Nestled in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, Kirkwood Mountain Resort is making its mark as a destination ski resort and real estate investment site.

"It is by California standards remote … It's on a major highway that is the only scenic highway open year-round in the trans-Sierra route that never has traffic," says Tim Cohee President of Kirkwood Mountain Resort and Kirkwood Mountain Realty.

The ski town also boasts a relaxing, spacious environment.

"The resort does not have [long] lift lines and has a world class reputation for terrain and snow. The densities are low. There will never ever be any form of crowding of any type," adds Cohee.

If this all sounds too good to be true, Cohee has an explanation, "From a visual perspective Kirkwood is an island." He says Kirkwood is basically self-sufficient, producing its own propane, operating its own sewer and water systems, and there is no privately-owned land available for development for approximately 25 miles surrounding the area.

That's why the town itself is considered one of the prime developing ski resorts in the Tahoe region. Three new real estate projects: Thunder Mountain Lodge condos are the first phase of the new Timber Creek Village, a ski-in and ski-out village; Sentinels West town homes; and The Palisades, homes located between two high-speed quad chairlifts -- the new Timber Creek Express and the Cornice Express -- already have waiting lists for purchasing.

Thunder Mountain Lodge is priced between the low $700,000s to $1.5 million. Sentinels West, which has only released four units of nearly 20, is priced between $1.3-$1.5 million, and The Palisades are priced at $650,000 to $1 million.

Other developing ski resort towns such as Squaw Valley, North Star and Sugar Bowl sell for higher price per square foot than Kirkwood currently does, according to Cohee. With booming real estate needs, Kirkwood is careful to stick to its master plan so that the area doesn't become overcrowded and lose its charm.

"Along with strict build-out guidelines in place, future terrain expansion will also ensure that growth in ski-able acres will exceed the growth in residential population," said Cohee. "This way we protect Kirkwood's soul as well as buyers' investments," says Cohee.

Cohee says while the population will grow by 40 percent, ski lift capacity will grow 60 percent and mountain capacity will grow 100 percent.

"You're already talking about the lowest lift line and density issues in the country. You're taking an already amazingly uncrowded experience, considering you're three hours from seven million people, and you're going to make it even better," says Cohee.

Future plans also include a private residence club similar to Deer Valley in Park City, Utah where you have five-star living and ski valet service.

"Private residence club has become hugely popular because it allows people plenty of ownership use at their home resort, while also being able to exchange to other resorts and, in essence, enjoy five-star living at a fraction of the price," explains Cohee.

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