5280 History

If you're new to Denver, it may take a second or two to figure out that 5280 takes its name from the city's mile-high elevation: 5,280 feet above sea level. It's an unusual name for an out-of-the ordinary magazine.

We began 5280 in 1993 with the simple but unprecedented step of asking 75,000 area residents what they wanted to read about in a magazine about the Mile High City.

Denver, they told us, is a place of contrasts. It's hot jazz at El Chapultepec, dry martinis at the Cruise Room, and high tea at the Brown Palace. It's the man-made beauty of the City & County Building during the holidays and the natural splendor of the Rocky Mountains. It's wild Friday nights at the Grizzly Rose and lazy Sunday afternoons at the Tattered Cover Bookstore.

Denver's people are no less eclectic. In responding to our survey, they enthusiastically shared their interests in everything from the arts to the environment, from fitness to historical articles on Denver and the West.

We took their answers and translated them into a combination of high-quality journalism and eye-catching design. The result was a new magazine that captured Denver's unique voice like never before.

Our hard work paid off.

5280 stories such as "Top of the Town," "Top Doctors," and our annual restaurant guides quickly became the focus of discussions at cocktail parties and water coolers all over town, not to mention frequent coverage in other area media. Today, we have more readers than any local magazine in Colorado, with a total distribution of more than 85,000. In fact, in Denver, 5280 outsells most national publications, with a readership that exceeds such well-known national magazines as Time, People, Oprah, and Martha Stewart Living locally. Our popularity hasn't meant a sacrifice in quality: A finalist for six National Magazine Awards, 5280 was recently named one of the five best city magazines in America by the City and Regional Magazine Association.

We encourage you to look around. If you like what you see and would like to check out the print edition of 5280, click here to subscribe.