November 16 2009, 6:51 AM
Yes, that's right. Denver has a brand-new, above-the-board, shout-it-cuz-we're-proud, bonafide swingers club. And though owner Scottie Ewing digs the "controversy" -- and plenty of free press coverage -- that a swingers club brings, he also wants the Sugar House lounge to be taken seriously as an upscale lounge. So. First question. The club is full of beds, lounge chairs, and private suites that can be rented for the night for hotel-style parties. How much group sex are we talking about here? And who's responsible for washing/bleaching/sanitizing those couches? Turns out, the rules are: no sex. No nudity. Dirty dancing? You bet. Making out in dark corners? Okay. Drinking shots named for x-rated sex acts? Oh yeah. Making plans for post-bar shenanigans? Definitely. This place is more about meeting, greeting, and mingling with other hopeful "adventurous" couples than about literally getting (or going) down on the dance floor. They offer singles nights on Tuesdays and Fridays, couples nights on Wednesday and Saturday (Saturday being the swingers-only-please night) and a somewhat lonely retro music night on Thursdays that's all about lounge music and the "art of the cocktail" that was lost somewhere in the late '60s. As far as the upscale lounge aspect, it's located in a rather downscale corner of Denver (Alameda and Pecos), but the off the beaten path location gives it a certain air of mystery. The interior is cozy, with tan leather couches, the afore-mentioned beds (the mattresses are that un-bouncy foam stuff, ideal for balancing cocktail trays), votive candles, homey chandeliers and granite-topped tables. Upstairs, the five suites range from retro-mod to vintage four-poster traditional in style, with a room called "the pad" decked out with a pool table, full bar, and several additional seating areas. We'll see how the opening goes. A few soft-opening events will precede next week's official grand opening on Friday, August 24. The first night is an open house, with no reservations allowed for any suites or areas and no particular agenda, single, swinging, or otherwise; I'll be sure to join the looky-loos to see if the crowd is really what Ewing claims his club will attract: young professionals just looking for a little adventure.