Two cannabis lounges in Denver, Colorado completed their applications for a cannabis lounge license this morning on Saturday, December 21st. The first business to apply, a social lounge in Colorado Springs, Studio A64, applied for the cannabis lounge license only hours before The Coffee Joint. Studio A64 became the first social lounge to apply for a consumption license in the state of Colorado. Both businesses applied for the cannabis lounge consumption license at the state Marijuana Enforcement Division office.
Rita Tsalyuk and Kirill Merkulov, owners of The Coffee Joint, stated: “This is bigger than us. It’s just a bigger step in the industry. It opens the door to do something different and plan ahead for the next year.”
Cannabis consumption areas in Colorado haven’t been a thing for long within the state that first legalized recreational cannabis in 2013. The Colorado General Assembly passed a bill in 2019 that allowed businesses who qualify to apply for a cannabis consumption license. House Bill 1230 allowed for businesses such as art galleries, restaurants, hotels, yoga studios, and more to apply for this cannabis consumption license. A tasting license, similar to what breweries have, is also an option along with a private consumption license.
The difference in Denver allows for cannabis companies who have a cannabis lounge to stay open through a 2016 initiative. A social consumption program, Initiative 300, was passed by voters in 2016. This initiative granted businesses the ability to apply for a social cannabis consumption license on a limited basis in areas throughout Denver. So far, the Coffee Joint has been the only cannabis business with a lounge to stay open in Denver. It is expected that the city of Denver will revisit the rules on public lounge consumption of cannabis in 2020.
“It feels like a relief to get the application done, but it feels like we accomplished something,” Merkulov says. “This isn’t really a material thing we can measure, but we can at least tell it’s one step further to expanding.”
Curious about how you can make money investing in cannabis? Sign up for Cannin Free Access and subscribe to the Cannin Chronicle. We’ll keep you informed on all things cannabis and even help you determine which cannabis companies have the highest growth potential.