Best Men's Pampering Palace 2018 | Frank's Gentlemen's Salon | Best of Denver® | Best Restaurants, Bars, Clubs, Music and Stores in Denver | Westword
Courtesy Frank's Gentelmen's Salon Facebook page

Facial hair is back in a big way, and like it or not, it seems like a holding trend. So you might as well take care of it in the best way possible. Frank's is more than a barber shop; it's a spa break for men, where things are done the old-fashioned way, with straight razors and hot towels, even if it's your scalp that's being shaved. But you can also get a full-service head massage there, a man facial, a brow waxing or a shoe shine. In an age when it's okay for men to have feelings, it's also all right to be pampered, dudes. Sit back and relax.

Mooi Studio owners Raquel Turner and Ahmana Aryan independently made their names as top Denver makeup artists, working the city's wedding and party crowds for many seasons before opening a permanent salon space on West 29th Avenue. There they offer a suite of beauty services, from makeup application to brow waxing and eyelash lifts, making Mooi an easy choice for pre-event pampering and regular maintenance. Facials fall in the latter category: Choose from a range of services that focus on things like acne reduction, hydration, anti-aging and skin plumping. We favor the Chocolate Champagne treatment, a series of masks and washes (some of which are infused with cocoa and smell so good, you'll want to eat them) that leave the skin glowing and nourished.

4433 West 29th Avenue


Courtesy Spektkl Facebook page

It isn't hard to find lovely photos of Denver. But have you ever noticed that they're always taken from the same spots? Justin Alber has a knack for photographing the Mile High City in unexpected, transformative ways. Black-and-white shots of downtown buildings almost look like Chicago. Faraway photos make the skyline look nearly recognizable, but in a beautiful way. Alber's unique eye for angles, colors and textures makes him the finest 'grammer in all the land.


Readers' Choice: @bestboozedenver

Denver's arts community is nothing if not eclectic, and Denver Orbit perfectly reflects the variety of creators who call the Mile High City home. Co-hosts Ryan Connell and Josh Mattison (who also acts as producer) are legitimate tastemakers, and their interests range far and wide, as indicated by the lineup of one recent episode: "Consent Means What Now?," a story by Amanda EK, "Hey Man," a song by Chella and the Charm, and "Defining Forward Momentum," a poem by Alessandra Ragusin. The programs consistently introduce listeners to the sort of folks who make Denver a richer and more vibrant place to live.

Readers' Choice: ProCO360

The L2 Church, at 1477 Columbine Street, specifically appeals to Denver youth by way of messages that connect spiritual verities with the challenges of today in a manner that seems real and tangible — and it uses podcasts of Sunday sermons to spread the word far and wide. Recent timely topics include "Chaos and Order" and "Sexual Harassment," both interpreted via the Book of Genesis, as well as the "Anatomy of the Soul" series, viewed through the prism of assorted psalms that brim with wisdom accessible to believers and doubters alike.

No matter how civically engaged a Denverite you are, there's no way you can make it to every important meeting, committee gathering or public event. That's where Denver 8 comes in. New video podcasts pop up at the website on practically a daily basis, offering the opportunity to virtually sit in on weekly city council sessions and panels touching on safety, homelessness, housing and more. There are also regular programs such as the Ask the Auditor and YCN: Your City Now series, plus coverage of special events like Imagine 2020 performances. The service puts the city at your fingertips no matter where the rest of you happens to be at the time.

Courtesy Mile High Games Guys Facebook page

Think listening to a podcast about board games sounds boring? Think again. The team of Adrian Richardson, Jeff Jackson and Zach McAnally bring an infectious sense of uncensored fun to their reviews of products such as Harry Potter: Hogwarts Battle and Ponzi Scheme, not to mention supplementary blog posts such as "Here's Some History Bitches," in which readers are introduced to "Optimus Douchbagus," who was " death for just being a dumb fuck." Let the games begin.

Imagine a place where kids from crawlers to tweens can explore, learn and exhaust a large amount of energy while being contained in one place. After a $16.1 million renovation in 2015, the Children's Museum now has a spacious art room, standing sculptures to paint on, easels and endless pieces of paper, a collage station and clay for molding. There's a climbing cage for older kids; a whimsical, toy-filled room for babies and toddlers to safely bounce around; an area to practice engineering by launching paper rockets; a mock dirt mound for little critters to investigate; and a huge outdoor area complete with a sand pit, zipline, splash area and fort.

While Home Depot is known as a place to get wood, potting soil and power tools, each month the stores also offer a free class for kids. Children ages three to eighteen can learn to build a birdhouse, a periscope or whatever else is on the monthly agenda. All supplies are included, and kids leave with their own apron. Most of the Home Depot stores offer the classes (all on the same day and time), so the best thing to do is check out the spot closest to you.

Multiple metro locations

There's something about being able to watch a movie while getting fed and served drinks that makes one feel extra special and super-relaxed. At both the Littleton and Sloan's Lake locations of this institution, you can indulge in the latest release (or an old-school favorite) while letting someone take care of you. Or, if you really can't get away from the kids, take them with you. On select days, Alamo Drafhouse offers Alamo for All, a program geared toward families with small kids. You might not get the full unwinding effect, but, hey, you can have that beer and elevated grilled cheese sandwich while letting the giant screen entertain. The only danger to seeing a movie here is missing the film because you fell asleep in the theater's cozy chairs.

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