Pampered, Privileged and Fun-Loving Vail

Solaris Residences in Vail

Private Terrace at Solaris

More Stylin’ at Solaris

Maybe you’re a part of the one percent and are looking for a great lodging recommendation in Colorado. Maybe you just want to peek behind closed doors to see how the ultra rich vacation. Or, maybe you just want some insider tips on where to find some family fun in Vail, Colorado. Either way, please read on and enjoy my pictures.

Sleeping in Style

Sweet Dreams

Like many other travelers, the ultra rich have discovered the joys of vacationing in our mountain towns winter and summer. What’s changed in recent years, however, is that in addition to staying in hotels and houses, they like to stay–or reside in–residences. I’m talking full-service spreads that can make them feel at home in sprawling style while delighting in the benefits of the amenities of a full-service hotel.

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Sweet Basil

Sweet Basil in Vail, Colorado

Sweet Basil in Vail, Colorado

Oh, sweet basil. I hope you’ve been delighting in plenty of this ambrosial herb this summer, especially served up with heirloom tomatoes, buffalo milk mozzarella, rich olive oil and aged balsamic. Hallelujah. I love this time of year. And perhaps no other ingredient conjures up images of a memorable, aromatic meal than sweet basil.

Jumbo Lump Blue Crab Salad in the Heart of the Rockies

Jumbo Lump Blue Crab Salad in the Heart of the Rockies

Sweet Basil. Such an appropriate name for a restaurant that creates and presents dish after dish of extraordinary flavor, texture and finesse. And they’ve been doing so for some thirty-three years. In Vail, Colorado, in perhaps the top mountain destination of North America where jet setters and regular folk flock season after season in search of great skiing, tons of mountain fun and always a fine meal to be enjoyed in a tony setting.

If it’s a warm, late or Indian summer day, start out with a Pimm’s Cup, perhaps out on the front patio of this Vail Village restaurant, a refreshing opener of Pimm’s, the ever-so flavorful gin-based liqueur, served with fresh-squeezed lemon and garnished with lime and cucumber. That, or a perfectly chilled glass of rosé, will accompany your study of Sweet Basil’s glorious lunch and dinner menus just right. Menus that take you on a journey through Colorado’s most delectable offerings of locally-sourced products, prime ingredients from all over the country and dishes prepared with great originality and panache. But it’s never too much. Just like sweet basil, you can always count on the perfect balance of flavor in all that you taste within this lovely dining establishment.

Sweet Basil:  Always a Lively Scene

Sweet Basil: Always a Lively Scene

At times Sweet Basil can nonetheless be downright astonishing. I was dazzled by one of my most memorable dishes ever here: a compressed watermelon salad consisting of warm, grilled haloumi cheese, cool filets of condensed watermelon (sous vide or vacuum packed) mint, watercress and aged balsamic. Fabuleux! And that was only for starters.

I’ve lunched twice at Sweet Basil and it now ranks among my top recommendations for best culinary experience in Colorado. As for the ambiance, it can’t be beat either. I love the mix of locals and international guests, all casually yet smartly dressed and clearly quite ebullient about the stories they have to share over lunch and dinner. As for the decor and service, it’s top notch, too, without a hint of snobbisme. And here’s another bit of good news: Sweet Basil has a book coming out this fall, so I’m confident I’ll be bringing sweet basil home more than ever. I’ll keep you posted.

Sweet Basil, 193 Gore Creek Drive, 970-476-0125,

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    This blog is a personal blog written and edited by Maribeth Clemente. This blog sometimes accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation. The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content. The owner of this blog is sometimes compensated to provide opinion on products, services, Web sites and various other topics. Even though the owner of this blog receives compensation for certain posts or advertisements, she always gives her honest opinions, findings, beliefs or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the blogger's own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question. This blog does not contain any content which might present a conflict of interest.
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