There is truly no comparison, Vail is everything, luxury, great service, good atmosphere and incredible terrain all in one. If you go to Vail you have to go to blue sky basin and the back bowls, you have not experience Vail until you go there. The front side is fun but you can find that terrain in other more affordable resorts. But Vail truly shows its power in the blue sky basin. It only takes you about one hours to get there and the views and terrain are absolutely incredible. The food is a little expensive, but hey it's Vail do not complain. Life is short enjoy it and ride all the snow you can.
Crowds can be avoided if you get there early, escape to back of the mountain and stay there. People are extremely friendly like in all summit county. Well except for one local that thought he was God. But over all what an incredible experience. Best resort I have ever been to.