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Inside Hotel Boulderado’s Thoughtful Restoration

Rowland + Broughton revives the historic hotel while maintaining its Victorian-era charm



Photos by David Lauer Photography

​The marriage of old and new is a delicate one, especially when it comes to design renovations. Too many modern touches can overshadow a space’s history or context, while too few improvements can leave it feeling kitschy and outdated. This was the challenge for Aspen- and Denver-based design firm Rowland + Broughton, who recently revamped the iconic century-old Hotel Boulderado in the heart of downtown Boulder. Since 1909, the hotel has served as a doorway to Colorado’s Victorian-era history as well as a landing pad for Rocky Mountain adventurers. Led by Rowland + Broughton Principal Sarah Broughton, Senior Interior Designer Jayna Kline, Director of Operations Amanda Christianson and Senior Project Architect Indra Tjaja, the renovation vows to preserve the 1909 building’s legacy by using clean, contemporary materials and colors that complement the hotel’s tried-and-true features, not overpower them.

“[We] aspired to celebrate and respect its significant history, while making it feel current and inviting," says Kline. “Approachable and comfortable, with a tailored and sophisticated aura, Hotel Boulderado is set to welcome guests for another hundred years.”

Take a look at the design team’s sensitive, elegant update below. 

The grandeur of the mezzanine lobby was kept in tact by preserving the original grand staircase, historic wainscot, columns, crown molding and the mosaic overhead. Rowland + Broughton broke up the large volume of the space with intimate seating areas in tailored fabrics and rich colors.

The hotel’s original tile floors were resurrected and restored, using tile sourced from American Restoration Tile to repair worn or damaged areas.

New lighting from Currey & Company and Restoration Hardware add bits of sparkle throughout, while groupings of Victorian-inspired sofas, high-back armchairs and barstools and cocktail tables provide ample space for guests to sip coffee, read a book or grab a bite.

The new custom-milled front desk is covered in gray textured faux leather.

New carpet lining the meeting room floors and main staircase were custom-designed in a watercolor pattern to emulate the look of an ancient Oriental rug. 

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