BY NICOLE FORMOSA
summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado
SILVERTHORNE – When Tamara Goodenbour walked into the former Alpen Hutte Lodge in Silverthorne last month for an annual Summit Dharma Center retreat, she was in awe over the transformation.
“Oh, I was floored. They totally re-did it, it looks so good,” Goodenbour said. “Before it was a lot of unnecessary stuff everywhere. Everything was disorderly and stacked up. It sort of reminded me of like an old fraternity house.” The lodge – renamed Riverside Lodge by new owner Brad Foreman – has been undergoing renovations for the past six months in an effort to change the 20-year-old hostel’s run-down image.
“What we’re trying to do is offer Summit County still an economical alternative for housing, but one that is clean, healthy and safe,” Foreman said.
Peak Investments, LLC – the company owned by Foreman and a partner – purchased the lodge for $1.315 million in late April, and has poured thousands of dollars into a facelift that includes new carpets, fresh paint and updated electronics in two large livings rooms, a handicap-accessible bathroom and two kitchens on the first level.
“The whole bottom floor was redone from tiles on the floor to the texture on the walls, plus we have artwork now,” said James Adams, of Vacation Rentals, who manages the property.
Renovations also included outfitting the kitchen with modern appliances, new countertops, tile floors, cooking utensils and pots and pans, and adding a second full-sized kitchen for guests of the lodge, which sleeps about 70 people.
All the beds in the lodge were also given new sheets and blankets.
Foreman is hoping the revamped Lodge will attract large groups, such as church groups, people in town for a family reunion or wedding, or perhaps ski teams in the county for training.
The lodge is also available to drop-ins – a bed in one of the dorm-style rooms runs about $25 to $30 a night – but in keeping with Foreman’s effort to attract more of a family-oriented crowd, guests must now sign a contract saying they won’t have drugs on the property or be intoxicated.
In the past, the Alpen Hutte had a reputation for allowing unhealthy conduct such as public intoxication and drug use, Foreman said,
Now, if guests do not abide by Foreman’s strict zero-tolerance policy, they will lose their deposit and be asked to leave.
Foreman envisions the Riverside Lodge developing a feel similar to Lodges in other countries that cater to cash-conscious travelers.
“What we tried to do is create that European thing where families could come cook their own meals and stay, save money and be safe, and it’s convenient,” he said.
Foreman’s philosophy also includes treating his guests right, a point Goodenbour didn’t miss during her recent stay.
“The new owners are very hospitable. It’s like what you’d expect from staying in a nice hotel, very customer service oriented,” Goodenbour said.
For inquiries about the Riverside Lodge, call (970) 468-0987 or visit www.summitpeakslodge.com.