DENVER -- It's a business concept that could only be launched in Denver: combining craft beer with a spa experience.
The Beer Spa by Snug is located in Denver's Five Points neighborhood. Customers are greeted with a wall of beer taps when they walk in, and are then led to a beer therapy room where they can enjoy their beverages while sitting in a hot tub where the water has been infused with hops and barley.
Co-founder Jessica French points out that sitting in a tub full of actual beer would be cost prohibitive and rather sticky.
"I mean first off ,just beer and spa together sound really wonderful to me. I love both of those things," said French as she described the concept.
French and her partner, Damien Zouaoui, discovered their first beer spa while traveling abroad. They pulled elements from different spas around the world, with plans to open a beer-themed spa in the United States. Denver, with its prolific craft beer scene, seemed like the perfect spot for their new business.
Each month, they will partner with a different Colorado brewery to feature six rotating taps of local beer. Even though the spa is heavy on the beer theme, it will also offer Denver-based Stem Ciders and wine from Infinite Monkey Theorem.
"We’re partnering with Ratio Beerworks for our first month, so we are all about supporting local. Every partner that we have – from our beverages partners to our retail partners – are all here from Denver or from Colorado," said French.
The spa was supposed to open in March 2020 but a series of building-related delays pushed that date back. In hindsight, French is thankful they did not open during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic and says the extra time allowed them to create an experience that aligns with current safety regulations.
"We have private rooms. They are completely sanitized after each use — the tubs are drained, cleaned, sanitized and refilled for each customer. The rooms are ventilated and you’re not in the room with anyone other than someone that you came in here with and that you’re obviously close with anyways," said French.
Opening a small business can be risky to begin with, especially during the current climate, and it was difficult to get funding. French said a loan from Denver Economic Development and Opportunity made it possible to launch their dream.
"The city of Denver, after we proved that we couldn’t get loans from these traditional banks, was able to give us half of the funding needed to open the Beer Spa and the other half came from Colorado Lending Source, which is a nonprofit lender here in Colorado,” said French.
The Beer Spa by Snug will begin accepting reservations on Feb. 12 at 6 p.m. Reservations will be available online.