The Greatest Snow on Earth: Park City Mountain Resort

Not that many years ago, the future of a modern-day Utah icon hung in the balance over a land lease dispute, stirring controversy in the town of Park City as their economic future suddenly became uncertain. Thanks to some mismanagement, Park City Mountain Resort was facing an eviction notice on its land and faced the prospect of not opening for the upcoming season. After a settlement through the local courts, the management of a neighboring mountain swept in and purchased the resort. What followed transformed an already famous American skiing landmark into a major player on the world ski resort stage.

Back in the 1960s after the once-prolific mines closed down, Treasure Mountain opened on the snow-covered peaks above Park City. Using old mining equipment, including a train to the center of one of the mountains, the ski area opened in 1963 and quickly became popular amongst the locals. A few years later, a competing resort known as Park West opened just a few miles to the north, with $5 day passes and three chairlifts. Treasure Mountain became a staple of the local economy, while Park West changed owners and names several times.

In the 1990s, Treasure Mountain changed its name to Park City Mountain and began undergoing major upgrades for the upcoming 2002 Winter Olympic Games to be held in Salt Lake City, including "flying couch" six-passenger chairlifts and improved infrastructure. Meanwhile, Park West became The Canyons and quickly underwent a rapid expansion and investment for development, including The Colony, an exclusive retreat of luxury homes built into the ski area. When it came time for the Olympics, Park City Mountain hosted multiple events and got ample camera time on the world stage; The Canyons remained home to the media operations instead.

As more time passed, The Canyons underwent another ownership and branding change simply to "Canyons," with another massive expansion and the beginning of increased local popularity since it had terrain, views, and an experience rivaling its neighbor. In 2013, Vail Resorts took over operations and added the area to their growing worldwide portfolio. In the meantime, Park City hadn't experienced many changes other than increasing pass prices and continued crowds at the base of its now-iconic terrain. The following year, Vail completed a purchase of Park City, with big plans in store for the following season.

While many continue to dispute the pros and cons of Vail in the ski industry, the company consistently strives to provide a great experience for its guests at all levels. One of the first things Vail did was dramatically slash the prices of season passes, and in 2015 completed $50 million in upgrades, maintenance, and other improvements. All of these reduced lines, brightened up facilities, and unified branding, but most importantly, Vail unified the two previously separated properties with a gondola and new trails. This transformed the area into a more accessible resort, further enhancing the experience of locals and visitors alike with incredible views and new terrains options. More powder to ya!

Nowadays, Park City Mountain Resort has unified the iconic and historic with the new and unique. Both sides of the mountain have their sweet spots, such as Jupiter Peak, McConkey's Bowl, and Motherlode Meadows from the main village, and Ninety-Nine Ninety, Murdock Peak, and Iron Mountain from Canyons Village. It's easy to avoid crowds and lines since the massive terrain expanse spreads out individuals quite easily, and improvements continue year after year as Vail continues to invest in the guest experience. The locals still keep closely-guarded secrets about their favorite terrain, and the resort maintains its character across 7,300 acres of world-class powder, the most in the United States.

At VIP Limousine, we take great pride in our home state of Utah and enjoy telling people about what makes it special. With skiers on staff, we examine each of these areas carefully and share what we love about them. Park City Mountain Resort, and the town which is its namesake, is one of our favorites across the Wasatch, and is truly an epic skiing experience.

Happy New Year 2020!

To all of our current, future, and potential clients, we at VIP Limousine want to wish you a very Happy New Year! 2020 is looking to shape up to be a big one on so many levels, starting out with the wintertime in Utah.

When the snow starts falling in the mountains, it's serious business, in part with the start of the busy season for Salt Lake City transportation companies. The SLC Airport becomes extremely busy with thousands of travelers coming in and out, as the ski season begins. After the initial New Years vacation period and corporate travel season resumes, the annual Sundance Film Festival begins with a whole host of goings-on. Hundreds of film premieres and private events occur over a period of several weeks, with fully-booked hotels, full streets, and limited parking. That's where we come in to make logistics easier and private travel more luxurious. 

As Sundance concludes, ski season picks up again alongside convention events in Park City and other mountain towns. With this time of year, we also see school dances start, lasting several months through the springtime. Then comes wedding and quinceañera season, lasting through the late fall. With the summertime comes the convention season, along with excursion travel across the state. Utah's state and national parks are a worldwide draw for travelers, and our chauffeurs know the ins and outs for accessing them, with recommendations on activities and other inside knowledge.

Weddings, quinceañeras, corporate travel, and the start of the school year round out the final quarter, coupled with family vacation travel for the holiday season. Some of our clients and types of travel occur year round as well. Then it all starts anew!

This year, 2020, marks the 31st year in business for VIP Limousine, and it's going to be a great one! In 9 months, Salt Lake City will have a new travel enhancement in the form of a brand new airport, with new international destinations, gates, amenities, and improved ground transportation access. We have new national and international affiliate networks and worldwide partners in hospitality and tourism, helping to better connect our local and outside clientele. As the market and standards change, we will also have updates and improvements to our limousine fleet.

Stay tuned to our blog, website, and social media channels for updates and announcements as we begin a new decade. Here's to the 20's!

Sundance 2020

Here at VIP Limousine, we're always looking ahead to what's coming next, whether it be changes in the transportation industry, trends for our business, or local events. Every January is the big one for Utah, with round-the-clock travel logistics, weather which can change on the fly, and thousands of miles logged on the road. That event is the Sundance Film Festival, and the 2020 event is looking to loom large over the Wasatch.

Salt Lake City International Airport becomes extremely busy, with all lanes piling up with cars. The hotels are full, and rental homes are packed with hardly any space remaining. Park City roads become gridlock, and with any added snowstorms, it starts to resemble a freeway in Los Angeles. 

But this is where we come in. With decades of Sundance experience under our belts, our team is prepared to get you where you need to go in safety, comfort, and style. Our luxurious fleet undergoes extra preparation for the weather changes, and we map out some of the hot spots and tough locations to avoid when traffic is at its worst. We work with our individual clients to also identify their specific needs to ensure that any event runs as smoothly as possible. 

The festival has several hundred films spread out across multiple locations, including Park City, Sundance Resort, and the Salt Lake City area. Ranging from feature-length productions to documentaries on obscure but interesting subjects, the festival attracts thousands of visitors from the film industry, as well as the film casts, crew members, their families, studio executives, talent agents, and studio, streaming, and production companies. It's a fun chance for the locals to rub shoulders with the rich and famous and take advantage of many of the local elements Park City has to offer.

But in the interim, there's still plenty going on outside of the Sundance Film Festival. One notable absence during this time are large crowds on the ski slopes at Park City and Deer Valley, which we gladly serve year-round. This means that there is plenty of the famous Utah powder to go around that will be staying relatively untouched; this also extends over into the Cottonwood Canyons. It's a perfect time to take advantage of Utah's main draw outside of peak season times.

However, whatever brings you to Utah, we're glad you're here to see what our wonderful state has to offer, and we'd be happy to show you around. Call us today for your reservations today and be prepared to experience the #drivenbetter difference.

Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years...Oh My!

With the weather getting a little bit more frightful, our limos become even more delightful! VIP Limousine does not slow down or stop when the snow hits. Instead, we break out the hot chocolate, blankets, and tunes of joy. 

Travel during the holiday season in Utah can be hectic, with a busy airport, jammed roads, and crowded parking lots for shopping and restaurants. But around Salt Lake City, we do our best to make things easier.

If you have some Black Friday shopping to do, for example, our large premium vehicles can hold passengers and items galore, and you don't have to look for a parking spaces...we do all the work for you! 

Have some family coming in from out of town? Are they arriving at a crazy hour? Is the weather less than desirable? That's where we come in! We operate 24/7/365 to bring Utah's finest chauffeured services from the airport curb to your front door, with all of your most precious cargo riding in style and comfort. Whether it's in our executive cars or our largest limousines, only the best will do.

Seeing all of the Christmas lights in Utah can be a challenge, too, but we come prepared! Our chauffeurs and staff have the hot spots mapped out each year, which makes planning your trip a cinch. Add the optional thermos of hot chocolate and you're all set to see the sights in lights! Popular locations include Temple Square, Thanksgiving Point, and the Tree of Light.

How about celebrating the New Year? Our limos can take you wherever you would like to go to ring in 2020, and operate overnight to bring you and your party home safely. The same goes for company Christmas parties and any other occasion you might have.

So don't let the wintertime blues get you down! We at VIP Limousine are ready to help you celebrate the little and the large in life as the snow falls.

Safety First: Maintenance

Our fleet is the pride, joy, and backbone of VIP Limousine. With passengers across the Wasatch Front trusting us for 30 years, our Salt Lake City-based service has run reliably, comfortably, and safely since inception. 

Part of how we do this is by maintaining our fleet to high standards, with safety always coming first. A transportation company can have the best service and the snazziest fleet, but if they can't get you there in one piece and on time, there's no point. Our preventative maintenance program ensures that there are no troubles on the road.

One thing we do at VIP Limousine is follow safety standards which exceed industry and state minimums. We check our vehicles on a set schedule with multi-point inspections done by certified mechanics. Chauffeurs point out anything out of the ordinary to us immediately, and we make sure the affected vehicle is safe to send out first before it returns to service.

Utah does have a distinction of being a hot and high state, with a desert climate and tall mountains, so vehicle cooling systems are crucial for comfortable and safe operation. We inspect ours thoroughly prior and throughout the summer months so that engines run smoothly and can take our vehicles up and down steep gradients without sweating, let alone steaming by the side of the road.

When you are searching for a car or limo service, be sure to ask the critical questions about your safety. At VIP Limousine, we can answer all of them with confidence, honesty, and accuracy.

Safety First: Livery Insurance

At VIP Limousine, our absolute #1 priority is the safety of all of our clients and our chauffeurs. When you are out on the road, you should be able to proceed with complete confidence, because none of the glittering lights, champagne flutes, powerful stereos, lacquered wood, and plush leather mean anything if something goes awry. 

Approximately 1 year prior to the publication of this blog, Hasy Limousines in upstate New York was at the center of one of the worst individual transportation accidents in recent memory. The chauffeur was not qualified to drive the vehicle, an SUV stretch limo which had failed a mandatory safety inspection and was not road-worthy. This is entirely preventable, even in Utah where there are fewer regulations governing safety of limos.

We at VIP Limousine use a common sense approach to safety, training each of our chauffeurs on defensive driving and bad weather in order to navigate all variety of trouble. We regularly inspect all of our vehicles to the standards and frequency expected and mandated by the USDOT. This includes the drivetrain and internal safety equipment, as well as capping passenger capacity. As a result, our company has a great safety record. However, what if something DOES go awry?

That's where insurance comes in. Livery insurance is different from regular car insurance in a few ways. First of all, it's often quite expensive, taking up a good portion of operating costs. It covers multiple vehicles in a fleet with high limits and deductibles for larger passenger capacities. Secondly, it has to cover a wide variety of other entities, including local municipalities (like Salt Lake City) where a company does business and other livery companies which may work in conjunction, usually in an affiliate relationship. Finally, there's also the matter of proper coverage. 

Some insurance policies won't meet certain state minimum standards, and therefore cannot be used in certain areas. In other instances, the coverage provided by a particular policy may not be enough. This is why we start looking at policies and alternatives up to 6 months in advance of our renewal. 

We have stringent requirements for what this must look like. For one, the policy must be affordable for the company to operate. There's no point in splurging if it puts you out of work. It must also be able to cover all vehicles in the fleet, and it must also meet or exceed state minimum standards. Our staff spent months searching for the right new policy, and didn't settle until after going through several dozen of them.

What does this mean for you? It means we can operate safely and securely above the state minimum standards. We can work in conjunction with more affiliates across the country and around the world, connecting you better than before. Further, it also means that our prices do not have to rise to offset cost, keeping our limo services affordable and competitive with the local market. That is just part of why our clients are #drivenbetter.

Special thanks to Joy and the rest of her team at our new brokerage for working with us! 

Flashback Friday

Remember when these were the standards on the roads? We do too! However, times have changed and we look forward to upgrades and new limousine options.

USANA, or: How VIP Limousine Does Big Events


At least once a year, USANA Health Sciences hosts their annual convention in Salt Lake City, and north central Utah becomes abuzz with other convention activities. The SLC Airport gets unusually busy, and we are all hands on deck around the clock. With all of our limos out and about for clients, the biggest, busiest, and best limo service in Utah is firing on all cylinders at full capacity. 

With international arrivals and changing flights as needed, we staff the airport and have the stretch limousines on rotation for up to 16 hours at a time. In the meantime, we also have other clientele going to other locations and still set up to provide the same quality service simultaneously. While USANA is focused primarily on downtown Salt Lake for their convention travel, our other clients are traveling all across the state for business or pleasure. 

Even with some language barriers and luggage missing in other cities, our staff and chauffeurs accommodated all of the variables to ensure a smooth service for all passengers all day, night, and the following day as well. The Grand America saw a lot of Hummers, Escalades, and Lincolns with our arrivals.

After the initial day of arrivals, the number of trips still continued to climb as late arrivals and flight cancellations had their schedules changed to the following day as the main events began. Even with this change, we got everyone where they needed to be in a timely and luxurious fashion, even accompanied by a police escort for an initial red carpet arrival. 

Between all of these and an exclusive dinner event, we still had other clients with transportation needs around the city and valley for events of their own. With successful juggling of logistics, these extra trips went off without a hitch.

Even when our dedicated staff and chauffeurs are loaded to the max, we look to execute the same great service across all levels and to all clients. If you have a big event in Utah, we're your one-stop shop!

Summertime Soirée

What do you call 200 people, catering, make-up samples, a jammed church parking lot, VIP Limousine's Escalade, and a white-out theme at a party?

It's called a summertime soirée! 

The Salt Lake valley is churning with events amok during the summertime, which spill beyond the reaches of the capital city limits. In this instance, our VP of Operations took our Escalade down to the city of Draper for an event hosted by Jordan Page. Jordan is a bit of a local celebrity amongst Utah families and moms, and has also appeared on national and international talk shows as a guest. These include heavy hitters such as Rachael Ray and Today on NBC and in Australia. As we discovered on that evening, she also knows how to throw a mean party featuring local businesses, such as Costa VidaSodalicious, and Shine Cosmetics.

We like to show up plenty early for events, driving the route in advance and setting up to coordinate with other attendees and businesses so we may operate most effectively. Sheen, Dalton, and Chip, all representatives for Shine, helped set up in the parking lot for make-up trials and touch-up, as well as creating space to park cars, pull up the limo, and get attendees lined up.

Given that some of the staff would simply be working or volunteering their time all night, we made sure that those who wanted got a picture with the limousine before they set up shop for the rest of the evening. Some of the hosts also got into a themed costume for the night, while we stocked up our business cards throughout the limo for those who wanted to take one. We also came prepared with water and ice, and got a little creative with the chalk window marker.

Once guests began to arrive, we started the limo shuttle service, winding through Draper neighborhoods in the long black Escalade from the church parking lot to the Page residence, making 1 round trip every 10 minutes or so. With the air conditioning on full and the Kenwood stereo blaring from Bluetooth, it was a cool and comfortable party every time for the next 5 hours as Sheen touched up make-up and Dalton got everybody fired up.

Upon arrival at the residence, the overhead drone captured shots of guests exiting the limo and gathering around the entrance, whereupon they went through to a photobooth and tents with reps and products from different companies. Many of them did a livestream of the ride, sharing it with all of their followers, and some requested extra pictures, too.

After a brief break downing some extra ice cream sandwiches, our guy got back to it taking attendees back to the parking lot. With darkness falling, the opera lights on the side of the limo, coupled with the LED and xenon lights, lit up the night sharply as the long Cadillac chariot rolled through the neighborhood more. 

This was definitely a fun event! Local and small businesses are what drive Utah's economy and can influence beyond the state borders, too, especially since many of them are adopting an online presence.