The ski resort hotel industry has been experiencing significant growth in the past few years. With more and more people getting interested in outdoor activities, ski resorts are becoming a highly sought-after destination for leisure travelers and ski enthusiasts alike. According to a recent report by IBISWorld, the ski resort hotel industry is expected to grow at an annual rate of 2.1% over the next five years, making it a profitable business venture to open a ski resort hotel. However, opening a ski resort hotel business can be quite a daunting task, and it requires careful planning and execution. If you are an entrepreneur looking to start a ski resort hotel business, you need to have a clear understanding of the industry and develop a comprehensive plan to ensure the success of your venture. In this blog post, we will provide you with a 10-step checklist to help you navigate the process of opening a ski resort hotel business. Step 1: Assess Market Demand Before you start planning your ski resort hotel business, it is crucial to assess the market demand for such a venture. You should conduct thorough market research to identify the target demographic, the demand for ski resorts in the area, and the competition. This will help you determine if there is a viable market for your business. Step 2: Plan the Business & Develop Business Model Once you have determined the market demand for a ski resort hotel, the next step is to plan your business. You should start by developing a business model that outlines your vision, mission, and goals for the ski resort hotel. It is essential to have a clear idea of what you want to achieve and develop a strategy that will help you reach those goals. Step 3: Write a Business Plan & Financial Model A business plan is a crucial document that outlines your business strategy and financial projections. You should prepare a comprehensive business plan that covers every aspect of your ski resort hotel business, including marketing, operations, finance, and management. You should also develop a financial model that includes revenue projections, operating costs, and funding sources. Step 4: Secure Funding Opening a ski resort hotel business requires a significant amount of capital investment. You should explore all funding options, such as loans, grants, and investors, to secure the necessary funds to start your business. You should have a clear idea of the amount of funding required to start and run your business for the first year, as well as contingency plans for unexpected expenses. Step 5: Acquire Necessary Permits & Licenses A ski resort hotel business requires various licenses and permits, such as a building permit, food and beverage permit, and health permit, among others. You should research and obtain all the necessary permits and licenses from the relevant authorities before starting your business. Step 6: Select a Perfect Location The location of your ski resort hotel is critical to the success of your business. You should select a location that is easily accessible, has the necessary infrastructure such as ski slopes and lifts, and offers a scenic view of the surroundings. Step 7: Source Staff & Suppliers A ski resort hotel requires a skilled and dedicated team to operate it successfully. You should source staff with experience in hospitality and the ski industry to ensure that your business runs smoothly. You should also identify suppliers of food, beverages, and equipment necessary to operate your business. Step 8: Build the Facility Once you have secured funding, obtained necessary permits and licenses, and sourced staff and suppliers, the next step is to build the facility. You should hire a professional contractor and architect to design and construct a modern, functional, and stylish ski resort hotel. Step 9: Promote the Business Promoting your ski resort hotel business is essential to attract customers. You should create a marketing plan that includes online and offline advertising, social media, and search engine optimization to reach your target audience. Step 10: Monitor & Adjust Strategies Finally, once your ski resort hotel business is open, you should monitor its performance closely and adjust your strategies accordingly. You should regularly review your business plan and financial model to ensure that you are on track to achieve your goals and make necessary changes if required. In conclusion, opening a ski resort hotel business can be a challenging and rewarding experience. With careful planning and execution, it can be a profitable business venture. This 10-step checklist provides a comprehensive guide to help you navigate the process of starting a ski resort hotel business. If you are passionate about the hospitality and the ski industry, this could be the perfect opportunity to turn your dream into a reality.

1. Assess Market Demand

Assessing market demand is the first step in opening a ski resort hotel business. This will involve researching your target market to understand their needs, preferences and behavior. You'll also need to consider the competition in the area to find your competitive edge. Here are some of the key steps to take:

  • Identify your target market: Determine who your ideal guests are, such as families, ski enthusiasts or luxury travelers. Look at their demographics, psychographics and geographics to understand their needs and preferences.
  • Research the competition: Find out who your competitors are and what they're offering. Conduct a SWOT analysis (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats) to understand how you can differentiate your hotel from the competition.
  • Conduct a feasibility study: Determine if there's a demand for your hotel by analyzing the skiing market and the area where you plan to operate. Look at factors such as ski lift tickets sales, tourism trends, and the local economy.
  • Identify unique selling points: Determine what sets your hotel apart from the competition. This could be things like location, amenities, customer service, or special features like a spa or restaurant.
  • Create a business plan: Once you have all the information you need, create a comprehensive business plan that outlines your goals, strategies, and financial projections.

Tips & Tricks:

  • Consider partnering with local ski resorts to offer package deals and increase your exposure.
  • Offer unique and personalized experiences for guests, such as guided skiing tours or evening activities.
  • Invest in sustainability practices to attract eco-conscious travelers and reduce costs in the long run.

Assessing market demand is a crucial step in starting a ski resort hotel business. By understanding your target market, competition and unique selling points, you can create a business plan that sets you up for success. Keep in mind that the skiing industry is seasonal, so you'll need to have a strategy to attract guests year-round.

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2. Plan The Business & Develop Business Model

After you've identified the perfect location for your ski resort hotel, it's time to plan and develop your business model. This involves calculating finances, identifying your target market, creating a marketing plan, and much more. Here are the ten steps to successfully plan and develop your ski resort hotel business model.

  • Step 1: Conduct Market Research and Validate Your Idea
  • Step 2: Create a Business Plan
  • Step 3: Identify Your Target Audience
  • Step 4: Develop a Marketing Plan to Attract Customers
  • Step 5: Determine Your Unique Value Proposition
  • Step 6: Plan Your Revenue Streams and Pricing Model
  • Step 7: Determine Your Fixed and Variable Costs
  • Step 8: Seek Out Financing Options
  • Step 9: Finalize Your Business Model and Launch Your Ski Resort Hotel Business
  • Step 10: Constantly Review and Monitor Your Metrics to Optimize Your Business Performance

Top 3 Tips & Tricks:

  • Do not rush through the planning process, as a solid business model is essential for your success.
  • Use market research to get to know your target audience inside and out and tailor your marketing efforts towards them.
  • Continually monitor your metrics and adjust your business model as necessary to maximize profits and minimize costs.

Overall, planning and developing your ski resort hotel business model takes time and effort, but it is crucial to ensure the sustainability and profitability of your business. By following these ten steps, you can create a solid foundation for your ski resort hotel and set yourself up for long-term success.

3. Write A Business Plan & Financial Model

A business plan is a crucial document that outlines your business model, marketing strategy, financial projections, target audience, and other essentials. A financial model, on the other hand, is a representation of your financial forecast that can help you make smart financial decisions.

To successfully open/start/launch a ski resort hotel business, you need to be prepared with a well-constructed business plan and financial model. Below are the key components that your business plan should include:

  • Executive summary: It should briefly describe your business and its unique selling proposition (USP).
  • Company description: This should include details like the name of your business, legal form, location, mission statement, and vision for the future.
  • Market analysis: This section should sum up the market trends and your target audience.
  • Service or product line: Here, you should describe the ski resort hotel services that your business will provide and how they are unique from your competitors.
  • Marketing and sales strategy: This should define the marketing techniques you will use to reach your target audience, and your sales strategy details.
  • Organization and management: This section should describe the structure of your business, and the roles and responsibilities of your executive team and staff.
  • Financial projections: Details your financial forecasting, potential risks, and challenges that you may face, and your financial milestones.
  • Conclusion: This should summarize your business plan, goals, and values you want to nurture in your company culture.

Your financial model should include:

  • A revenue model: It should describe how revenue will be generated from your ski resort hotel business.
  • Cost structure: Here, you should describe all your costs, investments, and overhead expenses required to operate your business.
  • Break-even analysis: This will give you the numbers you need to know to cover your costs of operating your business.
  • Cash flow analysis: This should outline how cash will flow through your business and how much you expect to have at any given time.
  • Financial projections: Details your financial forecasting, potential risks, and challenges that you may face, and your financial milestones.

Tips & Trics:

  • Research your market before proceeding with your business plan and financial model.
  • Be realistic in your financial projections.
  • Be concise and avoid jargon in your business plan.

Once you have completed your business plan and financial model, invite a third party to review the draft copies and provide feedback. Ensure that the financial model is strong and provides a sound representation of your future business. By having a well-developed business plan and financial model and associated financials, you will be set to pitch your new ski resort hotel business idea to potential investors and lenders.

4. Secure Funding

Opening a ski resort hotel business requires a significant amount of capital investment. The cost of buying or leasing the land, constructing the hotel building, purchasing the necessary equipment and furniture, and hiring staff can add up quickly. Therefore, the first step to launch the business is to secure funding.

  • Create a business plan: A detailed business plan is essential to attract investors or secure a loan from a bank. The plan should include the mission and vision of the business, market analysis, target customers, marketing strategy, financial projections, and risks and challenges.
  • Explore different funding options: There are various ways to obtain funding for a ski resort hotel business. Some options include personal savings, crowdfunding, private investors, government grants, bank loans, and Small Business Administration (SBA) loans.
  • Build a strong relationship with investors: Investors are more likely to invest in the business if they believe in the management team and the vision. Therefore, it is essential to develop a good relationship with investors by providing regular updates, seeking their feedback, and following through on commitments.
  • Maintain a good credit score: A good credit score is critical to secure a loan from a bank or other financial institutions. Keep a track of your credit score and try to improve it if necessary.
  • Consider partnerships: Partnering with other businesses or entrepreneurs can also help to secure funding. For example, partnering with a ski equipment rental business can be beneficial for both parties as customers of the ski resort hotel also need ski equipment.

Tips & Tricks for Securing Funding:

  • Prepare a pitch deck that highlights the unique value proposition of the ski resort hotel.
  • Research and target investors who are interested in the hospitality industry and have experience in funding similar businesses.
  • Be prepared to negotiate with investors or lenders, but also know your limits.

Overall, securing funding is a crucial step in launching a ski resort hotel business. It requires careful planning, research, and relationship building with investors or lenders. By following these steps and tips, entrepreneurs can increase their chances of obtaining the necessary funding to turn their dream into reality.

5. Acquire Necessary Permits & Licenses

Opening a ski resort hotel business requires obtaining necessary permits and licenses from local and state governments to ensure that your business is operating legally. Failure to obtain these permits and licenses can result in fines, legal action, or even the closure of your business.


  • Building permit- A building permit is required to ensure that your facility meets local building codes and safety standards. It can take a few weeks or even months to obtain a permit, so it's important to apply for one as soon as possible.
  • Zoning permit- A zoning permit ensures that your business is located in an area zoned for commercial use.
  • Environmental permit- An environmental permit ensures that your business is not harming the environment through pollution or other harmful activities.


  • Business license- A business license is required to legally operate a business. The requirements for a business license vary by state, but generally, you will need to provide proof of insurance, identification, and pay a fee.
  • Liquor license- If you plan to serve alcohol at your ski resort hotel, you will need to obtain a liquor license. The requirements for a liquor license vary by state, but you may need to attend a training program or pass an exam.
  • Food service license- If you plan to serve food at your ski resort hotel, you will need to obtain a food service license. This license ensures that your facility meets health and safety standards for food preparation and storage.

Tips & Tricks:

  • Research the permit and license requirements in your state and local government before starting your business
  • Stay organized and keep track of all permits and licenses that your business needs to avoid any legal issues
  • If you're unsure what permits and licenses you need, consult with a business consultant or attorney to avoid missing any crucial legal requirements

6. Select A Perfect Location

Selecting the right location for your ski resort hotel is crucial for your business success. Factors such as accessibility, proximity to ski lifts and attractions, local tourist traffic, and room for expansion should be taken into consideration. Here are some steps to follow:

  • Research potential locations: Make a list of potential locations that meet your business criteria such as local regulations, permits, and zoning laws. Consider locations that have local traffic, easy access, and ample space for expansion.
  • Visit potential sites: Before making any decisions, visit potential locations, and evaluate their features. Consider weather patterns, topography, and infrastructure such as water and electricity lines.
  • Check local zoning laws: Check local zoning laws and regulations to ensure your business meets local standards. Get in touch with local authorities to confirm requirements and restrictions.
  • Consider the competition: Research and compare competing ski resorts in the area. Look at their amenities, prices, and customer reviews. Choose a location that offers uniqueness, accessibility and has room for growth.
  • Assess costs: Evaluate the cost of the land, construction, labor, infrastructure, and maintenance. Make sure to factor in local taxes and permits.
  • Get professional advice: Consult with a professional team of experts, including architects, builders, lawyers, and real estate agents to make sure you make the right decision.

Tips & Tricks

  • Consider purchasing existing properties as a way to save on land and construction costs.
  • Study the demographics of the area and target audiences to provide tailored packages, services, and amenities.
  • Keep in mind the potential impact of weather changes on your location. Climate change can make skiing conditions unpredictable, leading to less revenue during the primary ski season.

7. Source Staff & Suppliers

As you plan to open/start/launch your ski resort hotel business, you must consider sourcing for staff and suppliers. This chapter will guide you through the process of identifying potential staff and suppliers and how to evaluate them to ensure they are fit for your business.

7.1. Staff

The success of your ski resort hotel business is tied to the kind of staff you hire. Your staff can either make or break your business, so you need to be diligent in selecting the right people. These are some of the positions you should consider:

  • General manager
  • Accounting and finance personnel
  • Marketing and sales personnel
  • Food and beverage personnel
  • Housekeeping and maintenance personnel

You can source for staff through various channels, such as online job boards, staffing agencies, or by contacting local schools and colleges. When hiring staff, you should consider their experience, qualifications, and personality fit with your establishment's culture. It is essential to conduct background checks on your potential hires and verify their references.

Some tips for sourcing staff:

  • Offer competitive salaries and benefits to attract top talent
  • Consider hiring local staff who have knowledge of the area and local culture
  • Create an employee referral program to encourage your current staff to recommend potential hires

7.2. Suppliers

Your ski resort hotel business will also need reliable suppliers to provide you with the necessary equipment and products. These are some of the key supplies you will need:

  • Ski equipment
  • Furniture and fixtures
  • Food and beverage supplies
  • Linens and bedding
  • Toiletries and cleaning supplies

You can source for suppliers through online directories, trade shows, or referrals from industry contacts. As you evaluate the potential suppliers, consider their reliability, quality, and pricing. You should also consider the supplier's location, as shipping costs can be significant.

Some tips for sourcing suppliers:

  • Seek out suppliers with sustainable and environmentally friendly practices
  • Negotiate contracts with suppliers to obtain more favorable pricing and payment terms
  • Regularly review your suppliers' performance and be willing to negotiate changes when necessary

8. Build The Facility

Now that you have completed all the necessary paperwork and obtained the required licenses and permits, it's time to begin the actual construction process of your ski resort hotel. This is a crucial step as the success of your hotel will largely depend on your ability to provide your guests with comfortable and luxurious accommodations. Here are some key steps to follow:

  • Develop a plan: Hire a team of architects and engineers to create a detailed plan for the construction of your hotel. Your plan should cover all aspects of the construction process, including the size and layout of the hotel, the materials that will be used, the timeline for construction, and the budget.
  • Secure funding: Once you have a plan in place, it's time to secure the necessary funding for the project. Consider approaching banks or venture capitalists to obtain a loan or investment funding.
  • Hire a contractor: Choosing the right contractor is crucial to ensuring the success of your construction project. Look for a experienced contractor with a proven track record of success in the ski resort industry.
  • Purchase materials: Procure all the necessary materials for your construction project. Be sure to choose high-quality materials that are able to withstand the harsh weather conditions of a ski resort.
  • Monitor progress: Keep a close eye on the progress of your construction project to ensure that everything is on track. Communicate regularly with your contractor to address any issues or concerns that arise.
  • Decorate your hotel: Once construction is complete, it's time to decorate your hotel. Choose comfortable and stylish furnishings that will make your guests feel right at home.

Tips & Tricks:

  • Consider hiring a project manager to oversee the construction process and ensure that everything is completed on time and within budget.
  • Don't skimp on the materials. Investing in high-quality materials will help protect your hotel from the harsh winter elements.
  • Choose a theme for your hotel that will appeal to your target market. This will help differentiate your hotel from others in the area.

By following these key steps, you can ensure that the construction of your ski resort hotel runs smoothly and successfully. With a high-quality facility in place, you can offer your guests a truly unforgettable experience that will keep them coming back year after year.

9. Promote The Business

Once your ski resort hotel business is up and running, it is essential to promote it to attract and retain customers. In this chapter, we will explore some effective ways to promote your business.

  • Create a website: In this digital age, having a website for your ski resort hotel business is essential. Your website should include information about your services, prices, and packages. It should also be user-friendly and responsive on all devices.
  • Use social media: Social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter are powerful tools for promoting your business. You can post pictures and videos of your hotel and skiing facilities, special offers, and promotions. You can also communicate with customers and respond to their queries and complaints.
  • Partner with travel agencies: Collaborating with travel agencies can help you reach new customers. Travel agencies can market your hotel and offer your packages to their clients. In return, you can offer them commissions or discounts.
  • Organize events: Hosting events such as ski competitions or live music nights can attract customers to your hotel. Events also provide opportunities for customers to experience your facilities and services.
  • Offer loyalty programs: Loyalty programs can keep your existing customers coming back. You can offer them discounts, freebies, or points that they can redeem for future stays or services.
  • Get listed on directories: Listing your business on online directories such as Google My Business, Yelp, or Tripadvisor can help customers find you. You should ensure that your business information, such as your address, phone number, and operating hours, are accurate and up-to-date.

Tips & Tricks:

  • Tip 1: Use influencer marketing to reach a wider audience. You can collaborate with social media influencers who specialize in travel or skiing to promote your business.
  • Tip 2: Respond promptly to customer reviews and feedback. Positive reviews can attract more customers, while negative reviews can damage your reputation if left unaddressed.
  • Tip 3: Offer referral discounts to customers who bring in new business. Word-of-mouth marketing is still one of the most effective forms of advertising.

By implementing these strategies, you can increase your visibility, attract new customers, and keep your existing customers happy. It is essential to regularly review and track the effectiveness of your marketing efforts and adjust them accordingly.

10. Monitor & Adjust Strategies

As a ski resort hotel business owner, it is important to continuously monitor and adjust your strategies in order to ensure that your business is growing and thriving. Here are some key chapters to keep in mind when it comes to this essential step:

  • Track Your Progress: It is important to keep track of your business's performance over time. Make sure to set up metrics to measure your success and regularly review your progress to see how you are doing.
  • Stay Informed: Keep up-to-date on industry trends, new technology, and best practices. Attend conferences, trade shows and other industry events, and engage in ongoing education to stay up-to-date with the latest developments.
  • Solicit Feedback: Be sure to ask your customers for feedback and listen to their concerns. Use this feedback to improve your services and offerings to better meet their needs.

Tips & Tricks

  • Use analytics tools, such as Google Analytics, to track your website traffic and understand your audience better.
  • Regularly review your financial statements to monitor your income and expenses and make adjustments as necessary.
  • Consider using a customer relationship management (CRM) system to track customer interactions and gather feedback from surveys, polls, and other direct feedback methods.

In all of these chapters, it's critical to be proactive and willing to make changes as needed. Don't be afraid to make minor or major adjustments to your strategies if they're not working as planned. By staying flexible and responsive, you can ensure that your ski resort hotel business remains successful and competitive over time.

Opening a ski resort hotel business can be a lucrative and fulfilling venture. With the increasing demand for outdoor activities and tourist destinations, the ski resort hotel industry is projected to grow at an annual rate of 2.1% over the next five years. This means that there is a promising market for entrepreneurs looking to invest in this industry. However, to ensure the success of your ski resort hotel business, it is essential to follow a comprehensive plan. This 10-step checklist provides a detailed guide to help you navigate the process of starting your ski resort hotel business successfully. From assessing market demand to monitoring and adjusting strategies, each step is vital to the success of your business. Remember that constructing a ski resort hotel business requires a significant amount of capital investment, but with the right planning and execution, it can be a profitable investment. Be sure to develop a solid business plan and financial model, acquire necessary permits and licenses, hire the right staff, and build a modern and functional facility that offers a scenic view. Once your ski resort hotel business is up and running, you should regularly monitor its performance and make adjustments where necessary. Whether it is improving your marketing strategies or tweaking your operations, staying ahead of the competition is key to achieving success in this industry. Overall, if you are passionate about the hospitality and ski industry, opening a ski resort hotel business could be the perfect opportunity to turn your dream into a reality. Remember to follow this 10-step checklist, and with determination and hard work, you can make your ski resort hotel business a profitable and fulfilling venture.

Excel financial model

Ski Resort Hotel Financial Model
  • 5-Year Financial Projection
  • 40+ Charts & Metrics
  • DCF & Multiple Valuation
  • Free Email Support