Upper Snow King condos

The Grand View Lodge at Snow King, lower center, will have new neighbors upslope. A new condo development will break ground this summer just to the south of Grand View.

A Texas developer with Jackson connections will build one of the last residential parts of the Snow King master plan, condominiums on the east side of the ski resort, upslope from the Grand View Lodge.

The first of 34 units will be built starting this summer on Upper Snow King Loop Road, where a retaining wall built nearly 20 years ago has been used as an ice climbing wall.

Developer Bob Liberi, with partners, finished the deal in October when they completed purchase of two parcels totaling about 1.9 acres.

Liberi said he and his partners had “always dreamt of having a chance to put our stamp on developing some parcels there, so we’re thrilled.”

The seller was Snow King Mountain Resort owner Max Chapman, who over the past several years has obtained approval of a new resort master plan and spent millions on improvements. That includes inauguration of the new gondola, which carried its first sightseers last week and is expected to haul skiers soon.

Liberi is founder and president of Astrea Development, a nationwide operator based in Dallas. Astrea will be doing its first project in Jackson Hole.

Liberi was in Jackson skiing this past spring with his wife and he “stumbled across those lots” at Snow King.

“We’re always looking at development opportunities in areas I love to visit, and Jackson Hole has always been on the radar,” Liberi said Monday. “It was perfect timing, when Max had finally achieved approval of the Snow King Master Plan.”

Liberi called the condo plan “the right project at the right time with all the capital improvements at the resort ... and the lack of inventory” in the housing and vacation lodging market.

The new condos — no name has yet been chosen — will include one-, two- and three-bedroom units, Liberi said, and they will fit the increasingly fancy Snow King neighborhood.

“They’ll be commensurate with comparables in the area,” Liberi said. “They’ll be pricey, for sure.”

He said similar units in the area around the base of Snow King are priced in the $2,000 per square foot range.

The units will be aimed at the luxury end of the market, but aside from the units themselves, Liberi said, the advantages are apparent.

“We’re well placed as far as ski-in and ski-out, and have probably unmatched views from that elevation, like nothing else — the Tetons, the Elk Refuge, the town of Jackson,” Liberi said. “And we’re also walkable to the town.”

The plan is to begin the first of two phases in late summer. The second phase would be built probably the following year, or even in 2024, with the schedule “a little less defined at this point.”

The new construction will fit in with but not copy the neighbors, he said.

“They’re going to look different than what’s currently there, but they will relate to what’s on the mountain already,” he said of the new condos. “They won’t be completely foreign but won’t look exactly like what’s there.”

Liberi said he will soon announce the architect for the project.

Chapman’s work on a revamped master plan was a big attraction when Liberi considered buying and developing. Chapman, he said, “had a vision that the resort could be much more than when he bought it ... that was part of our excitement.

“We’re bullish on Jackson Hole in general and bullish on Snow King in particular,” Liberi said. “We’re bullish on Max’s vision of Snow King.”

The demand for Jackson real estate and the slim inventory was also an influence. The philosophy he and his partners bring to projects is “we develop in areas where there’s a notable imbalance between supply and demand.” Jackson fits that idea, he said.

Liberi previously worked for Robert Raymond Construction Group, and before that in the semiconductor business. Astrea’s portfolio includes townhouses and single-family housing, health care facilities, gyms and office space.

He and his wife first visited Jackson Hole in 2008 on a climbing vacation.

“We’re not strangers to Jackson,” he said.

Contact Mark Huffman at 732-5907 or mark@jhnewsandguide.com.

Mark Huffman edits copy and occasionally writes some, too. He's been a journalist since newspapers had typewriters and darkrooms.

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(1) comment

Mike May

Oh joy, oh rapture.....another rich man's folly that further erodes the soul of Jackson Hole..... Tone deaf quote of the article..... “They’ll be pricey, for sure." Please make sure to explain to your new tenants that when the pass closes and the canyon is filled with black ice there will be no one around to do EVERYTHING for them. And for the record, if a single one of them actually walks to town from their ultra luxury pads I'll eat my hat. Carpetbagger.

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