Step into the elegant charm of the early 20th century when you discover this speakeasy in the heart of downtown Boulder. Walk down to the lower level of Hotel Boulderado in Boulder, Colorado, and you’ll discover a hidden gem of a bar, late night food spot, and live entertainment venue. This historic hotel houses License No. 1, a unique cocktail lounge serving classic and handcrafted libations, chef prepared small plates, and a lively atmosphere.
When Hotel Boulderado opened its doors in 1909, the City of Boulder was dry, having enacted prohibition a few years prior in 1907. By 1967 prohibition was lifted and soon after one of the first legal licenses to serve hard liquor in a restaurant was obtained by the bar located in the basement of Hotel Boulderado. Once known as the Catacombs Bar, the space evolved into License No. 1 in 2014, paying homage to the history and continuing to use the very same liquor license that was first issued after prohibition.
Whether you’re looking to relax after a long day or have a fun night on the town, License No. 1 has a lot to offer starting with one of the best happy hours in town. Featuring $4 draft beer, $5 wine, $5-$6 cocktails, and $7-$12 snacks, the Happy Hour menu is available from 5pm – 7pm. For those who are feeling like a late-night snack, especially after dancing to live music or laughing until you have stitches at comedy night, there is a menu for you including a more sizeable menu with small bites, soups and salads, sandwiches, burgers, steak, and desserts. Take a look at their full drink menu and you’ll discover classics, twists, and one of Boulder’s largest selection of whiskey and scotch.
Stay a little later and the speakeasy-style bar starts to hop with live music by the George Nelson Band on Wednesdays, DJ Night on Fridays, and Live Music on Saturdays. Check the calendar for artists and event details. Music starts at 9pm in the band room with plenty of space to dance, socialize among the antique furniture in one of the sitting rooms, or play games in one of the back rooms past the historic shoeshine chair. Deceptively big, License No. 1 even features a vintage photobooth, Jenga, a pool table, darts, and skee ball to entertain guests.
They say laughter is healing and License No. 1 certainly delivers on the abundance of hilarity every Thursday from 7:30pm – 9pm with The Underground Comedy Showcase presented by ComicCents. Reservations are required for this weekly event with limited seating. You can pick between regular comedy tickets for $20 or opt for the package which includes two tickets and food/beverage credit for $90 (pre tax and fees). With this fun Boulder event locals and visitors alike get a chance to see hilarious comedians with local and national clout in an intimate and eclectic setting.
For those 21 or older, this amazing bar and venue in downtown Boulder is a must visit. Sip on classic libations while relaxing in a charming lounge with friends or discover your new favorite musical or comedic act in an intimate setting.