Dizzying Changes on the 1400 Block of Market Street

Lit Lounge and Purple Martini are two of the newest additions to the 1400 block of Market Street.
Lit Lounge and Purple Martini are two of the newest additions to the 1400 block of Market Street. Jon Solomon

Denver's changing. Just look at the 1400 block of Market Street, which has seen a flurry of openings and closings over the past decade. With two new nightclubs — Lit Lounge and the Purple Martini — that trend continues.

Take the Lit Lounge building at 1410 Market Street: It was the longtime home of Spill Lounge, until Mynt Mojito Lounge took it over in the summer of 2016 after being at 1424 Market Street for a dozen years. Lit Lounge, which has a Latin dance night on Fridays, celebrated its grand opening in December.

The Purple Martini, which originally got its start on 15th Street in the mid-’90s, had locations in the Tabor Center, the Denver Tech Center and Boulder before they all eventually closed by 2010. The rebooted Purple Martini at 1416 Market Street is in the former home of Oak Tavern and the 24K Lounge and Monarck before that, as well as and the short-lived Lumi Nightclub.

A few doors north, Maloney’s Tavern closed in 2016 after nearly a decade at 1432 Market Street, and Lil and Lou’s Wreck, the country bar that opened in 2012, has also closed. Dorchester, which was also the home of Prive Social Club nightclub, which opened in 2014, has also closed its 1448 Market Street location.

Directly across the street, 1445 Market Street was the former home of Chloe Discoteque and Mezze Lounge, the 6,600-square-foot spot that was part of Francois Safieddine's Lotus Concepts group of nightclubs. Chloe closed in 2016 after a five-year run.

Greg Gallagher, who also owns the Front Porch and Roosevelt, opened Gaslamp in 2010 at 1437 Market Street. The bar, which was partly inspired by San Diego's Gaslamp Quarter, bridges the upscale and casual.

A few doors south at 1415 Market Street, where Old Chicago spent many years, is now Rhein Haus, a Seattle import that set up shop — and added a second floor — to the building in late 2015. The same folks behind Rhein Haus opened Wally’s Wisconsin Tavern in September 2017.

Last year, Celtic Tavern moved into the corner spot at 1400 Market — formerly the home of Wild Ivories and Buca di Beppo — after spending eighteen years at 1801 Blake Street.

The dizzying shifts are a reflection of the broader changes in the city, where there is no lack of new things to try out and getting attached to familiar spots can be a hazardous endeavor. Change means losing things we've grown to love — but there's also the pleasure of experiencing the new. On the 1400 block of Market Street, Denverites have the chance to do both.
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Jon Solomon writes about music and nightlife for Westword, where he's been the Clubs Editor since 2006.
Contact: Jon Solomon