Opened earlier this year in a restored industrial warehouse in Denver’s River North Arts District (RiNo), Nocturne is a modern take on jazz and supper clubs of the mid-20th century. Nightly live jazz, including regular performances by nationally touring jazz artists, and a menu that features “Standards” like cubano sliders and boardwalk frites and constantly changing “Renditions,” which are tastings inspired by iconic and historical jazz recordings, are part of the theme.  

Known for Root Down and Linger, Justin Cucci’s latest brainchild is Ophelia’s. Housed in an 1894-era Victorian brownstone listed on the National Register of Historic Places, the bar, restaurant and live-music venue has a gastropub-inspired menu with unique versions of flatbread pizzas, burgers and wings.  

Inspired by European markets and food truck roundups, Avanti Food & Beverage can best be described as a modern-day food hall. Seven restaurant concepts are housed in modified shipping containers in Denver’s Lower Highlands Neighborhood (LoHi), providing affordable chef-inspired cuisine, draft beers, classic cocktails and wines.  

In the Vail Valley, chef Jason Harrison has established Red Maple Catering to deliver memorable food experiences at private homes and rental properties. The caterer serves groups of up to 150 and specializes in the cuisine, farms, ranches and food purveyors of the Vail Valley and Rocky Mountains.  

Meeting and incentive trip planners: Get ready to be surprised at the diverse range of lodging options available in Colorado from glamping tents, yurts and teepees to overnight accommodations in a jail, train station, castle and replica fort. colorado.com

The 200-acre, family-owned Arapaho Valley Ranch has cabins, lodge rooms, glamping tents outfitted with southwestern flair, and 20-foot teepees equipped with queensized beds.

 

When planning a gathering, make sure to check a destination’s calendar of events for festivals, concerts and noteworthy exhibitions. Leslie Heins and Lisa Cook, owners and event architects of Denver-based Affair with Flair, demonstrated how this can be done with a social occasion, which easily could have been a corporate event in conjunction with the Denver Art Museum’s recent blockbuster “Dior: From Paris to the World” that wrapped up in March 2019.

 

The commoditization of the live events industry causes concern and prompts discussion.