Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Bill Jensen JoinsTelluride


Bill Jensen, a ski industry veteran, one-time head of Intrawest and a former executive at Vail Resorts, is joining Telluride as its CEO and partner, the Colorado ski resort’s majority owner, Chuck Horning, announced on Monday.
"This is a significant step towards bringing Telluride to its potential. Bill and I have been friends for many years. Having Bill as a partner brings depth to the ownership of this resort, and our shared interest in bringing together community and resort sustainability with a long-term vision is the core purpose for our partnership", stated Horning, who bought Telluride in 2003 and will maintain a majority stake in the resort. "Telluride is a relatively young resort with a huge potential".
Bill Jensen served for six and a half years as CEO of Intrawest, North America’s second largest ski resort company. At Intrawest from 2008 through 2014, Jensen was responsible for the oversight of Whistler Blackcomb, Mont Tremblant, Blue Mountain, Steamboat, Winter Park, Stratton, Snowshoe, the company’s hospitality business and Canadian Mountain Holidays, the world’s largest heli-skiing company.
Prior to Intrawest, Jensen was an executive with Vail Resorts for 11 years, including two years as Chief Operating Officer of Breckenridge Ski Resort and nine years as Chief Operating Officer of Vail Mountain, where he also served as President of Vail Resorts’ Mountain Division. Jensen’s extensive industry experience also included six years as President of three California ski resorts (Northstar-at-Tahoe, Sierra-at-Tahoe, and Bear Mountain).
Jensen is a Past Chairman of the National Ski Areas Association and the Colorado Tourism Office Board of Directors. He is a two-time recipient of the Colorado Ski Country USA Chairman’s Award and was inducted into the Colorado Ski Hall of Fame in 2008.
Coming to Telluride brings me full circle in my career, taking me back to the passion and excitement I first felt when I discovered my love for skiing and the mountains,” Jensen added. “This shaped who I am today. Telluride is wonderful for what it is and for what it can become. A world-class mountain resort that is a great place to live and work", said Jensen.
"I chose to come to Telluride because of the opportunity to invest in the future of this extraordinary resort", said Jensen. "For me, joining Telluride Ski & Golf Resort as a partner represents an unprecedented opportunity to fulfill Telluride’s potential as one of the top resorts in the world and the best in North America. To achieve this goal we will appeal to guests who seek out the best through the variety of unique experiences we offer. As part of that commitment, we will honor the special and unique nature of Telluride by infusing sustainability through economic growth and supporting the integration of science, including wellness and longevity for guests and residents. We will hire the best, we will work and grow together, and we will honor the spirit of Telluride".
His first order of business: "Getting to know our employees while they get to know me. Meanwhile, Christmas is coming and it’s all hands on deck. The highest thing on my ‘to do’ list is delivering a great holiday experience to our guests. If those customers go home happy, the word of mouth on Telluride will be excellent".
Telluride’s steep pitches and big vertical reminds Jensen of Whistler Blackcomb, he said. "The terrain is some of the best in North America. Joining Telski as a partner represents an unprecedented opportunity to fulfill Telluride’s potential as one of the top resorts in the world".
Certain ski areas are "really well positioned for the future", Jensen said, mentioning Deer Valley and Jackson Hole. But he draws a sharp distinction between Telluride and his former employers — Breckenridge, Vail and Whistler Blackcomb — that are known as megaresorts. "Telluride is not like them. We’re always going to be a certain size, in this certain place".
One future goal, Jensen said, is to cement Telluride as the preferred destination resort for the important Arizona and Texas markets.
In the meantime, he looks forward to meeting as many Telluriders as possible. "It’s a collective effort being part of Telluride,” he said. “Everyone here is invested in this brand. The word to pay attention to is not ‘ski’ or ‘golf.’ It’s ‘Telluride'".


Telluride Ski & Golf, rated the 1 ski resort in North America by Conde Nast Traveler (2013, 2014 & 2015), offers spectacular skiing, riding, golf and recreation opportunities. Located in the San Juan Mountains of southwest Colorado, Telluride is tucked among the highest concentration of 13,000 and 14,000 foot peaks in North America.
Telluride Ski Resort was voted the 4 Ski Resort in the West by SKI Magazine readers for their 2015-2016 survey. The 28th annual SKI Magazine reader’s poll ranks the top 50 resorts in North America and includes 20 different categories such as character, scenery, and service. This was the second consecutive year the resort received a top five placement, and was honored with the 4 ranking last year as well. SKI Magazine readers also ranked Telluride as the top resort in Colorado.
As part of the overall 4 ranking, SKI Magazine readers credited the Resort for slopes that are "virtually empty" and for offering an overall resort experience that "caters to all". They also gave the resort’s Ski School high marks for its offerings and highlighted the resort’s variety of terrain for all abilities. The resort also received high marks in individual categories such as Scenery (1), Service (7), Character (2), Lodging (5),Dining (5), Après (6), Variety (4), Challenge (7) and Grooming (10), which helped secure Telluride’s high overall ranking.

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