Aside from continually spectacular weather and countless offerings of yoga, wellness and fun, Denver truly has something for everyone.
Want to spend the entire day being outdoors? This city has got you covered! Want to do nothing but shop ’til you drop? Yep, Denver’s got that too! Want to do both and only have five hours to do it in? No problem!
“Denver is also advancing as a true culinary destination,” shares Melissa Gassien, Guest Experience Manager for Hotel Teatro. “Aside from the amazing breweries and distilleries we have, our food options rival that of some of the world’s finest. There is a true collaboration with local Denver establishments as well. For example, our Quail dish that we currently offer in the Nickel features a Whiskey BBQ sauce made with our favorite Leopold Bros. whiskey. The majority of our meats are sourced from local farms as well.”
After food and great weather, there’s amazing music. From a fantastic local scene with venues scattered all throughout the city, to world renowned venues like Red Rocks, you are sure to be able to catch your favorite artist on tour. Gassien says this was one of the big draws for her to the city.
Here’s Gassien’s perfect Denver day …
“My day doesn’t start without coffee and a good book. I love Europa Cafe for its funky industrial-chic atmosphere. They have a Croque Madame that makes me swoon. Bacon jam?! Yes please!
After breakfast, I would suggest either a great hike at Eldorado Canyon — only about a 40 minute drive from downtown, or if you don’t feel like venturing into the great outdoors, take a walk and check out some of Denver’s amazing street art. From murals along the Cherry Creek trail, to some amazing paintings lining the alleys of the 16th Street Mall, there’s plenty for the eye to see. I love to challenge guests to find all four “Love this City” murals.
Next on the list is shopping. Denver has such a unique assortment of local shops, you are sure to find something for everyone, especially yourself. One of my personal favorites is Hope Tank on Broadway. They offer a wide variety of funky gifts and their motto is “We sell gifts that give back.” A portion of every item sold in the store supports one of twenty local non-profits. All items are tagged with which non-profit it supports so both you and the recipient know the impact they’ve made. It is truly my go-to store for all special occasions!
After you’ve burned off breakfast it’s time for lunch or even just an afternoon treat! That’s when I head to the Denver Central Market. This place has it all! A gourmet marketplace and food hall all rolled into one set in the heart of RiNo. If you are feeling adventurous, head to RiNo from Broadway on one of Denver’s many BCycle bikes! They are cheap and easy to use and allow you to stay soaked in that great Denver weather.
I think one of my favorite loves in Denver is the amazing dance scene. “I don’t know how to dance” is not an allowed excuse in Denver. I’m currently learning the Lindy Hop + West Coast Swing. There are so many class options to choose from many of which are free. I love the atmosphere at the Turnverein Dance Hall. It’s steeped in a vintage feel and after their free one-hour lesson, they often host a dance for $8. You get the chance to show off all your new moves and jive along with some of Denver’s award winning dancers. There’s also Mercury Café which hosts an impressive calendar packed with dances, poetry and lessons for just about everything.
After all that calorie burning, it’s time to eat again, right? I would be remiss without mentioning dinner at the Nickel. We just won best Hotel Restaurant in Colorado and we couldn’t be happier. Our chefs showcase family recipes with a unique culinary twist. Our menus change with the seasons and it is incredibly fun watching them come up with new amazing dishes. One of my current favorites is the Buckner Lamb Cavatelli. Our chefs make the cavatelli by hand each day and it is delicious!
To round out the day, I would say a final stop would be to Union Station. It’s such a true destination for downtown. It always has a fun hustle and bustle surrounded by stunning architecture. One of my favorite bars is located on the second level — the Cooper Lounge. It has a stunning elegant lounge where you can sip on a delicious Sapphire Garden and watch the vibrant downtown scene. It’s a bar that makes you feel like you’ve stepped back in time.”
As Denver’s original boutique hotel, Hotel Teatro wanted to create a position that was completely unique. Gassien says Guest Experience Manager is a dream job.
“I’ve been in the hospitality industry for 17 years, and I have never been inspired at a job quite like the way I am now at Hotel Teatro,” she shares. “They allow me to be creative and find new ways to connect our hotel with guests and the city. Just recently I finished a “Shop Local” project which partnered Hotel Teatro with the local boutiques in Larimer Square offering special discounts and privileges to our guests. We pride ourselves on being a true boutique hotel and encourage our guests to continue that boutique experience when they shop and venture out into the city.”
Gassien says she also considers herself the unofficial “Dog Ambassador” of Hotel Teatro.
“We are one of the few ‘truly dog friendly’ hotels,” she explains. “I emphasize truly dog friendly because we are just that — no pet fees, no size restrictions, and our four legged guests get a welcome gift upon arrival! Not to mention myself and our operations team will jump at the opportunity to pet, sit or walk your pet!”