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Shirley’s guidebook

Shirley

Shirley’s guidebook

Unique local experiences
Experiences you'll only find in the Mile Hi City!
Kava is a root from the South Pacific Islands that is made into a relaxing beverage. Kavasutra sources their Kava from Vanuatu; this Kava is known to be the highest quality available. Kava bars have a relaxing, tranquil feeling -- you get the "bar experience" without the traditional bar experience. Try a flight! Full disclosure: Kava is bitter. Pineapple slices, honey, and cream are offered to make the brew more pleasing to the palate.
Kavasutra Kava Bar - Lakewood
9797 West Colfax Avenue
Kava is a root from the South Pacific Islands that is made into a relaxing beverage. Kavasutra sources their Kava from Vanuatu; this Kava is known to be the highest quality available. Kava bars have a relaxing, tranquil feeling -- you get the "bar experience" without the traditional bar experience. Try a flight! Full disclosure: Kava is bitter. Pineapple slices, honey, and cream are offered to make the brew more pleasing to the palate.
Yes, that's right. Cliff Divers and tacos. All the locals know that the only decent thing on the menu are the sopapillas, but the food isn't why you come to Casa Bonita. It's the perfect blend of kitchy, campy etertainment and over the top atmosphere; think of Taco Bell with a theme park. Most people book this venue for parties, especially children's parties. If you're traveling with kids this is a lot of fun. Eat before you go. Check out this recent review in Atlas Obscura! https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/casa-bonita?utm_medium=atlas-page&utm_source=facebook.com
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Casa Bonita
6715 West Colfax Avenue
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Yes, that's right. Cliff Divers and tacos. All the locals know that the only decent thing on the menu are the sopapillas, but the food isn't why you come to Casa Bonita. It's the perfect blend of kitchy, campy etertainment and over the top atmosphere; think of Taco Bell with a theme park. Most people book this venue for parties, especially children's parties. If you're traveling with kids this is a lot of fun. Eat before you go. Check out this recent review in Atlas Obscura! https://www.atlasobscura.com/places/casa-bonita?utm_medium=atlas-page&utm_source=facebook.com
The Ace Hi has been a go to watering hole for locals since 1961, and not much has changed in all those years. It's the classic small town dive bar atmosphere.
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Ace-Hi Tavern
1216 Washington Avenue
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The Ace Hi has been a go to watering hole for locals since 1961, and not much has changed in all those years. It's the classic small town dive bar atmosphere.
Even if you don't plan on seeing a show, have lunch in the restaurant and then tour the visitor's center that contains a massive amount of rock n'roll memoribilia.
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Red Rocks Amphitheatre
18300 W Alameda Pkwy
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Even if you don't plan on seeing a show, have lunch in the restaurant and then tour the visitor's center that contains a massive amount of rock n'roll memoribilia.
Rockmount, a Denver fixture since 1946, is the home of the original snap front Western shirt. Located at 16th & Wazee, this store is packed with everything a cowboy, cowgirl, or cowkid, could ever want. Celebrities from Elvis to the Red Hot Chili Peppers have been shopping here for decades and Rockmount shirts have been featured in more movies than you can imagine. Family owned for four generations, the store is small in size but has a heart the size Colorado.
Rockmount Ranch Wear Mfg Co
1626 Wazee Street
Rockmount, a Denver fixture since 1946, is the home of the original snap front Western shirt. Located at 16th & Wazee, this store is packed with everything a cowboy, cowgirl, or cowkid, could ever want. Celebrities from Elvis to the Red Hot Chili Peppers have been shopping here for decades and Rockmount shirts have been featured in more movies than you can imagine. Family owned for four generations, the store is small in size but has a heart the size Colorado.
Located in Morrison, Dinosaur Ridge is an educational treat for the entire family. They offer guided tours (one of our friends is a guide), exhibit halls full of fossils, and the dinosaurs tracks are truly amazing.
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Dinosaur Ridge
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Located in Morrison, Dinosaur Ridge is an educational treat for the entire family. They offer guided tours (one of our friends is a guide), exhibit halls full of fossils, and the dinosaurs tracks are truly amazing.
Ever wonder about where all that change in your pocket comes from? The Denver Mint is a branch of the United States Mint that struck its first coins on February 1, 1906. The mint is still operating and producing coins for circulation, as well as mint sets and commemorative coins. Coins produced at the Denver Mint bear a D mint mark.
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Denver Mint
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Ever wonder about where all that change in your pocket comes from? The Denver Mint is a branch of the United States Mint that struck its first coins on February 1, 1906. The mint is still operating and producing coins for circulation, as well as mint sets and commemorative coins. Coins produced at the Denver Mint bear a D mint mark.
Before multiplex, stadium style seating, there were beautiful movie houses and this is one of them. If you're a lover of Art Deco architecture this place is an absolute gem. Arrive a little bit early just to feast your eyes on all the beauty that you won't see once the lights go out.
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Landmark's Mayan Theatre
110 Broadway
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Before multiplex, stadium style seating, there were beautiful movie houses and this is one of them. If you're a lover of Art Deco architecture this place is an absolute gem. Arrive a little bit early just to feast your eyes on all the beauty that you won't see once the lights go out.
Food scene
Our favorite locally owned businesses
One of our very favorite places, owned and operated by the most adorable family you will ever meet. Gil, Evie, and their two children have created such welcoming atmosphere that you won't want to leave. The empanadas are to die for and don't leave without trying the Mexican Chocolate ice cream!
Mugs & Cones Cafe
2099 Wadsworth Boulevard
One of our very favorite places, owned and operated by the most adorable family you will ever meet. Gil, Evie, and their two children have created such welcoming atmosphere that you won't want to leave. The empanadas are to die for and don't leave without trying the Mexican Chocolate ice cream!
Jose's opened in 1979 and has been serving consistently great food ever since. They offer daily happy hour with a decent buffet -- the buffet food is spicy -- better wash it down with a margarita or two. The main menu is moderately priced and everything is yummy. My husband's favorite is the O'Shea Burrito; I love the Enchiladas Suizas.
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Jose O'Shea's
385 Union Boulevard
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Jose's opened in 1979 and has been serving consistently great food ever since. They offer daily happy hour with a decent buffet -- the buffet food is spicy -- better wash it down with a margarita or two. The main menu is moderately priced and everything is yummy. My husband's favorite is the O'Shea Burrito; I love the Enchiladas Suizas.
Serving only breakfast and lunch, Blue Sky offers delicious food by day & a yoga studio by night! Located in Denver West Shopping Center, you're only about five minutes away from this neighborhood gem. The juice bar is amazing, everything on the menu is delish, and the gorgeous painted ceiling makes the whole experience feel like magic. Be prepared for a long wait on weekends and during peak hours. The blue corn, piñon nut griddle cakes are to die for.
Blue Sky Cafe
14403 W Colfax Ave
Serving only breakfast and lunch, Blue Sky offers delicious food by day & a yoga studio by night! Located in Denver West Shopping Center, you're only about five minutes away from this neighborhood gem. The juice bar is amazing, everything on the menu is delish, and the gorgeous painted ceiling makes the whole experience feel like magic. Be prepared for a long wait on weekends and during peak hours. The blue corn, piñon nut griddle cakes are to die for.
Just like the atom -- Bob's is tiny but powerful! The fun filled atmosphere makes it a local favorite for a burger and brew and the milkshakes keep everyone running to the yard. 😉 Since seating is limited there can be a wait, but it's worth it.
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Bob's Atomic Burgers
1310 Ford Street
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Just like the atom -- Bob's is tiny but powerful! The fun filled atmosphere makes it a local favorite for a burger and brew and the milkshakes keep everyone running to the yard. 😉 Since seating is limited there can be a wait, but it's worth it.
We've been eating here for over thirty years. This was the first place we took our daughter for Chinese food; now she's all grown up and goes by herself and the ladies who work there treat us like family. This place is very special to us. It's not fancy -- just a neighborhood Chinese place, but the hot and sour soup is amazing! Moderately priced, casual, and delicious.
Szechuan Chinese Restaurant
9090 West 6th Avenue
We've been eating here for over thirty years. This was the first place we took our daughter for Chinese food; now she's all grown up and goes by herself and the ladies who work there treat us like family. This place is very special to us. It's not fancy -- just a neighborhood Chinese place, but the hot and sour soup is amazing! Moderately priced, casual, and delicious.
Spa Experiences
Our favorite places to unwind and pamper
Lake Steam was established in 1927 by Russian immigrants and was originally used for ritutal bathing by the large Hasidic Jewish community that settled around Sloan's Lake. It has both a wet and dry sauna along with a large hot tub. Get a soap or salt scrub on one of the large marble slabs in the central area or receive reflexology and massage in the private rooms down the hall. In keeping with it's Jewish origins, there is Kosher deli on-site where you can order a fruit and cheese plate or grab an egg salad sandwich, which according to Westword Magazine is the best egg salad in Denver. Since I'm not a fan of egg salad I cannot comment, but I love the experience of wrapping myself in a sheet and having a little snack in between soaking sessions. The cafe also has a selection of games, magazines, etc., to enjoy. Full disclosure: This place is rustic. It's not a place where you'll be handed a fluffy robe and a flute of champagne. They don't offer mani-pedi's but you can get an ionic footpath. Since nudity is the rule rather than the exception there are gender specific days, so check the website before you go. They also offer family and couples days where everyone wears swimsuits.
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Lake Steam Baths
3540 West Colfax Avenue
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Lake Steam was established in 1927 by Russian immigrants and was originally used for ritutal bathing by the large Hasidic Jewish community that settled around Sloan's Lake. It has both a wet and dry sauna along with a large hot tub. Get a soap or salt scrub on one of the large marble slabs in the central area or receive reflexology and massage in the private rooms down the hall. In keeping with it's Jewish origins, there is Kosher deli on-site where you can order a fruit and cheese plate or grab an egg salad sandwich, which according to Westword Magazine is the best egg salad in Denver. Since I'm not a fan of egg salad I cannot comment, but I love the experience of wrapping myself in a sheet and having a little snack in between soaking sessions. The cafe also has a selection of games, magazines, etc., to enjoy. Full disclosure: This place is rustic. It's not a place where you'll be handed a fluffy robe and a flute of champagne. They don't offer mani-pedi's but you can get an ionic footpath. Since nudity is the rule rather than the exception there are gender specific days, so check the website before you go. They also offer family and couples days where everyone wears swimsuits.
If you're looking for a spa experience at a budget price this place is an undiscovered gem. DIMS offers a wide variety of spa treatments; facials, dermaplane, body wraps, & waxing along with traditional and Thai (floor) massage. The place is adorable and is constantly offering different promotions. The CBD body wrap will leave you in a puddle of bliss; my husband and I get them regularly. Download the DIMS app to make your appointments. If you're lucky the manager, Martin, who is Mr. Personality Plus, will be there.
Denver Integrative Massage School
1221 Galapago Street
If you're looking for a spa experience at a budget price this place is an undiscovered gem. DIMS offers a wide variety of spa treatments; facials, dermaplane, body wraps, & waxing along with traditional and Thai (floor) massage. The place is adorable and is constantly offering different promotions. The CBD body wrap will leave you in a puddle of bliss; my husband and I get them regularly. Download the DIMS app to make your appointments. If you're lucky the manager, Martin, who is Mr. Personality Plus, will be there.
Established in 1859, this rustic spa has a large geothermal pool, public male & female vapor caves, as well as private indoor and outdoor soaking pools. They offer a variety of spa treatments. Full disclosure: Nudity is the rule rather than the exception in the public caves which is why they're separated by gender. The public pool (no nudity) is available for families and couples. Not much has changed since 1859, so this place is also very rustic.
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Indian Hot Springs
302 Soda Creek Road
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Established in 1859, this rustic spa has a large geothermal pool, public male & female vapor caves, as well as private indoor and outdoor soaking pools. They offer a variety of spa treatments. Full disclosure: Nudity is the rule rather than the exception in the public caves which is why they're separated by gender. The public pool (no nudity) is available for families and couples. Not much has changed since 1859, so this place is also very rustic.
Truthfully, I've never been to this place b/c I'm just not that fancy but many people I know love it. This is the true luxury spa experience and would be a fun girlfriend day. After you're finished spend a little time wandering around beautiful Evergreen.
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TallGrass Aveda Spa & Salon
997 Upper Bear Creek Road
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Truthfully, I've never been to this place b/c I'm just not that fancy but many people I know love it. This is the true luxury spa experience and would be a fun girlfriend day. After you're finished spend a little time wandering around beautiful Evergreen.
Historic Downtowns
These little downtowns used to be ghost towns, but now they're full of life and energy.
Downtown Edgewater has gone through such a transformation over the last five years. Enjoy the locally owned restaurants, brew pubs, and shopping along with the beautiful view of Sloan's Lake. Our favorite places are Edgewater Inn and Providence Tavern.
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Edgewater
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Downtown Edgewater has gone through such a transformation over the last five years. Enjoy the locally owned restaurants, brew pubs, and shopping along with the beautiful view of Sloan's Lake. Our favorite places are Edgewater Inn and Providence Tavern.
This is an adorable neighborhood that, like most of Denver, is undergoing massive transformation. Filled with locally owned businesses and cute places to eat. It's not very big, but it's super friendly. Our favorite stop is Right Coast Pizza.
Wheat Ridge
This is an adorable neighborhood that, like most of Denver, is undergoing massive transformation. Filled with locally owned businesses and cute places to eat. It's not very big, but it's super friendly. Our favorite stop is Right Coast Pizza.
There are so many great places to eat, drink, shop, and relax in Golden -- no wonder people love this place so much! Although it's undergone massive gentrification over the last few years there are still a few long time businesses hanging in there. Ace Hi Tavern is still a great place to grab a beer and shoot a little pool. If you're here from July 30-August 9, check out Buffalo Bill Days, Golden's annual street fair.
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Downtown Golden
Washington Avenue
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There are so many great places to eat, drink, shop, and relax in Golden -- no wonder people love this place so much! Although it's undergone massive gentrification over the last few years there are still a few long time businesses hanging in there. Ace Hi Tavern is still a great place to grab a beer and shoot a little pool. If you're here from July 30-August 9, check out Buffalo Bill Days, Golden's annual street fair.
Neighborhoods
Once a seriously rough part of Denver, this historic downtown is a true comeback kid. When we owned our lumberyard we sold doors and trim to the first business that pioneered into West 32nd under urban renewal twenty five years ago. Now I think the only original business that remains is Pizza Alley; the rest has turned into trendy boutiques, locally owned restaurants, and brew pubs. If tequila is your thing try The Matador.
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West Highland
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Once a seriously rough part of Denver, this historic downtown is a true comeback kid. When we owned our lumberyard we sold doors and trim to the first business that pioneered into West 32nd under urban renewal twenty five years ago. Now I think the only original business that remains is Pizza Alley; the rest has turned into trendy boutiques, locally owned restaurants, and brew pubs. If tequila is your thing try The Matador.
Pizza as a destination!
This is the classic neighborhood pizza joint. There will be no fancy wines, craft beers, or sun dried tomatoes; you just get great food at a great price in a very down to earth atmosphere. We've been eating here for over twenty years and the food is consistently great. The dessert calzone is dynamite and the owner still comes in daily to make the pizza sauce -- how cute is that?!
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Frontroom Pizza
13795 West Jewell Avenue
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This is the classic neighborhood pizza joint. There will be no fancy wines, craft beers, or sun dried tomatoes; you just get great food at a great price in a very down to earth atmosphere. We've been eating here for over twenty years and the food is consistently great. The dessert calzone is dynamite and the owner still comes in daily to make the pizza sauce -- how cute is that?!
Located in historic downtown Wheat Ridge, this tiny place is full of life and energy. They serve the original New York style pizza with a crust that easy to fold and the menu features an ever changing selection of local brews. The large pizza is about the size of a small coffee table -- not even joking -- it's huge. Since the place is so small there can be a wait -- but it's worth it.
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Right Coast Pizza
7100 West 38th Avenue
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Located in historic downtown Wheat Ridge, this tiny place is full of life and energy. They serve the original New York style pizza with a crust that easy to fold and the menu features an ever changing selection of local brews. The large pizza is about the size of a small coffee table -- not even joking -- it's huge. Since the place is so small there can be a wait -- but it's worth it.
Beau Jo's has been a local favorite since the 1970's. The original flagship store is in Idaho Springs is one of our favorite places to eat after soaking in the hot springs and there are additional locations in Arvada and Evergreen -- Arvada would be closest to you from our place. Try the iconic Mountain Pie, served with honey. Mmmmm!
Beau Jo's Arvada
7525 W 53rd Ave
Beau Jo's has been a local favorite since the 1970's. The original flagship store is in Idaho Springs is one of our favorite places to eat after soaking in the hot springs and there are additional locations in Arvada and Evergreen -- Arvada would be closest to you from our place. Try the iconic Mountain Pie, served with honey. Mmmmm!
The DiPietro family has been baking delicious pizza in the same stone ovens for over 60 years. With a friendly neighborhood atmosphere and cast of regulars, this family oriented pizza place is loaded with low key charm. So get yourself down to Ben Pietro Blvd., in historic downtown Edgewater and see what all the fuss is about. Not fancy -- just plain good!
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Edgewater Inn
5302 West 25th Avenue
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The DiPietro family has been baking delicious pizza in the same stone ovens for over 60 years. With a friendly neighborhood atmosphere and cast of regulars, this family oriented pizza place is loaded with low key charm. So get yourself down to Ben Pietro Blvd., in historic downtown Edgewater and see what all the fuss is about. Not fancy -- just plain good!
Street Fairs
A yearly event this goes back to the days when Wheat Ridge was full of indpenedent greenhouses owned by the Italian families that settled in the area. Parades, street food, and people watching are the main activities of this community gathering. This year it will be running from July 30-August 9
Wheat Ridge Carnation Festival
4355 Field St
A yearly event this goes back to the days when Wheat Ridge was full of indpenedent greenhouses owned by the Italian families that settled in the area. Parades, street food, and people watching are the main activities of this community gathering. This year it will be running from July 30-August 9
Wander the streets of Olde Town and enjoy the sights, smells, and tastes of Fall. Rides, food trucks, epic people watching, and a parade! Doesn't get any better than that! This year's dates are September 11-13.
Arvada Harvest Festival & Parade
5640 Yukon Street
Wander the streets of Olde Town and enjoy the sights, smells, and tastes of Fall. Rides, food trucks, epic people watching, and a parade! Doesn't get any better than that! This year's dates are September 11-13.
A Taste of Colorado is by far Denver's largest street fair venue. Restaurants from all over the city set up booths for samples of every type of food you can imagine. The music is wonderful and opportunities to people watch abound. It IS crowded, so be ready for that. Parking can be an issue so an Uber or Lyft would be a good idea. Typically held over Labor Day Weekend, 2020 dates are August 31-Sept.2.
A Taste Of Colorado
A Taste of Colorado is by far Denver's largest street fair venue. Restaurants from all over the city set up booths for samples of every type of food you can imagine. The music is wonderful and opportunities to people watch abound. It IS crowded, so be ready for that. Parking can be an issue so an Uber or Lyft would be a good idea. Typically held over Labor Day Weekend, 2020 dates are August 31-Sept.2.