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While a number of local dance clubs have changed names and concepts over the years to stay fresh, there are some standbys that have stuck to a tried-and-true formula that keeps people coming back. There are also some newer spots that have opened in the last few years. Whatever the case, here are the ten best spots in Denver to get your groove on.
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Located at 14th and Market, 24k, yet another spot owned by Francois Safieddine. The club is decked out with gold furniture, chandeliers and huge, back-lit photos of a girl painted gold and wearing a platinum wig. The club is nestled above Oak Tavern, with an entrance in the alley. While the intimate 24K primarily caters to the bottle-service crowd, it's a bit different from other bottle services around town, with lychee, mango, guava, passionfruit and pomegranate liqueurs thrown into the mix. 24K is open Thursdays through Saturdays with rotating resident DJs spinning house and dance music.
Suite Two Hundred (aka Suite 200) might just be the feather in Francois Safieddine's cap alongside Chloe. Since Suite Two Hundred opened in 2008, the ultra-slick upscale club, located in the former Lucky Star space on Larimer, has brought in nationally known celebrities such as Lady Gaga, Aubrey O'Day, Rock of Love's Daisy de la Hoya and Playboy Playmates to host parties that, in turn, attract many a local celebrity. While the club is usually packed on the weekends, its Baby Doll nights have also become the place to be on Tuesdays in LoDo.
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As the head of Lotus Concepts, Francois Safieddine has carved out a niche in the Denver club scene with Suite Two Hundred, 24K and the Oak Tavern. His latest venture, Chloe, is a lot more than just a chic discotheque; it's also a lounge, and a restaurant that serves Mediterranean and Middle Eastern cuisine. Named after a fictitious jet-setting fashionista, the space definitely has a worldly feel, and the disco has a European vibe from floor to ceiling.
The space formerly inhabited by Muddy's Coffeehouse and later known by a variety of names (Club Evolution, the Loft, Gallery 22 and Club Ra, among others) has found new life as NORAD. With decent cover prices and free parking across the street, 2200, as the place was most recently known, is the perfect place to see top locals and big names in electronic music in an intimate, relaxed setting. NORAD has now officially taking over the spot. Fridays will be geared toward indie dance music and Saturdays more focused on techno, progressive and tech-house styles of music. The idea behind NORAD, says owner Preston Douglas, is to bring solid dance music back to Denver for mature adults.
Denver's premier LGBT dance club, Tracks brings much-needed color and spark to Walnut Street. A neighborhood that was once entirely made up of warehouses now has bars and clubs popping up left and right. Tracks has a large, floor-lit dance floor, surrounded by neon lights and disco balls as far as the eye can see. The crowd is young, colorful and ready to party. Thursdays through Saturdays, the club pumps with jams spun by a stellar set of resident DJs as well as the occasional nationally known DJ.
After close to a twenty-year run as the Snake Pit, this Capitol Hill hangout got a much-needed makeover before it opened as Beauty Bar in June 2010. Based on the original Beauty Bar concept that got its start in New York in 1995, Denver's Beauty Bar was brought to life by partners Noah Ray McMahan, Justin Martinez and Mike Barnhart, who turned the 3,200-square-foot space into a sparkly new club that captures the '50s beauty-parlor aesthetic of the original bar. Some of the furniture was salvaged from old salons, while booths and chairs left over from the Snake Pit era were reupholstered in black and silver glitter vinyl by a lowrider shop. Armed with a killer KS Audio sound system, the main room is a great spot for dancing to resident DJs or the nationally known spinners who occasionally pop in.
Over the past year, Bar Standard has steadily risen to the top of the underground electronic-music scene. Although Vinyl and City Hall might be bigger venues that play to more mainstream crowds, the lush and lovely Bar Standard stands out for presenting some of the top names in electronic music today: Doc Martin, Mark Farina, Hugh Cleal, Lisa Shaw with Q-Burns Abstract Message and many more, including some of the best underground house, electro and straight-up techno spinners in Denver.
Vinyl is a behemoth of a dance club, with three floors all featuring different music (including house, electronica, hip-hop, R&B and Top 40) and an über-swanky lounge for those who just want to chill and have a drink. The club brings in national hip-hop acts and internationally known DJs, and the rooftop patio offers great views of Denver's skyline.
Stained-glass windows and hundreds of candles spread throughout the Church suggest a pious vibe, but the congregation is as mixed as they come. The roomy Lincoln Street mainstay has a booming soundsystem with a ribcage-massaging bottom end that draws globally hailed DJs, local residents, retro-lovers, even the under-21 set: Sections of the bar are open to those eighteen and up. A rooftop patio affords another great view of Denver.
Not only has Beta -- Denver's Best Dance Club -- become a prime destination for the local dance scene, but the venue was also named the top club in North America and fifteenth in the world by DJMag.com. Beta earned the honors by hosting a succession of national acts such as the Crystal Method, Deadmau5 and John Digweed and having them perform on the mind-blowing, super-bumping Funktion-One sound system. Add in a killer lighting setup, HD projection, go-go dancers and a Krygenifex cooling system, and you've got one hell of a dance club.
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