Visiting Highlands Ranch
Once you are serious about moving to Highlands Ranch, you will definitely want to plan a visit to scout it out. I'm going to make some travel recommendations based on my personal experience that will be helpful if you are visiting Highlands Ranch. If you are coming this way due to a pending move, you might as well add Parker and Castle Rock to the list. If you have a little bit more to spend on a house, I would also suggest Castle Pines, Lone Tree and Ken Caryl Valley. You can easily drive through all these towns in a 3-day trip using Highlands Ranch as your base camp.
Getting Here By Plane
When visiting Highlands Ranch, you will want to fly into Denver International Airport (DIA as it is known here locally). The aiport code is DEN. Almost all the major carriers service Denver. The two main discount carriers are Southwest (www.southwest.com) and Frontier Airlines (www.flyfrontier.com). These two carriers are priced very closely. As an example, from Los Angeles to Denver, airfare ranges from $175 - $240 roundtrip. Normally fares are consistently around $200-$220. Keep in mind that Southwest lets you check 2 bags per passanger for free. Frontier's cheapest ticket does not include any checked bags, those cost extra.
When you arrive, you'll need to get a rental car. Highlands Ranch is approximately 40 minutes from DIA with no traffic. If traffic is moderate, it's 50 min - 1 hour. Make your rental car reservation in advance and after you pick up your luggage in the baggage terminal, proceed to the shuttle waiting area outside the double doors (it's the farthest curb from the doors). All the major rental car companiesl have shuttles to pick you up and drive you to the rental car station (about an 5-10 minute drive).
As for lodging, there are two places I can recommend because we've stayed with them. The first is the Element Denver Park Meadows in Lone Tree (www.starwoodhotels.com). The Element is owned and operated by Westin. If you've ever stayed in a "W" Hotel, it's very similar. The Hotel is very new and modern. Most rooms have a kitchenette. We have are a family of 5. We got a room with two queens and a pull out couch for $79 per night during the winter. They also have a nice continental breakfast that's included in the price. For amenities, they have a nice workout room and an indoor heated pool. The other nice thing (since it was winter) was they always have fresh hot coffee in the lobby.
The second place we stayed was the Staybridge Suites (www.ihg.com), also in Lone Tree. Staybridge is owned and operated by InterContinental Hotel Group which includes Holiday Inn Express. The Holiday Inn and Staybridge Suites are both pet-friendly if you have that need. They also provide a free continental breakfast. The Staybridge Suites are very similar to the Element Hotel with kitchenettes and rooms with pull-out sofa beds. However, the Staybridge Suiteswere a bit more pricey at about $110 per night.
The Element is located in Lone Tree (the next town east from Highlands Ranch. You can easily get to Highlands Ranch on the C-470 Hwy or surface streets. It takes literally 3-5 minutes before you are into Highlands Ranch. The Staybridge Suites are also technically in Lone Tree, although you could walk into Highlands Ranch from the hotel. I like clean hotels with nice amenities and both of these locations are just that.
Making the Most of Your Time
Make sure if you are going to look at houses, you contact a real estate agent in advance and discuss your search parameters. Executive Homes Colorado will typically spend about 30 minutes on the phone asking detailed questions about the desires you have for a home. For those who want someone else to plan the trip, we have a VIP Experience. It includes the following:
- Personal Pick-up at DIA in our company Yukon GMC Denali
- Transportation to the hotel of your choice
- Tours of cities/towns of your choosing
- Home showings of the properties that best meet your search criteria
- Dinner with your's truly at Del Frisco's Double Eagle Steakhouse
For pricing and additional services, please contact me. We'd be happy to give you a personal tour of Highlands Ranch. However, if you don't quite need that level of service, I still hope this information is helpful. Feel free to leave any comments or questions below. Have fun visiting Highlands Ranch.