This winter as part of an exclusive partnership with the Utah Olympic Legacy Foundation, guests of the luxurious St. Regis Deer Valley will have the option to bobsled with Olympians or participate in a Biathlon challenge led by a professionals staff. Additionally, guests will have the opportunity to ski with Hall of Fame Paralympic skier Chris Waddell. The St. Regis is known for offering guests unparalleled experiences that exceed even the most discerning traveler’s expectations of adventure and discovery. The AAA Five Diamond resort’s idyllic setting in the rustic Wasatch Mountains of Utah, inspires even the staunchest spa-junkie to strap on a pair of skis (with the aide of a dedicated Ski Valet, no less) in order to take advantage of the exclusive ski-in, ski out access of the top-rated, winter playground Deer Valley Resort.
Perhaps after indulging in one of Chef de Cuisine Rachel Wiener’s award-winning wine dinners, you may want to burn those calories the following day by shredding up the mountain with Olympian and St. Regis’ Chief Inspiration Officer, Chris Waddell. Guests of The St. Regis Deer Valley will have the rare opportunity to purchase an exclusive “The Quintessential Skiing Experience with Chris Waddell” package available to groups and families that includes a personal meet and greet with Chris Waddell during a welcome reception or dinner, a 60-minute keynote speaking address followed by a Q&A session, as well as a full-day, group ski experience led by Waddell at Deer Valley Resort. During my group ski session with Chris, I had the honor of receiving invaluable tips to improve my skiing as he had evaluated my ability on several runs. As I hadn’t skied in several months and I am lucky to get on a mountain more than six times a year, I tried to cower and stay to the back of the pack, but Chris somehow managed to watch me on a few runs, unbeknownst to me, and he would wait for me mid-run and deliver tidbits of advice to help me get down the hill more effortlessly. I also had the privilege of riding the ski lift with Chris several times and gaining a little more insight into what makes this unique and captivating individual tick.
As a gifted, freshman ski racer at Middlebury College, Chris Waddell became paralyzed when his binding came undone during a turn while skiing the first day of his Christmas vacation. A truly inspiring and exceptional being, Waddell went on to become one of the greatest and most decorated Paralympic athletes in history, winning thirteen medals over seven Games in two sports. The Dalai Lama named him as an “Unsung Hero of Compassion” and People Magazine selected him as one of their “50 Most Beautiful People.” If these accolades weren’t enough, Waddell was the first nearly unassisted paraplegic to summit Mt. Kilimanjaro. Today, Chris Waddell is a motivational speaker, television host, author of two books and the founder of One Revolution Foundation.
If you are up for a bit of friendly competition that involves testing your cardiovascular ability, agility, and hand and eye coordination, look no further than the “Olympic Biathlon Experience.” Discover why Biathlon is one of the most popular winter sports in Europe as trained professionals coach you to shoot precision rifles at five targets after you ski or snowshoe to raise your heart rate. Participants are briefed on safety and given an instructional range orientation before breaking into groups to engage in a mini competition. The fun event takes place at the historic Soldier Hollow which was once the site of a Native American encampment and a stopover for a group of Army surveyors before becoming the site of the Olympic cross country and biathlon events in the winter of 2002.