Why do Vegas when you can do the Jasper PJ Party?

The dance floor is packed. Girls Club DJs are pumping out the early 90s hip hop and House of Pain is demanding we “Jump Around”! So jump we do. I’ve always been pretty badass for a soccer mom and This. Is. My. Jam! This whole weekend is proving to be my jam, and this estrogen heavy crowd? These are my people.

Even as a fully-grown woman with an aversion to being called a “girl,” I love a girls’ weekend. The Fairmont Jasper Park Lodge has tapped into that ethos perfectly with their annual PJ Party. It is most certainly a grown-up affair, but with a strong girls-just-wanna-have-fun vibe. The programming, the food and drinks, and the luxury setting in the mountains all set the stage for a weekend full of gently debaucherous fun.

Do All the Things. Or none of the things.

Beyond the parties, and unlike a getaway to a place where the focus is strictly hedonistic, part of the draw of the Jasper PJ Party is the programming. The schedule is like something your more organized friend would set out for you on a weekend away—plenty of time to relax mixed with interesting activities.

On Saturday morning we faced a tough choice between building a terrarium and learning tricks from expert hairstylists. As someone with terminally terrible hair skills, I opted for the hair magic. The second session I attended was hosted by Edmonton social media maven Linda Hoang on upping your Instagram game.

The afternoon sessions included a wine tasting, a mixology course, and a collage party. The collage party was the sleeper hit of the weekend—the DJs set the chill tone while party guests were set loose on more magazines than I’ve ever seen. Some of the women unleashed their inner artists while they created masterpieces, others sipped a glass or two of wine and became engrossed in the articles, abandoning their projects completely. But everyone agreed; they were surprised by how much they enjoyed it!

For those who weren’t sleeping in on Sunday morning (and the luxurious king size bed made it very difficult to get moving), there was a guided hike, yoga, or a cooking demonstration to enjoy. Smoothies served by the hot tub proved a temptation too difficult to resist; every morning should be so decadent!

There are no calories in the Rockies!

When the doors to the Beauvert Ballroom opened to the throngs of pyjama clad ladies on Friday night, we were greeted by tables groaning under sumptuous desserts, a fun candy bar of assorted sweets, a buffet with savoury snacks, and the showstopper: gorgeous signature cocktails created by master mixologist Micah Dew.  I’m not saying being fuelled by gummy bears and Gin Sippers made me a better dancer, but yea, it totally did.

As one would expect from a high-end Fairmont property, all weekend the food game was strong and the drinks were flowing. As our emcee assured us “There’s nothing wrong with a little day buzz!”

The amazing food and drinks theme repeated through the weekend, with a sit down multi-course dinner complementing the elegant gala evening on Saturday night. The weekend of wining and dining culminated with a hot brunch buffet (and accompanying mimosas and Caesars) on Sunday before we left—full and somewhat reluctantly.

Party, Chill, Repeat

In 2019, the cost per person was $699 plus taxes, based on double occupancy. No one will argue it’s a bargain basement price tag, but it is actually pretty reasonable for what you get; luxury accommodations in the Rockies, all your food and drinks, classes, a dance party, and a gala evening complete with a private concert (this year featured the dazzling Serena Ryder.) You would spend a lot more on a weekend in Vegas with the girls!

A laughing group of women wore matching t-shirts emblazoned with “Cheaper than Therapy” across their chests. I would never suggest that a person with mental health issues could be cured by a weekend away. But for a quick rest and recharge with just the right amount of vice, the Jasper PJ Party is a marvellous break from reality.