UPDATE: Paris on the Platte closed out its run by selling off memorabilia in what the owners dubbed a "nostalgia sale", unloading everything from fixtures to furniture.
Denver will lose another institution today, when Paris on the Platte closes this afternoon. The wine bar poured its last glass of vino last night, and customers have been lining up all morning at the Paris coffeehouse, which opened almost thirty years ago, back when this stretch of Platte Street was a wasteland. See also: Best Slacker Oasis 2002 -- Paris on the Platte
Except for the Westword office and a few other businesses at the corner of 15th and Platte streets, of course. Paris on the Platte was our haven late at night, our pick-me-up in the morning. And it's been a go-to spot for generations of Denverites.
People who had their first cigarette, found solace from high school hazing, read their first poem aloud at Paris have been coming in all morning, to say so long to founder/owner Faye Maguire, to thank her for what Paris has meant to them through the years, what it meant to find this creative outpost in the heart of Denver. Hugh Graham is playing barista today, taking on the job he did 28 years ago (and was fired from several times, he says); artist Jill Hadley-Hooper is behind the counter, too, as is Maguire herself.
It's the end of an era, everyone agrees.
At least the space is being taken over by a local, Lisa Ruskaup, most recently of the Breckenridge-Wynkoop Group, who has plans for opening a gourmet doughnut/coffee shop in the adjoining spaces. And in the meantime, there's not a moment to lose if you want a last latte.
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But we'll always have Paris -- at least in our memories.