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Mary Contreras is revved up about her new NV Lounge on Santa Fe

When the Continental Club opened at 475 Santa Fe Drive in early 2008, it showed a lot of promise, and quickly became our Best New Bar in that year's Best of Denver issue. The Continental closed within the year, though, and was replaced by One Eyed Jacks last January. And although Jacks, like the Continental Club, brought in a fair number of punks and hipsters, it closed in August. Now the address is being resurrected as the NV Lounge — and you can bet bikers will be part of the mix.

New owner Mary Contreras, who managed the biker-friendly Shuffle Inn for two years, wants to include the motorcycle set in what she envisions as a very diverse crowd of customers. To attract them all, she's done a lot of work since taking over the spot in December, putting in a new carpet, installing a DJ booth where the One Eyed Jacks jukebox once stood, and adding a dance floor to what had been the stage area. She's planning on bringing in DJs and live bands as well as hosting karaoke nights.

Contreras had the option of transferring the liquor license from One Eyed Jacks to NV, but Jacks had three serving-to-minor violations, she says, which meant she would have been automatically shut down for sixty days. So while a transfer would have been the cheaper route, she decided to get a new license, taking a petition up and down Santa Fe for neighbors and business owners to sign — she collected 300 signatures before she was done — and then going before the Denver Department of Excise and Licenses to get the green light.

Talking with people in the area helped Contreras focus her vision. "A lot of neighborhood people just said, 'I'd like to go watch a sports game or sing karaoke or dance.' So that's what I'm hoping on doing here."

And she's hoping to do it within the week, with a target date of mid-March for reopening the doors at 475 Santa Fe.

Better luck this time.

Club scout: While the Kadilak Nightclub moved into the former Heartthrob Nightclub space, at 10175 East Hampden Avenue, a few months ago, it just recently added a few nights to a lineup that already included Mexican music Fridays through Sundays. According to Sonny Herrera, one of Kadilak's event coordinators, Monday is now Lunes Pachanguero, a Latin night similar to the Church's Noche en la Catedral; Tuesday is LiqHer; on Wednesday, the Klutch Beat Boutique crew takes over (Wednesdays are also ladies' night, when gals drink free until 11 p.m.); and Fridays are hip-hop and R&B nights. The club was also remodeled, Herrera says, with the wall that used to separate the two main rooms removed and five VIP rooms installed that can each hold about twenty people.

Gallery 22, which took over the former Club Ra/Loft space, at 821 22nd Street, has launched Enter the Dubstep on Saturdays, when both floors of the club will be completely dedicated to dubstep and glitch-hop. And Brian Howe, a former Friday-night resident at Beta (1909 Blake Street) who left to tour around the States and Europe, has a new gig at the venue. After wrapping up a Saturday stint in the Beatport Lounge, Howe just started a residency in Beta's main room with DJ Shares for Forever Fridays, when they'll spin Top 40 dance and remixes.

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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

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