The first phase of its re-do of The Canyons Resort has just been announced by Talisker Mountain Inc., a private developer in Park City, Utah. The key pieces of the new look and function will be a butt-warming enclosed lift and a new direct-connect gondola from the village. Both are under construction and are expected to be ready for this winter season, The Canyon's Elizabeth Dowd told OnTheSnow.com

The developer, a subsidiary of the Talisker Corp. of Toronto, Canada, acquired the Canyons from the now defunct American Skiing Company in 2008, after a contentious series of lawsuits over the rights to the land. The resort was originally known as Wolf Mountain. Talisker added the new Waldorf-Astoria Hotel to its property list earlier this year.

An "orange, bubbled, state-of-the-art" lift will be built just outside the Grand Summit Hotel. A press announcement proclaimed it "a marvel of engineering." The quad lift, with chairs enclosed in a bubble, offers plenty of visibility and, for a touch of luxury, heated seats.

The idea of the weather-protecting orange bubble, they say, is to evoke the feeling of being inside a pair of ski goggles. It will transfer skiers and riders from the hotel's steps to the mid-mountain Lookout Peak, continuing uphill to just south of the existing Sun Peak chairlift. Uphill capacity will be increased by 47 percent. The ride will take nine minutes.

A new gondola portal has been created across the village center from the existing cabriolet lift (an open-style gondola), which remains. The new gondola will create a smooth direct-connection from the village to the Red Pine Lodge, a cafeteria.

Other improvements announced include 300 acres of new skiable terrain at the southernmost part of the resort, including a new detachable quad, dubbed the Iron Mountain Lift. There have been snowmaking enhancements with a 20-million gallon reservoir, more than doubling the ski area's snowmaking capacity. Finally, Canyon Ski Beach will be a new gathering for food and entertainment.

Talisker is developing real estate in several Park City area communities, including The Canyons ski resort, Empire Pass at Deer Valley Resort, Tuhaye golf course community, and others, comprising more than 13,000 acres throughout the area.