Brown Palace will open for the second time in 128 years after coronavirus shut it down

John Kite will also return behind the piano.

Prize steers Olaf and Zion make their grand appearance at the Brown Palace Hotel, Jan. 24, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

Prize steers Olaf and Zion make their grand appearance at the Brown Palace Hotel, Jan. 24, 2020. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

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After closing for the first time ever, the Brown Palace hotel is recovering from pandemic lockdowns.

On Wednesday, June 10, its Ship Tavern, coffee shop and tea service in the Atrium Lobby will open under “limited operation,” socially distant seating and a lower overall capacity, to meet state guidelines, a press release states.

The Brown Palace spa opened on May 9.

A press release from the hotel says staff has been trained to use personal protective equipment (face masks and gloves, for example) and that they’ve “heightened” cleaning protocols.

If you listen to the telephone hold recording long enough, you’ll hear a woman say the hotel has never closed, “not even for one day” since it opened in 1892. That all changed when COVID-19 forced lockdowns in Denver and across the country.

The hotel is opening “for the second time in its illustrious, 128-year history,” the release says.

Jerry Rauhn, who picked up the phone at the concierge desk, said the first guests he will have seen in months will check in tomorrow. Staff members, he said, are trying to make it a special occasion. Guests will get to sign in with a “special book” to mark the occasion.

Those who hang out in or above the Atrium during tea time will also be treated to the musical stylings of John A. Kite, who’s manned the piano there for 33 years but had to take a break as the pandemic heightened.

This article originally ran the wrong opening date for the spa. It’s been corrected.

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