by Caroline Costello
Nestled in the heart of Breckenridge, close to peaks eight and nine and not far from downtown Break, Mountain Thunder Lodge is a distinctly family-friendly property. The guestrooms are the lodge’s best feature for families. Perfect for groups big and small, Mountain Thunder’s studio and multi-bedroom suites and town homes comfortably accommodate large families. Living rooms with plush couches and fireplaces make you feel right at home after a day on the slopes.
Mountain Thunder lodge offers ski-in access, but don’t expect to sit on your balcony and watch skiers flying down the slopes as you sip hot chocolate. The resort is set away from the base of the mountain, next to a single trail, a green-circle run called “Gondola Ski-Back Parking Access,” which connects to “Four O’Clock.” If you’re on the right side of the resort, you may see a few skiers gliding down this run, but skiers generally use this trail only when they’re heading back to their hotel (and you can too, if you’re staying here and you’re not going to the rental shops at the end of the day).
There’s no ski-out access at Mountain Thunder. But you can easily reach the base of the trails by free shuttle. And when you’re hankering for a night out on the town or a bite to eat at one of Breckenridge’s many restaurants, Main Street is just a short walk away.
Our Editor Loves
- Outdoor pool and hot tub
- Ski school for kids' ages 3 to 13
- Large suites and town homes that sleep up to 14 people
- Horse Back Riding
- Connecting Rooms
- Family Room 5+
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
Big family? No sweat. The spacious accommodations at Mountain Thunder Lodge can comfortably house families of nearly every size, from smaller groups in studio suites to up to 14 -- yes, 14! -- guests in four-bedroom units. Town houses are also available, which sleep up to six people in two bedrooms or up to eight people in three bedrooms.
All Mountain Thunder rooms have clean and modern full kitchens with granite counter tops, full-size fridges, stoves, coffee makers and even dishwashers. Cabinets are fully stocked with dishes, glasses and cutlery. Basically, it's just like your kitchen at home, and you can expect to whip up home-cooked meals and entertain with ease.
Other amenities to be found in all rooms include balconies, daily maid service, humidifiers, gas fireplaces, DVD players and sleeper sofas. Cribs are available upon request. There's an abundance of seating areas, with cozy couches and chairs set around a sturdy coffee table in the living room. And since most of the rooms -- especially the larger multi-bedroom suites -- offer a remarkable amount of square footage, your family won't feel cramped spending an evening inside watching movies or playing games. The largest units have more than 2,000 square feet of space.
While it did take one-and-a-half to two hours to get there from Denver International Airport, I found Mountain Thunder Lodge quite a comfortable place. The room I selected was a singles studio condominium that, to my delight, I was able to book for an extremely reasonable price for two nights and was located at the front of the first floor of its building, and I was also delighted with both the fireplace and the DVD player that went with the room; the only problem I had was that the mattress was a bit too softy for comfortable sleeping..I also found it a convenient location; most of the places I wanted to go (restaurants, mostly) were within walking distance, and a free shuttle service is provided for places outside the town itself, such as the Nordic Center. My stay was only two nights, so I did not have much interaction with the Lodge staff, but the ladies at the front desk were extremely cheerful and helpful in both checking in and checking out.
I would definitely recommend Mountain Thunder Lodge for anyone staying in the Breckenridge area, but I would also advise to book well in advance (so as to possibly get a reasonable rate if you're on a budget) and to check ALL the travel/hotel websites (for the same reason).
by Bonnie S
We stayed one night in a one bedroom condo in building 5. It was very clean and spacious with a fireplace and outdoor seating area. The kitchen was spotless with all the amenities you would need. The staff at the check in counter were very helpful with suggestions for things to do and places to eat. They honored our request to check in early, and I so appreciate that. There is a free shuttle that will drop you off and pick up downtown, which helps on a Saturday night. The location is a little off the downtown area, very quiet and peaceful, yet close to restaurants and downtown. I will be coming back in the future!
The main attraction at Breckenridge is, of course, its perfect powdery slopes. To get to the trails from Mountain Thunder, you'll take a free shuttle to the base of the peak you want to ski, and then a gondola to the bottom of the slopes. Various rental shops are located throughout Breckenridge; the shuttle will take you to these as well. When you're done hitting the trails for the day, head down the "Gondola Ski-Back Parking Access" trail and ski right to the door of your resort!
A variety of lessons for young and old skiers alike are on offer at the Breckenridge Ski and Ride School. Kids ages 3 to 13 can spend the day in a group setting, improving their skills and getting to know other young skiers. Or parents can arrange for private lessons and the whole family can learn to ski together.
One Ski Hill Place
Guests staying at Mountain Thunder Lodge have full access to all amenities at One Ski Hill Place, the lodge's luxurious sister resort located directly on the slopes at peak eight. Ski or take the free shuttle to One Ski Hill Place, where a wide range of family-friendly activities await: two full-size bowling lanes, an indoor pool, an indoor and outdoor hot tub (offering fantastic views of the mountain), a fitness center, a movie theater, pool tables, restaurants and more! There is a separate children's pool, in addition to a pool just for adults. Best of all, it's free to use all of these great facilities.
While a few of the restaurants at One Ski Hill Place are open to the public, access to the rest of the resort's impressive amenities is restricted to guests of the hotel and of Mountain Thunder Lodge. Prices for lodging at Mountain Thunder are generally more affordable than those at the upscale One Ski Hill Place, and free admittance to Ski Hill's fantastic facilities -- without paying luxury prices -- is a wonderful perk. Just remember to make reservations for the bowling well in advance, as it's quite popular.
Outdoor Pool & Hot Tub
Pack your swimsuit! The outdoor hot tub and heated pool are perfect for soaking your muscles after a long day on the slopes. There's no separate swimming area for kids, but children are welcome in the main pool. (For a kids pool, head over to One Ski Hill Place.)
While the resort's free shuttle will cart your family nearly anyplace they want to go (within Breckenridge), it's nice to walk once in a while. Stretch your legs and head downtown for a family dinner or hot breakfast before hitting the slopes at one of Breckenridge's many restaurants.
Though there's no onsite dining at Mountain Thunder Lodge, the resort offers a grocery delivery program. Select the foods you'd like to order on the grocery's website, and your groceries will be delivered right to your room.
Giampietro Pasta & Pizzeria is a family-friendly restaurant located on Main Street. Specializing in pizza, the restaurant serves Italian cuisine on traditional checkered table clothes. Downstairs at Eric's can also be found only a few blocks from Mountain Thunder Lodge. Kids will love the restaurant's arcade, and the burgers are also very popular. It's a cinch to walk to a variety of other area eateries, as well.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Mountain Thunder Lodge doesn't have any kids' clubs. However, Breckenridge Child Care, which has several locations throughout town, offers babysitting services for infants and toddlers. Childcare is available at select centers throughout the year.
There are washers and dryers at several locations in the resort, and they're free to use (no coins needed). But remember to pack your own laundry detergent and dryer sheets.
The Art of Smart Timing
Mountain Thunder Lodge is open year-round. The busiest time to visit the property is during the winter between November and April, when skiers flock to Breckenridge's famous slopes. The least popular times (and the seasons during which you'll find the cheapest rates at most resorts in Breckenridge) are the spring and fall seasons. During summer, guests staying at Mountain Thunder Lodge will find plenty of outdoor activities to keep themselves busy, from hiking to biking to outdoor concerts and festivals.
Breckenridge is equidistant from both Denver International Airport and Colorado Springs Airport; the drive from both airports to town takes roughly 90 minutes. For guests driving to Breckenridge, Mountain Thunder Lodge offers free parking in an underground garage.
The resort offers a free shuttle that will transport guests anywhere within town.
For Mom and Dad
At One Ski Hill Place, parents can take advantage of the Mountain Thunder's sister resort's Rejuvenation Center, where licensed massage therapists work wonders on sore muscles. The Rejuvenation Center is located adjacent to the sauna, steam room and aquatics center at One Ski Hill. Spend a day recharging at the resort while the kids take lessons on nearby slopes.