SPARKLING HILL RESORT
By Kingfisher Heli
Sparkling Hill, the embodiment of luxury, has a heli pad right outside the door. Kingfisher Heli is the official heli-ski operator for the resort, and Sparkling Hill is a short drive from Silver Star Ski Resort for stormy days when flying isn’t possible.
My visit to Sparkling Hill took place a week before Christmas and the hotel was even more festive than normal, with a 20-foot Christmas tree and Swarovski-laden reindeer filling the lobby. We were offered gluten-free cookies upon arrival and shown to our spacious rooms infused with crystals, including a starry crystal sky over the two-person bathtub. Floor-toceiling windows offered views of our waiting helicopter as well as Lake Okanagan.
Canada’s Okanagan is sometimes called the Napa Valley of the North, famous for its locally produced wines. At Barrique, the hotel’s winebar, we met Kingfisher Heli’s founder Matt Devlin—a.k.a. Pinto—and Heather Robilliard and John Story from SkiAdventures.com who were there to sample the Kingfisher goods for their ski academy clients. Barrique was the perfect setting; we discussed our heli plans while sampling a local British Columbia wine from Ex Nihilo. Then we headed into PeakFine, the resort’s restaurant. Dinner was a gastronomic celebration of Canadian products— including boutique cheeses from B.C.’s Salt Spring Island, a wonderful chevre from Portneuf in Quebec, and locally sourced B.C. sockeye salmon with a Pernod lemon crust.
Heli-skiing is, of course, weather dependent—conditions are never guaranteed—but the one guarantee you do have at Sparkling Hill, regardless of weather, is your mind and body will be well treated 24/7.