How to Spend a Million in One Aspen Weekend

Aspen, Colorado, has long served as a winter playground for the rich and famous, including virtually any celebrity with a private jet (from Jack Nicholson to, more recently, Mariah Carey). If they're not checking into one of several five-star resorts,
they own million-dollar homes, like Antonio Banderas and David Geffen. 

The A-list history can be traced back to the sixties when the Kennedys visited for a family retreat. Since then, Elvis Presley came for ski jaunts, Hunter S. Thompson set up residence and wrote his first article for Rolling Stone ("The Battle of Aspen") and John Denver wrote two songs about Aspen when living there. Over this holiday season, recently spotted celebrities include Ryan Reynolds and Blake Lively and also LeAnn Rimes and Meg Ryan with daughter Daisy.
Peak season lasts until the end of February and a top draws this year are the 2014 Winter X Games (Jan. 23-26). Additionally, Aspen continues to crank out new spots for celebrities to congregate, like David Arquette and John Terzian-owned Bootsy Bellows and Food & Wine Best Chef Tim Goodell’s Ricard (in nearby Snowmass). Here's how the elite can spend slightly over $1 million dollars in a weekend in America's richest winter destination.

With so many celebrity-owned homes in Aspen, there could be a star map rivaling Hollywood. According to Forbes, Aspen ranked as the 11th most expensive zip code in the country out of the 22,000 in 2013. It's not unusual for A-listers to purchase million-dollar homes for property investment, primarily in the West End or Red Mountain. But condos have also become hot. Real estate is booming in nearby Snowmass (a 20-minute drive from Aspen), which ranked 48 on the list. In December 2012, Viceroy Snowmass debuted 152 one to four-bedroom residences and 57 have already sold to various notables.

A-listers arrive only by private jet to Aspen. Book the top-of-the-line Gulfstream G450 (holding up to 14 passengers with spacious cabins) with Clay Lacy Aviation, a preferred private jet charter for industry executives.

Ski the Colorado mountains with the well-trained, world-class ski instructors of Ski & Snowboard Schools of Aspen. Visitors can book a full-day private lesson for a reasonable $710 but tipping the ski instructors a G isn't unusual. In fact, A-listers have been known to offer even more generous tips like condos, vacations and, most recently, a Cadillac Escalade.

Read Article