"If you squint your eyes late at night, you can see the ghosts of Buffalo Bill, French fur trappers, mountain men, and silver miners," says Eric Clark, general manager of the new Winter Park Mountain Lodge. The description is apt for any destination in Colorado. Medical meetings come here for the state's laid-back, slightly rugged atmosphere, an ideal environment for CME.

The Broadmoor Hotel in Colorado Springs, one of the prime Colorado sites for medical groups, is adding meeting rooms and enlarging and upgrading all the guest rooms in the original building. A study undertaken by PricewaterhouseCoopers to determine whether Colorado Springs can support a downtown convention center has recommended a 300,000-square-foot center with 100,000 square feet of exhibit space. No funding or construction decisions have yet been made.

In May, Mayor Wellington Webb announced that Denver has agreed to finance a $212.7-million hotel to support the expansion of the Colorado Convention Center, assuring that both projects will go forward to an anticipated completion in 2003.

Denver * Marriott International will operate a 1,100-room convention hotel to be built directly across the street from the expanded Colorado Convention Center. Completion of both the hotel and expanded CCC is planned for 2003. * Just a block from the Colorado Convention Center, the Denver Executive Tower Hotel is being renovated. It will open in late summer 2001 as a new 659-room Hilton. The $108-million hotel will offer 30,000 square feet of meeting space. * The 390-room Omni Interlocken opened in July 1999 in Broomfield, between Denver and Boulder, with 34,000 square feet of meeting and function space. In September it opened its clubhouse and 27 holes of golf. * The 1,225-room Adam's Mark Hotel is adjacent to the new Denver Pavilions, with theaters and upscale shops and restaurants. Three blocks from the convention center, the hotel has three ballrooms and 125,000 square feet of meeting, exhibit, and banquet space. * A 526-room Westin and a 225-room Marriott, connected to the main terminal of the Denver International Airport, will open in 2001.

important info Denver Metro CVB * (303) 892-1112; Fax: (303) 892-1636

* www.denver.org

Colorado Convention Center * (800) 480-2010

* The CCC has 292,000 square feet of contiguous exhibit space on one level and 65,000 square feet of meeting space. Denver voters approved a $268-million expansion in November 1999 that will double the facility by 2003, adding 292,000 square feet of exhibit space, 60,000 square feet of meeting space, a 20,000- to 50,000-square-foot ballroom, and a 5,000-seat auditorium. Currigan Hall will be torn down and the Colorado Convention Center expansion will be built on that land.

Total Hotel Tax: 12%

Aspen * The 77-room Little Nell completed a major renovation in June.

* Aspen Meadows, the lodging arm of Aspen Institute, has 98 rooms, 90 of them suites with separate work space, and 11,000 square feet of conference space that includes six hexagonal meeting rooms for groups of up to 350 people. One meeting room is wired for up to 100 computers. It is an IACC-certified facility.

important info Aspen Chamber Resort Association * (800) 262-7736, (970) 925-1940

* Fax: (970) 926-1173

* www.aspen.com/aspenonline

Total Hotel Tax: 15.5%

Colorado Springs hotel news * The Broadmoor Hotel renovated to provide expanded seating outside on former terraces that are heated for winter use. The terrace and some small shops at Broadmoor West have been converted to meeting space, adding five executive meeting rooms that accommodate 25 to 125 people. A $42-million renovation of the main hotel will begin in November.

important info Colorado Springs CVB * (800) 888-4748, (719) 635-7506

* Fax: (719) 635-4968

* www.coloradosprings-travel.com

Colorado Hall Convention Center and the International Center * (800) 633-7711

* These facilities, both located at the Broadmoor, have 18,000 and 16,000 square feet of function space, respectively.

Total Hotel Tax: 10%