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Holiday Valley

Holiday Valley Road Ellicottville, 14731 us 716 699 2644 website: http://holidayvalley.com
Ranked No. 4 overall by readers in our 2010 Resort Guide

Reviewed by

Nov 06, 2008

avg. snowfall

180 in

number of runs

58

base elevation

1,500

peak elevation

2,250

vertical drop

750

skiable acres

270

Yes, Holiday Valley. No. 4 in the East. Ahead of Whiteface, ahead of Killington, ahead of Sugarbush, ahead of...well, you get the point. We know this: They’re not doing it with Terrain Variety or Challenge—not on 750 vertical feet, anyway. But that only underscores how successful this not-so-little Western New York resort dynamo is in serving the needs of its constituents. True, lots of Holiday Valley survey respondents aren’t comparing the place to the far-off mountains of, say, Vermont or the Adirondacks. But loyal Holiday Valley skiers are proud of their home hill, and by any standard, the charms of Ellicottville are obvious: real snow (thank you, lake effect), cozy village, lively scene, plenty of soul. “Best ski town east of the Rockies,” asserts one reader. “Great small-town feel,” adds another. All the busy bars and restaurants add up to “awesome après scene” (No. 3 in the East) and a high rank for Dining (No. 4). Meanwhile, the ski area makes the most of what it has: Respondents rank it No. 2 in lifts, for instance. (Admittedly, that’s a little tough to swallow if you’re say, Stratton, which has five high-speed lifts to Holiday’s two; but impressive by local standards nonetheless.) Family Programs rank a respectable No. 4, thanks largely to the efforts of the “awesome, highly knowledgeable” ski school employees. Holiday keeps it real in terms of pricing—and earns a No. 6 for Value. And its Terrain Parks (No. 7) do a great job of keeping the tweens and teens happy and out of trouble. In general, “they do a lot with their 750 vertical feet,” says one reader. “They work hard and keep making improvements,” adds another. Crowds can be a problem. So can the limits of geography. “Need more hill,” one reader admits. But the charms of Ellicottville and the fun, laid-back atmosphere of the mountain—“friendliest mountain staff in the industry”—seal the deal for skiers of Western New York and beyond. Just goes to show, the quality of a ski experience can’t always be measured in vertical feet.

/ What’s New / The $40 million Tamarack Club, scheduled to open in December with 79 condo units, spa, restaurant/bar, indoor/outdoor pool and hot tubs

/ Don’t Miss / A spin through Mud, Sweat & Gears, one of the nation’s better managed and more soulful ski and bike shops

/ Mandatory Run / Happy Glade, a low-angle stand of CCC-planted Norwegian spruces

reviews of Holiday Valley
My Rating:
0
fashion blog Doing so much with so little. Holiday Valley is the class of the Western New York ski resorts. The Apres is one of the things that gives Holiday Valley a leg up as the atmosphere of Ellicottville can rival the towns of Mont-Tremblant and Lake Placid. 3 high speed lifts is great for a small resort.
My Rating:
0
Very versatile resort in the fact that its a great place for skiers and boarders (like I am) and has lots and lots of great night skiing. Crowds are a problem but thats because they are no other big resorts in the area to offset the rush (Kissing Bridge has a good following, but will probably never be near the level of HV). There could be better terain parks (and thats the only category in which the Valley really loses out to Kissing Bridge). The mountain itself is still less than half the size of the Vermont powerhouses. But the staff is great and the resort is always trying to keep expanding. To me, I would have to say that Holiday Valley should fall around #10 in the eastfashion blog
My Rating:
4
Doing so much with so little. Holiday Valley is the class of the Western New York ski resorts. The Apres is one of the things that gives Holiday Valley a leg up as the atmosphere of Ellicottville can rival the towns of Mont-Tremblant and Lake Placid. 3 high speed lifts is great for a small resort. Very versatile resort in the fact that its a great place for skiers and boarders (like I am) and has lots and lots of great night skiing. Crowds are a problem but thats because they are no other big resorts in the area to offset the rush (Kissing Bridge has a good following, but will probably never be near the level of HV). There could be better terain parks (and thats the only category in which the Valley really loses out to Kissing Bridge). The mountain itself is still less than half the size of the Vermont powerhouses. But the staff is great and the resort is always trying to keep expanding. To me, I would have to say that Holiday Valley should fall around #10 in the east
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