Denver might be well-known for its craft brewing scene and its proximity to the snowcapped Colorado mountains, but the state capital is also home to a thriving public-art scene.
And the year-old Art hotel is highlighting that scene for guests through its programming and activities.
"Denver is full of art, but we do it in such a way that it's fun," said David F. Bodette, general manager of the Art.
Located in Denver's Golden Triangle, the luxury, 165-room hotel, a member of the Preferred Hotels & Resorts LVX Collection, is just minutes away from the city's eight museums, including the Denver Art Museum, History Colorado and the Clyfford Still Museum.
Guests are welcomed to the city's art scene upon their arrival. A 22,000-light installation by Leo Villareal greets visitors at the entrance before they head into a first-floor lobby that showcases a variety of pieces by artists including Mary Ehrin and Tracey Emin. Other artists featured throughout the property include Allan Houser and Deborah Butterfield.
Dianne Vanderlip, the hotel's curator, was previously the founding curator of modern and contemporary art for the Denver Art Museum. She assembled the collection of pieces seen throughout the property and also conducts training workshops with the hotel employees so they can answer any questions.
"Each guestroom floor is inspired by a particular artist whose style will be translated throughout each room and showcased into the hallways," said Chandler Taylor, a spokeswoman for the hotel.
During a recent media trip hosted by the Colorado Tourism Office, I was able to tour and learn about the pieces while enjoying the luxury amenities in the Mountain View Suite. The room featured an oversize sitting area, a king-size bed, commissioned artwork, a white Italian marble bathroom, an espresso machine, nightly turndown service and beautiful views of the city and the Rocky Mountains.
There are three other types of suites and three room styles available.
At the Fire restaurant, executive chef Chris Jakubiec uses ingredients from the region's top purveyors and focuses on locally grown and sustainably raised foods, Taylor said. Cabanas dot the outside of the restaurant. Even in the winter, the fireplaces and warm cocktails made it easy to enjoy the view.
There is also an on-site fitness center with treadmills, elliptical machines, free weights and other equipment.
The Art has created programming activities to help immerse guests and locals alike in the scene. Tours of the hotel's 40-piece original collection are offered on Saturdays at 11 a.m. and 5 p.m.
The Art Run, meanwhile, is an urban event that curates the best public art in downtown Denver. Hosted by an employee at the hotel, the 5-kilometer route starts and finishes at the Art and takes participants to key spots in the city's art scene, Taylor said.
Room packages start at about $270 per night. Visit www.thearthotel.com.