Aspen’s Main Street adding barbershop in historic Times’ building
From typewriters and presses to scissors and swiveling chairs, the original Aspen Times building, which was moved from its foundation Friday, will house another time-honored business: a barbershop.
A construction team used a series of beams to slide the old purple building on Main Street — home to The Aspen Times for more than a century — to the courtyard of the Hotel Jerome, whose owners acquired the property in 2012.
In its next chapter, a traditional barbershop will occupy the old Times space, along with the “secret door” to a subterranean speakeasy-style bar, Hotel Jerome general manager Tony DiLucia said Friday.
“It’s going to be very fun and in keeping with the 1920s era,” Jerome sales and marketing director Dana Cooper said.
In addition to a barbershop and speakeasy lounge, the project also will include the addition of a three-story building behind the old Times building.
The first floor of the new building will offer about 735 square feet of event space; the second and third floors will each house a three-bedroom residence.
As part of the project, the former Times building will remain in the courtyard while a foundation is dug below the old site. Workers will return the building to its original location thereafter.
The facade of the 1,423-square-foot historic building, including its “The Aspen Times” sign, will appear “exactly the same,” DiLucia said.
“This is an important part of the Jerome property now. … We’re taking great lengths to restore it and bring it back to its original look,” DiLucia said. “No expense was spared to make sure this restoration was perfect.”
The project will cost $11 million, according to city building permit records.
Also part of the project, though not included in the $11 million price tag, is a revamp of the courtyard and pool area.
These plans include a new pool that will face east to west, rather than the previous north-to-south setup, as well as two new hot tubs.
The hotel pool and courtyard also will be on the same level, unlike its former arrangement.
Renovations to the courtyard and pool are expected to be complete in time for guests to use by Dec. 1, Cooper said.
The barbershop and speakeasy, however, will be up and running sometime in February, according to Sarah Broughton of Rowland and Broughton Architecture.
Broughton, a lead architect on the project, said the firm “worked hand in hand” with the city’s Historic Preservation Commission.
“Historic preservation is very important to our firm and it’s something that we take to heart,” Broughton said. “These kinds of project are really, really exciting for us.”
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