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GOODS & SERVICES

part 1 of 3
Best Ladies' Room in a Mall
Neiman Marcus
Cherry Creek Mall

These aren't stalls, gals, they're suites. You get your own toilet, sink and mirror--all spotlessly clean and luxuriously private. If you can't bear facing another sale, you could lounge in here all day.

Best Men's Room
Denver ChopHouse & Brewery
1735 19th St.

Oh, what a relief it is! In this railroad-themed eatery (conveniently located in the old Union Pacific "head" house, Navy fans), gentlemen can do their business in a facility flush with 1930s-style panache. On the way in and out, revel at the train-related artwork on the walls. The only thing better would be taking your constitutional at speed aboard the UP's old City of Denver.

Best Public Restrooms
Coors Field
They built the ballpark with extra toilets for women, and they put in those nifty space-age faucets that turn on automatically (much to the delight of the kids, who may find them more entertaining than the game). Best of all, they pipe in the KOA radio broadcast of the game so you won't get caught with your pants down.

Best Art Deco Bathroom
Wazee Deco
1730 Wazee St.

A stunning black, white and chrome loo. Hand-painted pictures of a blimp and soaring industrial buildings, right there on the wall. Void in style.

Best Superstore
Incredible Universe
8585 S. Yosemite St., Littleton

Dollars and sensory overload! The Tandy Corporation's new mega-bombastic superstore--a monster the size of two football fields--sells kitchen appliances, home electronics, CDs, computers and software, but it does so with a concept: Each department at Incredible Universe features a "scene" peopled by actor-employees who demonstrate merchandise and encourage everyone to try it out. Shoppers can veg out in the home-video theater, feed the family burgers from the in-store McDonald's or test their vocal mettle in the karaoke booth--while the kids are entertained in a supervised children's area.

Readers' choice: Kmart

Best Shop Till You Drop Trip
MLT Shopping Tours
Gamblers head to Las Vegas. Folks with a shopping jones go to the Mall of America in Minneapolis. For roughly $200, MLT will book you a round-trip flight and put you up in a mall-area hotel for two nights. From there, hop aboard the shuttle to the 400-store shrine, where the slogan is "There's a place for fun in your life." When you tire of shopping or max out your credit cards (whichever comes first), entertain yourself at the mall's miniature golf course or in its many restaurants, nightclubs and bars. New for '96: a walk-through aquarium known as Underwater World. Book MLT through your travel agent.

Best Factory Outlet Store
Brooks Brothers
Castle Rock Factory Shops

Intimidated by the prices and la-de-da salesmen inside, we usually get no further than pressing our noses against Brooks Brothers' window. But this outlet store makes it possible to quench your GQ taste on a Budweiser budget. Everything is decently priced--suits, jackets, rep ties, Egyptian cotton shirts. Our favorite was the table of discounted slacks, where we snapped up a $99 pair of wool pants for $30.

Best Mall
Denver International Airport
Pena's Folly has got your typical fast-food restaurants and newsstands--plus art galleries, clothing boutiques and luggage stores. There's a specialty shop devoted to men's ties and another featuring children's clothing. There's a Body Shop and a Nature Company store for the Good Earth types on your gift list. Or pick up a Susan Vale sweater for those who fancy themselves royalty (soon-to-be-ex Princess Diana has at least one of Vale's handknit numbers in her collection). With 55 shops to choose from, DIA is about half the size of Cherry Creek. But Cherry Creek doesn't have those cool underground trains.

Readers' choice: Cherry Creek

Best Shop at DIA
Auntie Anne's Soft Pretzels
Concourse B

Who knows better than a flight attendant where to find the real deals? You'll see bunches of airline employees at DIA waiting in line--not for their luggage, but for the food at Auntie Anne's. In a stew of Quarter Pounders and yogurt, Auntie Anne's pretzels are the real winners. Staffers at this mom-and-pop stand knead and roll the dough right in front of you and then pop the pretzels in the oven; they're handed to you all warm and chewy. One flight attendant says the pretzels (plain, salted, sugar-and-cinnamon or hot-hot-jalapeno) are so popular because they're "filling, cheap and low-fat"--more important, they're also yummy. We get tied up in knots just thinking about them.

Readers' choice: Body Shop

Best Way to Get to DIA
Fly in
We've heard them all: It's too far away, the parking lots aren't properly marked, spacious Pena Boulevard is just specious, and once you get there, the underground trains are so crowded that the trip to your concourse can be a tooth-gnashing experience. And do you trust that baggage system yet? On the other hand, those big ol' jet planes are gracefully landing like clockwork, up to three at a time, on DIA's efficient runways.

Readers' choice: Drive

Best Way to Get to DIA (by Land)
The Airporter Commuter
The Airporter Commuter vans come to your house, load up your bags and drop you off at your airline's baggage check. Up to that point, you don't have to shlep a thing. And since the drivers get paid to get you there on time, they tend to be more reliable than Aunt Mildred. The service isn't cheap--fares run from $20 per person to and from locations east of I-25 and up to $40 for locations west of I-25. But it's worth its weight in stress-management techniques.

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