I’ve now spent a total of four nights at The Broadmoor with my family over the past two summers. If I could move into this grand property permanently, I would. No joke. The attentive customer service is excellent, the variety of restaurants divine, the guestrooms sophisticated without feeling pretentious. The Broadmoor’s beautifully landscaped grounds transport me to a country club state of mind, and around every corner I’m reminded of the hotel’s rich history, with fabulous memorabilia dating back to the early 1900’s. It’s luxurious and legendary and yes, expensive, but for a special occasion or a long-weekend splurge, I cannot recommend more highly a stay at The Broadmoor.
Here’s my take on what your perfect family day at The Broadmoor would entail:
8 a.m.: Wake up in your connecting rooms in the West Tower of the property overlooking Cheyenne Lake. Scoot over to the main building for the lavish buffet breakfast spread at the Lake Terrace Dining Room. (Though the a la carte menu here is also quite good; husband loved his Crab Cake Benedict.) Another option: breakfast on the patio at Charles Court Restaurant. Play it healthy with items like the Egg White Frittata or indulge with the Creme Brulee French Toast.
9:30 a.m.: Pick up your car from the friendly valet staff and drive a short five minutes to the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo. Here, your kids will love feeding the giraffes (at their eye level!), meeting the gorilla troop, watching the otters get fed and getting up close and personal with small animals at The Loft. The zoo is built into the side of the mountain, so be prepared to climb some hills. (The up side: fantastic birds-eye views of The Broadmoor and Colorado Springs below.) There’s also a tram that makes its way around the grounds; pay just $1/day per person to hop on and off all day. To note: Spencer Penrose, who founded The Broadmoor in 1918, also founded the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo in 1926.
Noon: Rest weary legs at the recently revamped Grizzly Grill, where you’ll find healthy (or healthier) food items besides standard hot dogs and French fries zoo fare (though you can get that, too). Choose from a freshly made deli sandwich, a made-to-order salad or an Asian rice bowl.
1 p.m.: Head back to The Broadmoor for an afternoon at the outdoor Lakeside Pool Complex. Here, grinning towel-bearing staff members will greet you, to usher you personally to chaise lounges on the grass (if you’re lucky, there will be a spot still available under a big umbrella; or pay big bucks for your own shaded cabana). Lounge with a trashy magazine while the kids enjoy the zero-depth-entry infinity pool and the two steep water slides (one’s more mellow than the other.)
3 p.m.: Leave Dad at the pool with the kids while you stroll over to the Spa at the Broadmoor for a pampering treatment, like the signature Mountain Showers Massage, performed under an overhead shower, or a delicious wine therapy sugar scrub.
5 p.m.: Take a nap.
6 p.m.: Drop your kids at the evening Bee Bunch program ($60 for first child, $50 for second), where kids play with other young guests and counselors (at a 1 to 5 staffer to kids ratio) in an inviting, 2,000-square-foot space. Dinner might include chicken fingers and fries, and activities typically feature arts-and-crafts and a movie.
6:30 p.m.: Finish primping and put on your dancing shoes for once-in-a-lifetime meal at Colorado’s only five-diamond and five-star restaurant, the Penrose Room. Jackets are required for men at this elegant dining establishment that has been offering exquisite cuisine and top-notch service since 1961. Go big with the Chef’s Tasting Menu with wine ($158 a person), and you’ll dine on such specialties as Belize Island Shrimp and Crispy Prok Belly Fricassee or Pan Seared Atlantic Turbo with Green Pea Cassoulet. (When I sampled this exquisite meal, the final cheese course and hazelnut chocolate dessert were especially divine.) Josh, the handsome, knowledgeable sommelier pairs each course with a half glass of wine, and he takes the time to explain the nuances of each varietal with such class and professionalism that I wanted to take him home with me to suggest wines to me nightly. All through the meal, you’re serenaded by a three piece band and talented singer; get up and dance to salsa, swing and ’50s tunes whenever the mood strikes!
10 p.m. Waddle out of the Penrose Room (if you’re good, maybe you didn’t lick your plates clean like I did), and pick up your kids at the Bee Bunch room. Retire to your rooms (where your plush beds have been turned down with chocolates left behind) for a good night’s sleep. After all, I didn’t even mention the options for tennis, golf, horseback riding and other fabulous Colorado Springs attractions that might fill your family’s agenda tomorrow!
Thanks to The Broadmoor for hosting my family’s stay and for providing the bottom photo of the Penrose Room.