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The Eddy Taproom & Hotel is a Stylish Basecamp for Adventures in Golden

The boutique hotel pays tribute to the city’s clay-mining and brick-making heritage with a mix of vintage and modern styles.

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There’s a fresh hotel coming to Golden. With a vintage-mod-outdoorsy vibe inspired by the city’s industrial past and its location as a gateway to the mountains, the Eddy Taproom & Hotel opens June 1.

Instead of going with the flow, an eddy is a swirling counter-current, and that’s exactly the effect the hotel is going for. “Eddies are rest stops along the river for kayakers and whitewater rafters,” says the Eddy’s general manager, John Drugan. “We’ve taken this idea where outdoor adventure meets rest and relaxation to create a hotel that’s fun, lively, comfortable, and welcoming.”

The Eddy is built on the historic site of the Golden Fire Brick Company, in the shadow of the foothills beside Clear Creek. Truck Eddy, parked near the hotel’s entrance, is known for its BBQ and milkshakes—it even offers a milkshake just for dogs. Image courtesy of the Eddy Taproom & Hotel

The all-brick, four-story, 49-room hotel sits atop the former site of the Golden Fire Brick Company, whose history goes back to the 1860s. Golden—originally named “Golden City”—was Colorado’s territorial capital from 1862 to 1867, growing and thriving as a supply depot for prospectors during the Colorado Gold Rush. A century ago, Golden was also Colorado’s clay capital, with 13 clay mines in and around the city producing a whopping 7,000 tons of clay per month. Bricks, tiles, and pipes crafted from Golden’s clay ended up as far away as China. So, when Denver-based Craine Architecture created the Eddy, designers made a point of including original Golden Fire Brick Company bricks in the hotel’s entryway.

The hotel’s overall design pays tribute to 19th-century industrial structures, mixing time-honored materials with modern comforts. Shirli Sensenbrenner, senior VP of design and development for property manager CoralTree Hospitality, explains, “We did not want to create a ‘period piece,’ [but] instead tell a story about Colorado today which is playful, fresh, and modern. We also worked hard not to make this ‘your grandma’s vintage’—we did not want Victorian lace and roses, but instead more of an ‘industrial vintage.’”

Sliding doors strike an industrial note in the guest rooms, where the designers chose modern furnishings, textiles, and fixtures with a subtle vintage vibe. Photo courtesy of the Eddy Taproom & Hotel

And that’s just what the interior design team from Denver’s Studio R Design provided. The Eddy’s modernized factory aesthetic is expressed in its riveted steel lobby walls, rough-hewn wooden floors, and black tin ceilings. The hotel’s beadboard-lined corridors are decorated with black-and-white photos capturing local mining and beer-making operations, along with images of original faculty members from the Colorado School of Mines. And door numbers for the guest rooms are modeled after the tags miners used to hang on a board to mark their daily entrance into and exit from the worksite.

The industrial-modern guest bathrooms feature penny and subway tiles, rolling glass shower doors, and vintage-inspired lighting. Photo courtesy of the Eddy Taproom & Hotel

The dramatic color palette gives way to brighter blues and sunny golds inside the guest rooms, where large windows offer views of the Clear Creek, the foothills, and the city. A deep-blue board-and-batten accent wall contrasts with sculptural golden armchairs and plaid cushions that the designers chose in tribute to Western flannel shirts and miners’ wool blankets. Each room also features a desk crafted to resemble an antique mining cart, with a wheeled metal base and a salvaged-wood top stamped with the hotel’s name. Industrial touches continue in the bathrooms, where gray penny-tile floors meet white subway-tiled showers, and a steel-framed mirror and vanity with black faucets are lit by vintage-inspired globe lights.

Even though its style might have been inspired by a long-lost factory, the Eddy isn’t all work and no play. Given its proximity to so many outdoor activities, the hotel’s designers prioritized easy access to fresh air. The Tap Room is equipped with garage doors that open onto covered patio, and there’s a roof deck for alfresco entertainment. The hotel offers complimentary bike rentals, with a pedestrian footbridge connecting to a 24-mile trail system, plus hiking, kayaking, and paragliding all nearby. Pets are also welcome at the hotel (an extra fee applies), and there’s even an on-site dog-washing station.

“What I think the Eddy offers is a genuine representation of the area’s outdoor spirit, history, and casual Colorado sophistication,” Sensenbrenner says. “We did not want to take ourselves too seriously—I mean, this is a hotel, right? We want our guests to be having fun!”

If you go: Guest accommodations range from 390-square-foot king or double queen rooms to an 855-square-foot, two-bedroom, two-bath suite that sleeps eight. Nightly rates start at $209. theeddygolden.com

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