DENVER – Coffee at the Point in Denver’s Five Points neighborhood has permanently closed.
Coffee at The Point’s owner Ryan Cobbins paused operations in July following issues tied to the pandemic, rising supply costs, staffing shortages and a lawsuit involving a former business partner. A GoFundMe was launched to help reopen the coffee shop.
“At one point, there was an incredible concerted effort to get us reopened. And then through just a little bit more self-reflection, I started recognizing that I was, like, 5% of that. And everybody else was 95% of me wanting to reopen. And so kind of late in the game, I decided to permanently close Coffee at The Point,” Cobbins said. “It's just kind of like a punch in the gut, and it keeps surfacing. So I've released some of that.”
Cobbins said he knows some of the challenges his business faced are not unique.
Several businesses in Five Points have closed recently. Welton Street Café and Moods Beats Potions (MBP) closed last year. Rosenberg’s temporarily closed last summer. Melody Market also temporarily closed in December due to water damage but is planning to permanently close at the end of the month.
“I would say around Denver, this is the challenge, right? And we look at the snippet of Five Points,” Cobbins said. “The challenges that our entrepreneurs are facing are real. There's the rising cost of goods. There's rising labor costs. I mean, when I first opened in 2010, minimum wage was a little over $7 an hour. As of three days ago, it jumped to $17 an hour... So businesses are still trying to put pieces together. And so, it just makes the environment a little hard.”
But Cobbins said the past decade has been particularly hard for Five Points.
“It's been kind of a perfect storm effect with the challenges that we're facing here,” Cobbins said.
“It's tough, because I personally know Ryan as a friend, and I also know him as a business person. And he ran a great business. Seeing it on Welton Street, seeing another place closed down, it's tough because the community here is fantastic,” said Sudhir Kudva, 715 Club owner. “When I see somebody close down, it means less foot traffic, right? Even though I'm not open at the same time, that is less foot traffic. All of a sudden, you have to be a destination as a single entity, rather than a destination as a community. “
Cobbins said despite his decision to close, he plans to continue to support Five Points businesses. He also said he’s grateful for the support from his customers.
“The things that happened in this space with folks coming in, you know, first time homebuyers signing closing documents, and, you know, people meeting their now married partner,” Cobbins said.
Cobbins said his doors may be closing, but his heart will remain in Five Points.