First Colorado business to allow marijuana consumption prepares opening

DENVER  -- Another milestone is set for Colorado’s pioneering marijuana industry. The first business that could allow cannabis consumption is expected to open by the end of the year.

The developers of The Coffee Joint plan to allow customers to enjoy pot while also drinking a cup of Joe.

Denver voters approved the social marijuana use initiative that allows businesses to offer on-site pot consumption.

City regulators still have to approve the license for The Coffee Joint, but the business’ owners are confident their application will be given the OK.

The coffee house will be located at 1130 N. Yuma Court near the interchange of Interstate 25 and West Colfax Avenue. It will neighbor an existing recreational marijuana shop.

“They’ll be able to vape … they’ll be able to eat edibles,” said The Coffee Joint co-owner Kirill Merkulov.

While consumption of marijuana would be legal inside the business, only noncannabis items would be allowed on the menu.

Those who visit the shop must bring their own marijuana. The owners said no smoking consumption is allowed. There will be a $5 admission fee that includes coffee and tea.

“This is novelty … this is very interesting,” co-owner Rita Tsalyuk said.

Merkulov and Tsalyuk said they were the first to submit an application for such a business. The application includes a letter of support from the Lincoln Park neighborhood association.

The shop is set to open in late December or early January without a marijuana component. The process for getting final city approval on marijuana use is still several months away.

Industry insiders believe more of these businesses will eventually be created throughout Colorado.

Businesses approved to allow marijuana consumption must be at least 1,000 feet away from a school. A public hearing is the next step in this process for consideration of cannabis use at The Coffee Joint.

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