Vail Buys Stowe Mountain; Epic Pass is headed East
February 26, 2017
It was announced last week that Vail has officially purchased Stowe for $50 million. This number is shockingly low compared to the over $1 billion that Vail paid for Whistler Blackcomb this past Fall, and is even significantly lower than the $93 million that a Californian investment firm offered to pay for Jay Peak back in August. The reason for the low price tag? As it turns out, Vail has only purchased the skiing operation from the resort, meaning that all extracurriculars such as lodging, Summer activities, events, real estate, and more will continue to be handled by AIG (Stowe’s previous owners).
What does Vail’s sudden presence mean to Vermont and the East on the whole? Vail ownership has been generally seen as a net-positive for a majority of the resorts they’ve purchased, including the two Midwestern feeder hills they purchased and revived. The general concern around New England has been less about Stowe, and more about the surrounding areas who now have to compete with a 800 pound gorilla in their backyard. Will the introduction of the Epic Pass to Stowe cause skiers to abandon their home mountains in an effort to save on their yearly trips out West? Or will the already massive hordes of people at Stowe this year, combined with the promise of even bigger crowds next year, cause locals to buy their season’s pass at another less crowded ski resort? Only time will tell but it’ll certainly be interesting to it all watch unfold.
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