Good variety, big mountain
Long traverse from backside, 25 min from town
I skied Purgatory (or Durango Mountain Resort, as it's now known) back in the late 80's, and then again in 2008. It's a big enough resort to offer a little something for everyone, although it doesn't stand out in any one area. If you are an advanced skier, head over to the backside of the mountain, where you'll escape the crowds (for the most part) and enjoy some challenging steep terrain (see pictures). You pretty much have to take the high-speed 6-pax to get started, but make the long traverse via Legends to Lift 8, or drop into Lift 5 if the mood strikes.
There are some nice tree skiing areas (Paul's Park and Poet's Glade) that are great if there is fresh powder.
If you wait until late in the day to head back to the front side, you may have to make a long flat traverse across the summit ridge. Not that bad, but if you want to avoid it, leave a little early and drop down a blue run to Lift 2 or 3. If you find yourself over on the front side with a little time to spare, make a run down Styx or Hades to finish the day.
DMR is a pretty good place to ski with a group of varying ability, because it has lots of blues and blacks serviced by the same lifts. The options for beginners on the front side are a little more limited..this would not be my choice of resort to teach youngsters to ski.
DMR is a good 25 minutes drive north of Durango. You may want to stay close to town, as Durango is a nice mountain town with a lot to offer, including some really excellent dining...my 4-star rating is based on the town, not the mountain village.