elcome to Colorful Colorado, reads a wooden sign mounted roadside on the drive up the foothills towards Breckenridge. The air feels crisper as we rise in altitude, passing mountain towns between quiet landscapes. Breckenridge, less than a two hour drive from Denver, is most known for family-friendly skiing midst a town lined with historic homes from the gold rush era turned into shops, cafes, breweries and more. Getting out of the city and into the mountains creates space to discover an elevated sense of escape. Without the pricey glitz of Aspen and more local vibe than Beaver Creek, a trip to Breckenridge is sure to replenish both mind and spirit.
Photo by Kait Herzog
The experts at Luxury Retreats, an arm of Airbnb, sift through endless pages of rental properties and spotlight only top-tier vacation house rentals in Breckenridge. Vacationing in a home means a lot more space than a hotel with flexibility to host a mountain happy hour or in-house spa day in a new and exciting space. Revel in what life could be like living in nature, or just enjoy sleeping in past the hotel’s famed maid knocking on your door.
If you’re not skier but still want to see the mountain, take a ride up Independence Chairlift to Pioneer Crossing on Peak 7. Unrivaled views pour in through the windows, framing the camp-chic dining hall with a vibrant backdrop. Warm up with an Irish coffee served in a vintage-style camping mug and swap stories with the bartender, who probably has a few.
Originally built as a privately-owned home in the 1800’s, the blue cottage tucked between trees serves up gourmet food and drinks, with a lovely $5 happy hour menu. The restaurant doesn’t even have an Instagram account, adding points to the Victoria era cottage-in-the-woods vibe. Make a reservation for dinner, and start out on the patio before heading in for some Rocky Mountain fine dining.
The Breckenridge Distillery is one of the top bourbon makers in the world. Stop in for a quick sip at the tasting room on Main street, or plan an evening around a visit to the new location, which welcomes a full-bar and restaurant in a lively space. Craft cocktails and local bison short ribs await…
Mohawk Lake, Photo by Jacquelyn Lumley
Mohawk Lake Trail
Hike along the Mohawk Lake Trail, where waterfalls and wildflowers pave the way between rocks and boulders. The five mile round-trip hike leads to a collection of fresh-water lakes. It’s so peaceful and quiet you might want to stay the night, and you can! Dispersed backcountry camping is allowed and no permit is necessary. Just make sure to bring a tent with some firewood too, because open flames are allowed (during dry seasons, there may be restrictions) and see if you can spot any moose or elks tracks along the way.
A spa day might be just what you need to assimilate to Breckenridge’s 9,600 foot altitude. Alpine Spa at The Lodge has got you covered with a High Elevation massage option to ease altitude sickness by stimulating the circulatory system and delivering more oxygen to your tissues. Pave way for total relaxation by booking a treatment upon arrival to ease any tension.
Those who choose to live surrounded in nature tend to develop a unique perspective on life. Summit County’s longest-running fine art gallery, located on Main street, showcases canvas artwork. photography, home goods and more created by a wide range of artists. Reflect on some local artistic interpretation or take home a memento to elevate your own living space.