Archive for February, 2008
Oceanaire Posted by
Yesterday marked the middle of the 2008 Denver Restaurant Week which this year runs from February 23rd - 29th. For seven days, Denver’s top eateries offer multi-course dinners at either $26.40 for one person or $52.80 for couples. This is our third year participating and we usually do two or three places.
We got 8:30 pm reservations last night at The Oceanaire Seafood Room located at 14th & Arapahoe right across from the DCPA. I had blogged about their grand opening last year and I was really excited to order from their actual menu.
We supplemented the $52.80 menu with an extra appetizer - their small grand shellfish tower - and a nice bottle of white wine. I ordered the crab cake appetizer, their Mahi Mahi for my entree and had the vanilla bean crème brulee for dessert. Everything we had was awesome! All of the seafood was very fresh and very flavorful.
This event is a great way to try restaurants that you usually don’t because of the price or have always wanted to try. It is amazing to see how many restaurants participate. We have reservations with friends on Friday - I will report on that later.
Posted in Events, Dining | No Comments »
Two Tabor Posted by
According to the February 20th edition of the Colorado Real Estate Journal (CREJ), “Two Tabor” - the long awaited second building at the Tabor Center - still has a green light to commence construction. Bill Tresham, Partner and COO, with Callahan Capital Partners out of Chicago wrote the article titled “CBD office: all the right stuff“. I last wrote about this project in my August 2007 post.
Since that post and the Rocky Mountain News Article a few things have changed. First of all, the project’s name is officially now “Two Tabor”, up until now I referred to as Tabor II. Additionally, the Class AA tower will now be 43 stories tall (previously it was listed on Callahan’s website as 38) and have a total of 837,000 sf of leasable space. Denver Infill has also blogged about this project, most recently in Ken’s January 9th posting. I expect the renderings he pulled from Callahan’s website to be pretty close to what is built given the timeframe outlined in the CREJ article.
According to this article construction should begin soon and 2010 is the targeted completion date. As was mentioned in my previous post the foundation was poured 20 years ago which will allow this project to show visible vertical progress almost from day one. While it was expected that this project was a go, it was great to read that it was moving forward after no official word for almost six months. I am even more excited than I was in August because it appears that the tower is still going to be designed by Kohn Pederson Fox (KPF) and is even taller than before!
I really hope this rejuvenates this part of Downtown - especially the ground floor retail along the 16th Street Mall - which besides the Cheesecake Factory has struggled in recent months. I am not sure if the internal retail space on the second and third floors will really benefit or not since they have never recovered from the massive renovation that took place a few years ago.
I remember when the Tabor Center Food Court was voted the best in all of Downtown and was mobbed every lunch hour. I also remember the fountains, glass elevators and atrium space that was really beautiful as well. It is amazing to think that at one time the Tabor Center had both Brooks Brothers and the Sharper Image as tenants including a great independent toy store. Well that was the past and Two Tabor represents the future. I really look forward to this project joining SPIRE, Four Seasons and 1401 Lawrence in transforming Downtown Denver’s skyline.
Posted in Development | No Comments »
Inspiring Impressionism Posted by
Spring is on the way and some new banners on the 16th St. Mall recently appeared that will welcome the change in season nicely.
Inspiring Impressionism, the Denver Art Museum’s newest exhibition, will open this Saturday February 23rd and be on display until May 25th. I am a big fan of this period and I think these banners are a great way to promote the exhibit. The banners remind me of a art history class I took back in college.
I also think it is impressive that Denver is one of only three U.S. cities to get this show (Atlanta & Seattle). With almost 100 works by Degas, Cassatt, Monet, Manet, Cezanne, Renoir, and Pissarro this looks like it will be so much fun to see.
Posted in Culture | 1 Comment »
$70 Million Posted by
Back in August I posted about the sale of the Adam’s Mark hotel (16th & Tremont) and its eventual conversion into a Sheraton. On Friday the Post ran a very brief (was hoping for a lot more detail) story about the conversion. I did some sleuthing and found the actual corporate press release the story was based on that was picked up by Yahoo and Forbes. Back in August the company acquiring the hotel was Oxford Lodging Advisory and Investment Group, LLC. Since then they have changed their name to Chartres Lodging Group.
The details released are really amazing, our Adam’s Mark was part of 4,867 room portfolio with other locations in Dallas, St. Louis and Indianapolis. The Adam’s Mark Denver will undergo a $70 million renovation during its rebranding. According to the press release, the rebranding into a Sheraton will be complete by spring of this year. Renovations will take 18 months and involve 1,225 rooms, two lobbies, common areas and meeting spaces, I suspect the renovations will be focused on the interior. Saturday’s Rocky piece had some quotes from a Starwood executive with further details from hotel consultants.
Although I would love to see some changes to the mall frontage retail spaces - looking very tired and outdated - I am not going to hold my breath. Don’t get me started on the older tower - gross! I really enjoyed the quotes from the press release:
“Chartres Lodging was afforded the unique opportunity to acquire large, convention-oriented hotels in the heart of five premier leisure and convention visitor markets offering extraordinary growth potential,” explained Maki Nakamura Bara, Chartres Lodging co-founder and managing partner.
“Given the cost and scarcity of comparable downtown development projects, we jumped at the chance to strengthen the strong hospitality legacy originally developed in these markets by HBE owner Fred Kummer.”
While this project will not come on line by the DNC this investment on the 16th St. Mall is huge. I really hope they can breath some life into the upper end of Downtown. I for one will not miss the hideous chandeliers, tacky wallpaper and the old school carpet.
Posted in Development | No Comments »
Downtown Denver is getting a Charter School! I cannot begin to even enumerate how awesome this is! Kevin Flynn at the Rocky Mountain News reported today that the school will located at 2409 Arapahoe St. in the Ballpark/Curtis Park neighborhood in the shuttered Crofton Elementary School building.
Called the Denver Venture School, it will focus on entrepreneurship and eventually be home to 450 students. They will start this year with 120 students in the 9th grade and eventually be a full 9-12 school. A school like this makes Downtown so much more competitive in attracting new residents and retaining existing ones. I think this school has the power to transform this neighborhood and Downtown Denver overall.
I also think a school focusing on entrepreneurship is such a natural fit for Downtown and the adjacent Central Business District. I can only imagine how hands on their curriculum will be! This is the kind of project that has the potential to garner a national reputation and really move the needle on increasing the residential population in Downtown. Such great news!
Posted in Development, Civic | 1 Comment »