Hotham is a rarity, with its own airport and the ski village located at the top of the mountain instead.

Victoria’s Falls Creek and Hotham ski resorts have been acquired by US-based outdoor leisure giant Vail Resorts in a deal worth around AUD$174 million, it has been announced today.

The agreement to purchase the properties was hinted late last year and brings the portfolio owned by the Merlin Entertainments subsidiary to three resorts after it purchased Perisher Ski Resort in 2015.

Falls Creek and Hotham are highly popular Australian ski resorts known for their wide variety of ski runs suited to all skill levels as well as lodges, hotels, restaurants, day spas and entertainment venues usually thriving during the winter season each year. The acquisition also includes ski schools, retail and rental outlets, reservations and property management outlets at both resort areas.

Vail Resorts Chairman and CEO, Rob Katz, said he was thrilled to be welcoming Falls Creek and Hotham into the portfolio.

“The acquisition of the leading mountain resorts in Victoria is part of our continued strategy to drive season pass sales and build loyalty with guests from around the world.

“After our success connecting with skiers in Sydney and across New South Wales since acquiring Perisher in 2015, we have a huge opportunity to create a deeper connection with Melbourne and broader Victorian skiers and riders,” he added.

The acquisition is currently undergoing regulatory approvals and is trading as normal in the lead-up to the 2019 winter season. Once finalised – expected to be by June 2019 – Vail’s 2018-19 unlimited access Epic Pass and 2019 Epic Australia Pass will include access to Falls Creek and Hotham along with Perisher and owned resorts in the USA and Japan.