From Check-In to Check-Out, Hotel Boulderado Provides Luxury Amenities, Historic Charm & Amazing Entertainment

By: Hannah Oreskovich

From check-in to check-out, Hotel Boulderado has all the bases covered for an amazing stay: beautiful rooms built for comfort and charm, a formal and fresh dining experience at Spruce Farm & Fish, poppin’ energy at The Corner Bar, and a nightlife scene of curated cocktails, boot-stomping shows, and skeeball at License No. 1.

Hotel Boulderado.

Hotel Boulderado.

Opened on New Year’s Eve 1908, Hotel Boulderado stands as the first luxury hotel built in Boulder, Colorado. Now a City of Boulder landmark and a member of Historic Hotels of America, the five-story brick building was originally designed by local architects William Redding & Son. Featuring a stunning stained glass lobby ceiling, rich woodwork on every floor, and both modern and classic furniture pieces throughout the property, there’s no doubt the Hotel Boulderado has maintained its luxurious aesthetic over the years.

The author in Hotel Boulderado’s lobby.

The author in Hotel Boulderado’s lobby.

Last weekend, I had the opportunity to stay in the hotel’s Historic King Suite, which features Victorian-era decor, a spacious sitting area with amenities like fresh spring water, and plush Boca bathrobes perfect for winding down your day. The floral wallpaper, iron headboard, and soft colors of the room add to the suite’s beautiful decor details while the room’s vintage desk area allowed me to get some much needed work done before exploring the rest of my stay.

The floral victorian-era decor of the Historic King Suite’s sitting room.

The floral victorian-era decor of the Historic King Suite’s sitting room.

Beyond their stellar room accommodations, Hotel Boulderado houses three incredible businesses under their one roof: Spruce Farm & Fish, The Corner Bar, and speakeasy License No. 1. After checking in and touring the property, I stopped by Spruce to make a reservation for dinner. There wasn’t an empty seat in the farm-to-table restaurant. With a little time before my reservation, I headed to The Corner Bar’s patio for a pre-dinner drink. Located just off of Boulder’s iconic Pearl Street Mall, the bar’s patio area allowed for ample people-watching. Inside, several patrons watched the Denver Nuggets game on television; others were crowded at tables sampling the spot’s small plates, burgers, and beers. A mix of hotel guests and locals, The Corner Bar served as an excellent start to my evening.

Spruce Farm & Fish let me know my table was ready about 30 minutes in to my Corner Bar stop, so I finished my Cabernet and headed to dinner. Though the Corner Bar shares some of the more casual eats from Spruce, Spruce offers an extensive seasonal menu with items you can’t find anywhere else. I sampled the Blue Crab Cakes appetizer (delightful and paired with citrus), the Sweet Pea & Mint Linguini (phenomenally fresh with a soft poached egg and delectable English peas), and the Crème Brûlée (a tasty rich custard with fresh berries and a perfectly caramelized top). The wait staff was exceptionally friendly and willing to talk through recommendations while also providing an opulent dining experience.

After dinner, I wandered downstairs to the hotel’s nightlife joint: License No. 1. There is an entrance from the hotel lobby, so guests never have to leave the property. Alternatively, the spot also has an entrance on 13th Street, a run which features several other Boulder bars. Though License No. 1 is perfectly located for a night of bar hopping Boulder’s downtown, there is so much to do inside of its beautiful brick walls that I never left. Along with its more formal seating rooms, the speakeasy also features a game area replete with a pool table, darts, skee ball, and a photo booth. Partnered with great live music in the venue’s listening room, I was constantly entertained by everything there was to do at License No. 1.

Banshee Tree.

Banshee Tree.

Known as the place where Boulder’s first liquor license was issued, License No. 1 features live music every Thursday-Saturday. Saturdays typically showcase Boulder’s Banshee Tree, a talented four-piece who blur the lines between funk, blues, and gypsy jazz. Comprised of Thom LaFond (vocals, guitar, piano), Jason Bertone (upright bass, shouting), Nick Carter (violin, fiddle, hollering), and Michelle Pietrafitta (vocals, drums), Banshee Tree’s skillful instrumentals and strong rhythm section had an entire room of 50+ people boogieing from wall to wall during my visit. It proved impossible to make my way to the front for photos, so I danced near the back before eventually finding a seat to sip one of the bar’s specialty cocktails, the Boulder Mule. Served in a copper mug, the delightfully refreshing drink is a combination of vodka, St. George pear liqueur, house ginger cordial, and vanilla ginger syrup perfect for summer. License No. 1 has an entire book of custom cocktails, some spirit-heavy; others floral focused or sweet. Much like everywhere else I’d been at Hotel Boulderado, the staff were friendly and enjoyed talking about the menu’s different drink options.

As Banshee Tree continued on, the crowd only grew larger. Formed in upstate New York, Banshee Tree have been living and playing across the Front Range now for years. They’ve played a number of Colorado music festivals, so catching them in the intimate environment that is License No. 1 is a serious treat! The band call themselves a “diverse blend of dance and improvisational styles,” making them easy to groove to or just interesting to hear if you aren’t the dancing type. Banshee Tree’s tunes feature long instrumental stretches, giving patrons ample time to stomp around. Each member of the band is equally skilled at their instrument(s), so songs featured guitar, standup bass, and fiddle solos while Pietrafitta kept up the dancey drum backbone of the tracks. The band broke their night up into two long sets, so during their intermission I had time to explore the venue’s gaming area and snap some shots in the License No. 1 photo booth. Banshee Tree had patrons bouncing well past the midnight hour and since the crew is jetting on tour soon, so I highly recommend catching a show near you this spring!

The historic check-in area at Hotel Boulderado.

The historic check-in area at Hotel Boulderado.

As the night came to an end, I wandered back to my room for a sweet surprise. The Boulderado offers a turn-down service in the evenings, complete with a gift of chocolate truffles from local chocolatier Lift Chocolate. Needless to say, I capped my night with the Grand Marnier and Raspberry truffle selection before drifting off to a very comfortable rest.

No matter the vibe you’re looking for in your next Boulder stay, Hotel Boulderado has something for everyone with an unparalleled excellence in dining, nightlife, and accomodations. Whether you’re booking for business, a wedding, or for pleasure, their staff aim for every guest to have a personalized and elegantly hospitable stay from start to finish. Their lavish amenities are the perfect perk, and historically, there is nothing else like Hotel Boulderado in town.

Hotel Boulderado is offering two special experiences with your stay this spring: the Downtown Boulder Shopping package and the romantic Colorado Clear Skies Stargazing package. To book the Historic King Suite I stayed in, or to see the hotel’s other suites, visit this link. Learn more about Hotel Boulderado here.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists or venues featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat. This feature is partially syndicated and some pieces originally appeared as part of a series on blondontherun.com.

Deckhead Records Tells Us Why Cassettes Are Still Cool & How They're Helping Artists Release Them

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Ask anyone over 40 and they might tell you the cassette is dead and then lament over their melted collection, the one that was formerly housed in their red ‘83 Camaro. Heck- even just a few years ago most millennials might have moaned that the tape deck in their car was useful only as a cassette adapter before the ever-present auxiliary (aux) port became standard in car radio. But just as high-waisted jeans and vinyl have made their way back into many of our hearts, so too has the cassette tape. I was recently gifted a Savage Blush cassette by Deckhead Records’ Duncan Bryant, which prompted me to chat further with the classic tape expert about why cassettes are back and how he’s bringing them to ears, cars, and living rooms worldwide with some of Colorado’s own talent. Read on:

Who is Deckhead Records?

Deckhead Records is a two man operation out of Boulder, Colorado. Chris Ferguson and I started the label to help our friends’ bands put out physical music releases. Deckhead is centered around the DIY ethos- we design and assemble all the tapes in-house. It’s definitely a labor of love! We also publish the Chowder Zine, which covers art, music and skateboarding “stuff.”

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How did Deckhead start?

I had the idea of a tape-based record label for a good while. I saw some of the bigger guys like Burger Records and Lolipop Records doing it, and then when I saw what First Base Tapes was doing for the Front Range indie scene, I thought that was something I wanted to do for the garage/psych/alt scene. And it kind of snowballed from there. We’re now working on releases nine and ten, with a few more in the works, so it’s been really rad to see it grow!

Why cassettes?

I’m a big music collector. It started mostly with records, which if you collect records you know how quickly that drains your wallet. Then I rescued an old tape deck out of my work’s dumpster and started getting tapes. At $5 a pop, I could get a few albums for the price of one record, and if I was at a show, I could just shove it in my pocket and carry on. I also started noticing that the bands I love were all putting out tapes in addition to their records. So that whole experience opened up my eyes to how popular tapes are getting (again) and it seemed like a realistic way for Deckhead to get off the ground on a nearly non-existent budget.

Also, from a label standpoint, cassettes are one of the more approachable means of a DIY physical music release. The entire process of making the release can be done in-house for fairly cheap, while still putting out a really high quality tape.

One of Deckhead's releases.

One of Deckhead's releases.

How does Deckhead find the artists you work with?

It’s really a combination of us finding projects and projects finding us. The big thing is we’re not a “tapes for order” company, and we put a lot of consideration into all the releases we take on. I guess what I mean by that is we put out music we’d listen to, and that’s really the first and last thing that we’re concerned with. So if any bands out there have demos, send ‘em to us! We’re focusing on garage/psych/alt stuff and we’re starting to expand into the heavier side of things, but we’re down to check out anything!

What does the tape making process entail?

We basically do the entire process out of my apartment! We get blank tapes and cases, and the rest is on us to dub, design, and assemble the cassettes. It is insanely time-consuming (anyone out there selling a tape duplicator?! hit us up!), but we love doing it, so it’s worth the time and effort that goes into every release. There’s something cool about doing it all yourself and putting out a quality release too.

The Deckhead release that started the author's recent cassette obsession.

The Deckhead release that started the author's recent cassette obsession.

Why do you think cassettes are making a comeback?

I think it all stems from a lot of people still really, really enjoying collecting physical music despite the world being in the “digital music age.” There’s something cool about walking into someone’s living room and seeing a record collection or a tape collection. You flip through that and can learn a lot about a person based on what they decided to make the effort to buy.

Cassettes are funny though. A lot of people seem to be buying them without even having tape decks. It’s kind of the “trading card” mentality. It seems like a lot of people will snag a tape at a show because it’s a cheap keepsake and they can slide it in their pocket and not be bogged down with a big record or poster tube for the rest of the show.

Deckhead's first tape release.

Deckhead's first tape release.

What does the Deckhead current catalogue look like?

We release music we love, and that’s everything from garage/psych stuff, to shoegaze, to stoner metal. We just love good tunes. Here’s a rundown of what we’ve put out since we’ve started:

Past Tape Releases:

  • (DHR001) - GHOSTS (Richomond, VA) - “i don’t know what i’m doing”
  • (DHR002) - GHOSTS (Richmond, VA) - “Ugly Kid”
  • (DHR003) - GHOSTS (Richmond, VA) - “Stupid Boy”
  • (DHR004) - GHOSTS (Richmond, VA) - “Super Star”
  • (DHR005) - False Peaks/Adult Colour (Boulder, CO) - “Split EP” (Local Label Day 2017 Release)
  • (DHR006) - The Savage Blush (Denver, CO) - “DUST EP”
  • (DHR007) - Nocturnal North (Phoenix, AZ) - “Radicle”
  • (DHR008) - The Savage Blush (Denver, CO) - “The Savage Blush”

We also have some more releases in the works for the next six months. We’re really stoked to be focusing more on the Front Range, but we’ll also be doing our first international release early next year with London psych metal band Green Lung.

Coming Up:

  • (DHR009) Slynger (Denver, CO) - “Sharp Teeth”
  • (DHR010) The Amphibious Man (Boulder, CO) - “Silver Alert
  • (DHR???) The Kinky Fingers (Denver, CO) - “Garbage Plate”
  • (DHR???) GHOSTS (Richmond, VA) - TBD
  • (DHR???) Green Lung (London, UK) - TBD
The Deckhead cassette logo found on every release.

The Deckhead cassette logo found on every release.

Righteous. Anything else we should know about Deckhead?

First and foremost, support small music and especially your local music scene! Find shows and go to them. Buy some merch. Tell a band you dig them. “Smaller” bands bust their asses to bring us good music, so we gotta help them stay stoked!

Also, Deckhead Records publishes a zine called Chowder that I mentioned. It’s the brainchild of Deckhead dude Chris Ferguson. It’s art-centric, but also covers skating and music. Volume 1 just came out and is 20 full-color pages of insanity! Check it out!

I think that’s it? Thanks for talking with us. BolderBeat is the sh*t!

Keep up with Deckhead Records and snag a tape for yourself to join the cool kids here.

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.

Boulder's Streetside Productions Wants to Make Your Next Music Video & More!

By: Hannah Oreskovich

Boulder's latest video production company wants to make your next music video. 

Over the past few months, you may have noticed our awesome partnership with Colorado Community Radio Network (CCRN), and more specifically, the crew at Green Light Radio. Every Sunday, they bring you our #ListenLocal feature on Rocky Flats’ The Network between 9-10PM, broadcasting a song from one local artist that we choose, live from their studio at Streetside Productions.

Streetside Productions specializes in film and video production for commercial spots, feature films, music videos, and live events. They also house a complete audio recording studio, which is used for voiceover artists, solo vocalists, and full bands. They have a full post-production setup in-house as well, so they can master, produce, and edit all of your audio and video needs right on the spot. Streetside offers several different packages that can be tailored to your specific needs, so give them a call and build your vision!

Some of the Streetside team.

Some of the Streetside team.

Streetside has recently worked with Boulder’s Molly Kollier and Rocky Flats on new music videos, and in the past they’ve worked with death metal band Centimani. They’ve also worked a lot with the Sparta Combat League filming live events.

Watch Streetside Production’s music video for Centimani:

So whether you’re looking to do a production-style shoot or something small, Streetside Productions has the team you’re looking for!

For more information on Streetside's rates and capabilities, check out their FB page or email them directly at streetside6681@gmail.com.

 

-Hannah

Follow Hannah on Instagram and Twitter.

All photos, videos, and embedded tracks per the artists featured and those credited. This feature was edited for brevity and clarity by BolderBeat.