Devil’s Thumb Ranch reopens classic inn as Vasquez Creek Inn.
The family-owned Gasthaus Eichler was for decade a simple, lovely little Winter Park inn and fine Austro-German restaurant on the main floor. Hans and Hannelore Eichler got into the hospitality business in 1980 and built the distinctive chalet-style gasthaus in 1987. Now in their mid-70s, they retired and sold the property, which is right on US 40 across from Hideaway Park and five minutes from downtown Winter Park. It has been renamed Vasquez Creek Inn.
The Winter Park Fraser Chamber of Commerce recently named Hans and Hanne Eichler as the Fraser Valley’s Pioneers of the Year. In selling to Bob and Suzanne Fanch, owners of Devil’s Thumb Ranch in nearby Tabernash, the Eichlers couldn’t have left their inn in better hands. The Fanches, who have carefully and respectfully rebuilt and expanded Devil’s Thumb Ranch in nearby Tabernash, have a track record of environmentally aware renovations and updates.
The restaurant component of the old Eichler’s has been completely renovated and is becoming Volario’s, offering a casual bistro-style dining experience with menus described as “Spanish-influenced Northern Mountain Italian cuisine.” It is scheduled to open in mid-August for happy hour and dinner. Dining options include scratch-made pastas, pizzas, cheeses and charcuterie, along with microbrews, creative cocktails and extensive European, domestic and Australian wine selections. Guests can choose from dining in the restaurant, bar or on the new creekside patio. A new private dining room with open kitchen viewing provides additional options for up to 40 people, and there’s a hot tub along Vasquez Creek for guests.
Room rates start at $175 per night, including daily European-style Continental breakfast. Summer visitors can enjoy the myriad activities at nearby Winter Park Resort or Rocky Mountain National Park, roughly 45 minutes away. The Vasquez Creek Inn is located at 78786 US Hwy 40, Winter Park, Colorado 80482; 970-722-1188.