Denver Mayor, City Councilmember Celebrate Opening of New Restaurant
Mayor John Hickenlooper and City Councilwoman Judy Montero today celebrated the opening of a new restaurant that received funding through an economic development loan. The Santa Fe Tequila Company, one of many neighborhood businesses assisted through the Denver Office of Economic Development (OED), held a ribbon cutting ceremony to celebrate its opening in the flourishing Santa Fe Arts District.
“I am proud to welcome the Santa Fe Tequila Company to our neighborhood,” said City Councilwoman Judy Montero. “This restaurant is a very welcome addition to the healthy mix of businesses that have both grown and emerged along Santa Fe Drive. We have a bustling corridor, with a strong focus on the arts and culture that other neighborhoods and even other cities are trying to emulate.”
Located at 901 W. 10th Ave., the Santa Fe Tequila Company is a traditional Santa Fe-style restaurant and lounge that serves authentic Northern New Mexican cuisine. The restaurant is the first and only upscale eatery in the art district, and features a variety of home-grown Santa Fe dishes and more than 60 premium tequilas and specialty drinks. The 4,500 square-foot eatery includes a private dining room that can seat up to 44 people for special events. The restaurant serves lunch on weekdays and dinner on Monday through Saturday.
“We greatly appreciate the support of Mayor Hickenlooper, Councilwoman Montero, the Office of Economic Development, and the other local Santa Fe Drive business owners,” said Joe Falko, co-owner of the Santa Fe Tequila Company. “We are thrilled to join this prospering community as a central hub to the district, and look forward to serving as a vehicle to drive additional patrons to the area.”
A portion of the financing necessary to the open the restaurant was provided through the City’s Neighborhood Business Revitalization (NBR) program, a gap financing program that helps stimulate business development within targeted commercial districts.
The NBR program is one of several resources that the City has used to spark the revitalization of the Santa Fe Drive corridor. OED has provided 87 small business and real estate loans in the aggregate amount of $9.8 million over the past 25 years in the Santa Fe target area. These City loans leveraged $25 million of private debt and equity. Additionally, OED has invested approximately $4 million into the area’s public right-of-way, on items such as decorative pavers, trees and lighting, to further stimulate private investment.
“Through our strategic investment of community development funds, we have painted a tremendous picture of economic vitality along Santa Fe Drive,” said Mayor Hickenlooper. “The Santa Fe Tequila Company greatly complements the host of other development projects that the City has supported along this corridor. We are now bearing the fruits of these efforts, with a strong, sustainable district that draws residents and visitors alike.”
OED’s small business financing funds, which are derived from federal Community Development Block Grants, have funded restaurants, galleries, artist workspaces and residences, cultural institutions, and retail and service establishments along Santa Fe Drive. These efforts have included both start-up businesses and the expansion of established businesses from 14th Avenue to Alameda Drive.
The NBR program is one of the small business financing services offered through OED. NBR loan recipients must provide goods or services to adjacent Denver residential neighborhoods, create permanent jobs for low- and moderate-income Denver residents, or assist in the elimination of slum and blight conditions within the targeted commercial district. The program can finance up to 50 percent of a project’s total costs if deemed necessary and appropriate.
For more information on the Neighborhood Business Revitalization program and other Denver business assistance programs, call (720) 913-1999.
The Denver Office of Economic Development (OED) works to create a local environment that stimulates balanced economic growth through job creation, business assistance, housing options and neighborhood redevelopment.