Everything you need is at the Mountain for the most part. So if you can find a place close to the Gondola or Christie (I believe it's still there...) lift, not a bad way to go.
Downtown Steamboat has it's own feel though and more restaurants, town type stuff to check out. Probably slightly cheaper to eat and drink at overall too.
In your case staying by the mountain is probably the way to go. The Tugboat is a legendary ski town bar and Slopeside is not far behind in that regard.