On Ghosts, Lipstick and Microclimates

Many Downtown Denver buildings are said to be haunted…or, to at least have some pretty odd things occurring from time to time. But, there is only one actual Ghost Building, and it’s named that for a person by the same name, not a spirit. So, now and not in the best spirit, it is again empty. The owners failed to successfully negotiate a new lease with 20-year occupant, the Rocky Mountain Diner.

By the way, there is plenty of interesting information about the building itself (actually the facade) that was originally at 15th and Glenarm, threatened with demolition in the name of development, but dismantled and stored for years in a warehouse, to magically reappear at 18th and Stout.

But, now we have lost the Diner along with the Blue Plate Special, hot turkey sandwich, pan-fried chicken and western saddles at the bar. And, schooners! That’s a shame.

Meanwhile, across town at 15th and Market, it looks like work is beginning to turn the former Ruth’s Chris Steak place into a nightclub. At least, they have a large grafitti-like sign on the door complete with Deborah Harry lips, a phone number and some xoxo’s, all signed by someone named Chloe. It’s that Lotus thing. An entire city blockĀ has becomeĀ a spectator sport. So far, we like the door treatment at the former Rocky Mountain Diner much better. It just said, “Get in Here!”

And, don’t worry about driving down Larimer Street through Larimer Square for a few days. A street-wide high-tech tent takes up the length for a big to-do Thursday evening. This is a private event for 1500 attendees from around the world at the Young Presidents’ Organization “Global Leadership Summit”. The delegates are already in town, and the dress code Downtown has been changed to “Elevated”. Even former President Bush (the “W” one) will speak to this group on Saturday.

But, by then, the tent will be down, and we can all safely return to the microclimate that exists in front of the Market, making it a nearly year-round outdoor seating mecca. This spot of pleasant weather is one reason you never see owner Mark Greenburg wearing more than shorts and a t-shirt. As is golf.

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