By Marcia Stoller
Special To The Standard
KILLINGTON — The Highline Lodge, one of only a few original ski lodges built in Killington during the 1960s, then known as the Alpenhof Lodge, was purchased and recently opened by businessman and entrepreneur Gregory Gross. Retired from the insurance industry after almost 30 years, Gross, an avid Killington skier from Tuxedo Park, New York, spend over a year renovating and completely modernizing the structure. Located on a knoll directly off the Killington Access Road, the gray shingled building easily attracts attention with its massive stone exterior chimney. Similar stone pillars define the driveway entrance. The 14 room Lodge affords guests unobstructed views of the Killington Ski Resort including its namesake, the Highline ski trail.
The two-story, 9,000 sq. ft. building includes 14 elegantly appointed guest rooms, one being a two-bedroom suite, a full service dining room with bar area, an ultra-modern kitchen, and several common areas. The guest rooms allow for individual thermostat controlled temperature and include flat screen televisions and Wi-Fi access. Common lounge areas boast the wood burning stone fireplaces. An additional 32,000 feet of meadowland around the lodge will shortly be developed for outdoor catered events, including weddings, reunions and private parties.
Guests enter the Lodge directly into ‘the great room,’ an experience akin to entering a lodge in Wyoming or Montana… without the western motif. The striking open beamed two-story room features original barn siding, brown leather couches and chairs, brushed aluminum riveted accent tables, large windows, custom designed iron railings, and showcases the massive interior stone fireplace.
Chef Scott Robertson, formerly the chef at Hawk Inn and Mountain Resort in Plymouth, provides a complimentary breakfast buffet and a’ la carte menu for guests. Box lunches are available upon request. A hors d’oeuvre tray is set out for guests in the afternoon. The dining room is formally set to seat 32, with linen covered tables and damask covered armchairs. Although the style is slightly baroque, the room is comfortable and conducive to lingering. A custom marble topped bar with modern designed black and chrome square stools adds to the rooms ambiance. Chef Robertson describes his dinner cuisine as “eclectic” due to its diversity, encompassing French classical, Asian, and Americana (including ‘comfort food’). He’d like people to know they can come in and he’s happy to customize dishes for them. “I’m pretty good at inventing on the fly,” adding, “If I have the ingredients I’m happy to accommodate.”
Menu selections, which change weekly, may include such choices as baby clams and bacon sautéed in white wine, spinach and EVO served over angel hair pasta, or baked brie with red delicious apple served with balsamic drizzled toast points, as après ski appetizers. Entrée selections include bone-in veal au poivre, crusted with cracked black pepper in a bourbon cream sauce, or pan seared salmon with ginger citrus sauce. “You can always expect to have a new experience when you dine with us,” adds Chef Robertson.
Gross maintains a presence at the Lodge, ensuring the high standards and luxury accommodations that exemplify his entire concept for the business. Being the newest, while at the same time being the ‘oldest ’lodge in Killington, Gross would like perspective guests to feel welcome to visit and preview the property at their convenience. They can also call or e-mail to check on room availability.
The Highline Lodge is located at 96 West Park Road in Killington. For additional information, call (802) 315-0034 or toll free (877) 489-0909.
By Marcia Stoller