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Washington Post | Telluride beyond the slopes: The Colorado town’s hidden assets by hot-air balloon

 September 29 at 5:30 PM

Telluride’s town park transformed into a mosaic of orange and pink, turquoise and yellow as the enormous canvases were unfurled onto the dewy grass. In early June’s pale morning light, teams of four-to-five people, most of them gray-haired and denim-clad, spread out huge balloons attached to wicker baskets. There was a chill in the air, and the encroaching canyon walls looked almost black as they towered above us in the predawn.

The roar of a propane torch broke the stillness. At first just one, and then many fiery starts and stops caused “envelopes” — the inflatable bags that make up the balloon component of a hot-air balloon — to rise. Within minutes, the park was a garden of color. The sun peeked over the ridge, its golden light spreading tangible warmth as it crept higher into the sky.

It was Day 1 of the 2016 Telluride Balloon Festival, and my husband and I had come early to wrangle a ride in one of the rigs. Jeff and I are normally sporty types — cyclists and skiers who measure a vacation’s success by how tired our muscles are at the trip’s end. But for this getaway, we sought a more tranquil mode of transport. Since getting hitched eight years earlier, we’d moved, changed jobs and had kids, and we wanted to celebrate our anniversary by sequestering ourselves in a place of natural beauty far from the demands of home.

Telluride, a seven-hour drive from our home in Boulder, fit the bill. I’d been once before in winter and was eager to see the town in full summer bloom. We were also curious about the festival, which is tiny by the usual standards — 19 people registered for the event this year, compared with the nearly 600 balloonists who congregate each fall for the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta.

But before we took flight, Jeff and I set out to ground ourselves, arriving several days early and checking in at the Lumière, a boutique hotel in Mountain Village. The community sits at the base of the ski resort, and is connected to town by a free gondola that operates year-round. People often ask if it’s better to stay in town or on the mountain. Either is fine — scenic views abound no matter where you are — and if you’re not staying in Telluride proper, it’s easy to park your car in town and walk everywhere.

Unlike other posh destinations I’ve visited — and it is expensive, a result of its cachet among movie stars and retired tech billionaires — I found Telluride exceedingly friendly, even quirky.

Until direct flights to nearby Montrose (in 1988) — and, this year, to Telluride — were established, it was a five- to seven-hour drive from any metropolitan area. Mainly skiing die-hards made the trip, which wound over at least one steep and winding mountain pass, depending on where you came from. The town features more than 50 restaurants as well as dozens of art galleries and boutiques. With more than 40 festivals each year — including the Telluride Bluegrass Festival, the Literary Arts Festival and, most prominently, the Telluride Film Festival — there is an event nearly every weekend that draws outsider crowds of as many as 12,000 people.

One afternoon, Jeff and I strolled up to Bear Creek Falls, a popular five-mile hike that wanders from the base of the town up a mild grade through aspen groves and along Bear Creek before arriving at the massive falls. It was an easy walk, and one of Telluride’s many hiking options. The town rests deep in southwestern Colorado’s San Juan Mountains, an isolated pocket of the state where most peaks top out between 13,000 and 14,000 feet above sea level. As the area’s topography suggests, there is no end of outdoor activity in Telluride, whether it be the town’s infamously steep slopes or offseason options such as scenic float tours or rough-and-tumble 4X4 mountain safaris.

We returned to town famished and headed straight to the Butcher & Baker, where my turkey sandwich arrived between thick slices of homemade bread and topped with roasted red peppers and a life-affirming aioli. Afterward, we took a historic walking tour — the kind of activity I normally eschew on vacation, preferring to poke around on my own instead of joining a crowd. I am so grateful I ignored my instincts and followed tour guide Ashley Boling up and down Main Street and in and out of some of Telluride’s historic buildings.

I learned about the valley’s original inhabitants, the Ute Indians, who dubbed the area the “Valley of the Hanging Waterfalls,” the most prominent being Bridal Veil, about three miles east of town. Next came hardy miners seeking their fortunes; silver and gold were first discovered in Telluride around 1872, and the subsequent mining boom inflated the town’s population to nearly 5,000. What followed was almost a century of booms and busts, the fates of miners and their families ever in the balance.

Not surprisingly, Telluride was home to San Miguel County’s first bank robbery, which took place on June 24, 1889, when Butch Cassidy stole $22,000 from the vault of the San Miguel Valley Bank. The money was slated for the miners’ monthly payday, traditionally the 25th of the month.

By the 1960s, mining had crashed, and entire blocks of downtown were deserted and boarded up. But the economy began to revive when the ski resort opened in 1972. Back then, real estate was relatively affordable, Boling said, with the average house costing about $35,000. These days, the prices of houses in Telluride start around $2 million and the town, which has little room to expand, is grappling with severe housing shortages even as it experiences unprecedented tourism.

After a few days luxuriating in the high mountain air, Jeff and I were already fantasizing about relocating. The beauty. The recreation. The people. Who wouldn’t want to live here?

We’d heard that one way to ingratiate yourself with the balloon pilots, most of whom were willing to give bystanders a ride, was to make yourself useful, which is how we found ourselves on the rope side of a hot-air balloon, helping keep it tethered as its envelope filled with air.

The balloon, dubbed Snaggletooth for the jagged line that overlaid its colorful stripes, was owned and piloted by Richard Schmidt, a quiet, affable man with gray hair and a mustache.

The good news is I didn’t need any specialized knowledge. All that was required was a firm grip when handed a rope to hang onto and a willingness to lean my weight against the pull of the inflating balloon. Better yet, as I pulled, I also watched, and the combination of cool morning air, coffee and doughnuts, bright colors, and the promise of what awaited — a peaceful flight void of jet fuel or propellers — filled me with an expansive sense of belonging. There in the town park, Jeff and I joined a movement, and as each balloon lifted from the mist­-covered grass and painted the blue sky pink and red and yellow, I was grateful to have momentarily woven myself into the fabric of this community.

I was so entranced that I almost missed my chance to hop into the balloon.

“Hurry up!” Schmidt said, interrupting my reverie. “Or we’ll go without ya.”

As the crew ferried us by hand to the launch point, the balloon hovered several feet off the ground. The sensation was similar to that of being in a canoe bobbing in the water. When Schmidt got the signal, he fired up the burners and we began to rise, first 500 feet and then 1,000 feet above the ground.

Another water analogy came to me as we floated over the town’s Victorian facades and brick storefronts. Steering is not possible in ballooning — the air sent us in the direction of the currents like a stick that had fallen into a river midstream. “You go where the wind blows,” Schmidt said. “And you get what you get.”

As our balloon bobbed its way down-valley, the town’s landmarks — the gondola, Bridal Veil Falls, the mesa where the airport is located — shrank until the landscape looked like a Monopoly board. From on high, I saw how physically constrained Telluride is. They call it a “box canyon” because the mountain walls are steep and the valley is narrow — there’s only one way in and out of town. Literally rising above the fray shifted my focus. I now had a greater appreciation of all the things that combine to make Telluride what it is.

Weightless and feeling as expansive as the air inside Snaggletooth’s envelope, I tried to memorize my surroundings. This is unlike any part of Colorado I’ve visited before, and I grew up in the state. I know it well. But in Telluride, in going slow, I saw so much.

Walker is a freelance writer and editor based in Boulder, Colo. Follow her on Twitter at @racheljowalker.

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Telluride’s Fall Color Is Stunning

fb95img951475187604806The stunning fall colors of Telluride looking south to Mt Wilson. (Picture courtesy of the Madeline Hotel)

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Telluride prepares for first Neil Young concert, Friday and Saturday nights

Neil Young

Neil Young, along with Promise of the Real, play Telluride Town Park Friday and Saturday nights. (Courtesy photo/Henry Diltz)

Posted: Wednesday, September 28, 2016 4:34 pm

I’m pretty sure that between Bluegrass promoter Craig Ferguson and Blues and Brews promoter Steve Gumble, there has been a standing offer for Neil Young to play in Telluride every year. Figure that offer has been on the table for 20 years and Young has turned down 40 offers to play Telluride.

It’s kind of like in “Dumb and Dumber” when Lloyd asks what his chances are of landing his paramour and she tells him, “A million to one,” and Lloyd excitingly asks, “So you’re saying there’s a chance?” Well, those long odds have finally paid off in spades, and Neil Young and Promise of the Real are taking the stage Friday and Saturday night at the Fred Shellman Memorial Stage in Telluride Town Park.

Neil Young is the preeminent Canadian musician in history (with a nod to Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen). He is also regarded as one of the greatest songwriters in rock ’n’ roll. Certainly any top-10 list of songwriters would include Young and some might put him in the top three.

The Promise of the Real describes their sound as “California Hippie Surf Rock.” The band includes Willie Nelson’s son Lukas on guitar, Anthony LoGerfo on drums, Corey McCormick on bass and Tato Melgar on percussion. By all accounts, the band has injected fury into Young’s sound reminiscent of the Crazy Horse of the mid-’70s.

Young is using these two shows as a rehearsal for Desert Trip, a weekend of concerts next weekend at the Empire Polo Field in Indio, California (where Coachella is held). In addition to Young, the festival features Paul McCartney, Bob Dylan, The Rolling Stones, The Who and Roger Waters.

Desert Trip is being held on the same site as Coachella and is jokingly being referred to by some (who don’t have tickets) as “Old Chella” (the average age of the headliners is 71 years old).

You don’t want to show up to an event like Desert Trip with some of the most iconic bands in rock ’n’ roll history without your A game, so Young and the Promise of the Real went looking for a few tune-up gigs and they decided on Telluride. One big question that has been bantered about on barstools and chat rooms is whether or not Young will play two different shows in Telluride or try to perfect the same show twice.

I think they will play two different shows, though there may be some repeats over the two nights. The band may play the same song twice but with a different arrangement. It is essentially a rehearsal in front of a live (and very lucky) audience.

The word is that Young and the Promise of the Real have been playing some pretty obscure stuff on their recent tours (in addition to fan favorites). I think they’ll go a little bit more mainstream for Desert Trip and we’ll hear less “Hitchhiker” from “Le Noise” (2010) and more “Southern Man” from “After the Gold Rush” (1970).

This might be the very reason they want the rehearsal — because they haven’t been playing so much of their mainstream stuff and need to rehearse it. Let’s hope I’m right because if so we are in for two epic shows.

Here’s a list of some of those more mainstream songs I’d like to hear this weekend and some of my favorite lines from them.  Young is known to begin his show with some acoustic songs. In light of the two shows, we may see quite a few acoustic numbers (or none at all). Here are some acoustic tunes I’d like to hear.

· “Comes A Time”>”Sugar Mountain” medley — I have a recording of Young combining these songs from one of his Bridge School Concerts. It’s epic.

·  “Comes a Time:” “We took our souls and we flew away. We were right, we were giving that’s how we kept what we gave away.” Sugar Mountain: “There’s a girl just down the aisle, oh to turn and see her smile. You can hear the words she wrote, as you read the hidden note.”

· “After the Gold Rush”: The title track from Young’s 1970 record has a mystical feeling to it that I’ve always loved: “All in a dream, all in a dream, the loading had begun; they were flying mother nature’s silver seed to a new home in the sun.”

· “On the Way Home” (Buffalo Springfield): Young often opened his shows in the early ’70s with this gem: “In a strange game, I saw myself as you knew me. When the change came, and you had a chance to see through me. Though the other side is just the same you can tell my dream is real. Because I love you, can you see me now?”

· “Pocahontas:” The idea of Marlon Brando and Pocahontas talking about the Astrodome around a campfire is an awesome image. “Aurora borealis, the icy sky at night. Paddles cut the water in a long and hurried flight from the white man to the fields of green and the homeland we’ve never seen.

Moving into the electric realm…

· “Down by the River:” I think I’ve heard this song covered by more artists — from the Meters to Norah Jones — than any other Young song. “You take my hand, I’ll take your hand, and together we may get away. This much madness is too much sorrow, it’s impossible to make it today.”

· “Cowgirl in the Sand:” “Hello woman of my dreams, this is not the way it seems. Purple words on a grey background, to be a woman, and to be turned down, old enough now to change your name when so many love you, is it the same? It’s the woman in you that makes you want to play this game.”

· “Cortez the Killer:” Rumor is that Young wrote this song when he was in high school. It’s my favorite Neil Young song and word is that the band has been playing 30-plus minute versions of it.  “Hate was just a legend and war was never known. People worked together and lifted many stones. They carried them to the flatlands and they died along the way. But they built up with their bare hands what we still can’t build today.”

Conde Nast | The U.S. Is Now The World’s Top Ski Destination


 September 21, 2016

What will the Swiss think? The French? According to recent data from the U.S. National Ski Areas Association, the world’s most popular country for skiing is now—surprise—the United States, which saw asix percent hike in its ski and snowboard visitors during the winter of 2015–2016, for a total tally of 53.9 million. Even more impressive? The Pacific Northwest region (Alaska, Washington, and Oregon) saw an increase of 142 percent in skier visits over the previous season, more than doubling from two million visits in 2014–15 to almost five million in 2015–2016. The Rocky Mountain and Pacific Southwest regions also had marked numbers in skier visits, though “weather challenges” across the eastern half of the country resulted in declines from the 2014-15 season in the Northeast, Midwest, and Southeast.

France, which has traded the top spot with the U.S. in recent years, saw its visitors drop three percent and came in second with 52 million ‘skier days’ in the winter of 2015–2016, according to Domaines Skiables de France, an organization representing the French ski industry. (A ‘skier day’ is by and large considered to be the equivalent of a one-day pass, or each time someone paid to go skiing.) Of the country’s er, slight downhill slide, a spokesperson pointed to the weather: “There was a very difficult start to the season due to a lack of snow at low and medium altitudes, not to mention unpredictable weather causing disruptions to our operating systems,” the DFS said in a statement. Europe’s second most popular skiing destination, Austria, also dropped in visitors from the previous winter, finishing the season with 49.9 million skier days

According to Condé Nast Traveler readers, those interested in hitting the slopes stateside should start with Deer Valley, Utah—the destination in the Wasatch Mountains topped the list of the 20 best ski resorts in the U.S. and Canada. Looking for somewhere that allows both skiing and snowboarding? Try Telluride for its annual 300 inches of snow and (300 days of sunshine). As if you needed convincing…

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Telluride Blues and Brews Has Arrived!

Blues Main Street

From Blog:

There are many tell tale signs that fall has arrived in Telluride—the crispness in the air, the aspens leaves starting their transformation into fiery orange and yellow hues and of course, the Blues and Brews Festival. Now in its 23rd year, the Blues and Brews has grown from a one day event into a 3 day-festival. Like most festivals there is a Main Stage, but at Blues & Brews, there’s so much more! With multiple stages, yoga sessions, kids area, late night shows, TONS of beer, and a multitude of incredible musicians, it is an action-packed weekend.

Here are some valuable tips to fully enjoy the 23rd Annual Blues and Brews Festival:

The Brews

After all, the festival is called Blues & Brews so there are 56 microbreweries and 170 styles of craft beer at the Grand Tasting on Saturday, Sept. 17. In addition to the Grand Tasting, festival goers can enjoy eight different styles of beer from Sierra Nevada including the coveted Back Porch Lager! Back Porch Lager was created by the Blues & Brews staff at a ‘one-of-a-kind’ Beer Camp weekend in Chico, CA. This lager brewed specially for Blues & Brews and is not available anywhere outside the Festival. In addition, festival goers can choose between six premium craft beers and one hard cider from the ‘House of Brews’. The House of Brews featured five additional breweries which will be poured throughtout the weekend – Big B’s Hard Cider,Bonfire Brewing, Durango Brewing Co, Sierra Nevada Brewing Co, Ska Brewing and Telluride Brewing Co.

The Late Night Scene

Some of the best shows you’ll see all weekend are after dark at Telluride’s intimate concert venues: The Blues Stage (Town Park Pavilion), The Moon at O’Bannon’s, Sheridan Opera House, the Elks Lodge and Arroyo Wine Bar & Gallery. At the Juke Joints, bands play late and get rowdy. Friday and Saturday Juke Joint passes allow access to all venues for the night purchase but get there early, all venues are first-come, first served. Doors open at 9:45 p.m. each night.

Blues for Breakfast

Start your mornings off proper with blues music, a hearty breakfast and drinks at Blues for Breakfast! Kicking off at 9:00 a.m. on both Saturday and Sunday of the Festival weekend, Blues for Breakfast offers a pleasant warm-up to a dynamic day and late night full of music. Join us at the Telluride’s intimate Elks Lodge (located at 472 West Pacific Avenue), for a bite to eat as the first official chords of the day are struck. Saturday’s breakfast hosts The Telluride Blues Challenge Finals and Sunday’s hosts The Telluride Blues Challenge Finals Runner-Up.

Find your Namaste

Stretch out those muscles from all the dancing and bliss out during Yoga Sessions presented by Telluride Yoga Festival. This new addition offers festival goers the opportunity to unplug from the ordinary and discover the extraordinary from within. All skill/ability levels welcome. These free yoga sessions will be held in Elks Park on Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 17 & 18, 10-11 a.m.

Kids Area

Kids of all ages can enjoy various activities in the Rainbow Kids Area during the festival weekend with the help from Living Folklore. Living Folklore features children’s entertainment, workshops, and two parades specifically geared for the kids (or the kid at heart) – one on Saturday and one on Sunday. So, bring your kids to the Rainbow Kids Area located in the back of the festival grounds to join the wild and wacky Living Folklore Clowns, Giggly Sprout and Gumbo Wobbly, along with activities like a bungee trampoline, climbing wall, inflatable bounce games, face painting, a talent show, and much more!


If you need a break from the music and all the delicious beer, there’s a handful of beautiful hikes starting directly from downtown Telluride to explore: Bear Creek Trail is less than one block from Town Park (S. Pine Street) and is a perfect beginner trail up to a waterfall. If you need a more challenging hike, check out the Jud Wiebe Trail (N. Aspen Street) that takes you to a gorgeous overlook of the entire town.

Ride the Gondola

The only FREE transportation of its kind in the country, Telluride’s Gondola is a must-do while visiting. Get out up top (San Sophia) to hike around or ride the Gondola down into Mountain Village to check out the local bars, shops and restaurants. The Gondola will be open until midnight on Thursday, until 2:00 a.m. on Friday and Saturday and until 1:00 a.m. on Sunday during the festival.

To visit Telluride Luxury Properties click here

Significant Sales | Volume I – Issue V

Posted on September 15, 2016

Screen Shot 2016-06-30 at 10.49.46 AM

From a sophisticated celebrity home in Atlanta, Georgia to a modern waterfront home in California, this issue of Significant Sales also showcases homes from throughout the United States, Brazil, Mallorca, Australia and Canada.

$17,500,000 USD | Georgia, USA | Atlanta Fine Homes Sotheby’s International Realty

Perhaps the most compelling private residence to ever be offered in the history of Atlanta, this mansion is situated on over 17 private and pristine park-like acres with substantial Chattahoochee River frontage. It offers an unrivaled amenity package, including a resort-style infinity-edge swimming pool, lighted tennis court, fully equipped gym, spa, theater, hobby house, underground ballroom with catering kitchen, formal and informal gardens, entire estate generator, guard house, caretaker’s suite and presidential-level security system managing two gated and secured residential entrances.


$17,375,000 USD | Hawaii, USA | List Sotheby’s International Realty

Take in breathtaking views of Oahu’s famed Kailua coastline from every vantage point of this artfully designed home inside and out. This grand estate is nestled in a private gated setting, on over one acre and approximately 200 linear feet of white, sandy beach. This meticulously appointed home has five bedrooms and six-and-one-half baths, features a pool side cabana, fire pit, tiki torches, fountains, built-in BBQ and a state-of- the-art security and lighting system. A spa and a private outdoor granite bathtub provide the ultimate tranquil retreat. Natural elements include the use of gleaming hardwood throughout and lush tropical landscaping. Imagine hosting large scale events on the expansive grounds under the stars.


$16,000,000 USD | California, USA | Sotheby’s International Realty – Montecito – Coast Village Road Brokerage

Down a tree-lined drive behind gates, this newly remodeled contemporary home of approximately 7,394-square-feet, built by Giffin and Crane, is situated on approximately three panoramic Montecito Valley and ocean view acres. Take advantage of Santa Barbara’s unique climate with stunning indoor/outdoor areas, including expansive living spaces, soaring ceilings, and large floor-to-ceiling French doors that open to modern loggias, and a luxurious outside lounge with pool retreat.

Noteworthy Sales from Around the World


$20,000,000 CAD | Canada | Sotheby’s International Realty Canada

This 36,000-square-foot post and beam waterfront estate designed and built by Lepik Construction is quite simply a one-of-a-kind masterpiece. Offering nearly 13,000-square-feet of living space over three levels, the home features five bedrooms, seven baths, over 4,600-square-feet of terraced slate decks, outdoor pool/hot tub, indoor swim spa/hot tub, indoor elevator system, geo thermal heating, 8,000-gallon front entry koi pond, five-car heated garage and an incredible 50-foot attached private yacht garage. A chef’s kitchen and cabinetry by Redl Kitchens, Brazilian cherry floors, and floor to ceiling glass are also featured.


€ 8,700,000 | Mallorca | Mallorca Sotheby’s International Realty

“Ocean 34”, an architectural masterpiece in the luxurious marina Port Adriano, is the only contemporary home with open panoramic sea views in the area. This seafront property blends indoor and outdoor spaces with streamlined architecture and striking design elements. The interior living areas are completely open to the outdoor area, which features an infinity-edge pool and a large terrace, creating a natural flow between the two spaces.

View the entire issue of Significant Sales

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The Coveteur | Why you Need To Make Telluride Your Next Weekend Getaway



Maybe you know Telluride from that Vanity Fair cover with Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, and baby Suri. Maybe you know it because Mount Wilson, the mountain made famous by the Coors Light can, is perpetually IRL in your line of sight when you’re in Telluride. Maybe you know it because Kelly Ripa, Oprah, and Jerry Seinfeld all have homes there—and Ralph Lauren’s famous Double RL ranch is a stone’s throw away. Maybe because of the film festival, which, this weekend, will host just about every actor and director vying for an Oscar this year. In short, for a town with just 3,000 people, there’s a lot of celebrity to be had. Or maybe you know it because, you know, you’ve heard about the world-class skiing and biking and rafting. Maybe you’re that person.

I’m most certainly not that person. I also didn’t know a whole lot about Telluride other than it’s in Colorado and it’s a ski-resort town—and I was going in summertime when skiing would most definitely not be on the itinerary. But after spending a long weekend in the mountain town and putting my journalistic sleuthing *skills* to use, I can confidently say that Oprah, Cruise, Ripa, Seinfeld, et al. are very much onto something and that Telluride, any time of year, is quite possibly the most luxurious place while simultaneously being incredibly down to earth and chill (for lack of a better word—that really is the vibe). This isn’t your outdoorsy adventurers guide—you’ll have to go elsewhere for that—but I’m here to tell you that there’s much more to this coal-mining-town-turned-one-part-ski-bum-one-part-star-power paradise. Here’s how to eat, drink, shop, spa and generally make merry in Telluride.



The Telluride airport was made private only some years ago (which honestly tells you something), so unless you have a private jet, there’s no flying direct (but if you do, I’ll totally hitch a ride from Teterboro). Instead, fly to Montrose and take an hour-and-a-half shuttle or private car to Telluride. Keep your eyes peeled for the Double RL gate as you approach. The other views are pretty all right too (as in effing stunning ranch land meeting snow-capped mountains).



The Madeline Hotel & Residences (568 Mountain Village Boulevard) is pretty much the place to stay in Telluride. It’s located in Mountain Village, which is a 15-minute gondola ride away from “downtown,” but it’s the area in which everyone stays; it’s ski-in, ski-out, and it’s where all the celebs have homes (Kelly Ripa gets her hair done at the Madeline’s in-house salon). The other thing about the Madeline? If you really want to chill the eff out, you don’t have to leave, like, ever. The restaurants, Black Iron (alfresco lunch beside the fire) and M Club (a cozy dinner), are pretty darn excellent. For lunch, get the beet and amaranth salad; for dinner, get, well, everything, but especially the trout tartare and the whole roasted cauliflower. There’s also a spa that offers just about everything you’d ever need to relax and feel good about yourself (it’s also the site of a gemstone massage that made even my inner skeptic believe in the power of crystals). Oh, and there’s a stunning pool deck that’s open year round with views that’ll make your Instagram account’s year. Just trust me and stay there.


(aka what’s what on and around Telluride’s main drag)


You’re not going to find major designer shopping in Telluride, but you have Barneys for that, and that’s not why we’re here. What you do have is sweetly and smartly curated boutiques, galleries, and apothecaries (and a dispensary or two) that you’ll only find here. And there’s a lot more to find, from the Opera House (opened in 1913) to a truffle shop, if you give yourself some time to explore. Here are the must-sees.

Gold Mountain Gallery (135 West Colorado Avenue) is the kind of place where you can find classic Rockies furniture and art—it looks like a Ralph Lauren showroom only it’s the real deal.

If you’re missing your reformer, go to Studio Telluride (135 South Spruce Street) for a traditional Pilates workout. Be prepared to feel it after.

Forgot to pack your favorite jeans? Or maybe all this fresh mountain air is giving you shopping withdrawal. Go to Scarpe (250 East Pacific Avenue), where you can find Raquel Allegra, Frame Denim, and Steven Alan. Plus, you can rationalize any purchase as a souvenir.

If you want a real taste of Telluride hippie, hit up Medicine Ranch (615 West Pacific Avenue), which sells tinctures that can cure just about any ailment that you might suffer from, elixirs and crystals, and offers acupuncture. If you’re anything like me, you’ll walk out with something.

Mixx (307 East Colorado Avenue), at the end of the main street, has a sophisticated and expertly curated mélange of art, jewelry and furniture. Of any of the stores in Telluride, they sell the stuff you actually want to ship back for your apartment.

You can’t go to Colorado without at least looking in on a dispensary (whether or not you buy any goods I’ll leave to your discretion). Delilah (115 West Colorado Avenue) is the place to go—the staff are extremely friendly (no question is too dumb), and they have everything from pre-rolled joints to hemp salve for sore muscles.



Unexpectedly, there’s a lot of world-class food in Telluride, from pizza to Thai to local farm (river, ranch, lake) to table. You’ll roll out of town by the end of the weekend.

Tucked away just east of the main strip, Siam (200 South Davis Street) looks kitschily eccentric from the outside, but it makes seriously great Thai food (some with a particularly Colorado twist, like elk curry).

Across the street from Siam is There (627 West Pacific Avenue), a very friendly tiny bar that serves bizarre but totally delicious jam drinks—quite literally different flavored jams mixed into liquor concoctions of your choosing.

The New Sheridan Hotel (231 West Colorado Avenue) is the new(ish) version of the first hotel in Telluride, and it was built in 1895 when the only people coming to town were those hoping to strike it rich mining for gold. Come here for a bourbon or a beer with the rowdy local crowd and you’ll feel like you’re in an old Western.

221 South Oak (221 S Oak St) is the place to eat dinner in Telluride. It’s gourmet food and wine with a significant vegetarian menu, all from the genius that is Eliza Gavin, a former Top Chef star. And it’s in an unassuming house off the main drag. Eat outside in the backyard—I highly recommend the mountain trout.

Last Dollar Saloon (100 East Colorado Avenue), known as the Buck, is seemingly where everyone in Telluride ends up late at night. And that’s all you need to know.

Everyone you meet in Telluride will tell you about Brown Dog Pizza (110 East Colorado Avenue) and that it won a Pizza World Championship in Italy, no less. Suffice it to say the pizza is good.

Go to The Butcher & Baker Cafe (201 East Colorado Avenue) if you’re craving a gourmet sandwich or salad—it’s the most delicious (and adorable) place for lunch in town.

Illustrations by Meghann Stephenson

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Telluride Increases Air Service for 16/17 Winter Season


8th September 2016 | TELLURIDE SKI RESORT


TELLURIDE, Colorado (September 8, 2016) – The Colorado Flight Alliance has recently announced the official schedule for nonstop air service coming into Montrose-Telluride Regional Airport (MTJ) for the 2016-2017 winter season as well as the return of commercial service to Telluride Regional Airport (TEX). This winter, visitors will have an increased range of options when planning a trip to Telluride, with a significant increase in the frequency of flights this season over last winter.

“The increased flight service this winter affords our guests more options whether they’re flying to Montrose-Telluride directly or connecting through a major hub,” said Bill Jensen, CEO of Telluride Ski & Golf Resort. “We know our guests want more options, and the Colorado Flight Alliance has worked to partner with the airlines to provide that, particularly from Dallas. With nonstop service beginning in November and increasing to twice daily service during peak periods, guests from Dallas as well as connecting from hubs in the south and northeast will benefit from this increased frequency.”

Starting on Saturday, December 17th, the Telluride Regional Airport (TEX), located just 10 minutes from Telluride Ski Resort, will welcome the return of daily commercial service from Denver International Airport (DEN). These new flights, provided by United Airlines’ partner Great Lakes, will allow United customers to connect through Denver and land directly in Telluride. These flights will run year-round with an average frequency of 10 flights per week.

Service highlights for the 16/17 winter:

  • Daily flights on American Airlines from Dallas/Ft. Worth (DFW) will begin on Friday, November 18th and will increase to twice daily frequency during high-traffic periods.
  • American Airlines service from Phoenix-Sky Harbor (PHX) will increase to daily frequency with service beginning Thursday, December 15th.
  • Year-round service will resume into Telluride Regional Airport on Saturday, December 17th allowing for connections through Denver on United Airlines.
  • Service will continue from Houston (IAH), New York (LGA & EWR), Chicago O’Hare (ORD), Los Angeles (LAX), and San Francisco International (SFO) Airports.
  • Allegiant Airlines will offer twice-weekly, low cost flights to Montrose-Telluride Airport (MTJ) from Denver International Airport (DEN).

“The direct economic impact of added flights is invaluable to the region, and we look forward to continued growth along with the major increases in air service,” said Michael Martelon, CEO of the Telluride Tourism Board.

This winter season, travelers can fly direct to Montrose-Telluride Regional Airport (MTJ) from 9 major cities, including Dallas, Phoenix, Houston, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Atlanta and Denver. Direct flights to Telluride Regional Airport (TEX) are on Great Lakes Airlines, a partner of United Airlines.

For route maps and detailed schedule information, please visit For resort information and reservations, please visit

To visit Telluride Luxury Properties click here

WSJ | Telluride: Good Movies, Welcome Back

A scene from ‘Moonlight.’
A scene from ‘Moonlight.’ PHOTO: A24

Telluride, Colo.

Either no one has noticed or no one has complained, but for longer than I’ve chosen to admit—at least publicly—my annual roundups from this lovely little town in the Rocky Mountains have followed the same template, and the same emotional arc: “After a grim summer at the movies, the Telluride Film Festival has restored my faith in the medium.”

The template still applies, though with ominous adjustments. Grim can’t begin to convey the essence of this year’s soul-chilling summer at the movies, a near-interminable stretch of stinkers with precious few signs of life from mostly clueless studios. Telluride has provided reason for hope, as always, but hope tempered by an awareness that the theatrical medium is increasingly threatened by a whole constellation of cultural forces. (A crucial trend that usually eludes industry analysts is young people’s resistance to the notion of spending two hours in a public space where they’re not supposed to talk or check their mobile devices, whereas TV, streaming services and YouTube offer them a choice of binging on their favorite shows and movies or consuming them in small doses.) All the more reason, then, for movie lovers to cherish and support the good stuff as never before. And some of the features at Telluride this year weren’t just good but, dare I say it, perfect in their various fashions.

First and foremost for me in the perfection category was Kenneth Lonergan’s“Manchester by the Sea,” a searingly beautiful film set in a Boston suburb starringCasey Affleck—a perfect performance—as a closed-down loner who has suffered terrible loss and may or may not find his way back to embracing life. Perfection on a different scale, in a different place—Europe in the wake of World War I—is achieved by François Ozon’s “Frantz,” a drama that poses the same question in the person of a grief-stricken young woman played exquisitely by Paula Beer. If there’s a false note in “Graduation,” a Romanian film by Cristian Mungiu, I didn’t notice it—I found only truth and humanity in the tale of a decent man who loses his moral compass when he tries to enhance his daughter’s chances of getting into a prestigious college.

The most obvious category for “Moonlight” is Black Film, or more accurately Great Black Film—but even that doesn’t do justice to this second feature by Barry Jenkins, a profoundly moving study of a frightened, near-silent young boy coming into manhood in contemporary Miami and shutting himself off from a long-ago love. There are many passing marvels in “Moonlight,” but the most remarkable thing about Mr. Jenkins’s movie is how vividly you can see, at the end of an almost total transformation, the tender child in the flint-hardened man.

The festival was graced with a trio of strong documentaries about jazz. John Scheinfeld’s“Chasing Trane” evokes the career of the singular saxophone virtuoso John Coltrane.Janus Køster-Rasmussen’s “Cool Cats” amounts to parallel portraits of two superb saxophonists, Ben Webster and Dexter Gordon, at a time in the 1960s when both men fled racism and a failing jazz scene in America for the frigid weather and warm welcome of Copenhagen. While it’s technically correct to call “I Called Him Morgan” a documentary, Kasper Collin’s brilliant film plays like first-rate drama as it tells the tragic story of Lee Morgan. He’s the bop trumpet prodigy who died of wounds after his common-law wife, Helen More, shot him on a snowy night in 1972 in a jazz club in New York’s East Village. The tragedy was shared; Helen, as the movie makes clear, was a compelling figure in her own right, a woman of depth and passion who rose from rural poverty in North Carolina.

In a tactical departure from its traditional role as a high-altitude Brigadoon for cinephiles, the festival featured a mainstream Hollywood production that goes into wide release this week: Clint Eastwood’s “Sully,” which starsTom Hanks as Chesley Sullenberger, the pilot who landed his airliner in the Hudson River in 2009. The tactic is debatable, but “Sully” is very good, and I’ve reviewed it at greater length in the online Journal. A debut film at the festival, Otto Bell’s “The Eagle Huntress,” will open theatrically toward the end of October, when my review will run in this space. Here again the technical category is documentary—the subject is a 13-year-old Kazakh girl, Aisholpan, who yearns to become the first female eagle hunter in her family of nomads on the immense Mongolian Steppe. I have some reservations about the film’s yearnings to become an inspirational feature, but the vistas and cultural insights are fascinating and Aisholpan is simply, though not plainly, enchanting.

A sense of duty sent me to a couple of films that turned out to be exceptional, notwithstanding my misplaced doubts. Pablo Larraín, the Chilean director of the smart and exciting “No,” has taken surreally poetic liberties in “Neruda,” which is set in 1948, when Chile’s celebrated poet and Communist senator was charged with treason and went into hiding. (He’s played by Luis Gnecco.) Mr. Larraín’s political phantasmagoria is framed as a chase and told from the perspective of a beguilingly articulate cop, played byGael García Bernal, who refuses to believe that he’s a supporting character, let alone a product of his quarry’s imagination. The running time of “ Toni Erdmann,” a German comedy by Maren Ade, is almost three hours, yet every one of its 162 minutes is justified by the counterpoint between Winfried, a Falstaffian eccentric played with epic gusto byPeter Simonischek, and his daughter, Ines, a corporate executive played by Sandra Hüller,whose performance is no less remarkable for being a study of control freakery.

Gael García Bernal in ‘Neruda.’
Gael García Bernal in ‘Neruda.’ PHOTO: TELLURIDE FILM FESTIVALL

A presentation that runs more than three hours, Bertrand Tavernier’s “My Journey Through French Cinema” had me mesmerized from start to finish. I thought I was fairly well versed in the great films of France—my cinema journey began in earnest when the French New Wave hit American shores—but I had lots of other thinks coming as Mr. Tavernier, the filmmaker who directed Dexter Gordon in “’Round Midnight,” made his way through decades of lore with the scrupulous judgments of a scholar and the zest of an unquenchable fan. I’d also had more than a casual acquaintanceship with Czech cinema, but none of it prepared me for the joyous originality of Karel Zeman’s 1962 feature “TheFabulous Baron Munchausen,” a live-action/animation hybrid, gorgeously restored, that opened up possibilities and provided artistic templates for such subsequent innovators as Ray Harryhausen, Terry Gilliam, Tim Burton and Wes Anderson.

The danger of reveling in great films of the past is nostalgia; their moments are gone, and will never return in the same form. But nostalgia got surprising new twists from two films that could hardly differ more in form or content.

A scene from ‘California Typewriter.’
A scene from ‘California Typewriter.’ PHOTO:AMERICAN BUFFALO PICTURES

One of them is “California Typewriter,” a documentary by Doug Nichol. It’s about typewriters, exactly as you guessed, along with people who love them, continue to fix them (the film takes its name and focus from a typewriter shop in Berkeley), and collect them. The lovers, and users, include David McCullough, Sam Shepard and John Mayer.The collectors include Tom Hanks, who was ubiquitous at the festival in the flesh as well as on the screen. The point of it all isn’t just nostalgia, though I must say I was smitten anew by the sight of Smith-Coronas, Olympias, Olivettis and Selectrics I once owned, but the palpable pleasure of using a machine to put ink on pieces of paper that can outlast the fugitive data on a hard drive.

The other retro revelation, a lollipop-colored musical called “La La Land,” was the hit of the festival, and no wonder. The writer-director, Damien Chazelle (“Whiplash”), has created a film so daringly retro that it looks and feels brand new. Emma Stone is Mia, an aspiring actress who works in a coffee shop on the Warner Brothers lot. Ryan Gosling is Sebastian, a jazz pianist who can’t make a living playing the music he loves. Whatever nostalgia one may have for the glory days of Hollywood musicals can’t conceal the fact that the co-stars are less than consummate singers and dancers, and the score is far from sublime, but that doesn’t matter in the end. (If you remember the winsome loveliness of “The Umbrellas of Cherbourg,” you’ll understand why.) What matters is the movie’s renewal of a promise that movies used to make as a matter of course—come see this and you’ll forget your cares and woes. That, as they used to say, is entertainment.

Sotheby’s International Realty® Brand to Target China’s Wealthy with New Alliance

Posted on September 7, 2016


Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC has announced an alliance with that enables the luxury real estate brand to generate Chinese buyer interest on one of the world’s most prominent real estate websites with over two million monthly visitors. As a truly international brand, Sotheby’s International Realty now has the most global representation on, displaying luxury listings from 65 countries and territories.

We are constantly looking for opportunities to expand globally by adding new distribution opportunities that showcase properties to affluent consumers in key growth markets.  The alliance with achieves that by giving us better access to a market that is already one of our most important, and which promises great future growth.

“One of’s key advantages is that it is hosted on both sides of China’s internet firewall, so its listings are visible online both within China and outside of China.”

–Wendy Purvey, chief marketing officer, Sotheby’s International Realty Affiliates LLC

At this moment, one out of every 10 visitors on is located in China, and the syndication and advertising program with will further strengthen the Sotheby’s International Realty brand presence in that market.  The  alliance includes the following components:

  • Listing display: Sotheby’s International Realty property listings will appear on and in its real estate search results.
  • First responders:’s Chinese-language team is located in mainland China so they can respond to consumer inquiries in real time, translate the inquiries into English and forward them to the Sotheby’s International Realty sales associate who has the listing.
  • Brand page: A Sotheby’s International Realty brand overview page carries information about the brand, a contact form and the network’s listings – all in one place.
  • Banner advertising: Sotheby’s International Realty banner ads will run on the homepage, promoting the company’s new brand page and listings to’s audience.

To see the Sotheby’s International Realty brand page on, visit:

To visit Telluride Luxury Properties click here

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