Vail Resorts’ Katz: New EpicMix application is “best of both worlds”

By | September 16th, 2010

EpicMix is Vail Resorts’ newest online mobile application for winter sports, and with ski season just around the corner, I asked Rob Katz, Vail Resorts’ CEO, to weigh in on social media and skiing. Here’s our interview.

Let me pick up where we left off the last time we talked. At the end of our interview, I mentioned that I had several family members who haven’t skied and were not interested. And I asked you how I could persuade them. You recommended showing them one of your resorts, which is, in fact, what I did. And now they’re hooked. So, I guess to follow up on that, how do you keep families interested in a mountain resort experience?

It’s great news to hear you and your family are hooked on skiing. At our five world-class resorts, Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge, Keystone and Heavenly, we try to offer a variety of family programming and activities for children of all ages — both on and off the snow — to give families the best possible experience at our resorts. Plus, the nature of doing activities together like skiing, snow tubing, ice skating, and attending unique family events like Kidtopia at Keystone Resort gives parents an opportunity to spend time with their kids to create those lasting family vacation memories.

As an avid skier, I can’t wait for the season to begin. When do you expect to open your resorts this year?

Ski season is right around the corner. Keystone Resort opens first on November 5th followed by Breckenridge Resort on Nov. 12, Vail and Heavenly open Nov. 19th and Beaver Creek opens November 24th.

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OK, let’s talk about EpicMix, your newest product. Can you describe what it is?

We are very excited to be able to bring EpicMix, a new online and mobile application to Vail Resorts guests this ski season. EpicMix allows Vail Resorts guests, at any of our resorts to effortlessly utilize technology to digitally capture their ski and ride experience and share it with friends and family.

EpicMix is a digital application that guests can access online, at their computer or via a free mobile application that can be downloaded for the iPhone, Android or other smart phone. EpicMix automatically captures the activity of guests throughout each of its resorts, by leveraging Vail Resorts’ state-of-the-art radio frequency (RF) scanners that are being installed at all of the 89 lifts across our five mountain resorts.

An RF-enabled chip embedded in Vail Resorts season passes and PEAKS lift tickets will automatically track guests’ lift rides, calculating vertical feet skied and days on the mountain, and will recognize special achievements and accomplishments by granting guests commemorative, collectible digital pins. EpicMix will have hundreds of available digital pins for a multitude of unique experiences available at each resort.

Who can use it?

EpicMix is accessible to everyone, not just those already familiar with social media and at the end of the day you can log onto EpicMix to check out what you accomplished during your ski day and you can also install the application on your mobile phone and connect your activities to Facebook and Twitter to share your ski experience with your friends online and alert them to where you are skiing on the mountain.

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