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Not that a vigorous ski vacation ever feels like a ripoff, but holy Alberto Tomba has the sport gotten expensive. Lift tickets are regularly over $125, condos can go for $2,500 a week or more, and drinks at après ski bars are often pricier than they are in Vegas nightclubs. Skiing was never a budget sport, but now it’s approaching equestrian and skydiving as a “take out a loan” sport.
While we can’t do much about the price of drinks or lift tickets, we can help you control your cost of accommodations. We put our heads together with Airbnb, who dished on the 10 hottest North American ski destinations this winter, based on increased booking demand. In each spot, we found the coolest Airbnb you can rent for affordable rates, with a tolerable proximity to the mountain.
1. Ski in/out townhome with onsite golf — Big Sky, Montana
Not that you’ll necessarily hit the fairways before your big day on the Big Sky slopes, but if you just absolutely fall in love with Montana, you’ve now got a place to stay in the summer, too. This three-bedroom house has vaulted ceilings, a spacious deck for your own private après ski, a barbecue, and cable TV. Plus you can walk to all the bars, restaurants, and general ski-resort excitement of Big Sky Mountain Village. The house costs $91 per night and sleeps up to eight people, so if you’re down with being a little cozy, you can have your ski lodging covered for just over $10 per night.
Price: $347 per night
2. Mountain Lakeshore Condo — Bozeman, Montana
On a clear winter day the view here will trick all your internet friends into thinking you’re staying at some luxe ski getaway, rather than paying just $72 a night. This 1,200-square-foot, two-bedroom condo has a covered deck situated right on a lake, with mountain views right behind. It’s about 25 miles from Bridger Bowl and 45 miles to Big Sky, so you’ll still have a bit of a drive to the slopes. But your distance from skiing is more than made up for with your proximity to the breweries and bars of this mountain college town, also one of our Coolest Towns for 2018.
Price: $93 per night
3. Dog-friendly chalet with hot tub & sauna — Girdwood, Alaska
Long flights be damned, the Alyeska Resort near Anchorage has seen an 83-percent uptick in demand this year. Fortunately, that hasn’t driven prices up yet, and you can get this two-story, two-bedroom chalet with vaulted ceilings and glacial views for $200 per night, about the price of a mid-range hotel. The chalet also has a private hot tub on the deck, a wood burning stove, and a pullout sofa bed if you want to fit six people inside. And it’s only a few minutes from the slopes, meaning you won’t be driving all over sprawling Anchorage to get to your skiing.
Price: $175 per night
4. Three bedroom modern condo at the village — Blue Mountain, Ontario, Canada
Though Ontario has never been top of mind for many Americans as a big ski destination, Airbnb saw a 142-percent increase in demand for Blue Mountain this year. This condo puts you right in the heart of the ski village, with three bedrooms spread over two stories and 1,700 square feet. The main living area has floor-to-ceiling windows that allow maximum light in to start your morning, and the master bedroom features an oversized bathtub to soak in after a long day on the mountain.
Price: $526 per night
5. The 36th Street Urban Yurts — Boise, Idaho
Many are calling Boise the new Portland, and while that might not necessarily be a title the city wants, opening up stuff like urban yurts definitely makes a strong case. These exquisitely-designed colorful yurts have electricity, wood floors, gas stoves, and a skylight. Yes, the bathrooms are shared in a shop across the yard, as are hair dryers, microwaves, and other amenities you might find in a hotel. But for quirky yurt glamping, at $68 per night, this is the most unique property in Boise. And it sits on 0.36 acres of meticulously landscaped garden, perfect for relaxing at the end of the evening.
Price: $68 per night
6. Downtown old Colorado City with panoramic views — Colorado Springs, Colorado
Aspen? Vail? Telluride? Great spots. All also painfully expensive. This is probably why less-traveled Colorado Springs has seen a 138-percent increase in demand this year. This second-floor apartment in a four-story house, available for $110 per night, has panoramic views of Cheyenne Mountain and Garden of the Gods, with heated floors and clean, white decor. The kitchen has a dishwasher, but no range. But you’re only a short walk from trendy Colorado Avenue, where you’ll find no shortage of places to eat, drink, and do whatever else one does in Colorado.
Price: $110 per night
7. The Good Life Mountain Retreat — Revelstoke, British Columbia, Canada
Revelstoke has become a big destination for adventurous skiers, and as one of Canada’s top regions for backcountry skiing, it’s seen a 123-percent increase in Airbnb demand. And after hours of shredding powder nobody else has touched, having a private Jacuzzi is a must. This two-bedroom condo has one right on its private deck, along with an open kitchen, satellite TV, and a basement where you can dry your wet clothes. It’s also got an Xbox, if you want to turn your mind off at the end of the day, and an outdoor barbecue for summer outings.
Price: $225 per night
8. Golf course-front home with shared hot tub, easy ski access — Mt. Hood, Oregon
This 1,596-square-foot house sits right along the fairway at the Three Nines Golf Course, which dates all the way back to 1928. If you’re hearty, winter might not keep you off the greens, but if it does, the house is also only 12 miles from Mt. Hood Skibowl, 19 miles from Timberline Lodge, and 24 miles from Mt. Hood Meadows. The house is part of the Mt. Hood Oregon Resort, and staying here also gives you access to the resort’s sports courts, spa, playground, and other amenities.
Price: $180 per night
9. 2-bedroom condo near Mountain Rd. — Stowe, Vermont
Stowe is underrated younger brother to blown-out Killington, a quiet little town with a challenging mountain and a world-class ski resort. Lodging, however, is limited — so a big, modern condo four miles from the mountain is quite a find. This two-bedroom spot has a wood-burning fireplace and is only a couple of miles from quaint downtown Stowe. You’d be well advised to hit the restaurants at the Stowe Mountain Lodge, as well as its underground speakeasy at Linehouse.
10. Black Box Studio — Kamloops, British Columbia, Canada
Who would have thought Kamloops was a hotbed of chic, sustainable architecture? These cool container homes sit right between the Shuswap Mountains and the South Thompson River, providing sweeping views out over the hoodoo desert landscape. The 710-square-foot home and the 384-square-foot studio are connected by a communal breezeway, both showcasing sleek, modern decor with big windows and gorgeous sunrises. Though you’ll have to drive about 45 minutes to the Sun Peaks ski resort, there’s a winery within walking distance, and two more just a few minutes’ drive away — and it’s all just $76 per night.
Price: $96 per night
A version of this article was previously published on November 6, 2018, and was updated on February 19, 2021, with more information.
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