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An aerial view of a river in the middle of a forest in Vail.

The Stories of Vail

Did you know…?

The Yellow Gondola

Vail is hailed as having the first gondola in Colorado. And you’re looking at it. This yellow gondola cabin was part of the original gondola that opened in December 15, 1962. Cool, right? Even cooler is how far the gondola has come from its original rendition to the gondolas used today.

How Far is That?

Well, you’ll see the first cabin is groovy, but looks like it belongs in 1962. The cabins on the Eagle Bahn Gondola, which opened in 1996 and leaves from Lionshead, look kind of like little space pods. Cabins seat 12 people, and you gotta love the giant windows! The cabins on Gondola One, which opened in 2012 and leaves from Vail Village, could double as a mini hotel room.

These beauties have:

  • Heated, cushioned seats
  • Wi-Fi access
  • Full-length tinted windows
  • LED lighting
  • Seating for 10

Why is One of the Gondola One Cabins Painted Yellow?

Good eye! One of the 120 cabins in Gondola One is indeed painted gold. It’s Cabin #50, painted gold in honor of the 50th anniversary of Vail.

One More Thing – Isn’t a Venetian Boat Also Called a Gondola? What’s the Big Deal?

Excellent question! The term “gondola” evolved, like many words do. It started as the term for the Venetian boat, then evolved to:

  • A large, flat-bottomed river boat
  • A railway car with low sides
  • An elongated car attached to a hot air baloon
  • The car attached to a ski lift

You’re welcome to use it to describe any of the above. But, you don’t want to leave Vail without taking a scenic gondola ride.

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Sitting inside this little yellow gondola makes us appreciate just how far gondolas have come, especially the heated seats and Wi-Fi in Gondola One. Interested in learning more about what makes Vail a dream destination? Stay connected with us through our newsletter!
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