Whistler earns top rankings among magazine readers

Whistler, BC- As if top rankings in SKIING, SKI, Outside and TransWorld SNOWboarding magazines weren’t enough, several Whistler properties have also been named as favourites in the latest edition of Condé Nast Traveler magazine.

The November edition of the esteemed travel magazine includes the Readers’ Choice Awards for the world’s best hotels, resorts, cruises, islands and cities.

Making the list of the top-100 Resorts in the World is the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre. In addition, the Four Seasons Resort Whistler, the Hilton Whistler Resort and Spa, the Westin Resort and Spa Whistler, the Fairmont Chateau Whistler and the Pan Pacific Whistler Mountainside join the Pan Pacific Whistler Village Centre in the list of the top 20 Canadian Resorts.

The Condé Nast awards round out a series of recently-announced kudos.

Readers of SKIING recently named Whistler the No. 1 overall ski resort in North America for an unprecedented 12 years in a row. Whistler was also recognized in a number of other categories including Best Apres Scene and Best Festival (awarded to the resort’s TELUS World Ski and Snowboard Festival). The Four Seasons Resort Whistler was also singled-out by SKIING magazine for its outstanding product.

TransWorld SNOWboarding magazine’s readers named Whistler Blackcomb the best overall resort in North America for the third year in a row. In addition to the top overall ranking, the Nintendo Terrain park was recognized as the Best Park and Whistler Blackcomb made the top 5 in nine additional categories.

SKI Magazine’s annual Top 50 Resort Guide has named Whistler the No. 3 resort for a second year in a row with top 5 rankings in the following categories: Terrain/Variety (No. 1), Apres Ski (No. 2), Off Hill Activities (No. 3), Lifts (No. 3), Lodging (No. 3), Dining (No. 4), Terrain/Challenge (No. 5) and Terrain Parks (No. 5).

In its November issue, heralding North America’s Best 15 Resorts, Outside magazine ranked Whistler Blackcomb No. 2 citing its exceptional vertical, vibrant Village and the imminent arrival of the PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola linking Blackcomb and Whistler mountains.

Whistler Blackcomb’s PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola was also recently recognized as the Best North American Resort Development by Where to Ski and Snowboard, a leading UK publication. Hardy’s Skiing & Snowboarding Guide (formerly The Great Skiing and Snowboarding Guide), also out of the UK, named the Garibaldi Lift Company as the best apres ski venue (North America) in the annual Hardy’s Skiing and Snowboard Awards.

Earlier this year, Whistler Blackcomb received the designation of North America’s favorite ski resort by visitors of OnTheSnow.com, a popular online snow sports portal. The website, which attracts a Nielsen-audited 1.2 million unique monthly visitors during the winter, gave its visitors the opportunity to write reviews of all resorts in North America and they chose Whistler Blackcomb as their favourite.

Closer to home, the results of the Best of Vancouver poll were published in the September 18 edition of the Georgia Straight. Whistler was voted the Best Winter Destination and the Best Weekend Getaway.

With the 2008/ 09 winter season just around the corner and less than a year and a half until Whistler welcomes the world as Host Mountain Resort of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games, Whistler has a great deal to celebrate.

The new PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola, opening December 12, 2008, will stretch from the top of Whistler Mountain to the top of Blackcomb Mountain and travel a distance of 4.4 kilometres (2.73 miles) in just 11 minutes. The PEAK 2 PEAK Gondola will be the longest, highest gondola of its type in the world and will let skiers and snowboarders easily move around to access the best weather and conditions on any given day at Whistler Blackcomb.

Whistler’s three Winter Games competition venues are complete: Whistler Creekside for alpine skiing events, the Whistler Sliding Centre for bobsleigh, luge and skeleton, and Whistler Olympic Park, for cross-country skiing, biathlon, and ski jumping. Winter venue tours will be open to the public at both the Whistler Olympic Park and the Whistler Sliding Centre. Of course, skiers and snowboarders can also experience the Dave Murray Downhill run at Whistler Creekside, where the alpine skiing events will be held in 2010.

In addition, the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre opened in June, 2008, expanding Whistler’s offerings as a cultural destination. This shared legacy project of the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games reflects an unprecedented cooperative venture between the Squamish and Lil’wat First Nations. An inspiring new meeting and event location, it includes an outdoor area with interpretive trails and a ceremonial gathering area. The 30,400 square foot architectural masterpiece includes a high-tech theatre for performances and events, specialized meeting space, display area for native art (including visiting collections), craft market, restaurant, gallery and a tour-guide service. For more information visit: www.slcc.ca
With plenty of reasons to explore all that Whistler has to offer, visitors will want to take advantage of the Book Early and Save packages offering the best value of the 2008/ 09 winter season. Guests who booking their vacation package by November 15 can save up to 35 per cent, plus kids 12 and under ski and rent free. Packages including five nights’ accommodation and four-day lift ticket start from C$448 (US$367) per person; packages with seven nights’ accommodation and six-day lift ticket start from C$640 (US$528) per person.
Call 1-800-WHISTLER or go to whistler.com to book your package now. Reservation agents at whistler.com can also customize a vacation package for you, taking care of your flights, transportation, accommodation, activities and lift tickets.

Whistler is a year-round leisure and meeting destination located in the Coast Mountains 120 kilometres (75 miles) north of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, and is the site of the alpine, Nordic, and sliding events for the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games. Whistler has a range of accommodations totalling 3,200 hotel rooms, and more than 5,000 other tourist accommodation units including condos, B&Bs and chalets. Whistler offers a wide selection of restaurants, bars, spas, boutiques, and activities from world-renowned skiing and snowboarding, mountain biking and golf, to hiking, rock climbing, and watersports. Whistler Blackcomb Mountains feature 3,036 hectares (8,171 acres) of terrain and receive an average of 10.22 metres (33.5 feet) of snow annually. The Resort Municipality of Whistler is home to a diverse community of more than 10,000 permanent residents.

Tourism Whistler is the member-based marketing and sales organization representing Whistler, operating the TELUS Whistler Conference Centre, the Whistler Golf Club, the Whistler Visitor Centres and tourismwhistler.com, as well as 1-800-WHISTLER and whistler.com – Whistler’s official source for visitor bookings and information. As the convention and visitors bureau for the Resort Municipality of Whistler, Tourism Whistler represents more than 7,000 members who own, manage and operate properties or businesses on resort lands including hotels, restaurants, activity operators and retail shops.