Overview: From Anchorage, take the scenic Seward Highway 40 miles south into the Chugach Mountains. There you'll find this 304-room resort offering onsite guide services, shops, and restaurants—plus a saltwater pool. The great room with cathedral ceiling peers out over coastal temperate rainforest and Alyeska Resort.
Notable: Olympian Tommy Moe calls Girdwood home, and trained downhill at Alyeska (1,400 acres, 643-inch snowfall). Take the seven-minute tram ride from the hotel's back door for views of the Chugach, seven hanging glaciers, giant spruce, and occasional wildlife. While you're up there, dine at the award-winning Seven Glaciers.
Our Take: The rooms are spacious, comfortable, and family-friendly, keeping the resort busy summer and winter. During spring break, the pool is teeming with kids. Other times, it's a mix of skiers, travelers, and business people.
Stay Here If: You like comfort without attitude. The hotel is a perfect basecamp for adventurers: drive or fly to three national parks, skiing, snowmobiling, rafting, ice climbing, downhill mountain biking, fishing, hiking, and paragliding.
Information: Regular rates start at $149 (summer) and $299 (winter) for a standard. alyeskaresort.com —Berne Broudy
From the Spring 2012 issue