Cap Hill

Capitol Hill Tour

By Abby Templeton-Greene and Nache Greene
Photos by Chase Doelling

Denver’s most densely populated neighborhood has seen one hundred fifty years of boom and bust cycles. Former residents include both Molly Brown and Allen Ginsberg. A diverse cast of characters still inhabits the area today.


Art by Book Williams, Jr.1. Something for Everyone 

City O’ City is a place that can fit any mood: you can break open a laptop and sip a cappuccino, meet a friend for lunch and get tipsy off chai tea infused bourbon, or even get engaged while enjoying the sweet and savory gluten free La Chagall pizza for dinner (seriously, I know two people who did this). City O’ City is known for its unique, tasty vegetarian and vegan fare and its hip atmosphere. This place is so Cap Hill you can see the capitol dome through a window housing an artsy display of succulents.

Location: 206 E. 13th Ave.

Hours: 7 a.m. –2 a.m.

Contact: 303-831-6443,

Lando Allen often sells the VOICE near City O’ City. Lando likes vending on Capitol Hill: “You got some generous people over there. They kind of have a style of their own, just like I do.”


Brian Augustine, VOICE vendor, will go to Denver Ted’s at 1308 Pearl St. for a Philly cheesesteak when he wants to treat himself.


2. All-Age Venue That Doesn’t Suck

Dan Landes, local entrepreneur behind City O’City and Watercourse Foods, has done it again, this time blending comedy, music,  and community space. Located above City O’ City, The Deer Pile is a refreshing spot to check out open mics, stand up comedy, local bands, poetry, and all other things informative, expressive, and cool. This all-ages venue is the best thing to hit Cap Hill since gold leaf hit the dome.

Location: 206 E. 13th Ave.

Hours: vary

Contact: 303-831-6443,


3. Denver Landmark For Vinyl  

Wax Trax has been fueling Denver’s local punk scene since the 1970s. Walking into the space feels like visiting a music store before Napster and iTunes took a wrecking ball to the business. It is still a great place to pick up a Marvin Gay cassette, a Nine Inch Nails CD, or step over to the vinyl section next door and get lost in the world of the “black crack.”

Location: 638 E. 13th Ave.

Hours: Mon–Thurs, 10 a.m.–7 p.m.

Contact:  303-831-7246,


4. Art Gallery You Can Simply Enjoy

When Hurricane Katrina victim Eric Dallimore opened Leon Gallery, he was seeking to create a space that broke the world of the quiet and inaccessible art gallery—celebrating art, music, and the magic in life. Showcasing stunning work by local artists emerging on the national scene, this hip gallery keeps busy hosting Monday night Yoga classes, biweekly music shows of local and touring bands, and dance parties when needed.

Location: 1112 E. 17th Ave.

Hours: Wed–Fri noon to 7 p.m., Sat & Sun
                noon to 5 p.m., closed Mon & Tues

Contact: 303-832-1599,

Vendor David Gordon remembers: “There was an Einstein Bagels on Cap Hill. You could go right in that dumpster and you’d find bags of bagels. The bagels were still good, they were a day old. That was a great place. That was a good place to sleep too.”