I have a confession to make. One that I’m kind of embarrassed about. Over the years I’ve haphazardly treated Denver as a fly-over city. Or a drive-through city to be more accurate.
My travels take me to Colorado a lot (thankfully!). Denver is usually my fly in and out of airport and then I take a drive to Aspen, Breckinridge or Beaver Creek, but every time I leave, I want to kick myself for not scheduling more girl getaway time in the Mile High City.
In one word, Denver can be summed up as: AWESOME.
As mentioned, I’ve been in and out of Denver a hundred times. During those hundred or so times, I’ve learned a lot of the in’s and out’s of the different parts of the city, but this last visit landed me in the illustrious Cherry Creek, which is a posh corner of the sprawling city.
On my last day in Colorado, I checked into the award-winning JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek, which literally had me grinning from ear-to-ear from the second I checked in until the moment I got into my rental car and headed out. Recently featured on Conde Nast 2014 Readers’ Choice list as one of the “Best Hotels in the West,” this immaculate high-rise hotel had it all. And it’s no wonder with their $5-million renovation having been completed just a few years ago.
The JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek is the only luxury hotel in this prestigious and ever-growing area known as Denver’s top shopping and entertainment district. The hotel sits amidst nearly 400 unique and one-of-a-kind boutiques (try O2 Boutique), national retailers (my favorites: Lululemon and Neiman’s), restaurants (try True Food Kitchen for lunch and INK! Coffee for coffee and bagels), galleries, yoga studios, spas and more.
The hotel itself features over 600 pieces of art created by local Colorado artists and curated by respected art advisor Paige Powell formerly of Andy Warhol’s Interview magazine – a nice touch for a locally driven city like Denver. Not to mention the great view. The JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek has 196 guest rooms and more than a third have an unobstructed view of The Rockies (the mountains, not the baseball team!), which is just breathtaking and a pleasant reminder that even with all that great shopping, you’re still in the mountains.
The state-of-the-art Fitness Center did not go unnoticed by yours truly, but my absolute favorite part of any hotel is including a local running map for avid runners like myself. I’m all for lacing up my New Balances and going for a run “to get lost,” but if a map of favorite and recommended courses is included, I’m all for it. It guarantees a great run through a part of the city that needs to be seen. The JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek included a small 4×6 runner’s card that gave runners two options: a 4-mile trail run along the Cherry Creek Trail to Four Mile Historic Park and a shorter loop around Cheesman Park (twice around and back to the hotel is approximately 4.5 miles). As if I didn’t get enough cardio in walking around Cherry Creek, but a run while traveling is always nice.
The JW Marriott Denver Cherry Creek has clearly set the cosmopolitan standard for this prestigious shopping and entertainment district, and I can’t wait to go back! Please remind me to schedule more time in Denver on my next Colorado girlfriend getaway visit.
Jayme Lamm is a freelance writer and marketing consultant based in Houston focusing on travel writing and is in a full-court press writing her hugely opinionated sports column, The Blonde Side. Be sure to follow Jayme’s travel and sports adventures on Twitter @jaymelamm.