SANDPOINT - Schweitzer Mountain Resort is making $1 million in capital improvements on the mountain as it prepares for the coming winter season.
The resort announced on Wednesday it is replacing the drive and chairs on the Musical Chairs lift and replacing the electrical system on the Great Escape Quad, among other improvements.
"We are excited about another round of resort upgrades specifically designed to enhance the overall guest experience," Tom Chasse, CEO and president of the resort, said in a statement. "These improvements will be felt throughout the resort as we continue to evolve The Schweitzer Difference."
Schweitzer's workhorse beginner lift, Musical Chairs, will be singing a snappier tune with a new variable-speed drive and new chairs with an outside bale. The bales allow easier loading, particularly for beginner skiers and snowboarders. The chairs will also be fitted with restraining bars.
The upgrades are expected to increase the upload capacity and create a more user-friendly lift, the resort said.
The resort's high-speed quad will become more efficient and reliable with a redesigned electrical system.
In the village, Schweitzer's Ski and Ride Center layout is being entirely revamped to enhance the customer experience for those renting equipment or booking a lesson. The new floor plan allows guests to seamlessly flow from registration from rental products.
The Source retail shop is being moved to the south side of the Mill Building, the exterior of which received structural upgrades, new windows, siding and cosmetic touches that fall in line with other structures in the village.
Rooms at the Selkirk and White Pine lodges are also being upgraded with new LCD high-definition televisions and media chests. Rooms at the Selkirk Lodge are getting new tables and chairs.
Gourmandie, the specialty foods market in the White Pine Lodge, is being doubled in size and will feature a larger storefront and additional seating to accommodate the popularity of its relaxing apres scene and wine tasting, the resort said.
The Ski and Ride Center will also have two Surly Pugsley snow bikes for rent. The Pugsley resembles a traditional mountain bike, but has beefy large-volume, low-pressure tires that offer good flotation and traction in snow. The snow bikes will be allowed on the cross-country trail system, although specific routes have not yet been determined.