This is a press release by Urban Cowboy written in conjunction with GBX Group and Historic Denver.
Urban Cowboy Heads West: Owners Lyon Porter and Jersey Banks to Open Outpost of Boutique Hotel in Denver
A historic Downtown Mansion will play host to the lodge and signature Public House bar/restaurant, joining properties in Nashville, The Catskills and Brooklyn
Urban Cowboy, a boutique-hotel that invites visitors to experience community and freedom against a cowboy-inspired backdrop, has settled on its next frontier: Denver. Owners Lyon Porter and Jersey Banks will bring an outpost of the lodge – along with a two-story version of bar and restaurant Public House – to a historic mansion in the city’s Downtown, joining sister locations in Nashville, the Catskills and Brooklyn. The mile-high property represents a homecoming of sorts for Denver-native Banks, who is excited to share her and Porter’s take on Western Cowboy culture and hospitality when the property opens in early 2023.
The new location will make its home in the George Schleier Mansion, a historically preserved 1880s building. The mansion was acquired by Cleveland-based GBX Group LLC in 2018, a firm specializing in the revitalization, and operation of historic real estate in urban markets. With review from the non-profit organization Historic Denver, which holds a preservation easement on the structure, the National Register of Historic Places-listed building will retain its historic façades in perpetuity.
A historic photo of the Schleier Mansion dated 1880-1910 Credit: Denver Public Library
Annie Levinsky, Historic Denver’s former Executive Director says, “The Schleier Mansion has been a landmark on the edge of downtown for over a century, and for the last three decades was used as offices. We’re excited to witness its transformation into more active use for a new generation and know that a special historic place like this will help anchor the growing neighborhood.” Denver architect, Frank Edbrooke, designed the original mansion in the ornate Queen Anne style for Schleier, a hat tycoon (nicknamed “The Glad Hatter”) who transitioned to local politics where he promoted the city’s early development. The building’s next evolution will see it transformed into an 18-room hotel that maintains the mansion’s ornate historical detail.
Details like the gargoyles, engraved Bavarian swans and its “onion tower” cupola are protected by a preservation easement, and Urban Cowboy will work with Historic Denver, the city’s leading community-driven voice for historic places, to stay true to themansion’s historical roots during the redesign. “It’s a jewel box already, and was love at first sight,” says Porter. “I see my job here as showcasing the property’s intricate details and honoring its bones. Working with GBX Group and Historic Denver on the project has been a win-win: we have the opportunity to preserve a historic building for future generations to enjoy while bringing long-lasting, positive economic impacts to the area.”
Expect an interior makeover in the spirit of the other Urban Cowboy properties, which have become favorites among design-conscious travelers. Porter and Banks will add modernized fixtures and soaking tubs, along with decorative found objects that the duo plan to pull from Colorado, Wyoming and Montana. “We’re really inspired by the romantic, rustic nostalgia of what was authentically cowboy in Colorado and the West, which is different from what cowboy culture looked like in Nashville,” says Banks. “I’m especially excited to play with this since I grew up here.”
The mansion comes equipped with a two-story carriage house in the back, perfect for an outpost of Public House, Urban Cowboy’s signature restaurant and watering hole. Megan Jay, Beverage Director at the Nashville property, has already relocated to Denver to bring the Public House’s casual but quality hospitality to the new location. Like Public House Nashville, The Denver location will feature a menu from NYC’s iconic Roberta’s Pizza. The Denver team will also put the carriage house’s second story to good use, transforming it into a lounge area and private event space.
Antonin Robert, President of Community Development for GBX Group added, “In following the Secretary of Interior Standards for Rehabilitation, the property will be enhanced with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance to ensure greater accessibility. We are excited to partner with Urban Cowboy in this existing adaptive reuse project. With Urban Cowboy’s deep understanding of hospitality design, this project strikes the perfect balance of preservation and modernization.”
Porter and Banks promise that the Denver property will have all of the good stuff that made the others so popular, while maintaining its own distinct identity. Expect unforgettable style, award-winning food and beverage, and a vibe that encourages socializing. “It’s a homecoming for me,” says Banks. “I’m excited to bring our brand of hospitality to the city where I grew up, and look forward to making this Urban Cowboy special in new and exciting ways.” https://www.urbancowboy.com/
About Urban Cowboy
Founded by Lyon Porter and Jersey Banks, Urban Cowboy is focused on the traveler’s vision of what makes an experience memorable. The true spirit of The Cowboy is about freedom. The romantic, the wanderer, he adventurer all find inspiration in the unique lodging spaces in both Brooklyn, Nashville and the Catskills. A fusion of luxury, design and creature comforts continue to make Urban Cowboy a home away from home where writers find meaningful words, creators expand the limits of art and musicians tap out the rhythms of life. Lyon and Jersey are looking to pursue their dream of having “homes” all over the world in the places that they want to be, creating environments that inspire Community and Freedom. For more information, go to www.urbancowboy.com.
About GBX Group LLC
GBX Group LLC specializes in acquiring, preserving, and operating historic real estate in urban markets. The company partners with investors to fund the purchase and preservation of historic real estate to generate community revitalization and economic growth. Since its founding in 2001, GBX has completed over 135 projects in 21 states. For more about GBX, visit gbxgroup.com/.