HOTEL JEROME, ASPEN, COLORADO – Located on East Main Street, this quite bland looking brick structure was built in the 1880s by Jerome B. Wheeler, at the time a co-owner of Macy’s, and a major investor in Aspen during its early boom years. He wanted the city to have a hotel that equalled European ones in its refinements and amenities, and his hotel was one of the first buildings west of the Mississippi to have full electric lighting. It’s been through a lot since then, always remaining open, and for a little while even acted as the town morgue (with claims that the building has been haunted ever since).
After the end of the World War II, Aspen and its new ski resort become a popular destination, and celebrities followed suite. Gary Cooper and John Wayne often stayed at the Jerome, and it became known as a place where celebs and the locals mingled freely. It was a haunt of Hunter S. Thompson, who used the bar as his office for many years, and later on the hotel ballroom hosted his memorial service (Bill Murray later partied there while portraying Thompson in a film).
We love a place with history, and who doesn’t like the idea of having a drink at a bar that once hosted legendary writers? But you can’t blame a hotel like this for feeling and looking a bit tired. By the 80s, it was time for rehab. This finally happened earlier this year, when the hotel reopened following a magnificent multimillion-dollar facelift. Designer Todd-Avery Lenahan has added cashmere curtains and leather bed frames to all 93 rooms, replacing the Victorian gilt that had crept in and corrupted the location’s Wild West roots.
The recently upgraded guest rooms are all appointed with custom furnishings, authentic details and modern amenities that embody the mountain spirit of Aspen. There’s even a new yoga room where you can stretch out overlooking the beautiful Mt Sopris “Fancy digs aren’t my priority when I travel,” wrote Phil Marty of the Chicago Tribune, “but then you walk into something like Room 302 and think, ‘Well, maybe I should spend more time in my room.”
Sounds just like our type of place.
Hotel Jerome has 93 guest rooms (from $695 in high ski season, or $395 in the off-season)