by Traci L. Suppa
Nestled in the Uinta Mountains, the only range in the United States to run east to west, the Montage Deer Valley Resort in Park City, Utah, claims a picturesque perch at an altitude of more than 8,300 feet.
The upscale aesthetic here is refined Mountain Craftsman. At first glance, it looks like a lodge, but there’s more marble than timber, and the rustic-style fixtures are on a grand scale. Despite the subdued opulence, the Montage has a warm, welcoming vibe toward families. During our stay, we saw an equal number of families, couples and single business travelers.
High season here is winter, as this is one of North America’s top-rated ski resorts. There is true ski-in/ski-out access, with three high-speed chairlift stops on the property. Whether you’re a skier or not, there’s plenty to do the rest of the year, thanks to the full range of indoor and outdoor activities offered through the Compass outfitting shop.
With no immediate neighbors, the Montage’s mid-mountain location is serene and quiet. The views are expansive, and on a clear day, you can see the state of Wyoming 70 miles away. Park City’s celebrated Main Street is less than 10 minutes by car or via the complimentary, on-demand resort shuttle.
Our Editor Loves
- Secluded, mountainside location
- Supervised childcare program
- Indoor and outdoor recreational activities
- Children Programs
- Family Room 5+
- Free Wi-Fi
- Game Room
- Onsite Dining
Rooms & Rates
The Montage Deer Valley Resort has 154 deluxe guestrooms and more than 66 suites and residences. Guestrooms are a spacious 600 square feet, and the two configurations available include either one king bed or two queens. Rooms can be combined to create two-bedroom suites. Both cribs and portable play yards are available to borrow. Fine amenities -- including 400-thread-count Egyptian cotton sheets and down bedding, bathrobes and slippers -- add a high level of comfort.
Guestrooms and Suites
The guestroom layout included a small foyer where the honor bar and fridge were located, a walk-in closet, a dedicated work space, an ample furnished balcony and a loveseat at the foot of the bed in front of the large, flat-screen LCD TV. The gas fireplace provides a warm glow with real flames, and generates a fair amount of heat. It is automatically set to turn off after about an hour. Lighting throughout the room, which includes a stylish chandelier over the bed, is ample and set on dimmers, which take some time to figure out how to use. The complimentary Wi-Fi was fast and reliable.
The bathroom was large by most standards, with a separate water closet for the toilet, a marble-surround soaking tub and a stand-alone shower. Inside the shower was a marble bench seat and two shower heads; a traditional fixture from the wall and an oversized rain shower fixture from the ceiling. An extended selection of complimentary toiletries is provided, too.
Regardless of your room's location, views will be spectacular and serene. Set into a mountain range at 8,300 feet, the property faces undulating wooded hills in every direction. With no immediate neighbors, you can sit on your balcony and enjoy the quiet rustle of leaves. The evergreens offer year-round color, while the aspen and birch trees sport changing foliage spring through fall.
Each guestroom and suite receives twice-daily housekeeping, including turndown service. Check-in time is 3 p.m.; check out is noon.
The resort offers several residence units to guests as an alternative to the traditional guestrooms. If you would like access to a kitchen, laundry facilities and other household amenities, consider staying in one of these.
I expected this place to packed but it seem very low key and calming. The food was amazing the rooms were fabulous can’t wait to come back in the up season and mingle with my whole family for the holidays
by Tamika B
First let me start off by saying that I would stay at this hotel again simply because I like the peace and quiet of the property off season. I was there in September. The weather is warm during the days and cool at night with pretty autumn leaves. I was here on AMEX Fine hotels and resort package.
Pre check in: The valet/door man/driving team actually stood out the most at this hotel. They made me feel welcome at the moment I arrived. When the door person took me to the front desk we stood there for 10 minutes while the front desk staff ignored me and dealt with phone calls. There was only one staff person. It was all a bit awkward and finally he said let me find someone to help us. During that time, he tried his best to make the hotel shine by acting as concierge and telling me about different things to do. He also brought me a newspaper. This man's name was Mark. Really excellent!
Check in: I was told my early check in was not available. The hotel (per staff) was no where near capacity. I also did not see many people during my stay although it is a large property. My point is this was a bit odd. So you would think the hotel front desk would suggest something for me as I was carless from an early flight from LAX. Nope. So I said well is there some place on the property I can relax. She then proceeded to tell me of different spots. You would think she would show me these spots. Nope. So I said well can you show me? This was all very strange. I think she is well meaning. I think the issue is which was a theme throughout my stay is that staff in many areas are not trained at the level of a 5 star resort. I know that some are only here for seasonal work but they should have a bootcamp of sorts. I'm not sure. The hotel would benefit from talking to the Mandarin Oriental were I have never had a service issue. At any rate, I digress. Twenty minutes later she contacts me to say my room is available and its an upgraded room. She goes over the fine amenities items. What she doesn't tell me is 1. there is a cute hotel dog that shows up to pet 2. there is a cool bowling alley 3. there is archery lessons you can take 4. in the evenings there are smores. It was astonishing that I had to learn of these things talking to the hotel bartender and other patrons. I really missed out on some of the activities considering I was here for rest and relaxation. Again, not her fault. This is a problem with management not demonstrating to staff what a 5 star experience is versus if you are just at the Hilton Garden Inn. Staff performed more at the level of the latter. Furthermore, someone named Walt when I called the front desk said to me when I inquired when housekeeping would come as I had been gone and I returned around 3pm to a filthy room, "Keep in mind they have until 5pm to clean the rooms." Uh, ok. Again, not a 5 star response. After hanging up I called house keeping myself and their response was "We will be right there."
Bell service: Excellent. He was helpful in setting up my room and a bit more involved than I've seen.
Concierge: The positives are they followed up in a professional and timely manner. The negatives are they didn't seem to have many great ideas. Again, the drivers/bell service are the ones that told me which restaurants to eat at. A bit odd. What I mean is if concierge has someone come to their desk for fly fishing, in a 5 star place then after that is settled they should ask would you like us to book you dinner, etc etc. That being said the fly fishing experience I did was phenomenal. I believe I was with the owner of the company and it was just the two of us. Great experience and I would go back and do that.
Activities: Loved fly fishing (of course its costly but it was worth it to me). Enjoyed the free archery lesson I had. It was fun and the instructor was personable.
Room: The room was pretty far from the rest of the hotel. It was supposedly an upgraded room. What it was is someone's montage condo. I dont know what the other upgrades look like but for me the room positives were there was a nice view. The negatives are there was some awful noise at night and for a while I thought I was imaging it and when maintenance came it turned out I wasn't and there was something wrong with the air filter. I didn't sleep two of the nights because of this but I should have told someone earlier. There is a lovely fireplace that warms up quite nicely. The tv remote was dirty.
House keeping: Terrible unfortunately BUT very responsive and apologetic. Staff frequently forgot things like one time the staff left their dirty rug in the tub. When I entered the room, the robe was full of old food stain or something. They did come replace it and left chocolates. They left chocolates every night. Unfortunately, I dont eat that sort of thing so it may be helpful to ask if a person wants fruit instead. Thats me being particular but really housekeeping needs to pay attention to details.
Laundry service: Did not utilize
Room service: Pricey but fine in a pinch. The food is nothing to write home about. Standard American fare. They were prompt. Unfortunately, they showed up in the top of the morning to collect the tray even though I had not pressed the button. This also happened with house keeping. What I mean is I clearly had a do not disturb sign on and they showed up.
Random managers throughout looked friendly and said hello
Spa: Oh, boy. I know spas. The spa attendant decided not to do deep tissue when I requested and paid for it and a lot of other things. It was really terrible. The front desk spa desk man was extremely unprofessional and not up to the standard of a 5 star. I had to ask to speak to the manager. She offered me a free massage on my departure day. That was very nice but it was unfortunate as I really was looking forward to a drama free spa experience. Otherwise the facilities are nice. The pool area is full of families and can be noisy. Unfortunately, unlike other 5 star properties you can not order what you want in the indoor pool and spa. At the Montage in Beverly Hills, one has access to any food on the entire property. Here you are limited so no mimosa and breakfast at the spa.
Pool: Indoor: See above. Its large and nice and there is a jacuzzi. I did not go in. I like to wear bathing suits but not really get in the water. Outdoor: spectacular and great service. Lovely experience just dont order the pineapple drink-first its 30 bucks and second it attracts bees. lol
Bar area: Very friendly bartenders from the bourbon area to the main lounge area. The bartenders also gave tips on things concierge normally would have assisted with.
Gym: This was a very nice gym with great classes. Definitely at standard. There was not a gym attendant at all times but I expect this is because this was low season.
Breakfast: Meh. It was okay but not spectacular to be honest. For me it was included. The staff at the restaurant were subpar like others. What I mean is they tried but they havent been trained. For instance, no offering of a newspaper to a solo diner which is customary. Sort of lax behavior and gossiping with their colleagues. Not very good at seating. Seriously to wait 15 minutes when the dining hall is half empty is a bit absurd. It's all because a lack of coordination.
So, most of this review was negative but I loved the actual physical space. I loved how in Sept at least the hotel is not very full so one can just read a book in the lobby and not be bothered. I thought the staff for the most part tried they just didnt seem trained to be honest. They are fine for a 3 star hotel but not at the caliber I'm used to. I will return and I hope the hotel has put some emphasis on training and education of staff.
With an ideal location atop Empire Pass, the Montage Deer Valley Resort is one of North America's top-rated ski resorts. Other outdoor winter recreation activities available include snowshoeing, ice skating, cross-country skiing, snowmobiling and sleigh riding. In the spring, summer, and fall, guests enjoy hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding, swimming, fly-fishing kayaking, rafting and golf.
In addition to the activities offered through Compass and Paint Box, two programs delighted us. Marshmallow roasting is a nightly ritual at any of several fire pits located on the property. All the makings for S'mores are provided, including homemade marshmallows in several different flavors.
Montage also has its own resident "canine ambassadors;" two well-behaved Bernese Mountain dogs. They are brought to the lobby three times a day to meet and greet guests.
The hub of all activities is the onsite outfitting shop, Compass. "Camp Compass" features 30 recreational activities on property, indoors and outdoors, which vary by season. Inside the shop is a Ping-Pong table, and just outside is a volleyball net, disc golf, horseshoes, croquet and bocce ball.
Parents are welcome to join their kids in many group activities, like outdoor photography, family yoga, guided nature hikes, fly-casting lessons, horse-drawn sleigh rides, archery lessons and outdoor concerts. With instructors on hand, several parents competed side-by-side with their kids to hit the center archery target and earn bragging rights.
The shop is also located close to the ski lift and convenient during ski season, which runs from December through March. Compass staff serves as guests' personal ski concierge and valet, by storing and preparing all ski equipment, arranging lift tickets and lessons and even warming boots.
Come spring, they offer the same level of service for biking, by providing street and mountain bikes and all necessary equipment.
Paint Box provides organized children's activities in a relatively small but well-stocked room with arts and crafts, toys for dramatic play, computers and more. This is a drop-in center for kids ages 5 to 12, which allows parents to enjoy child-free time. In addition to the indoor facility, kids are treated to supervised outdoor activities like painting, nature photography sessions, scavenger hunts, guided hikes and mountain bike treks, species spotting with a naturalist, fly-fishing instruction and picnics.
Paint Box is open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Kids can go for the morning session (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.), the afternoon session (12 to 4 p.m.), or all day. Each session includes a meal and snack. Evening sessions from 6 to 10 p.m. are also offered on Friday and Saturday nights. Normally it is fine to drop into any session, but during high season, it's best to reserve your child's spot ahead of time.
Alpine Pool Deck
In addition to a full-sized pool, there is a 1.5-foot deep wading pool for young children, and a large hot tub for adults with a circular stone table in the middle for resting drinks.
The chaise lounges have thick, comfortable cushions. While we were there, a water polo net was set up, and several kids were playing.
The pools are heated and open year-round from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m., daily. The property's only indoor pool is located in the spa, and offers family hours from 9 to 11 a.m. and 5 to 7 p.m.
Daly's Pub & Rec
The most casual of all onsite eateries, Daly's offers kid-friendly fare, such as brick oven pizza and hamburgers. Two signature beers have been created for the resort using Utah hops: Monty's Belgian Ale (named after the property's canine mascot) and the Montage Mountain Ale, which is used in the batter for the tasty fish and chips.
Daly's is the place your older kids will want to spend their evenings, especially in the arcade with video games and four Wii stations. There's also a pool table, table shuffleboard, foosball and darts. We really enjoyed the bowling alley, which has four lanes available and circular banquette seating with tables so you can dine at the lane.
The resort's signature restaurant is an American grill featuring farm-to-table ingredients. Three meals a day are served here, as well as a skier's brunch in season, which allows skiers to have a quick meal. The dress code is casual by day, but dinner service is geared to adults in more formal attire. The outdoor dining facility on the mountainside terrace is heated and available year round.
Buzz Coffee and Tea
This espresso bar offers a full range of hot and cold coffee drinks, gelato and grab-and-go snack items for picnics or to take to the ski slopes. It's only open from 7 a.m. to 3 p.m.
Vista Lounge & Terrace
This space is a great room, open all day. At one end is a bar, which serves handcrafted cocktails in the evenings, along with classic bistro fare, Asian-inspired small plates and desserts. There is nightly entertainment, including a pianist.
This small eatery adjacent to the Vista Lounge is only open in the evenings during the summer and winter seasons. The menu features fresh sushi rolls and nigiri, sake flight pairings and beers from around the world.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
The Montage Deer Valley Resort sits at an altitude of more than 8,300 feet. If you're traveling there from a low-lying region, you may feel some effects of the altitude. The most prominent for us was the dry air, which lead to a near-constant thirst. More severe effects could include headaches and shortness of breath. The easiest prevention is to stay well-hydrated.
Complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the resort
The Art of Smart Timing
The resort is open year round but high season here is winter ski season.
The closest airport is Salt Lake City, approximately 40 minutes away.
Utilize the complimentary, on-demand shuttle service for trips into Park City. Before you leave, grab a business card from the Resort Transportation desk so you'll have their number handy to call for your return ride. They will pick you up anywhere along Main Street, although the Post Office is a central, convenient meeting place close to the Park City Museum, a must-see attraction your children will enjoy.
For Mom and Dad
Take advantage of Paint Box, and plan to leave your kids there for a few hours so you can indulge in a spa treatment, time on the slopes or a Main Street shopping excursion. It's even open on Friday and Saturday nights, so you can enjoy a leisurely gourmet meal at Apex. The Paint Box does not take children younger than five years old, but babysitting services are available through the concierge.
The Spa, with its opulent decor, is the largest in the state of Utah. While the facility is oriented to adults, certain treatments are available for teens 16 and older. The facility's "surrender" program pairs you with a specialist who interviews you to determine what your individual needs are, and then customizes your treatments to suit.