Ft. Collins is a cool place - it has all the good things they say (we checked it out). BUT, it's a long throw to lift-serviced skiing and Denver.
IMO, the next "place to be" in CO will be Longmont. It's still a bit rednecky and C&W, but changing.
Whole Foods is putting a store there, and many people we met working in Boulder lived there. Boulder's New Age vibe is starting to bloom there, and it has a real town center (like Ft. Collins and Boulder). Best of all, you can acquire housing there for a LOT less in Longmont than Boulder or even Louisville.
In a nutshell, the housing is accessible, the town is evolving, and it's closer to Boulder, Denver and skiing.