Founded by actor Robert Redford in the 1960s, Sundance Resort is a hidden treasure buried deep in the heart of Utah. Surrounded by nature and spanning more than 5,000 acres, the resort is a perfect place to escape reality with a vacation or an extended stay at a vacation home exchange. During the summer months, hiking trails will take your heart and soul on a journey of tranquility and peace. Winter months will unlock your wild side with 450 acres of skiable terrain.
Redford purchased the resort with the intent of preserving its history and cultural heritage inspired by the Ute tribes that first inhabited the canyon. Redford once said, “Sundance is and always will be a dream. What you see, smell, taste, and feel here is a dream being carefully nurtured.” In 1981, the Sundance Institute was founded here at the Sundance Mountain Resort. The Sundance Institute is the driving force behind the world renowned Sundance Film Festival - a festival held annually in the state of Utah. The Sundance Film Festival is the largest independent film festival held in the United States. The heart of the film festival action is just 30 minutes from its roots here at the resort.
Locals consider this place a gem. If you aren’t from around the area, you are in for a real treat. “Sundance isn’t just another resort where one comes and goes,” says Sundance Mountain Resort Marketing Director, Annie Cutler. “People who visit Sundance truly fall in love with it, and connect and feel included in this community that has been created.” The small community still includes Redford and his family. According to Cutler, the Redford family is still very much involved in the resort. “With the continual merging of larger resorts in Utah and across the country, Sundance remains true to Robert Redford’s vision.”
The resort is nestled beneath Mount Timpanogos. Sitting just below the resort, are several homes and cabins, including International Vacation Home Exchange property #0299. The vacation home exchange is the perfect place to rest before you set off to find yourself with nature. “My personal tagline is: whether you’re 9 or 90, there is something here for you at Sundance,” said Cutler. If skiing is your calling, there are plenty of groomed trails to hitch a ride on during the winter months. The resort has skiing for every ability, with about 20% beginner trails, 40% intermediate trails, and 40% advanced trails.
Tourists looking for a little adrenaline boost, there’s now a zip line tour. It is the largest zip line tour in Utah and the third largest in the United States,” said Cutler. “This provides guests with a new way to soak in the Wasatch Mountains and the incredible views to be seen here.”
If your mind and body need a soak after a day on the mountain, you can meditate while enjoying a day at the spa. “Sundance has an eco-friendly, nature-inspired spa,” said Cutler. “The spa includes an actual herbal garden outside where our therapists will pick the fresh herbs for a more customized treatment.”
Just minutes from your vacation home exchange (and the resort) are horseback riding, fishing, hiking, and golfing. Those who need to reconnect with reality can do so by simply driving 20 minutes to the nearest city. But I will warn you, once you arrive at Sundance, you may never want to leave. “This place is truly a hidden gem,” said Cutler. “And an incredible place for anyone to come, rejuvenate, and find the much needed connection and balance in their lives.”
Sundance Mountain Resort is predicting a December 5 opening date for the 2015-2016 ski season (weather permitting). The Sundance Film Festival will be held January 21-31 in 2016.
Thank you to our guest blogger Carla Roberts Pruitt. Follow Carla on Twitter at @crobscarla.