June 1, 2018
For Norm’s Thursday Doors this week, I return to Denver, on the day we spent visiting the downtown area.
When we arrived in Denver in late afternoon two days before, we went first to our Airbnb to get settled. Our host’s name was Marlene and she was an artist. She recommended several places to eat in the area. That first night, we went to Tennyson St., a hip, artsy street full of restaurants, art galleries, murals, and shops, to have dinner at an Italian restaurant, Parisi. The food was good, but a little expensive.
Down the street across from Parisi was a eatery called Burrito Giant. The door is not particularly interesting, but it is surrounded by this amazing mural!
The next morning, we went to a restaurant for breakfast that Marlene had recommended, also on Tennyson St., called The Cozy Cottage. The food was so good that we ended up going there every morning we were in Denver! The menu had a variety of interesting menu items, so we wanted to try something different each day. Also the coffee was great! This the patio where we found a table each morning, since the weather was warm.
Dale went inside to use the restroom and took this photo of the restroom doors, marked either and or! Apparently they were unisex restrooms. I’m not sure which one he chose!
Next door to the Cozy Cottage was this children’s bookstore.
Other sights along the same stretch of Tennyson St.:
The following day, June 1, we spent exploring part of downtown Denver, specifically the 16th St. Mall (which is a mile long pedestrian street) and the state capitol, which I have already blogged about in my State Capitols series. We parked at the Colorado Convention Center,…
…then walked to the capitol.
We passed the McNichols Civic Center Building on our way to the 16th St. Mall. The cornerstone of this building was laid in 1909. It was recently renovated and reopened in 2016. (Source)
The art deco style University Building, on the pedestrian mall, was built in 1911 as the A. C. Foster Building. It was renamed the University Building in 1929 and its façade was remodeled at that time. (Source)
One of Denver’s most iconic buildings is the Daniels and Fisher Tower at 16th and Arapahoe Streets. It began construction in 1910 and was opened to the public upon completion in 1912 as a department store. Modeled after the Campanile in Venice, it was the tallest building west of the Mississippi at the time, opened in time for the city’s 50th anniversary. (Source)
The 16th St. Mall had a lot of unusual things to see, among them several upright pianos of similar type, each painted a different color. Apparently anyone can just sit down and play one of them.
We saw other musicians, too.
There were many other interesting things to see.
In a plaza in front of Union Station were fountains of water which spurted out of the ground for people (mainly children!) to run through.
I was interested in seeing Union Station, at the far end of the mall, a beautiful train station which is Denver’s main transportation hub. Marlene had painted a picture of it which was in our Airbnb apartment.
A station was first built on the site in 1881, but it burned down in 1894. The current building was constructed in two stages, with the large central portion being completed in 1914. The station underwent renovation in 2012 and was reopened in 2014 as a combination of a hotel, several restaurants, retailers and a train hall. (Wikipedia)
We were at Union Station on a Friday, but on Saturdays from May to October, a farmers’ market sets up on the plaza in front from 9 am to 2 pm. Union Station is also the site of Denver’s latest bee-keeping project: there are 4 hives on the roof! Honey and honeycombs produced by these hives are used in the station’s restaurants.
You can play a type of shuffleboard at Union Station!
Lots of people sit around waiting – there is a variety of seating, including some comfy chairs.
Entrance to one of the restaurants. I bought ice cream at the Milkbox Ice Creamery!
Union Station’s Bus Concourse earned a Gold LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) certification for “green building” in 2014, because of its use of recycled materials, increased ventilation, natural light and a green cleaning policy. It was only the ninth transit building in the country to earn LEED designation. (Source)