The Regency, Denver
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The Regency is one of three student-housing communities for the Auraria Campus in downtown Denver, Colorado. Formerly known as the Regency Hotel, the building is privately owned by local investor and proprietor V. Robert Salazar (owner of Regency Realty Investors LLC), who bought the building in 2004.
Located two miles from the Auraria Campus, just off Interstate 25 and Park Avenue West, The Regency is Auraria’s first student housing community (the others being Inn at Auraria and the Campus Village Apartments). Both graduate and undergraduate students of Metropolitan State University of Denver, Community College of Denver, Rocky Mountain College of Art and Design, Lincoln Tech, Aveda, Denver School of Nursing, Red Rocks Community College, Art Institute, Johnson and Wales and University of Colorado Denver are eligible for housing at The Regency.
The designers of the community were Architectural Workshop. For their work at The Regency they won several awards such as the 2005 Hard Hat Award as well as received Honorable Mention for Renovation Design in the 2006 ASID Awards.
The Regency Hotel was a hotel in Denver, Colorado. Built in the 1960s to serve as a regional convention center, it was famous locally for its large gold dome and the luxury of the rooms within. A lack of business pushed the Regency into neglect and it became known as a dangerous and unclean location. The former hotel is now The Regency: Student Housing Community.
"The Regency once rated four stars in travel guides. Denver developers Victor and Marvin Lederman were its first owners, having built the hotel's original tower and lobby complex in 1969 at a cost of $4 million. I worked there in 1971 and I found Victor to be one of the most unpleasant people I ever met; Marvin was quite a good man - their father Jacob was probably a gangster.
There were 180 guest rooms in the tower, and two lounges, two dining rooms and a coffee shop on the first floor. The hotel was successful, and in 1973, the Ledermans hired local architect Richard L. DeGette to design a $5.5 million expansion. It added 230 rooms, an outdoor pool, a 16,000-square-foot (1,500 m2) ballroom with two-story-high ceilings, a conference center and a 12,000-square-foot (1,100 m2) exhibit hall beneath a massive golden dome. The Regency was then one of the few luxury hotels of its size in America to be independently owned. In addition to Elvis, President Gerald Ford and Olympics track-and-field star Jesse Owens stayed there when they came to town. It was a popular spot for weddings, black-tie fundraisers and high school proms.
Transients regularly occupied rooms, the hotel becoming a substitute for low-income housing. Residents were forced to move in April 2004 when a district court declared the building an extreme fire hazard. The owner, citing financial difficulty, failed to comply with the updates and renovations required by state building codes. The ruling displaced approximately 110 residents, the majority receiving temporary relocation assistance from the Denver Department of Human Services.
In 2005, a private developer purchased the Regency Hotel. Seeking to create a student housing facility for the nearby Auraria Campus, he ordered a series of renovations. After substantial investment, the building now offers housing to 700 students. According to a Regency press release, Williams Construction Corporation began renovation of The Regency in early 2005. In order to make the hotel habitable again they had to update the plumbing, electrical, mechanical and life safety systems. These life safety systems are still not up to date on human life safety. They also installed new windows and replaced the building’s roof among other tasks.
During construction, the building’s golden-domed rotunda caught fire. Fortunately, no one was harmed and there were no delays to the construction schedule.
The first students moved into The Regency on September 1, 2005 as minor renovation was still being completed inside the main tower. Last Fall (August 2014) they debuted a new property on the same lot, The Villas at the Regency are Modern.Hip.Urban 3 bedroom 3 bathroom apartments.