As our kids grow up, move out, and begin their adult lives, it gets harder and harder to spend time together. Planning an enticing vacation near my son Garrett’s home made it possible for us to engage in quality time together in June. Our home base was The Ritz-Carlton, Denver.

The Ritz-Carlton in downtown Denver, Colorado, welcomes guests with genuine hospitality and first-class service. Open for ten years this year, and a AAA Five Diamond hotel for eight, this hotel has continually met and exceeded guest expectations. The restaurant ELWAY’S Downtown continues to satisfy the most discriminating diners. The newly remodeled spa features locally crafted treatments, and The Ritz-Carlton Fitness Center offers state-of-the art equipment. Hotel guests have access to an additional 50,000 square feet of fitness space next door at the True Fit facility. The hotel boasts more than 13,000 square feet of meeting space accommodating small group gatherings, professional conferences and elegant weddings.

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The Inviting Atmosphere

Before arriving, I was concerned that the atmosphere of The Ritz-Carlton, Denver might be a bit stuffy for our long weekend, but I soon discovered that the staff was friendly, efficient and felicitous without an air of pretension. The hotel, rich in décor and entrenched in traditional hospitality, feels fresh and inviting. The stunning, yet comfortable lobby lounge, made for a perfect place to catch up on work, plug into the Internet or visit with new friends before heading out for the day.

The Revitalized Look

The Ritz-Carlton, Denver, recently received a makeover. Guestrooms, suites, The Club Level, and the spa were redesigned between 2014 and 2016, and in 2017 the hotel’s new meeting space and lobby were unveiled. The new blue, purple, gold and white color scheme provides a fresh and vibrant look that speaks to the geography of Colorado, and the “Sense of Place: Crafting Urban Adventure” artwork collection in the hotel lobby adds to the theme.

Ritz-Carlton hotels hold to certain uniform standards in service and product excellence, but a new program, #RCMemories, launched this year, allowing for each hotel to enliven its unique identity. According to Cody Thompson, the Communications Manager at the Ritz-Carlton, Denver, “The #RCMemories initiative draws guests into their destinations through unexpected moments and programming. #RCMemories connects guests to local culture by featuring elements of a destination’s taste, sight or sound.” The Ritz-Carlton, Denver, celebrates the city’s numerous bike trails, nearby craft breweries and green chili, a Colorado staple. Showcasing these local icons each afternoon in the lobby, green chili-cheese dip and house-fried tortillas (crafted by Executive Chef Garrett Gooch and his culinary team) are served on a specially crafted blue bicycle accompanied by printed guides for exploring the best of the city.

The Lovely Rooms

The spacious 540-square-foot guestrooms cater to the modern traveler’s need to stay connected with a pullout plugboard in the desk and headboards built for connectivity. All rooms at The Ritz-Carlton, Denver have the same setup: a double vanity, oversized soaking tub, rain shower and separate toilet. Suites afford additional amenities and space ranging from 1000 square feet to the Ritz-Carlton suite with 3030 square feet.

Our double queen room on the 12th Floor Club Level, featured a chaise lounge, plush robes, marble floors in the bathroom, a flat-screen HD smart TV, feather beds and fabulous linens.

The Enticing Club Lounge

The Club Lounge on The Club Level is open from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. and offers five complimentary culinary presentations to members and guests that have purchased access along with their room reservation. Garrett and I enjoyed breakfast in the lounge each morning and another stop in the afternoon. With delicious delicacies like bacon croquettes or grilled portabella with tomato, mozzarella and pesto, it was difficult to resist stopping in for a quick bite and aperitif before heading to dinner each night.

ELWAY’S Downtown

On our first night, we dined at Elway’s Downtown, the hotel’s restaurant that is owned by retired football quarterback John Elway. With subtle décor that pays homage to the owner, this high-end steakhouse is open for breakfast, lunch, dinner and weekend brunch. We began with a glass of bubbly and moved on to a tasty grilled artichoke. Garrett enjoyed a succulent porterhouse steak, and I savored a bone-in ribeye cooked to perfection. We finished dinner with decadent cheesecake drizzled with a sweet-tart strawberry sauce.

The Ritz-Carlton, Denver, offers guests everything they could want in a luxury vacation. The accommodations are opulent, the hospitality is first-class, and the food at both ELWAY’S Downtown and The Club Lounge are delicious and add to the experience. The next time you are looking for a luxury getaway with family, book a room at The Ritz-Carlton, Denver.