July 2018. After driving 1400kms / 900miles from SK, Canada to CO, USA, I was ready for the overnight stay at the legendary Brown Palace Hotel and Spa in downtown Denver, Colorado.
This hotel was recommended to me by my cigar-friend Patrick Carr, based on the fact I was looking for a hotel with a cigar-lounge.
Walking into this grand establishment, I was awe-struck by the beauty of it all.
Diners were just finishing Sunday Brunch and there was a buzz of excitement & joy through the entire building.
I was greeted heartily by Tom, the front desk clerk who welcomed me to both the hotel and to the city of Denver.
As he checked me in, Tom proceeded to tell me about the different amenities the hotel offered – of which there are many … so many!
Of course, I was interested in hearing all about the spa, the shopping, the dining options, the water … but finally – almost hesitantly – he mentioned
“Churchill’s – The Cigar Bar” within the Brown Palace Hotel.
That’s when I smiled, handed him my @CigarHerf business card and replied …
“That’s why I’m here”.
Tom was genuinely happy to get to know a sister cigar-smoker!
We started talking about premium cigars, with the conversation soon turning to whiskey & bourbon.
It turned out Tom knew his Brown Spirits as well as he knew the
Brown Palace Hotel!
I do wish I’d had more time to visit with Tom, but I could hear the call of a Robusto, so I accepted the suggestion of a suite, collected my luggage from the valet who was parking my SUV and headed toward what would become one of the most exhilarating days of my life!
When I opened the door to the “suite” I was thrilled with the sights before me! The hotel’s “Beatles Suite” is a vision to behold!
According to legend, this is the room the Beatles stayed in when they played Denver in the early 60’s.
There are so many things to see in this room, it’s astounding!
There’s the brilliant Wurlitzer Juke-Box just to the right of the lobby of the suite. It’s loaded with tons of Beatle’s Tracks which I started playing as soon as I saw it!
Love, Love Me Do!
Directly across from the BeatleMania Juke-Box is a collage of tickets & photos from The Beatles one night stay at the Brown Palace Hotel on Wednesday August 26, 1964.
Can you imagine paying Six Dollars & Nine Cents ($6.60 with tax) to see THE BEATLES! at the Red Rock Amphitheatre?
The Beatles, people. Think about it!
I’m thinking I’m pretty lucky to just be in the same room they stayed in
– in 1964!
When I’m 64? in 2021!
As I made my way through the living room of The Beatles suite at the Brown Palace Hotel, I took a moment to look through the many coffee-tables books dedicated to The Beatles.
Although it was only 4pm in the afternoon, when I saw the luxurious bedroom of the Beatles Suite / Brown Palace Hotel, I was tempted to just crawl under the opulent covers and sleep the rest of the day away!
But, I couldn’t lose sight of my reason for booking a nights stay at the
Brown Palace Hotel … which was to enjoy a cigar at the Churchill Bar … after all, the purpose of this journey is right there in the headline:
“the Cigar road-trip to IPCPR2018!”
I’ll be writing about the cigar lounge in the next instalment of this blog.
Until then, here’s a bit of history about the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa in Denver Colorado:
“Henry Cordes Brown, a carpenter-turned-real-estate entrepreneur from Ohio, came to Denver in 1860 after several adventures in California, Peru, Nebraska and St. Louis, Missouri. In Denver, Brown purchased several acres of land, including a triangular plot at the corners of Broadway, Tremont and 17th street, where he grazed his cow. Brown made a name for himself by donating land for the State Capitol building, and by giving $1,000 for the founding of the city’s first library.
Henry Brown had made a fortune selling off the rest of his land on Capitol Hill and no expense was spared for his “Palace Hotel”, hiring Architect Frank E. Edbrooke to design the hotel.
Work on The Brown Palace began in 1888 with efforts to make it one of the best hotels in Colorado. Edbrooke designed Brown’s hotel in the Italian Renaissance style, using Colorado red granite and Arizona sandstone for the building’s exterior. For a finishing touch, artist James Whitehouse was commissioned to create 26 medallions carved in stone, each depicting Colorado animals. The hotel’s “silent guests” can still be seen between the seventh-floor windows on the hotel’s exterior.
For the interior, Edbrooke designed an atrium lobby, with balconies rising eight floors above ground, surrounded by cast iron railings with ornate grillwork panels. No one knows for sure whether it was done intentionally, but two of the grillwork panels were installed – and remain – upside down. Edbrooke imported onyx from Mexico for the lobby, the Grand Salon (now the Onyx Room) on the second floor, and the eighth-floor ballroom. No wood was used for the floors and walls, which were instead made of hollow blocks of porous terracotta fireproofing, making The Brown Palace the second fire-proof building in America.
After an expenditure of $1.6 million – a remarkable sum for the time – and another $400,000 for furniture, The Brown Palace celebrated its grand opening. It had 400 guest rooms (compared to 241 today) that rented for between $3 and $5 a night.” courtesy: Brown Palace Hotel & Spa
Want to know more? Here’s the link to the Brown Palace Hotel & Spa.