by Joe Kennedy

OK – this article is mostly for the guys out there.  I’m no relationship expert, but want to give you a relationship tip that I recently stumbled across while on a weekend holiday to Whistler/Blackcomb.

Giving gifts for birthdays and special holidays is great, but giving experiences is so much better and way more memorable.

I was super fortunate to be able to line up a media review trip to Whistler Blackcomb late in the ski season – and it just so happened to be my girlfriend’s birthday weekend.  It was a weekend experience that we will probably remember for the rest of our lives.

By the time that we got up to North America’s most awesome ski resort, the Whistler side of the mountain was closed for the season and the snow was melted from the roads.  Still the same, there was tons of fun to be had on the slopes on the Blackcomb side of the mountain.  We were so fortunate to have amazing accommodations at the The Coast Blackcomb Suites, which is directly adjacent to the slopes and a true ski in/ski out opportunity.

The Coast Blackcomb Suites is an all-suite luxury hotel in a lodge-like setting.  The suites are super comfortable and extra functional.  Our suite had a separate bedroom, two flat screen televisions, a full kitchen, a patio overlooking the swimming pool and hot tubs.  We especially enjoyed the complimentary breakfast each morning, with choices ranging from fresh fruits, oatmeal, muffins and pastries, cereals, and self-made waffles.

The extra kind people at Tourism Whistler provided us lift and equipment passes for a day and although I was really looking forward at carving some turns on some pro skis, Stacia had never been on snow before and wanted to try to learn to snowboard.  I made the ultimate sacrifice (a potentially epic day of skiing) to spend the day, or at least a good part of it on our asses – and on cold snow and ice to boot.

Trying to learn to snowboard was certainly frustrating, but was well worth it.  By the end of our day on the mountain, we were certainly bruised, tired and beat up, but were both getting the hang of cutting turns on a snowboard.  The real payoff is that Stacia really appreciated the experience and is frequently telling people that she went snowboarding at Whistler …

We actually only tested ourselves and bruised our butts for a few hours, but when we finally made it down the hill, it was time for some awesome relaxation.  We got in our swim clothes down to the Jacuzzis where we met some really cool people – a few from Canada and others from Sweden and Mexico.  At first we were hesitant to go down to the Jacuzzis that seemed to be constantly busy, but we were very happy that we did.  We not only got to meet other vacationers, but also some people who frequent Whistler and knew all about Whistler Village.

Some of our new friends told us about one of the opportunities for an ‘experience’ in Whistler Village – the Belvedere Ice Room at the Bearfoot Bistro.  The Belvedere Ice Room opened in 2010 and has been a hit with Village visitors ever since.  It is actually lined with ice and for $48 guests are provided with warm Canada Goose down parkas and winter hats to make the -40 degree celcius (which coincidently is also -40 fahrenheit), and get four vodka samplings (they offer a range of 50 different vodkas from all over the world).  They say it is Canada’s first sub-zero vodka tasting room and the coldest one worldwide.  We were very excited about taking in this experience and made it one of our first stops of the evening.  Unfortunately for us, the Ice Room was completely booked until well past our bedtime and will have to wait until our next Whistler / Blackcomb experience.

Lucky for us – and for you, Whistler / Blackcomb has many outdoor activities that lure and satisfy travelers year round.  Whether you are into mountain biking, zip lining, hiking, riding motocross bikes or atvs, or simply relaxing, Whistler is calling you this summer, while we wait patiently for another awesome season of snow sports.

Joe Kennedy is a freelance writer and professional blogger and can be found online at

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