Pet-Friendly Hotels and Plentiful Parks Make Aspen a Pup’s Paradise
ASPEN, Colo. — No one likes to leave family at home when going on vacation, and fortunately Aspen caters to those furry, four-legged loved ones. Hotels, restaurants, retailers, and even local banks all have amenities specific to dogs traveling with their owners, making Aspen a heavenly spot for man’s best friend.
PAMPERING YOUR PUP – Many of Aspen’s hotels welcome canine guests with open arms. Options for dog-friendly, high-end accommodations include Aspen’s finest. The Little Nell, a five-star, five-diamond hotel, indulges their four-legged guests by providing in-room water and food bowls, pet menu selections, plush beds, personalized brass ID tags, a dog walking and sitting service, gourmet treats, recommendations for groomers and pet-friendly hiking trails, and a Puppy Jet Lag Kit. Expect the same service from the neighboring Residences at the Little Nell. Additional canine amenities can be found at St. Regis Aspen Resort and Hotel Jerome. Aspen’s original dog-friendly hotel, the Limelight Hotel, continues to welcome four-legged friends with in-room dog bowls and a superb location across from dog-friendly Wagner Park.
DOG-FRIENDLY DINING –The Little Nell’s Living Room and Terrace Bar invite dogs to join their human companions for five-star dining. With gourmet selections, the dog menu ensures their taste buds will be tantalized as well. In addition, al fresco dining options are plentiful during summer months. Grab a to-go salad from The Big Wrap, grab a brew at the dog-friendly Aspen Tap, or sit on the patio at one of the many restaurants in town, where many allow guests to tie up their dogs on the sideline and give him a bowl of water to boot.
FROM DOG BONES TO BEDS – Rocky Mountain Pet Shop provides food, treats and a huge selection of dog toys, and now has a self-service dog wash to clean up your pooch after a long hike.
HIT THE TRAILS – Aspen has an endless chain of parks, trails, and streams where your pup can play. Between Aspen’s Wagner Park, Paepcke Park, and Rio Grande Park, there’s plenty of room for a pick-up game of Frisbee, swimming in the Roaring Fork River, or just relaxing.
Aspen offers miles of hiking and walking trails, including the beginner level Rio Grande Trail, the popular Smuggler/Hunter Creek Trail, and the challenging yet shaded Ute Trail. Smuggler Mountain Road, located on the southeast side of town, is an official off-leash area for dogs, making this challenging hike for humans an open-space dog park, too. Dogs are allowed on the Silver Queen Gondola in the summer, so hikers can take their pooches to the top of Aspen Mountain and out Richmond Ridge. For more information and rules, check with the Aspen Ranger District. (970.925.3445)
FEELING LONELY? For travelers who left their pets at home but still yearn for some canine camaraderie, the Aspen Animal Shelter’s ‘Rent-a-Pet Program’ allows visitors to spend a day with an eager companion. In fact, many participants end up going home with a new adopted friend.
ANIMAL HOSPITAL – Should something go wrong, or if pets need a mid-vacation check-up, Aspen Animal Hospital is a quick jaunt from town and offers a full array of veterinary services.
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For visitor information, visit www.aspenchamber.org, or call 1.888.290.1324 or 970.925.1940.