46 S. Broadway hasn't always been the wood filled, white walled, coffee infused, artistically curated place you now know it to be. In fact, not too many months ago it was frankly trashed. But we loved that trashed box from the first moment we walked in. Sure it had a terrible drop ceiling, no floors or finished walls, old heaters popping out the floor, and plenty of other "problems," but we immediately saw what it could be.
This post is really nostalgic to us. The photos aren't perfect, but rather a collection of random iPhone shots along the way, renderings, and anything else we could scrounge up. The story is long, full of surprises, frustrations, and rejoicing. We'll share a bit of it here, but if you ever have the time, come grab a cup of coffee and we'd love to share the in depth side of things.
A lot of people ask us "what was this place before you?" Well, simply stated we were the magazine side of Denver Book Fair. When the owner, now our landlord, decided he wanted to pursue other ventures, he made the call to split the nearly 4000 sq ft space down the middle. The north side containing a basement and about 1000 sq ft of additional space, and the smaller south side, with no basement but with a private courtyard in the back. We made the choice that was obvious to us, get that courtyard.
Outside of the courtyard, we're also the only shop on the strip that we know of with a front window that looks straight down a residential street instead of just at other buildings, and that's something we really enjoy. Sure, there was a lot of change that needed to occur to make this into a space that we could be proud of and our friends would be exited about, but we were ready for that challenge and the responsibility we were accepting, so we dove in head first.
It started with locking in a contractor and getting some designs together and was quickly followed by 3 tireless months of long days of work and sleepless nights laboring. The level of coffee proposed was confusing to the city. Not knowing quite what to do with us, we turned our coffee area into a mobile food kiosk. After that taking quite a few weeks out of our building time we had to scramble to get back on schedule. The building is old, so we didn't dare go without masks during the demo and construction, and with the front windows blocked out it felt like we were living is a dusty, asbestos filled cave with just a feathered glimpse of those strolling Broadway. A lot of care went into just the floor, walls, and ceiling so after over another month of long, dirty days it felt like we had just cleaned the place up, which made the idea of inviting the public to enjoy the space just barely imaginable. Seeing our proposed opening day approaching faster and faster we had to adjust our shelving build to a hybrid between our plan A and plan B, which we were really excited to see actually work out better than either plans in and of themselves. We were amazed and humbled by others close to us that would hear or see what we were working on, and just start showing up to help. With the help of close friends shelves were built, details were painted and cleaned, and the store came to life.
It was at some points surreal to see our ideas turning into reality. What was simply a dream and some sketch up models was turning into something that we could experience, we could touch, and smell. Keeping this now living and breathing creation that was so impactful to us as a secret to the general public was a continually daunting, yet uniquely exhilarating task.
Sneak peeks would gradually leak out on our respective Instagram accounts, little previews of the life we were so immersed in, but always removed of any discernability of what was happening and removed from any descriptions eluding what was to come. Then 2 weeks from opening, more excited than a redneck walkin' in to Bass Pro Shops, we made the announcement to the world that we were going to be opening our doors on 05-25-13. And it was on...
Those last two weeks are now simply a blur. It was a full sprint from the announcement through the final all-nighter we pulled to get everything finalized and the doors open on Saturday.
And here we are, open and more excited than ever to get to know you, offer Denver a variety of goods curated to a lifestyle we know and love, and to be a part of this amazing neighborhood. Light the way.