Between the ample sunshine and the easy access to hiking, biking and winter sports, Denver has earned its reputation as an outdoor lover’s paradise. But there’s also plenty of fun to be found indoors! From escape rooms and arcades to billiards, bowling and golf, we won’t blame you if you decide to stay inside. Here are a few favorites to check out on rainy or snowy days (or any time you want to relax inside.)
A Little Bit of Everything
Punch Bowl Social has eight bowling lanes. But — despite the name — this giant fun factory is so much more than just bowling. Punch Bowl Social also offers private karaoke, ping-pong, foosball, arcade games, board games, Virtual Reality, billiards and giant Scrabble and Jenga. When you get thirsty, pop up to the bar for wine, cocktails or craft beers, or take a quick break from gaming to share an order of sriracha peanut fries or some cocoa-dusted carnitas tacos.
Pindustry is a massive, multi-level, indoor and outdoor space boasting all sorts of interactive gaming, including traditional 10-pin bowling, duck-pin bowling, cornhole, shuffleboard, darts, skee-ball, a giant chess board, vintage arcade games, pinball, and table games like billiards, foosball and ping-pong. Enjoy live music every Friday and Saturday in the beer hall, and fuel your gaming with handmade cocktails, craft beer and wine, wood-fired pizzas and more.
Bowling. Arcade Games. Billiards. Laser Tag. Bowlero Lone Tree truly offers something for everyone, along with a lineup of signature cocktails and delicious eats that are guaranteed to impress all of your guests. The lanes feature black lights, soft lounge seats and huge HD video walls that play everything from live sports and music videos to classic family films, and the deluxe arcade boasts state-of-the-art video games, as well as old-school favorites and classic pinball machines.
Keep the good times rolling at Lucky Strike, where you can go head to head with friends and family on 12 full-size bowling lanes. After you’ve bowled your last frame, challenge your peers to a game of pool, table tennis, shuffleboard or some of the 130 deluxe arcade games. If all that rivalry whets your appetite, fill up on smoked gouda mac and cheese bites, chicken tinga quesadillas, filet mignon sliders or cauliflower-crust pizza, and wash it all down with a handcrafted cocktail.
It’s all about teamwork at these Denver escape rooms. At EscapeWorks Denver, you’ve got one hour to band together with your group of two to twelve people to escape from a clue-filled room. Each room features a different scenario: plunder Blackbeard’s pirate ship, escape from an Egyptian tomb, elude the police at Prohibition-era speakeasy or pull off an "Ocean’s Eleven"-inspired casino heist. Plus, keep an eye out for seasonal rooms: EscapeWorks ups the scare-factor around Halloween and decks the halls with a Christmas-themed room in the winter.
Escapology is the first and only live-action Denver escape room that combines games, a bar and a restaurant. The 6,100-square-foot location features neo-Victorian steampunk décor, seven themed live escape rooms and the Solutions Lounge and Restaurant. Your team of two to eight players will spend an hour decoding clues to escape an abandoned laboratory, a speeding train with a murderer on board, a sinking submarine, a spooky mansion or one of three other intriguing scenarios. Afterward, unwind with a drink (including escape-themed cocktails!) and a meal.
When it comes to classic arcade fun, it’s tough to beat Dave & Buster’s. The family-friendly sports bar and restaurant is a great spot to grab food and drinks while you’re watching the game, or indulge your inner child (and your actual kiddos) with more than 200 arcade games, Skee-Ball, air hockey, a life-size Rock'em Sock'em Robots and carnival-style games where you can win tickets to redeem for prizes.
Holey Moley (formerly Urban Putt) is the city's first and only indoor miniature golf course. Located in the 130-year-old City Cable Railway Building, Urban Putt’s two high-tech nine-hole courses are decked out with thousands of LED lights, motion sensors and sound effects. But the detail most likely to delight both locals and visitors is the collection of Denver landmarks. Putt past Denver International Airport, around Red Rocks Park & Amphitheatre and through the Colorado State Capitol, complete with gold dome. And lest you think mini golf is only for mini-humans, note that Urban Putt is 21+ after 8 p.m. and includes a full bar and a menu of pizzas, burgers, sandwiches, salads and more.
Okay, so this one is technically indoor-outdoor, but we’re including it here because you can comfortably play rain, snow or shine. Both the Topgolf in Centennial and the Topgolf in Thornton have more than 100 covered, climate-controlled hitting bays. Play against up to five friends in a variety of games — every ball is micro-chipped to track your shots. Got a non-golfer in the group? The Centennial location also includes a game hall with new and retro arcade games. After all the physical exertion, you’re bound to work up an appetite. Simply flag down one of the bay hosts and order something from the extensive food and drink menu.
Denver has more than 60 craft breweries, but only one of them also boasts Denver’s largest pool hall. Head to Wynkoop Brewing Company in Lower Downtown (LoDo) and belly up to one of the 15 tournament-sized billiards tables on the second floor for a game or two. There are also two shuffleboard tables and two dart lanes. Keep hunger at bay with eats from the lunch, brunch and dinner menus, and browse the long list of beers brewed in-house. People especially love the Cowtown Milk Stout, the Rail Yard Amber Ale and the Patty’s Chile Beer, aged with Anaheim, serrano and ancho peppers.
Unplug and reconnect with friends, co-workers and family at Game Train USA, a restaurant and entertainment venue with an 1890s Victorian Steampunk aesthetic that offers delicious food, a full-service bar and tabletop games. Hop on one of the 1890 train car simulations (the "windows" play real recorded first-person footage from several operating railroad routes, and subs built into the flooring provide the feeling of being on a real train) and choose from more than 600 board games for cooperative and competitive play, along with a full food and drink menu.
You better bring your A-game when you show up at Ace Eat Serve. This Uptown eatery dishes up dim sum, bao buns, fried rice, ramen and other Asian cuisines, along with a heaping helping of competition when you challenge your dinner companions to a few rounds of table tennis.
SMASH*IT Breakroom might not count as a “game,” but it is indoors and it is a lot of fun. A break room is a room designed for specifically destruction! SMASH*IT provides you and a buddy with safety gear, an assortment of wrecking tools (think hammers and crowbars) and a room full of items to destroy. Pricing depends on exactly what you want to smash, from small items like glass cups and ceramic plates all the way up to electronics and furniture. Want to really make a mess? Check out the “wet room,” where you can smash a variety of seasonal fruits and veggies and pumpkins and watermelons à la Gallagher the comedian.