Thursday, June 24, 2010

Exciting times at Cranmore Mountain!

Cranmore Mountain, under new ownership announced last week, announced plans to infuse the resort with millions of dollars of improvements in the next six months.

The principals and long term operators of Jiminy Peak Mountain Resort, Brian Fairbank (pictured below), Joseph O’Donnell and Tyler Fairbank (pictured below), purchased the resort on June 15th and plan to make major upgrades and improvements immediately. CNL Lifestyle Properties, Inc. a Florida-based real estate investment trust (REIT) is providing close to $7 million capital for the planned improvements. GM Ben Wilcox has been promoted to President and will also continue his role as General Manager of Cranmore.

Upcoming improvements include the installation of a fixed-grip quad chairlift to replace the South Double. The new lift, a Doppelmayr eco-Drive fixed grip quad, will double the capacity of the current South Slope lift. The new lift occupies the same footprint as the current double chair.

The existing South Double chair will be relocated to a new location near the Beginner Basin area (near the former North Chair line). It recycles most of the parts of the South chair but will feature new lift towers and is 1,050 ft. long. It will run about half way up the Lift Line slope. We are changing some of the trail layouts in that area of the mountain to accommodate the new lift and to provide additional beginner terrain in what is now some underutilized trails including lower Lift Line, Quad Chute and Summit Alley.
Also in the works is the relocation and enlargement of Cranmore’s tubing park, the most visited snow tubing park in the state of New Hampshire. Its lanes will increase from seven to ten and will now feature a new Sun Kid surface lift in addition to a handle-tow lift.

The tubing park is being relocated in part to accommodate a new Mountain Coaster to be installed in the approximate location of the current tubing park. The Coaster is to be installed by Wiegan, and is the same manufacturer as the Mountain Coaster installed at Jiminy Peak and other resorts throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe.

Other on-mountain improvements include a significant investment in snowmaking equipment including the installation of 70 new energy-efficient tower guns. This should allow us to open more terrain earlier than ever while also consuming less energy.

Cranmore also has big plans for its base facilities. The current Arlberg Lodge is being converted into a state-of-the-art Children’s Center. Its facilities will be reserved specifically for kids enrolled in Penguin and Adventure Camps, and home to the Cranmore Play Room for Young Children. The Center will have its own ticketing and reservation center, rental services and lesson drop off areas.
Cranmore’s former “North Chair” building, now the Cranmore Training Center, will see renovations for Cranmore’s race program participants.
The main base lodge is undergoing changes as the current space for its children’s programs is moving over to the new Center, freeing up facilities for additional seating, and food and beverage options for guests. Guests entering the building will now be greeted by a large, bright Guest Services desk and basket check area.

Additionally, the Cranmore Family Fitness Center will be modified to accommodate a new food and beverage venue, ticketing outlets for the new Mountain Coaster and Tubing Park, in addition to a new fa├žade, roof repairs and other interior renovations. The Fitness Center will continue to operate as the Valley’s largest health club with a full array of cardio and weight equipment, group fitness classes, personal training and more. The Fitness Center just invested thousands of dollars in new cardio equipment as well.


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