A word from company founder Mike Connolly
I arrived in the Vail Valley in October of 1998 newly married and anxious to reacquaint myself with mountain living after a short stint in Colorado in 1994. We had previously been living in London, working for a joint venture between National Geographic Television and Docstar, the documentary subsidiary of French pay TV giant Canal +.
My wife Carolyn and I had used our spare time to travel extensively within the UK, as well as continental Europe, always staying in small bed and breakfasts or traditional inns. We loved the intimate feel of these places and the opportunity to sit with the owners and learn about the local culture firsthand as well as to share perspectives on the wider world.
My mother's family, a mix of Italian immigrants and first generation Italian-Americans, were engaged in various bits of the hospitality industry. Some cousins were restaurateurs in New York City and my grandfather was a liquor distributor and retailer. I can remember my mother telling me and my sister, Mary-Katherine, that we should never go into the hospitality industry (particularly the restaurant business) as it was all consuming – no time off and seven day a week work in order to build and then maintain a reputation.
The combination of my personal experiences and a seeming genetic predisposition had left me with a strong desire to open a small inn of the European variety and cater to a select group of clients wishing to experience the fullness of life here in the Colorado Rockies.
Practicalities required that I take a position in the corporate finance group at Vail Resorts, then still headquartered in the heart of its ski resort empire. In the meantime I began investigating the details of bringing my romantic dream into reality. I quickly discovered one of the Vail Valley's universal truths: buildable land is scarce and therefore expensive, very expensive!
By the time my sister, who harbored a similar desire to serve guests, moved here in May of 1999, I had begun to adjust my dream based on economic realities and was contemplating a move within Vail Resorts to its hotel division to start a new career. For the second time in my professional life serendipity worked its magic and the opportunity to take over Peak Properties was offered to us.
Peak's business was not exactly what my sister and I had in mind – it was even better! In exchange for providing caretaker services for homes in Vail’s premier residential neighborhood, the owners of many of those homes allowed us to rent them out to vacationing tourists. We were in the hospitality business with zero investment in real property
In the first few years our enthusiasm carried us through some dreadful business mistakes, most of which stemmed from our strong desire to provide a unique level of service to renters of vacation properties – we knew what we wanted the experience to be, we just could not get all the pieces to come together and function consistently. We were definitely "kissing a lot of frogs"!
Today, we have hitched our enthusiasm to good business decision making processes and the results have been outstanding. While running a business like this is a constant work in progress, I firmly believe that we have never been better at what we do than we are now.
Proof has come most recently in the form of our expansion within Vail and into Beaver Creek and Bachelor Gulch. Our reputation for quality physical maintenance services and outstanding guest service has led to the addition of the Vail Mountain View Residences on Gore Creek and 5 outstanding residences in Beaver Creek and Bachelor Gulch to our management portfolio. We are most privileged to have the Former Home of President and Mrs. Gerald R. Ford in Beaver Creek in our rental portfolio. The fact that we had it rented for Christmas within 2 weeks of taking it on to a repeat client of ours speaks volumes to us about how much our rental guests trust and appreciate what we do.
Notwithstanding the growth we have experienced, our mission remains constant: provide the owners and rental guests of luxury property in the Vail Valley with the services necessary to make their visits here as memorable as possible.
We look forward to seeing you here soon!