Day 3: Sunday

Start with a leisurely breakfast of Eggs Benedict New Yorker at homey Creekside Café & Grill. While you're sipping your second cup, take a moment to admire the mountain-chic decor and the whimsical sky mural on the ceiling.

An easy drive brings you to the Eleanor Bliss Center for the Arts at the Depot; the galleries, housed in the city's refurbished train depot, show off Steamboat's creative artistic side, with a rich selection of contemporary art.

Then grab a quick lunch―like the spicy Asian salad or guilt-free veggie burger― at Freshie's, before heading off to skate at the Howelsen Ice Arena. The enclosed facility is Olympic caliber in size and quality, and you'll likely witness local talent of near-similar ability.

While you're there, walk over to legendary Howelsen Hill Ski Area and you will probably see at least one Olympic ski jumper in training, soaring off the 114-meter jump.

As night falls, you'll be lured to the inviting glow emanating from Off the Beaten Path, an eclectic bookstore/coffeehouse/wine bar in a Victorian-style house. Later, treat yourself to dinner at Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant, another local favorite for its Tex-Mex menu and potent top-shelf margaritas. And have the chips―you've earned them.

 

 

Creekside Café & Grill.  $; open daily. 131 11th St.; 970/879-4925.

Eleanor Bliss Center for the Arts at the Depot.  1001 13th St.; www.steamboatspringsarts.com or 970/879-9008.

Freshie's.  $; open daily. 145 Trafalgar Dr.; 970/879-8099.

Howelsen Ice Arena.  Open daily; $6. 285 Howelsen Pkwy.; www.howelsenicearena.com or 970/879-4300.

Howelsen Hill Ski Area.  www.steamboatsprings.net or 970/879-8499.

Off the Beaten Path.  Open daily. 56 Seventh St.; 800/898-6830.

Rio Grande Mexican Restaurant.  $; open daily. 970/871-6277.

Lodging

Rabbit Ears Motel.  From $89 until Dec 26. www.rabbitearsmotel.com or 800/828-7702.

Creekside at Torian Plum.  From $209 until Dec 15. 1855 Ski Time Square Dr.; www.resortqueststeamboat.com or 800/228-2458.