River North Art District, more affectionately known as RiNo, is the veritable hub of creative arts in the city of Denver. With more than a dozen major art galleries, and several smaller creative studios and work spaces, this up and coming neighborhood epitomizes its motto: “Where Art Is Made.” But don’t be fooled; RiNo isn’t just for the creative crowd. In fact, it’s quickly becoming one of the most popular neighborhoods in all of Denver because of all it has to offer residents and visitors alike. RiNo is much more than just an artist’s paradise, it’s an urban playground for anyone that loves food, beer, music, shopping, architecture, the outdoors, socializing and having a good time.
Even if you’re not into the visual or creative arts, you can still enjoy RiNo’s artisan vibe as it applies to the multitude of modern gastropubs within the neighborhood. With some of the most creative eateries in all of Denver, including Park Burger, Acorn and Los Chigones, there’s something to please every palate, no matter how eclectic. Also make sure to check out The Source, a huge indoor marketplace where you can shop for artisan meat, cheese and bread, sit down for a cup of craft coffee, and grab a gourmet meal, all while admiring the architecture and charm of the restored iron foundry it was built in.
Whether you want to savor the flavor and composition of the perfect craft beer or cocktail, or simply grab a drink with a few friends in a trendy bar, RiNo is the place to go. With the highest concentration of independent craft breweries and cideries in Colorado, there’s no shortage of places to wet your whistle. And not only are there more breweries in RiNo, they’re some of the most interesting and creative spaces to hang out in thanks to the trend of reusing and incorporating old, existing architecture into the design to make something new and unique. Make sure to check out Epic Brewing Company, Great Divide Brewing Company and Stem Ciders while you’re in RiNo, or simply take the Denver Microbrewery Tour for the chance to try some of the neighborhood’s best breweries while also getting the chance to explore the neighborhood on foot.
You won’t find traditional, boring department stores or chain outfits in RiNo, but you will find some of the most interesting, creative places to shop in the entire city of Denver. Whether you’re looking for a special item for your home, a gift for someone hard to shop for, or an couture dress that’s not “off the rack,” the artisan shops and small family-owned storefronts that line the streets of RiNo are ideal. Most shops feature locally-sourced and locally made goods that are designed with the style and functionality that are synonymous with the Denver attitude.
From 6pm to 9pm on the first Friday of every month, RiNo opens its doors and invites Denverites to experience its artsy vibe. Galleries, shops, restaurants and breweries host special monthly events that include food, drinks, live music, art installations and pop-up galleries that allow the public to pop in and see what the neighborhood is all about. It’s a great way to experience the artistic vibe of the neighborhood without the fuss and pretense of a traditional gallery. Plus, it’s a great chance to get out, meet your neighbors and explore new places in the area. Make sure you check out the First Friday Website each month for a list of open galleries and events.