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SAM Magazine--Vail, Colo., Mar. 10, 2005--Vail Resorts achieved a revenue gain of 7.2 percent in its fiscal second quarter compared to the year-earlier period as both mountain and lodging revenue grew. However, increased expenses served to offset much of the gain.

Mountain revenue for the second quarter of fiscal 2005 was $214.2 million, a 7 percent increase from $200.1 million in 2004. Mountain expense increased $7.5 million, or 6.0 percent, from $125.3 million to $132.8 million.

Lodging revenue for the quarter grew $3.4 million, or 8.5 percent, from $39.2 million to $42.6 million. Lodging expense increased $1.0 million, or 2.6 percent, from $39.6 million to $40.6 million.

Total revenue, which includes mountain, lodging, and real estate revenue, rose 7.2 percent, from $246.9 million to $264.6 million. Total operating expense increased 5.4 percent, from $170.9 million to $180.1 million.

Income from operations for the quarter improved $14.0 million, or 30.0 percent, to $60.6 million, compared to $46.6 million for the same period last year. Excluding exceptional items in both years and using a normalized tax rate, Vail's second quarter net income would have been $28.4 million compared to net income of $20.5 million in fiscal 2004.

For the first six months of 2005, total revenue grew $11.5 million (3.3 percent), to $362.5 million, and total operating expense increased $11.7 million (4.1 percent), to $297.7.

"Thanks to increases in lift ticket pricing, favorable visitation mix changes, a modest growth in skier visits and robust ski school patronage, all five of our ski resorts performed very well during the quarter," said Adam Aron, Vail Resorts chairman and CEO. "Measured guest satisfaction rates continue to reflect our guests' intense affection for the high-quality customer experience we offer, which in turn has enabled us to post these strong financial results." \