefit visitors. All three have added new lifts and terrain over recent seasons.
Although the Park City Mountain Resort is long established, Deer Valley itself was conceived and opened as recently as 1981 to a modern design and remains independently owned and operated (an increasingly rare asset for a major North American resort). It is located a mile from Park City's central Main Street.
The legendary service standards were there from inception, and currently include the option to send your skis ahead to the resort, and back home afterwards by courier. Or, if you decide to drive up with your skis, guest service attendants are available to help you load and unload your gear.
You can also expect your ski teacher to come round and meet you at your condo before your private lesson if you'd like. Free daytime and overnight ski storage is also provided. Off the slope's Deer Valley's reputation for high culinary and lodging quality is as high as its other service standards.
World famous for customer service and trail grooming and often promoted with neighbouring Park City resorts of Park City Mountain Resort and The Canyons, Deer Valley was one of the venues for the 2002 Winter Olympics , the slalom, aerial and mogul competitions were staged here.
Since the 1998 - '99 season, Deer Valley's skiing has extended over four mountains, with the addition of Empire Summit and its Empire Canyon ski area, previously only accessed by snowcat. Two new quads now serve the terrain, which includes Deer Valley's highest: up to 9,570 feet (2,917m). It includes a variety of trail levels, along with some of the resort's toughest runs with ten chutes, containing 45 to 60 degree pitches, as steep as anywhere in Utah, and three bowls. Yet another way in which the resort leads the industry is in its grooming standards, which are known for their immaculate perfection - too immaculate for some! There are trails for all standards right across the resort's mountains, although some suit one category slightly more than another. There are easy, intermediate and advanced trails on every mountain. First time skiers have a separate, protected beginners' area known as Wide West, which is accessed by the Burns and Snowflake chairs. This is located on Bald Eagle Mountain, the first to be reached from Deer Valley's base and best suited to beginners and intermediates. The new Deer Crest area has added a further eight trails served by a quad and an unusual new four seater gondola. A second mountain suited to beginners and intermediates is Flagstaff, although it also includes the resort's double-black diamond Ontario Bowl runs. Most of Deer Valley's terrain will suit intermediate skiers, and the resort has two categories of intermediate level run. Normally graded 'blue square' in North America, Deer Valley offers 'double blue square' grading for tougher intermediate trails. Bald Mountain contains mostly intermediate and advanced terrain with Sunset the escape route for beginners who mis-read their maps. Free tours are staged twice daily for intermediate and advanced level skiers. Deer Valley Mountain hosts meet guests at the base of the Carpenter Express lift in the morning or from Silver Lake Ski storage in the afternoon. There's a wide range of ski school programs with special women's clinics and programmes for children. Stein Eriksen, now in his seventies, the 1952 Olympic Champion, is Deer Valley's Director of Skiing. On-mountain dining is taken to new heights at Deer Valley and the resort is famous for the quality in this area in particular. The Snow Park Lodge, the resort's main base lodge, houses the Snow Park Restaurant where Belgian waffles and eggs Benedict are served from 8 to 10.30 a.m., whilst the Snow Park Lounge offers hors d'oeuvres after 3.30 p.m. On the mountain there are two huts which offer hot drinks and snacks: Snowshoe Tommy's is located on the top of Bald Mountain and Cushing's Cabin on top of Flagstaff. The Silver Lake Lodge offers four different eating choices: Silver Lake Restaurant, which is buffet style, Bald Mountain Pizza, McHenrys - a casual restaurant open for lunch and dinner - and the Mariposa, Deer Valley's premier fine dining restaurant.. Deer Valley is one of the three Utah resorts selected to stage Alpine skiing events for the 2002 Salt Lake Olympics. The resort hosted three Olympic events - the men's and women's slaloms will be staged on a black diamond trail called "Know You Don't", the combined slalom on 'Big Stick'. Deer Valley will also host the freestyle skiing disciplines of high-flying aerials and bump and run moguls
Deer Valley's Children's Center can accommodate children from 2 months of age, with skiing for children aged 3 to 12. Babies aged up to 2 are in infant care, and non-skiing children aged 2 to 12 are also looked after in the Center which is at the resort's Snow Park base lodge. For skiing children the program begins with the Fawn Special where three year old's receive a one hour private lesson daily with the rest of the afternoon in Children's Centre activities. The Bambi Special, for children three-and-a-half and older gives kids the option of additional ski time or other outdoor activities after lunch. The Reindeer Club is for children aged four-and-a-half to 7; it includes a full day of lessons and lift ticket. Children aged 7 to 12 can participate in The Adventure Club. On the slopes and next to the Children's Center, the Snow Safari park has a jungle theme complete with animals, waves, kid-sized radical bumps and rolling banking. The Antler Cup, a fun race for children, is staged every Friday. The Enchanted Forest draws children into a labyrinth of exploration. Complimentary pagers are offered to parents of children registered in the Children's Center and they're also kept informed of their child's progress and happiness through progress cards. A Teens Program, the 'Teen Equipe' operates during mid-to-peak periods . Teenage children up to age 17 receive a 35% discount off the adult rate when guests purchase at least three nights lodging and two days skiing at least a fortnight in advance through the resort's Central Reservations service.
Deer Valley has set the standard for dining in North American ski resorts with The Mariposa top of the stack, and serving a blend of classic and current cuisine, as well as vegetarian specialities. The Royal Street Café, located mid-mountain during the winter season. The contemporary lodge setting complements both traditional and trendier entrées such as the Chipotle VVQ Burger or shrimp and lobster layered with papaya salsa and fresh guacamole, served in a margarita glass. The Seafood Buffet attracts the locals along with visitors with its vast array of fresh seafood including chilled seafood. Non-fishy choices are also served, such a grilled fowl, pasta and prime rib and it has a reputation for its superb deserts.
Deer Valley has not cultivated an après ski scene of its own, with most night owls preferring to head in to Park City for it's many facilities. The resort's location only a mile from Park City's Main Street, which boasts more than 100 restaurants, bars, saloons and other night spots. In 2009 a new law came into effect changing Park City’s and indeed the State’s bar scene. In the past purchasing a temporary membership was required to get into a bar or club. Bars, pubs and clubs now have an open door policy to welcome all comers over 21 and no longer require customers to purchase a temporary membership. Salt Lake City itself is also easy to reach for an evening. Regular attractions there include performances by the famous Mormon Tabernacle Choir (rehearsals are free and open to the public on Thursday evenings) and an ever-increasing array of sporting events, such as games by the Utah Jazz basketball team. Several of Deer Valley's top restaurants including the Seafood Buffet, McHenrys and The Mariposa are open in the evenings.
One of the few resorts left in the Western world where snowboarding is not permitted.