Sundance Resort, Utah

6,000 Acres of Sundance ...

In 1969, after making “Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid,” Robert Redford bought what was then called Timphaven from the Stewarts, a family of Scottish immigrants who had settled the canyon in the early 20th century. When he bought the the 6,000-acre property at the base of 12000-foot Mt. Timpanogos, it had a local ski resort with a chair lift, a rope tow and a burger joint. That’s it.

... and in Winter

Rejecting advice from New York investors to fill the canyon with hotels and condominiums, Redford saw his newly acquired land as an ideal locale for environmental conservation and artistic experimentation. The result is the Sundance Resort.

The Foundry Grill

The resort might be too big for some – with the range of accommodations running the gamut from studios to suites to various sets of cottages – but it is, after all, a resort. The nearly 100 rooms are done, as one upmarket travel site noted, to make the resort “part eco-lodge, part artists’ community, which is not just ethically correct but also quite aesthetically satisfying.” The rooms are “understated,” with a “handcrafted quality” and cottages are “immersed in the landscape.”

On the property, which lies northwest of Provo and southwest of Salt Lake City, is great skiing in winter but lots of summer activity too, hiking and biking in an actively preserved landscape.

The Sundance Preserve is dedicated to maintaining the balance of art, nature, and community, as well as to the cultivation of independent, innovative thought among artists, scholars, scientists, public policy, and business leaders. Located within the protected splendor of its own lands, it is the mission of the Sundance Preserve to inspire action for the benefit of civil society.

The Film Festival is in January

MOVIES, MOVIES

The Sundance Institute, started in 1981 to promote independent film, has grown too big for the resort, but the Sundance Film Festival takes place each January in nearby Park City, and certain institute programs still take place at the resort.

Sundance has a longstanding history of green policies, dating back to the property’s original purchase. The staff carry out ongoing projects each year aimed at restoring the mountain to its natural state by working to eliminate noxious weeds on the mountain, laying erosion blankets and restoring vegetation where seasonal land use has altered the terrain.

Wood and Fire, Cabin

The resort buys 226,264 kilowatt hours of wind-generated electricity each month, or 2,715,170 kilowatt hours annually, representing 100 percent of the resort’s total electricity use.

All departments at the resort buy environmentally responsible products. The General Store purchases recycled cotton grocery bags, organic cotton T-shirts and housewares made from natural and recycled materials. The restaurant and catering teams use organic produce and products, as well as chlorine-free products such as paper cups and coffee filters. Sundance’s in-room amenities feature Sprout Out, a collection showcasing the Gilchrist & Soames Naturally Kind Formulations combined with certified organic extracts of rooibos, cardamom seed, yarrow, and ginseng to gently care for skin and hair, as well as Sundance’s own organic soaps made in the Art Studio. Guests can participate in a linen re-use program, as well as other energy-saving programs.

Cabin Cozy

Sundance also has a glass kiln, since disposal of glass in Utah has its own challenges. Artists in residence from Tlaquepaque, Mexico, break down bottles, which are then transformed into decorative art and housewares used around the property.

The resort offers a carpooling incentive for ski guests. Carpools arriving with four or more skiers/snowboarders receive $5 off each lift pass when four or more are purchased.

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