Aspen’s Peaceful Nooks | AspenTimes.com

Aspen’s Peaceful Nooks

Inviting, soft chairs. Good light. A hushed room. And everything in the world to read. Come here, grab the latest New Yorker or Snowboard Life or the Washington Post and unwind. The library also has an amazing selection of art and photo books to peruse.

If you’re interested in learning about Aspen’s past during your visit, check out their Colorado collection. Located at Mill and Main across from the Hotel Jerome.

Visit the Aspen Center for Environmental Studies’ 25-acre lake nature preserve and environmental learning center. It’s down by the Aspen post office. Wooden boardwalks and interpretive signs allow you to meander along a self-guided trail, look at the ducks, willows and iced-over water. It’s an immensely peaceful spot.

Head down to the post office and follow Puppy Smith Drive around to the gate. It’s open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

The Art park is art itself, a landscaped, meditative park full of sculpture that meanders along the Roaring Fork River. The Art Museum sits at the edge of Art Park, and on sunny days, the whole park is worth exploring.

If you go on Thursday nights from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., there’s free admission, refreshments and a gallery tour. Admission is $3 for adults and $2 for students and seniors. It’s located at 590 N. Mill Street, across the street from the Aspen Post Office. Closed on Mondays.

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Walk into this cozy Victorian bookshop on Main Street, and feel instantly at ease. Its shelves and floors are filled with the latest fiction, non-fiction, science fiction, poetry, art books, history and travel. Wonderful classical music is usually playing.

Many folks come just to browse. You could spend hours. If you really want comfort, buy a magazine or book or a blank journal and grab a table upstairs by the fireplace with a French-pressed pot of coffee or tea. True luxury. The big table upstairs along the stairwell is known locally as the “Joiners” table. Sit here and expect some company.

Victorian couches add comfort to a few moments spent here by the fireplace. Imagine the days back in the 1880s when this “hotel” was just a tattered white wall-tent on the corner of Mill and Durant in the middle of Ute Territory.

Aspen’s landmark has had a remarkable history — part of which is illustrated in the many black-and-white photographs that line the hotel’s walls. They’re worth a few of your quiet moments.

Browse through the center’s new retail store and learn about alternative health care, gardening, cooking or east/west psychology. Or take a tea at the tea bar. The center’s courtyard has trees, flowers, with soothing music wafting through. The center, located at 449 E. Hopkins (on the top floor), is open from 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. You’ll likely relax a few notches just by walking inside.

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