Snowcreek Resort: Mammoth's Original Resort Community
Unique, Expansive 450-acre Location Claims its Place in Mammoth History
MAMMOTH LAKES, CALIF. - While Mammoth Lakes' mining boom of the late 19th century turned out to be a bust, Charlie Summers built Mammoth Camp, considered the first "village" in Mammoth in the early 1900s, and found another kind of gold as he set the wheels in motion for what now is considered, a century later, one of the greatest mountain resorts in the country and the world.
The 21st century has already seen significant changes and growth to Mammoth Lakes, including an influx of renowned developers and operators who aim to transform this rustic mountain town into a contemporary, world-class resort destination where the city-meets-the slopes. But there is one community in Mammoth – Snowcreek Resort – that is adamant about sustaining its roots, as it too grows and evolves, abiding by the traditions and history that shaped its creation more than 30 years ago, decades before any of the conglomerates even looked askance in Mammoth's direction.
1970, The Beginning: Dave McCoy spent nearly two decades developing Mammoth Mountain, which opened on Thanksgiving Day 1955. A construction worker named Tom Dempsey helped Dave build the mountain's first chairlifts. There was nary any development in Mammoth at the time and by the 1970s, in an effort to change that, Dempsey had selected and purchased 355 acres of meadowland called the Arcularius Ranch, an operational cattle ranch, that was previously part of Charlie Summers' land holdings. He meticulously chose it for its wide-open spaces, unencumbered by the shadows of the forests, and because it sat as a perfect trifecta offering 360-degree views of the towering peaks of the Sherwin mountain range, Mammoth Rock, Mammoth mountain and the White mountain range. Rambling Mammoth Creek and tranquil ponds created a sense of peace and rounded out Mother Nature's accommodation of the ideal natural backdrop for a special mountain retreat community. The location he chose was at the easternmost edge of Old Mammoth, just two minutes from town, but seemingly and literally remote for it was, and is, so fundamentally different than any other resort offering in Mammoth.
Over the next three decades, Dempsey carefully unfolded phases of his community-adopted plan -- always allowing for much of the land to remain in its natural state -- including a series of condominiums, designed by Barry Berkus, encircling a Ted Robinson-designed nine-hole golf course on beautiful sun-drenched meadowlands. Additional clusters of town homes were introduced in later phases establishing Snowcreek as a formidable community. And while the homes in Snowcreek provide a luxurious base camp from which families launch a variety of activities that further bind them to nature and each other, the ability to rent these lodgings when they are vacant, the golf, a 30,000 square-foot Athletic Club, the abundance of Rainbow trout in Mammoth Creek, horseback riding, and the miles of hiking, biking, snow shoeing, off-piste and cross country skiing and thousands of acres of protected Forest Service land make Snowcreek nature's bountiful community for all. Snowcreek is very much attuned to the passion of avid skiers, who schuss to an average snowfall of more than 30 feet per season, which makes Mammoth the second most visited ski resort in the U.S. Shuttle service to and from Snowcreek is frequent throughout the season.
2005, Passing the Torch: Dempsey passed away in 2001, but his legacy is being immortalized for the next generation of Mammoth visitors. Linda Dempsey, Tom's wife, painstakingly searched for a partner whom she trusted would share the vision and could realize the remaining phases of Tom's dream resort in a way that was true to the land, using tradition to guide its growth. Southern California-based The Chadmar Group was deemed the perfect match. Its track record of successful, quality projects, sensitivity, conservation and authenticity are hallmarks that enable Snowcreek to progress today in a way that is pure Americana and in the tradition of Charlie Summers' Mammoth and Summer Camps.
Into The Future: The vision for Snowcreek is based upon four cornerstones designed to elevate and evolve the community village to a new level of excellence: Creating an authentic mountain village in the Mammoth tradition, allowing for a close connection to nature, providing world-class service and offering year-round memorable experiences for one and all.
Elegant yet unpretentious, The Lodges at Snowcreek are the latest phase within Snowcreek Resort and the first developed by The Chadmar Group. Completed by spring 2007, the 106 two-and-three bedroom, as well as three bedroom with loft, homes ranging from 1,856 to 3,418 square feet, are priced from $689,000 to $2 million and elevate Tom Dempsey's original plan to an unprecedented level. Designed by Newport Beach-based Scheurer Architects and complementing Snowcreek's family-friendly environment, The Lodges feature classic Mountain Ranch Architecture, a tribute to early western design that is true to the town's mining and ranching roots.
The homes are constructed with rough-hewn timber, stone fireplaces and authentic finishes with luxurious gourmet kitchens, expansive rooms and direct access garages, creating environments that look like they belong to the land and feel like they belong to the families who inhabit them.
Snowcreek now encompasses 450 acres and as it continues to evolve into a full-service mountain village, future phases include additional enclaves of private homes, a luxury hotel and spa, retail offerings, additional golf and year-round outdoor recreational and cultural services and amenities.