Say it ain’t so! Phipps Mansion will cease to be a wedding venue and will now become the private residence of Denver resident Tom Gill (Quark Xpress software founder). The University of Denver has decided to liquate the asset and put the money into education. Gill is rumoured to be spending around $9 million for the property and is proposing some renovations (while keeping the original character intact).
Senator Phipps (Republican 1919-1931) moved to Colorado after a lucrative career with the Carnegie Steel Company in Pittsburgh. He didn’t run for re-election in 1930, deciding to stay close to home with his third wife, Margaret. Phipps gave back to the community in many ways and it’s been said that he built such a large home to employ out-of-work builders and craftsmen during the Great Depression and to give a personal endorsement to the fledgling Belcaro neighborhood that was taking shape South of the Cherry Creek area. While the surroundings are very lush today, it was constructed in baron prairie and it took The Senator’s promise of a grant Tennis facility to convince Margaret to leave her beloved downtown residence.
I photographed a number of wonderful Phipps Mansion weddings and will miss roaming the halls of the 31,000 square foot mansion looking for shots. I loved the ‘Document Room’ where it was said that President Eisenhower would confer with dignitaries of the 1950’s while looking for an escape from his Denver mother-in-law’s residence.
These images are from one of my favorite weddings there. Amy & Mike had their ceremony at Phipps in 2007 and it was a slightly overcast day which allowed the colors of the grounds and flowers to really pop. In the afternoon, things cooled off which helped the comfort of the reception a great deal as The Phipps was not air conditioned (certainly something Mr. Gill will address in his renovations). A particularly love that last shot. Father & Daughter dance, and I walked outside and photographed the moments through the back window allowing the curtains to provide a nice frame. My wireless flash kept firing through the walls (I love radio flashes!).
So long Phipps Mansion – how we loved thee!
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