By: The Fighting Couple
Sun Valley Idaho has long been the playground of the rich and famous. Hollywood starlets and hunks alike are drawn to the challenging slopes and inviting hospitality offered by the small alpine hamlet located in sun drenched central Idaho . Even though the small airport
is always lined with private jets shuttling in the well-heeled to enjoy the gorgeous scenery and make billion dollar deals: we have a secret for you. You don’t have to be a millionaire to go to Sun Valley to see the same sights and do the same things on a plebeian budget. We are going to show you how.
While the area is famous for world-class alpine and Nordic skiing in the winter, our favorite time to go as a couple is summer. The Sun Valley area is perfect for couples! It boasts the ideal combination of outdoor activities to do together paired with slow-paced, intimate dining choices. Even if you only have two days, you’ll leave feeling relaxed and ready to take on the workweek. You might even like your spouse by the time you are ready to leave.
Let’s start at the top. Take the Gondola: For only $15 a person, take the Gondola up Sun Valley’s Bald Mountain. The Gondola will take you up to the Roundhouse where you can have a lunch at 9150 feet overseeing the Valley. If you can’t get enough of the hills, panoramic views, and overabundance of wildflowers, take the ski-lift up even higher to the top of the mountain. There’s a spot at a look out station that you can’t beat for pictures. There’s an easy hiking/biking trail back down to the Gondola. It takes about 45 minutes to hike down to the Gondola.
See the Ice Show: Hands down-You will get to see the best ice skating, with the best seats at the best price at the Sun Valley Ice Show. Try seeing the caliber of ice skating at any venue in America and you’ll need binoculars for a $38 ticket. But at the Sun Valley ice rink, every ticket is literally front row. The ice rink, directly behind the resort boasts an ice show every Saturday evening during the summer. The resort brings in a headliner to join the already stellar cast of Olympic and US medalists and world champions. The cast members will wow you with flips and splits on the ice, the
Pamchenko from the Cutting Edge movie, and skating with fire. We saw the flamboyant and ultimately flexible Johnny Weir perform. He was even kind enough to stay after the show for autographs and pictures. What a guy!
Eat chocolate: The area around the Sun Valley resort has a Swiss Village feel along with a Diane von Furstenberg store and several restaurants. But our favorite store is the Sun Valley Chocolate Foundry. You’ll find the delicious Sun Valley Chocolate as well as every other kind of delectable candy known to man. Buy and then eat the chocolate. It heals every couple.
Paddle Your Way: What better way to burn off some chocolate than to paddle around Sun Valley Lake. The Lake, more like a pond, is a three-minute drive from the resort. For $12 for 30 minutes or $15 for an hour, you can paddle around the lake and enjoy the sunshine. It’s also a bit romantic watching the ducks on the lake while your sweetie does most of the paddling.
Golf: While skiing is famous at Sun Valley, the golf is just as good. The resort now offers three great venues for golf: the Elkhorn, Trail Creek, and the new nine-hole White Cloud course. In typical Sun Valley fashion each course is manicured from tee to green. Each has its own unique personality. Don’t miss the amazing vistas offered by the White Cloud course. Simply breathtaking! The golf offers challenges for almost every skill level.
Find style gold at the Gold Mine: On Walnut Street in downtown Ketchum is the thrift store, the Gold Mine. There is a reason it’s called the Gold Mine. I bought Dolce and Gabbana shoes for $28. There is lots of stuff, and a few treasures. It takes time to find them but when you do, it’s like you’ve struck gold. 1000 Fights likes the book section the most. You can pick up new releases for $7 and hardback books for $1. We’ve even found books signed by the author. Stocked by Sun Valley’s rich and famous, the proceeds of the shop fund the local library. Plan on taking time at the shop, you’ll never know what you’ll find.
Eat: No couple’s weekend would be complete without eating food you don’t have to cook at home. Sun Valley has quite a foodie scene. We like the Kneadery or Konditeri for breakfast. For our anniversary we tried a new place: Vintage. We were not disappointed. We ate outside surrounded by trees and Christmas lights. Our entrees were good: fish and steak, but the dessert made the trip worth it. We ate “Delights of a Naked Stranger.” Um. Yum. It was a flour less chocolate torte with a pecan crust served with caramel and chocolate sauces with a scoop of homemade banana ice cream. Heaven. I liked that naked stranger, a lot.
Sun Valley is the perfect spot for a weekend getaway. While you can mingle with the 1 percent, you don’t have to be one to enjoy the nature, food, and amenities. Book a summer weekend trip to Sun Valley for your next romantic getaway; it’s got all the right ingredients.