Telluride Ski Resort’s Bill Jensen gives us the facts
Bill Jensen stopped by our Telluride Real Estate Corp. staff meeting to give us the latest on the new Public Health order in Telluride, CO. His first comment was that the safety of employees and guests are his top concern. The Telluride Golf Course is slated to open June 12th for members only. Families can play with members but there will be no pro shop or locker room. They are tentatively slated to open June 27th. There will be no restaurant or clubhouse, as at 50% capacity the club could only accommodate 6 people. However, the Halfway House will be fully operational and stocked with food and alcoholic beverages. The club anticipates opening up the course and the clubhouse to the public the second half of August. Retailers like Heritage Naturals will be re-opening 5 days a week beginning June 4th. Mountain Biking will also re-open 4 days a week beginning June 26th thru September 27th. Restaurants Tomboy Tavern, The Pick and Crazy Elk Pizza will open 5 days a week beginning June 24th for take out only. Jensen mentioned the generous gift of $100,000 in donations from the Town of Mountain Village for outdoor seating and heaters was crucial to the restaurants re-opening. He added that he hopes Allred’s will open for 5 nights a week the last week of June through September 26th. Allred’s will be taking reservations for 50 guests max in two seating flights: (1) 5:30 pm – 6 pm – 6:30 pm & (2) 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm – 8:30 pm. Unfortunately, there will be no Wednesday night concerts or Music on the Green this season.
Jensen reiterated much of the sentiment Colorado Flights Alliance Matt Skinner shared with us at a previous meeting. We are hoping to have ½ the seats for flights this winter, but multiple flights a day will probably regress. Coming out of a destination market, Telski’s revenues are down. This summer will see 150 less employees than the 225 they typically employ. However, Jensen remains optimistic, “I am predicting a minimum of 12 months and a maximum of 24 months to recover,” he said. San Miguel County received more than $14M in PPP funding, however Telski is ineligible due to too many employees.
Currently the town is operating its short-term lodging at 25% occupancy, around 200 people total for camping and lodging. In three weeks or so, we should see that number increase to 50%. Jensen said that with 3-11 months of ‘practicing’ the new normal, we should feel secure enough to see positive change next winter. He added that he hopes to see full restaurant seating by December 2020.
The community has shifted this last week to talking to Second Homeowners and there is a definite uptick in the activity during the weekends. Telluride is perceived as safe environment, with clean air and water, healthy people and wide-open spaces that make it an easy place to social distance. Due to many people wanting to get out of urban areas, we have seen a significant increase in 30-60-day rentals.
Jensen commented that United Airlines is flying 10% of their aircraft with around 13 people on each plane. In July we expect at 25% usage, and hopefully up to 50% by next December.
With Telluride and Mountain Village facing current water restrictions, Jensen made it clear that the golf course water supply has nothing to do with the town, that they pull from creeks and snow melt ponds and are not water restricted. He added that full crews have been grooming the course for the past two weeks and with the increasing temperatures and irrigation, we should see a lush course by the end of June. The new Zip line in Mountain Village is also currently on hold due to lack of space to social distance on the 8 ft. wooden platforms between zip lines. Jensen is hoping there will be free rides offered to the local community so people can start getting excited – the $1M dollar investment is intended to offer guests a 2 hour canopy experience tour of the Mountain Village area via 10, 40 foot platforms.