A lot of people will tell you that it’s tough to get to Sun Valley.
Fewer flights from fewer locations. A smaller airport that is prone to winter weather delays. Longer drives from popular locations. All valid points.
BUT, once you get here. Once you get here it all makes sense. An insanely cool destination four season resort in the middle of Idaho. An oasis of fun. A hassle free playground with unlimited good time options. Very nice, friendly people. Sophisticated, yet casual. 250 days of sun each year. Restaurants, recreation and killer real estate.
So, the tougher access and remote location is what helps make it great. I mean, when is the last time you waited in a lift line on Baldy? When was the last time you couldn’t find a sweet stretch of river to fish all for yourself on the Wood? When was the last time you got cut off in traffic? Waiter with attitude? Pretty much never.
That’s what makes Sun Valley worth it.
In fact, I was talking to a client of mine who said she actually likes when she gets bussed in from Twin. Because she knows she is going to have a great time while she’s here. People that come here understand this and thats why they continue to come. They know it’s special and they’ll make the extra effort to get here.
Now, that being said, we’re in the process of building a new airport somewhere south of the existing airport. It probably won’t be completed for another 5+ years, but it is coming. The existing airport doesn’t work anymore.
If the new airport accomplishes its goal of better, more reliable access from more destinations will things change? Will we suddenly see a giant influx of people arriving on the non stop daily from NYC, Chicago and LAX? Will this change Sun Valley for the better? The worse? Will we become another mega resort? Will it change the vibe here?
It’s an interesting situation. The reason Sun Valley came into existence is for tourism. That’s why the Sun Valley Lodge was built. To entertain and serve tourists visiting from other places. Tourism is the Valley’s lifeblood that drives our local economy. Most of us probably wouldn’t be here without it.
Only time will tell. There’s not much more to say except that I hope we move forward with a good balance of give and take between keeping it special and making it work from an economic standpoint. Change and growth is pretty much inevitable. Hopefully, we’ll all remember what Sun Valley’s all about and do our best to keep it that way.
Enough said, I’m going skiing.