While the discussion of which destinations have yet to be determined, the new runway upgrade is scheduled to start this summer. During that time the airport will be closed for about four months. The runway will be lengthened by 1,000 feet to allow for certain aircrafts to carry more fuel and still be able to take off. Because of the altitude in the Vail Valley, in summer the runway is not long enough for the big planes to take off. Analysis is still being done on the cost effectiveness to fly longer distances and to which locations.
Direct flights to the Vail Valley from the top cities in the U.S. will make Vail more attractive to those people who are looking for ease of travel. Let’s face it, air travel is not quite like a visit to the dentist, but it is getting close to it. The more painless it is to get here, the higher up on people’s vacation list Vail will rise.
Meetings are being held to decide the next steps for the Eagle County Airport. Does the current situation provide ample needs for the Vail Valley or is expansion and growth going to become a necessity? Are international destinations to Vail something that is a worthwhile venture to look into? Going international not only poses the question of fuel and capacity but also of the need for a customs booth which is a big obstacle to overcome. But boy would that be a big plus to our Real Estate sales. As of right now we get foreign visitors but not so many foreign buyers of our Vail Real Estate.
There is also the forever on going talks of adding a special exit off of I-70 to make the airport more accessible. Currently, the drive time to the town of Vail from the Airport is about 30 minutes. Direct access to the highway may not take a huge amount of time off that trip, but certainly will make it easier.
You can come visit us by flying through Denver this summer and then taking a really scenic drive up here. It is worth the drive and you will see what the locals say about what brought them here to begin with and why they are still here. “You come for the snow but stay because of the Summers”.
The last few weeks of ski season, or the first couple weeks of April have seen record snow fall at Vail and Beaver creek. The great snow conditions coupled with Easter and Holy week falling so late in the year has somewhat helped Vail to recover some lost revenue. Real estate which follows the visitor trend was way off. See stats on www.VailValleyLiving.com. The last two weeks of March saw lower lift-ticket revenue than usual and less than stellar snow fall.
Both retail shops and rental agencies reported similar experiences seeing some slight decline over the normal numbers for end of March. Guest bookings for the entire 2008-2009 ski season were down around 12.8 percent compared to last year. And while Vail resorts also saw a 6.2% decline in skier visits compared with last year, despite the incredible sales of the popular Epic pass, the shortfall still seems relatively minor compared to what is happening in the rest of the country. Next years Epic pass sales have already started, a small amount of money down is required.
Our Real Estate seems soft in terms of the number of sales and sellers are dropping prices as the season ends. The next 6 weeks are the premium feasting time for Buyers as Sellers who did not sell will want out and after the 1st of May they will be looking for the summer crowd to help them.
There is some good news for those looking to get a new piece of the Vail real estate market. The Ritz Carlton ResidencesTM in Vail Colorado which is currently under construction, announced that they have dropped their prices and are giving a 20% discount. The Real Estate project which is scheduled to be completed by fall of 2010 has 24 unsold residences with some now selling at about $1,624 per square foot. As an added bonus, all buyers will receive a social membership to the beautiful Arrabelle Club, which will include lockers, ski storage, access to the spa and dining services at the base of the mountain in Lionshead near the Gondola.
The question is will this be enough to get any sales? The banner name is not really represented in the product. No spa, no restaurant on site, mixing fractional ownership with whole owner ship with no barriers of access to either part. If and that is an (if) the proposed lift happens, it is across the street near the water treatment plant.
For those buyers already having purchased one of the new residences, a 15% discount will be given on the property as well as an Arrabelle social membership. But you can buy in the Arrabelle which is steps from two lifts with some selling for less than $1,624 per square foot with tons of shopping and amenities including room service for food. See all the Arrabelle listings at www.AllVailListings.com under Lionshead as well as all the Ritz-CarltonTM properties.
The Ritz-CarltonTM Residences are 71 whole-ownership residences that range in size from two-bedroom homes to a six-bedroom penthouse; plus fractional ownership opportunities.
Vail/Lionshead, Beaver Creek, Bachelor Gulch, and Arrowhead
We are seeing a push to create a real estate auction market here in the Vail Valley. So are auctions the answer to getting everyone off the fence? Will it get the market moving? Who comes out the best?
Sellers who send their real estate to auction are finally really sellers. The caveat is that this is true only if the reserve (minimal accepted bid) is at a realistic price when their past listed price was not realistic (did not bring forth any buyers). If it is too high then it will still be unsold real estate since they are in de facto the highest bidder.
Buyers who show up as end users along side the speculators and bid can create the new bar to create sustainable comparables. If just speculators show up, the reserve may never get met. If the speculators do the bidding, have we really learned where the bottom is?
The first auction in Vail will be July 28th and we will learn pretty quickly who the winners are. The prospective bidders will have $50,000 deposited into a holding company and be able to close in 30 days max, then Katie bar the door.
Can we get real movement? Can we get a new base line from these sales? Only time will tell.
The market will turn when the banks make loans (ask anyone trying to market or buy or refinance real estate and the reality is the banks do not want to lend, forget what the banks PR teams are putting out). Low rates and low prices only work when people can borrow the money needed to buy the properties and the prices create incentive to buy.