Lancer Lounge gets evicted and will close tomorrow at 2 p.m.

Lancerloungetoday.jpg
Lauren Hendrick
A few Lancer Lounge regulars belly up to the bar before the iconic watering hole closes tomorrow for good.
Update: For photos of Lancer Lounge's final night, visit "Slide show: Lancer Lounge's last night." For more on the developing story, read "Lancer Lounge seized by State of Colorado for back taxes."

I don't remember the first time I went to the Lancer Lounge -- it was more than a decade ago -- but I do remember the last time I was there. It was a typical Friday night at the venerable watering hole, where the drinks are as stiff as a starched shirt. Journey's "Don't Stop Believin'" was blasting on the jukebox, and the cheap whiskey -- a single that's always a double here -- went down easy. And after a few, the liquid courage had done its job, convincing me to belt out the lyrics...and dance, slow, with a perfect stranger, whose name I'll never know. Nothing out of the ordinary. No one cared.

See also:
- Lancer Lounge seized by State of Colorado for back taxes
- Slide show: Lancer Lounge's last night
- The Lancer Lounge gets up to code -- and even gets a new window

Just about everyone who lives in Denver has a story about the Lancer Lounge, which Ron Nathan leased in 1976, more than four decades ago -- long before the 'hood became a culinary breeding ground for some of the top chefs and restaurateurs in the city, including Frank Bonanno, who now owns Mizuna, Bones and Luca d'Italia, all of which reside in the same stretch of building, which is owned by the Sherman Agency, a local real estate company.

But according to Becky Conda, who took over the Lancer Lounge in 1999, when Nathan passed away and gifted it to her in his will, Howard Snyder, the vice president/treasurer of the Sherman Agency, has evicted her, and as of tomorrow afternoon at 2 p.m., the Lancer Lounge will cease to exist.

Snyder, for his part, refuses to comment, offering only this curt statement: "It's in the courts. I'm not going to tell you what happened."

Fair enough. But Conda, with whom I spoke with earlier today, isn't holding her tongue. "I'm not doing good. I'm numb," she admits through tears and the muffled mumbles coming from the bar, where a few regulars were camped out this morning in solidarity.

"I can't honestly tell you why this happened, but I was one month -- one -- behind in my rent, and I had a sewer problem, which I spent a ton of my own money to fix, but they didn't think that I handled it correctly," she says. "And so they've evicted me, and there's nothing I can do about it. I have to comply with the law."


Location Info

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Lancer Lounge - CLOSED

233 E. 7th Ave., Denver, CO

Category: Music

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27 comments
ladybeerlover
ladybeerlover

"...1976, more than four decades ago..."   Um, I was born in '72 and I am 40, so that math is very flawed.

Spanky
Spanky

So sad, I hate to see anyone lose their job.

milleralexjames
milleralexjames

Went last night for the close, nice to see people having fun and enjoying the "wake". It's a shame, too bad a really fun if not all that respectable bar is shutting down.

DanWinter
DanWinter

C'mon folks.  The owners of that building have 3 Bonanno concepts in it already, paying market rents and paying on time.  When Lancer's lease came up for renewal, what would you have done?  Give her a rent break?  Give her money to renovate?  Everyone here is focused on what this does to the neighborhood, what it does to their favorite watering hole (that you probably rarely, if ever patronize), but the reality is there is someone who owns that building who has great tenants on each side of a holy dive bar that hasn't maintained the property and was behind in rent.  **(Perhaps an attorney can weigh in on the minutiae of eviction, but my understanding is you can't kick someone out for being 1 month in arrears.  There would need to be a history of late payments and subsequent notices by the landlord, with this current 1 month non-payment being the final straw).

 

Think of it this way - you own 4 rentals in a building.  Three of the tenants are terrific, maintain their spaces and pay on time. One of them pays late (or never) and their place stinks to high heaven.....and then their lease comes up for renewal.  Hmmmm......

bugsycook
bugsycook

That's too bad. I think part of the Lancer's image problem was that Becky placed way too much trust and confidence in one long-time male bartender and one long-time doorman who catered to and gave VIP treatment to the local drug dealer losers. Sad to see the Lancer go.

 

Heather Hixson
Heather Hixson

Lots and lots of memories there...most of them too inappropriate to speak in public...some that could get me in real trouble. ;)

Juan_Leg
Juan_Leg

I quit drinking & move off the Hill' , then look at what happens .

The ONLY thing that can be done is to collect MAJOR dirt on the

closures source , & bully them right back as has been done to this poor lady .

Kiko Woelfel
Kiko Woelfel

I paid my respects: $10 worth of two fistfuls of bourbon. The Lancer had more dignity in its slovenly soul than... well, you know. Sayanora, sweet portal to the horrible...

ProDenDiver
ProDenDiver

A Denver "dive" landmark! Very sad to see this one go.....

Sarah Elizabeth Korus
Sarah Elizabeth Korus

Damn it...I just moved a few blocks from there! That was one of my favorite dives in town.

Rachel Ann Willis
Rachel Ann Willis

There goes the last interesting place in the 'hood. Might as well put a chain restaurant in....

Richard Scott Taylor
Richard Scott Taylor

I will miss when it was a poet's row dive bar, filled with cab drivers, junkies, winos, and the good residents of lower cap hill. People who were smart enough not to go to Gov's Park or goddamned Benny's. The lancer got lost in the trash of the neighborhood in the last 15 years..

Ryan McNeal
Ryan McNeal

where am I going to go to get "Lancer'd" now?

Ninja69
Ninja69

Tavern Cap-Hill. You heard it hear first. Can't wait for more brah's and shitty bar food.

ThisIsBS
ThisIsBS

there has to be someway to fix this. screw that property managment company. people of CapHill, its time to stand up and revolt!

TransitDesigner
TransitDesigner

"I can't honestly tell you why this happened, but I was one month -- one -- behind in my rent[...]"

 

That's all you need to read, right there. When you have a property owner who wants you replaced for a more profitable lessee, any excuse - ANY excuse - is more than sufficient.

Denverite
Denverite

This just floored me.  Is there really nothing anyone can do?

strangefortune
strangefortune

Is it me or are there people who are Hell bent on destroying Denver and it's history?

Genericdenver
Genericdenver

This is so fuc-ed up, I swear that soon Denver will be awash in generic chain bars and restaurants everywhere with no character at the rate that every institution in Denver is closing.  RIP Lancer Lounge!

rawdoggin
rawdoggin

 @Ninja69 You may be right on.  Rumor has it there is one going into LoHi over by Lola.  Thanks for bringing all the things I hate about downtown back to the area where I moved to escape the idiocy.  The Schultz machine cannot be stopped.

DanWinter
DanWinter

 @ThisIsBS Yes there sure is - give them some money to cure the default.  Problem solved.

Bagw
Bagw

 @DanWinter  @ThisIsBS Actually, if you read the article, they had the money to cure the default and the landlord didn't care.

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