All Together Now
Stanley Marketplace serves as a community gathering spot in Denver’s Stapleton neighborhood.
There’s a new community marketplace in Denver, and it’s a must-visit—whether you’re a holiday commuter or a local heading to the Front Range. Stanley Marketplace, located in the progressive urban development Stapleton community in Aurora, is a 100,000-square-foot mixed-use space boasting 54 independently owned restaurants and drinking establishments. In addition to other businesses and work spaces, there’s an event venue called The Hangar at Stanley, and adjacent micro apartments. The entire project acts as a connector in the neighborhood; a synergistic undertaking that brings together diverse tenants that provide guests with a variety of offerings.
While Stanley Marketplace is a full-fledged development, it started with a simple idea: Three University of Denver business school grads—all Stapleton residents—wanted to open a neighborhood beer hall. When Aurora city officials caught wind of the idea, they approached the trio about turning an abandoned industrial park (the marketplace building, constructed in 1954, was the home of Stanley Aviation) into a mixed-use development, incorporating the beer hall and other independent, Colorado-owned eateries into the mix. The vision was for Stanley Marketplace to join the ranks of acclaimed urban markets across the nation, including San Francisco’s Ferry Building and Seattle’s Melrose Market.
The first businesses opened in December, 2016. They included Comida Cantina, a Mexican street-food-inspired chain; Cheluna Brewing Co., the first production brewery and public taproom for the eponymous Colorado craft brewer; and Stanley Beer Hall, which offers 30 draft lines, including 25 to 28 rotating beers from Colorado and the West Coast. Annette, the first restaurant from Chef/Owner Caroline Glover, opened in early February. Glover is the former sous chef of Denver’s Acorn; prior to that, she was a cook and gardener at Paonia’s Fresh & Wyld, worked at Carbondale’s Roaring Gardens and Fold Community Kitchen, and she is a cofounder of Carbondale’s late Snowed In Supper Club.
Other highly anticipated food and beverage tenants include Maria Empanada; Rosenberg’s Bagels & Delicatessen, which retrofitted its water system to re-create New York City water for their authentic-tasting bagels; and the first taproom from Denver’s urban winery, Infinite Monkey Theorem.
In keeping with the building’s past (the first ejection seat was invented inside the Stanley Aviation building), the marketplace features an aeronautical motif throughout. Large fans reminiscent of propellers line the ceiling; the original signage and red aviation doors are still intact and landmarked by the City of Aurora. The Hangar at Stanley space is also recognized as Local Historic Landmark No. 27 by the city.
“This has been a project of organic growth,” notes Bryant Palmer, Stanley Marketplace’s “chief storyteller.” “A small group of early adopters signed on first, and they brought in friends. The ethos behind it is that through collaboration, every tenant can be better by all being in it together.”
GO FIND IT!
2501 Dallas St., Aurora