Developer Proposes New Concept for Infamous Denver Property
Millions of people watched the Netflix documentary surrounding the sketchy stories that took place inside Los Angeles' notorious Cecil Hotel — but when it comes to hotels with a dark history, one in Colorado could definitely rival the Cecil when it comes to the creepy factor.
While it may not have global infamy, Denver's now-abandoned Royal Palace Motel is known by locals for its scandalous past.
When the Royal Palace Motel originally opened in 1969, it was a popular stopover for people traveling to or through Denver. But even with features like a cheery yellow exterior and fancy glass elevator, things at the motel on the corner of Colfax and Colorado Boulevard slowly began to go downhill.
Dead Motels USA cites issues like bed bugs and poor management as some of the reasons for the motel's decline. Denver residents and former guests shared their own opinions on Facebook, claiming the motel was a major hotspot for drugs and crime. Several murders even took place inside the building, and one remains unsolved to this day.
Similar to the Cecil Hotel, the Royal Palace ultimately shuttered its doors to guests in 2013. Though the six-story building is fenced off, it remains in good condition and still catches the eye of people driving by. The building’s owner applied for a landmark certificate of demolition eligibility, which was granted in June 2021.
Recently, a new idea was proposed for the property where the Royal Palace Motel currently sits at 1565 Colorado Boulevard. According to Denver Business Journal, in May of 2022, a real estate developer filed concept plans with the city of Denver that would give new life to the vacant structure.
The transformation would include 161-apartment units. Levels three through six would house the residential spaces, and a courtyard would be built on one of the floors. Other proposed amenities include a clubroom, fitness room, bike storage, and a 750-square-foot roof deck. Parking is proposed to be on the second level, with 165 designated stalls.
The city has to approve these plans before the Royal Palace project can break ground. If the renovation does occur, it will hopefully bring light back into one of Denver's darkest buildings.