Reasons to Stay
Why Not Stay?
We couldn't afford it. The rates were out of our range, when we made our plans for a summer Colorado trip. But on June 15, we stopped in for a drink at the classy, Churchill Bar.
The Book Paves the Way
We didn't spend the night, but we had drinks and ended up meeting the talented, Chef Kasper from the hotel's Palace Arms dining room. My Dining Blog link below, tells how my silly cookbook helped introduce us. It also explains how Kasper's generosity and enthusiasm lured us back, to spend a night at The Brown!
A Week Later
A week after our evening at the bar, Don and I altered travel plans and headed back to Denver. This time we actually had reservations at The Brown. Chef Kasper was able to get us a rate we could afford. My Denver friend Martha, even offered to drop us off to avoid the $37.00 valet parking fee.
Even though we had seen the grand hotel a week earlier, I walked through the revolving doors like a giddy child. Before checking in, I paused to sample water from the ritzy water fountain. The hotel was actually built on an artesian well, so there's a reason for the fancy fountain.
I love historic hotels, when they make me feel like I'm stepping into one of my favorite classic movies. The escalator and retro elevator did the trick. If only I'd been wearing a hat and carrying a train case. Then I would have paused for sure, to make a call on that classic, house phone, near the escalator.
From the street, I could see the lovely stained glass and model ships in the windows. I studied the impressive way the tavern fit into the "rounded point" of the flatiron building. I learned that there's a reason for the hotel's shape. It's because it was built on a pie-shaped plot of land. Now, I don't know why there happened to be a pie-shaped plot of land.
Red & Blue
If only we'd had more time! I would have loved to have had a drink, sitting on one of those nautical stools! What a fun mix of old world wood and patriotic colors.
I took this photo of the Atrium, a week earlier, not knowing we'd be returning. The gold and marble was just as impressive on the second visit.
Arches on the Second Story
There's probably a name for the second story with all the fancy arches. If I'd had a lot more time, I could have studied all the intricate designs on the panels. I heard there are a couple that are upside down. You'd have to be pretty observant to notice that.
Our room was spacious and lovely. I really have no idea where this ranks in their line up of accommodations, but we couldn't have been more pleased. Don and I spent a lot of time shaking our heads and grinning at our good fortune. We were getting the Brown Palace experience, for about the same price as 2 nights of valet parking!
We didn't have a whole lot of lounging time, but there were cozy robes and comfy sitting spots and a wonderful shower for freshening up.
This was one more gracious gesture on the part of Kasper! Luckily our dinner reservations were on the late side and our Denver friends weren't arriving for a little while.
Enjoying with Friends
By 6:30, the Atrium atmosphere had gone from Tea Time to Jazz & Martini Time. My college buddy Martha and her hubby, taxied over to join us for drinks and music.
Double the Fun
It was so much fun having Martha and Bill to share our giddiness. They live in Denver and have experienced some fun at The Brown before. In fact the piano player, recognized Martha from last December, when he recognized her theatrical flare and managed to get a "White Christmas" performance out of her. It was the wrong time of year for that, but we did some dancing.
By 7:45, we our friends had headed home and we were headed into the elegant Palace Arms for our reservations. There were other diners when we arrived, but by the time we finished our 6 courses of food, the place was dramatically quiet.
From Salt Block to a Bag of Jams
The Dining Blog shares more about our extraordinary meal, prepared by Chef Kasper. These photos show how we began and ended... with crisp vegetables, served on a cold salt block and a gift bag full of jams and breads made by Kasper himself. What an amazing evening.
The Brown Palace is a dreamlike hotel, all on its own. The people will be what made this historic hotel experience notable!
My New Year's Resolution for 2014 was to start documenting some of the memorable overnights I've had in some very odd and curious motels and hotels. Like the adventures in my Dining Blog, I have learned to enjoy the surprises that happen when you step out of the comfort zone, far away from the well-known chains.
I began with a few entries recalling my very first home away from home memories from my youth. Then, I started sharing about some of the quirky and unforgettable motels, hotels and inns that my husband and I have discovered in recent years.
The best part about this challenge was making some lists with Don and getting on the road in search of new overnight adventures. I gave myself a 2-year goal to write up 90 stories and the goal was met. Now we just keep on adding!