We decided to do Denver and it’s suburbs for a few days, mostly to visit friends and to see what the city had to offer. Checking into The Four Seasons Hotel was a heck of a start, as the lobby and it’s bar is gorgeous, our room had a rocky mountain view, and the hotel location is in the center of the downtown area. Mile High Stadium (football), Coors Field (baseball), and Pepsi Center (basketball, hockey, lacrosse) are all downtown so sports fans get a multitude of teams to root for. Fans of the arts are also appreciated in the city. We visited a section of town referred to as “RiNo,” where artsy boutiques, street murals, and fledgling breweries are popping up. We had scrumptious sandwiches from Culture Meat & Cheese in Denver Central Market while perusing the wall murals and local brew pubs.
For some more traditional shopping, we explored the Union Station area and Larimer Square. I tried on exquisite vintage jewels at Victoriana Jewelry (quite reasonable prices.) I stopped into John Fluevog on Larimer, one of the most innovative colorful shoe boutique chains and a favorite of mine. We dined al fresco for lunch at Mercantile near Union Station, while watching a class for folks renting Lyft scooters. (I think we need those classes in Santa Monica!) Dinner brought some shared homemade pasta and Chianti at the famous Osteria Marco near our hotel.
I’ve always wanted to go to a concert at Red Rocks Amphitheater in Golden, Colorado, a short 30 minute drive from Denver. We purchased tickets to see One Republic with the Colorado Symphony, and we invited friends who live in Boulder to join us. They planned for us to have dinner in Golden before the concert. That meant that once we got on the winding mountain road into the venue (which is a natural rock amphitheater) we were in lots of traffic. All of the close parking spots were taken by folks who got there early and tailgated. Folks like us had to park WAY far away on top of another mountain and HIKE for about 30 minutes to the concert. Not expecting that, we were late. To top it off, the “seats” are cement benches with numbers on them, and people from the back rows take the liberty of squishing into the cement benches in the closer rows. Nobody is checking tickets. So, in effect, we had WAY too many people in our row. Crowded in to the maximum, the woman in front of us decided to stand on her seat (instead of on the floor) and she became a total blocker for us. Yikes. Can’t recommend that venue. The concert, however, was filmed for NBC. I may have to watch it to actually see the parts I missed.
We spent our final day in Fort Collins, Colorado, to visit the best man in our wedding, the one and only, Vinny. He had recently moved to Colorado from Virginia with his wife and two sons. After touring scenic Horsetooth Mountain, he took us to Cafe Vino since “Vino” is my husband’s nickname. We all had a blast talking about old times while dining on fresh summer peaches, cornbread stuffing, and BBQ chicken.
Driving back to the Denver airport, we caught a glimpse of the future. The air pollution was so bad, that there was on ozone warning. After seeing such gorgeous scenery, that was really scary.