7 Most Impressive Architectural Designs in Colorado

March 8, 2023

Colorado is filled with many examples of diverse and eye-catching architecture. Of course, you don’t need a whole team of Boulder architects to help you know impressive architecture when you see it. From the big city of Denver to beautiful mountain towns like Vail and Aspen, the Mile High State is a great spot if you’re a fan of architecture and design.

That’s why, in this article, we’re taking a closer look at some of the most impressive architectural designs you’ll find in Colorado. With a range of museums, churches, and even a castle, the architecture in Colorado certainly has a little bit of everything.

7 Most Impressive Architectural Designs in Colorado

Are you looking to begin your own tour of all the top architectural displays throughout Colorado? Check out our list below to get started:

1. Downtown Denver Aquarium: let’s start by taking a dip at the state’s largest aquarium. Located right downtown on the banks of the South Platte River, the Denver aquarium is home to countless species of fish—and even a pair of tigers. Originally opening its doors in 1999, the Denver Aquarium offers guests a unique interactive experience filled with fun and educational opportunities.

2. Denver Art Museum: located right downtown, it’s hard to miss the unique architecture of the main art museum in town. Home to over 70,000 individual pieces of art, the Denver Art Museum is one of the largest in the Western United States. The art museum is composed of two distinct buildings, each with a unique look and feel. You have the North Building, designed by Gio Ponti (in fact, the ONLY building fully completed by Gio Ponti in the United States) finished in 1971. Then there’s the Hamilton building, designed by Libeskind, that opened in 2006. Pairing these two buildings right across from one another creates a truly stunning architectural display that brings life and style to the city center.

3. Air Force Academy Chapel: right off I-25 between Colorado Springs and Denver, you have the United States Air Force Academy. Nestled right in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains, it’s definitely one of the most picturesque locations for a college campus. But on top of that, there’s some impressive architecture on campus, too. Most notably, there’s the Air Force Academy Chapel. Completed in 1962 and then named a National Historic Landmark in 2004, the Chapel features stunning spires and a steel base that is made from 100 tetrahedrons with each measuring 75 feet long. This chapel makes a stunning display with the Rocky Mountains as the perfect backdrop.

4. Denver’s Union Station: with recent renovations and upgrades across the board, this central hub for the city’s transportation is a spot you can’t miss. After heavy renovations, the Union Station reopened its doors in 2014 to offer travelers and city residents alike a chance to enjoy a drink, delicious meal, or quick cup of coffee. With a hotel, a selection of restaurants and bars, and of course, the functional bus depot, Union Station is truly one of the most remarkable—and functional—spots downtown.

5. Denver Airport: if a bus or train isn’t your style, you’ll still see some stunning architecture when you fly into the Denver Airport. Located northeast of the city, the Denver Airport is unlike any other. The main terminal is simply flooded with natural lighting as large clerestory windows to the west and east allow you access to the stunning Colorado Rockies in the background. Perhaps the most unique part of this design is the towering white roof peaks (rising 150 feet above the main terminal) designed to imitate the Rocky Mountains just miles to the west. This unique design has won the Denver International Airport countless awards, including the Best Large Airport in the US in 2021.

6. Red Rocks Amphitheater: designed by noted Denver architect Burnham Hoyt in 1941, there’s no live music experience quite like Red Rocks Amphitheater. Carved into sandstone formations at the foot of the Rockies, this Amphitheater almost looks like it was naturally a part of the red rocks. The towering rock walls on either side of the seating create a unique acoustic experience, and while enjoying the show, you can also overlook the city of Denver on the horizon. While most popular in the summer, you can check out concerts, movies, and comedians at this venue throughout most of the year as it’s rapidly growing in popularity. And if you’re not looking to drop cash on concert tickets, you can visit the Amphitheater and surrounding park for free during the day. Get in a quick hike and then sit back on the steps and enjoy the amazing views—what’s more Colorado than that?

7. Broadmoor Hotel: if you’re down in the Colorado Springs area and looking for an unforgettable place to stay, you’ll need to check out the Broadmoor. This hotel was originally constructed in 1918 and was designed by the same team who was also behind Grand Central Station. Centered around a large lake, the Broadmoor Hotel spans 5,000 acres and includes a golf course, a gorgeous landscape with premier landscaping maintenance, walking trails, and of course, the stunning Italian renaissance-themed hotel itself. When you stay at this hotel, you may not feel the need to really go anywhere else during your Colorado stay. But just a few miles from the mountains, you’ll owe it to yourself to keep exploring.

Conclusion – 7 Most Impressive Architectural Designs in Colorado

When you first think of Colorado, most people automatically envision the stunning Rocky Mountains and all the natural beauty that has made this state so popular. But even with so much natural wonder, you also shouldn’t overlook some of these impressive architectural designs that have formed the identity of the Mile High State. From the downtown aquarium, and the Denver Art Museum, to Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, there’s simply so much to see and do when you’re in Colorado.

 

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Carlos Diaz
I believe in making the impossible possible because there’s no fun in giving up. Travel, design, fashion and current trends in the field of industrial construction are topics that I enjoy writing about.

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