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I just got back from a short Denver trip last week! I took my beer-loving husband on a surprise getaway there to celebrate his birthday. Although I’ve never been, I thought Denver would be a good mix of culture and beautiful sights to see, all in one area.
Well, let me just say I definitely made the right choice! We enjoyed our stay so much, we talked about how we’d consider it as a place to go if we ever decided to leave Texas. I mean, the area has everything: Arts & culture, tons of restaurants, breathtaking mountain views, casinos, and now even weed dispensaries (if you’re into that). And we didn’t even get a chance to dive into the nightlife scene. It was all pretty amazing to see.
Now that we’re back and I’ve had some time to rest up, I thought I’d share a little overview of our trip, including where we stayed and what we did, along with some of my favorite pics. If you follow me on Instagram you’ve probably seen most of these!
Where we stayed
We arrived in Denver on Tuesday and went straight to our hotel. We stayed at the brand new Kimpton Born hotel in lower downtown Denver. This place is super close to the train station (seriously, like 300 feet away), free bus routes, and tons of restaurants. So were able to save a lot of money by taking the train to and from the airport, riding the free bus to places in the area, and walking to restaurants that were really close.
The hotel also has other great amenities like a hosted wine & beer hour, where you can have a free beer or glass of wine and relax in their lobby. Nice. There are also 2 fancy restaurants downstairs, although they’re pretty expensive. We had drinks at Citizen Rail one night though and I loved the vibe and the atmosphere.
I loved the trendy vibe of this hotel and the style of our room. It was a perfect mix of modern and rustic styles with a cozy feel.
On top of all that — before our trip I was able to switch us to a suite for less money than the standard room I originally booked. And in the end I saved a ton of money when my bill turned out to be $300+ less than I was quoted! Yay! (This is not sponsored, by the way, I just really like the Kimpton brand of hotels.)
Where we ate
Most of the places we ate at were right there in lower downtown Denver near our hotel. Denver has such an eclectic mix of restaurants but my husband has….simple tastes and that really limited the places we could go. But these restaurants were fantastic. I think my favorites were Illegal Pete’s, Tupuelo Honey, and Bob’s Atomic Burger in Golden. (My mouth is watering just thinking about them 😃)
- Hopdoddy Burger Bar
- Snooze A.M. Eatery
- Lucky Pie Pizza & Taphouse
- Illegal Pete’s
- Cafe 13 (in Golden, CO)
- Bob’s Atomic Burger (in Golden, CO)
- Tupuelo Honey
- Citizen Rail (but we only had drinks and an order of fries)
What we did/saw (highlights)
We spend Tuesday and Wednesday exploring downtown. We had the pleasure of being there during the holidays, so there were lots of lights holiday decorations to see while we just wandered around. And, since we’re total nerds, we made sure to be very cliché and see lots of touristy stuff too.
- Denver Mint Tour
- Coors Brewery Tour
- Big blue bear sculpture
- Horse on a chair sculpture
- Lookout Mountain
- Museum of Contemporary Art (for free)
- Historic Downtown Golden
- Cherry Creek Mall
This big blue bear looking into the convention center downtown was one of my favorite things! It’s so cute and really HUGE. I love that there’s so many art pieces downtown that give the city lots of character. (I wish we had more of that here in Dallas!)
On Thursday we caught a ride over to Golden, CO to take the Coors Brewery Tour for my husband. The town was so quaint.
Then we got a ride up to the top of Lookout Mountain and the views were spectacular! I mean, look at this breathtaking view!!!! We also saw the grave and museum for Buffalo Bill.
For next time
On Friday morning our trip was officially over and we flew back home. We LOVED it here though and we’ve added it to our list of places to visit again someday. The next time we go to the Denver area I’d like to try more restaurants, of course, including Biker Jim’s Gourmet Dogs. I didn’t get to visit Tattered Cover Bookstore either. Booo. But I’d also like to go to a casino, check out Boulder, and maybe go to the Rocky Mountain National Park. A friend of mine is a singer and was performing one night while we were there but I didn’t get a chance to see her. So I’d like to do that next time as well.
I had so much fun on our little vacation but I was so EXHAUSTED. All of that standing and walking really wore me down!
Have you ever been to Denver??