Property sales in top US ski resort of Aspen hit eight year high

Sales in Aspen, regarded as the US’s premier ski resort, have reached an eight year high, and prices are up 3.9% year on year.

The data from Knight Frank residential partners Douglas Elliman shows that the resort, which covers four mountains, saw more than 80 properties changing hands in the first nine months of 2015, nine of which were above US$10.6 million.

Aspen Mountain itself generated the strongest volume of property enquiries and the highest property prices, with values around US$3,000 per square foot, the report reveals.

By comparison, a luxury home on one of the neighbouring mountains of Snowmass, Buttermilk and Highlands ranges from US$1,000 to US$2,000 per square foot.

Overall residential prices in Aspen rose by 3.9% in the 12 months to September 2015 and more enquiries have been coming from Chinese buyers.

The report explains that each resort has its own distinct appeal. Aspen Highlands is favoured by the locals, Snowmass appeals to families and Buttermilk is considered the best mountain for beginners.

Property demand is primarily domestic but international interest is on the rise. Alongside those Europeans seeking a ski retreat, primarily German, French and British, and Australian and Chinese enquiries are strengthening.

Aspen is described as a truly year round resort, offering a programme of events from Jazz Aspen, Food and Wine Classic, the Aspen Music Festival and the Aspen Institute’s Ideas Festival in the summer months. The X Games, Wintersköl and World Cup Ski Championships dominate the winter months.

The report says all of this helps to put Aspen on the radar of international buyers. Aspen, due to its cooler climate, is also popular with Texans and Californians in the summer months.

It adds that the Aspen-Pitkin Co. Airport is located less than four miles from the heart of Aspen and has a more regular service from major carriers than any other regional ski town airport in North America.

In the winter, its regular, weekly flights number more than 170. In addition to regular service from Denver, Aspen sees more than 20 flights a week from Chicago and Los Angeles.