Our Favorite Design Hotels in the Mountain West
Warmer months has us dreaming of travel. While the landscape of the Mountain West is a destination in and of itself, there are a few hotels within it whose design elicits a road trip.
We travel for design, whether it be the landscape, the architecture, or the way our food is presented in a restaurant. Design is everywhere in the world. For us, one of our favorite elements of travel is checking into a beautiful hotel room where interior design reigns supreme and we’re transported to a world other than our own. Sometimes that world is extreme luxury, other times it’s the Wild Wild West, but it’s the sense of place that we love. Dreaming of warmer days where we can hit the road from our headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah, we gathered a few of our favorite interior design hotels, from the room to the lobby, in the Mountain West.
“The idea of designing a hotel has always been a ‘down the road’ dream for me. It’s not all that different than designing a family home; I’m creating an experience for the people who will live inside of it, no matter the period of time. With Studio McGee, I’m constantly inspired by the world around me, and I like to think of designing a hotel as an opportunity to create a whole new little world for the people who choose to spend their time there.”
No. 01 | The Joshua Tree Hotel in Tuscon, Arizona
The Joshua Tree Hotel’s Tuscon outpost sits near Saguaro National Park, a landscape dotted with the Saguaro cactus, creating an atmosphere that’s as much about quiet reflection as it is adventure. It’s a small inn of only six suites, each paying homage to its surroundings through design—clay tiles and wood beam ceilings, artwork and furniture crafted from local artisans.
No. 02 | Caldera House in Jackson, Wyoming
Located right in Teton Village at the base of Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Caldera House is a five-star luxury resort that manages to retain the essence of personalization and community though being sprawling. It has a spa and multiple bars and restaurants, all of which capture the golden age of downhill skiing. The design of the hotel utilizes a plethora of natural materials, from wood and stone to steel and copper.
No. 03 | Hotel Jerome in Aspen, Colorado
Aspen’s Hotel Jerome has been a landmark in this Rocky Mountain community since the 1880s. Even then it was a beacon of luxury and high design, being one of the first buildings on the west side of the Mississippi River to be fully lit by electricity. The most recent iteration of the high-mountain staple keeps all the original charm with its encaustic tilework floor, carved-oak fireplaces, and the low-back leather chairs and Chinoiserie woodwork of the legendary J-Bar, where Hunter S. Thompson famously once partook in what we can only assume was overindulgence.
No. 04 | Amangiri in Canyon Point, Utah
We love how the walls of the Amangiri seems to be rising out of the iconic, Desert Southwest landscape of which it’s housed. It feels mysterious and spirited, not too dissimilar to the storied cliffs and rock formations that dot the land around it. Though incredibly minimalistic in design, it’s the way the sharp angles of the concrete structures play with the sun and shadows that make the Amangiri a spectacular example of high design in the Mountain West.
No. 05 | Lone Mountain Ranch in Big Sky, Montana
We love Big Sky’s Lone Mountain Ranch for the way it fully embraces mountain cabin style. The American West is iconic for its log cabins interiors, and all the uniquely western design elements that come within it—think quilted duvets, antler chandeliers, animal hide rugs. Sitting on 140+ acres of untamed wilderness, Lone Mountain Ranch is special in the way it transports you to the days of cowboys and cowgirls, welcoming you with western hospitality.
No. 06 | The Ramble Hotel in Denver, Colorado
Downtown Denver’s Ramble Hotel was inspired by 17th-century French salons, and it’s apparent the minute you walk through the doors of the lobby meets coffee shop meets restaurant meets bar. This is a place where people gather under soaring ceilings dotted with chandeliers, velvet and leather sofas, and a collection of antique rugs. What makes The Ramble really stand out is the juxtaposition of its surroundings, which is the grittier downtown portion of Denver, Colorado.
From top, photo courtesy Kelly Calvillo and The Ramble Hotel.
No. 07 | The Lodge at Blue Sky in Wanship, Utah
A personal favorite of the McGee family is The Lodge at Blue Sky. Nestled into the Wasatch Mountain Range near Park City, Utah, this hotel blends a rustic, mountain aesthetic with modern design elements like black steel doors, cedar-plank walls, and an infinity edge pool that seems to disappear into the landscape. One of the truly incredible parts about the lodge is its commitment to showcasing said landscape. Clean lines and natural materials leave a sophisticated but soft touch, leaving the awe-inspiring views to do most of the talking.