Vail Resorts, the Colorado-based owner of ski areas around North America, is continuing its expansion into New England.
Vermont’s Okemo Mountain announced Monday morning that it has entered into a purchase agreement with Vail Resorts that also includes New Hampshire’s Mount Sunapee and Colorado’s Crested Butte. The sale is expected to be completed this summer.
The acquisition adds to Vail’s growing lineup of resorts featured in its Epic Pass — a multi-resort season pass that offers unlimited skiing, including at Vermont’s Stowe, which Vail acquired in 2017.
It also enhances the Epic Pass’s value proposition in New England as it competes with the rival Ikon Pass that Aspen Skiing Company introduced in January. The Ikon Pass offers access to Killington and Sugarbush in Vermont, Loon Mountain in New Hampshire, and Sunday River and Sugarloaf in Maine.
The full Epic Pass is $899 right now and the Ikon pass is $999. Both have variations and additional price points.
Tim and Diane Mueller own and operate Okemo, Mount Sunapee, and Crested Butte as part of their Triple Peaks LLC. Okemo is among the largest ski areas in Vermont, and Mount Sunapee is one of the best “big mountain’’ resorts in close proximity to Boston.
“Diane and I are incredibly proud of what we have accomplished at the three resorts for the last 36 years,’’ Tim Mueller said in a statement announcing the deal. “We have had the great privilege of working with a lot of smart, hardworking, dedicated team members, as well as many other people in the local communities and the states where the resorts are located.’’
Vail Resorts also operates Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, and Keystone in Colorado; Park City in Utah; Heavenly, Northstar, and Kirkwood in the Lake Tahoe area of California and Nevada; Whistler Blackcomb in British Columbia, Canada; Perisher in Australia; Stowe in Vermont; Wilmot Mountain in Wisconsin; Afton Alps in Minnesota and Mt. Brighton in Michigan.
“We’re very much looking forward to welcoming Crested Butte, Okemo, and Mount Sunapee to our family of resorts, and each of their teams into our company,’’ said Rob Katz, chairman and chief executive officer of Vail Resorts. “These three resorts add incredibly unique and special experiences to our portfolio, and will truly enhance the variety of options for all our guests.’’
The purchase agreement also includes two Vermont golf courses, Okemo Valley in Ludlow and Tater Hill in Windham.