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Sun Valley, Vail ink deal for passes, but not ownership

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The Sun Valley Resort and its sister mountain Snowbasin will now be part of Vail Resorts’ Epic Pass program.

The program allows skiers and boarders to buy one pass that gives them access to many resorts across the US and around the world, many under the ownership of Vail.

Sun Valley went out of its way to emphasize that the tie-up is only for passes, and not part of any ownership pact.

Sun Valley and Snowbasin are 100% independently-owned and operated. They have formed an alliance with Vail Resorts to offer benefits to each other’s season pass holders,” Sun Valley wrote in an FAQ.

In recent years, Vail has rolled up scads of resorts, spending nearly $2 billion in the process.

According to BusinessDen.com, which tracks Vail, it announced a similar Epic Pass deal with Crested Butte in Colorado. It purchased the resort a few months later.

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The Holding family, which owns Sun Valley and Snowbasin, have said they plan to keep the resorts in the face of increasing industry consolidation.

Aspen Ski Co. has also been acquiring resorts, and opened a Limelight Hotel in Ketchum in 2016.

The Epic Pass will go on sale in March and be good at Sun Valley starting next ski season.

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Don Day
Don is the founder and editor of BoiseDev. He is a National Edward R. Murrow Award winner and a Stanford University John S. Knight Fellow.

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