A++ Boutique De Force
At A++ Boutique de Force, six local fashion- and design-forward businesses join forces to present a powerhouse showroom on Belmar's artsy Block 7. Collectible sneakers rub shoelaces with vinyl toys, costume jewelry and mod tees while fine art and prints create a backdrop for trying on the best that Denver clothing designers have to offer. Give thanks to Gimme Gimme Pillow Toast, the Fabric Lab, Kundenkarte, Plastic Chapel and the 400 for bringing urban cool to the suburbs. A++!
Cook's Fresh Market
When cute cooking couple Edward and Kristi Janos and their meat-cutting partner, Bill Roehl, moved their specialty grocery shop, Cook's Fresh, to the city, downtown denizens rejoiced. Loft dwellers no longer had to satisfy themselves with visiting the website, www.cooksfreshmarket.com, or face trekking out to the Tech Center to enjoy the market's gourmet groceries and condiments, rich-and-flaky baked goods, made-to-order sandwiches or delicious soups and prepared dishes. For those foodies and newbies more skilled at takeout, the Janoses even offer classes on how to prepare such a plethora of goodness. Welcome home, Cook's Fresh Market.
Cali & Mo and Lilly Partain simply can't be mentioned separately. The sister stores, on the second level of the Pavilions, are the brainchildren of boutique entrepreneurs/friends Allison Leyn and Vicki Raichart, and both express a love of vintage -- but in different and equally charming ways. If Cali & Mo is a street girl, wrapped in her faintly upscale flea-market finds -- enameled tin sets, refurbished blazers, slinky new clothing, antiqued side tables, retro greeting cards and costume jewelry galore -- Lilly Partain is her Parisian cousin, flounced out in silky ruffles and flashing rhinestones and scented with hand-milled soaps. Old, new -- it's all mixed up between the two to create one wholly wonderful store.
Macy's Cherry Creek
When shoppers first began comparing Foley's apples to Macy's stars after Federated Department Stores rebranded its stores, there didn't seem to be much difference -- just new signs replacing old. But the slavering few who'd shopped a Macy's elsewhere knew to be patient. Their wait paid off: Macy's is better. It's trendier and less cluttered, blending in well with the existing stores and able to satisfy the middle-of-the-road Jones New York crowd as well as those looking for something a little more chic. Now, that's star power.

Best New Store on Broadway (Since March 2006)

Fancy Tiger

Fancy Tiger
From the moment partners Matthew Brown and Jaime Jennings opened Fancy Tiger, its blend of DIY mentality and
hipster fashions meshed perfectly with the neighborhood and adjacent social centers hi-dive and Sputnik. And like a good bar, it has something for girls and guys alike: hip make-your-own kits, unisex saddle bags, jeans and street wear, knitting supplies, old buttons, open craft nights, sewing classes for men, deejaying classes for everyone and plenty of other busy-bee activities to keep the corner humming day and night. Plus, the blog at www.fancytiger.com keeps a record of it all. Fancy Tiger, how did we ever live without you?

Best Store on Old South Gaylord Street

Pome

Pome
Pome has a little bit of everything and anything, all arranged to keep you oohing and aahing from the door to the back counter. There are even goodies to keep the kiddos looking and wishing while their moms are shopping. In fact, some of Kate Feinsod's best customers can't even see over the counter when they slap down a quarter for their penny candy. You'll find a great variety here, from an Italian accordion in a leather suitcase to an Herm?s 3000 cursive typewriter, or appliqud vinyl messenger bags by Queen Bee, beautiful necklaces hung with unique vintage findings by local jeweler Phyllis Quinn, a rainbow of ribbon sold by the yard, sweet tin toys and, in the summertime, even fresh fruit. Sweet.
Studio Bead
A delightful shop commanded by adorable owner Joy Barrett, Studio Bead is not like any other place on the block -- or anywhere else. One month, it's all vintage bags with freshly beaded and charm-hung handles, the next it's a Frida tribute show. But always there's a well-culled selection of beads, from inside-painted orbs from China to whimsical glass lampwork kitties. Drop by, sign up for a class and let Barrett's infectious verve inspire you.
Savory Spice Shop
Mike and Janet Johnson's new Savory Spice on Littleton's Main Street is as engaging as their first location at 15th and Platte streets downtown. And, as with the old store, you can smell it coming -- which is downright divine. Once you enter, choose from smoked paprika, granulated garlic, pungent meat rubs, barbecue blends, ground chiles, dozens of peppers (whole and cracked), variously colored sea salts and exotic curry mixtures. Don't miss the Madagascar vanilla-infused sugar or the Saigon cassia cinnamon. Bon apptit!
The Olde Town Pickin' Parlor might be the closest thing to nirvana for a serious acoustic-guitar fingerpicker. Just walking in the store, which opened in 1991 (long before the "new" Olde Town), is enough to get your salivary glands working overtime. There's the vast selection of Martin and Taylor guitars near the front door, plus plenty of exceptionally crafted guitars made by Breedlove, Goodall and Collings to fondle. We're talking the BMWs and Audis of the guitar world. And you could probably buy a used car for about the same price as some of the guitars in the shop, as most run anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000. But the Pickin' Parlor is whole lot more than guitars; it's also a haven for banjos, resophonics, mandolins and fiddles. If you're into bluegrass, fingerstyle, folk, Delta blues or jazz, this place will definitely make you want to do some pickin' and grinnin' -- at least until you get your credit-card bill.
Powell's Sweet Shoppe
Tim Burton's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory wasn't bad, as remakes go, but it can't hold a lollipop to Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, the first cinematic adaptation of Roald Dahl's sweet-and-sour novel -- and Powell's Sweet Shoppe's decision to construct a shrine to the latter, complete with autographed photos of cast members and the flick itself screening on a continuous loop, says a lot about its sensibilities. In addition to tasty ice cream and lots of current treats, the jam-packed store showcases a jaw-dropping selection of old favorites, ranging from Big Hunks to candy cigarettes. There's nothing like the originals.

Best Of Denver®

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