BusinessDen: High-end dispensary makes a play in Denver

The first dispensary Neil Demers owned, Mr. Stinky’s, had a skunk for a mascot.

The second, which the 31-year-old opened Tuesday at Federal Boulevard and Alameda Avenue, has oak cabinets and Doric columns meant to give off a different aroma – luxury.

“We built a really high-end store, which this market hasn’t had before,” said Demers, CEO of dispensary Diego Pellicer Colorado. “But we have competitive prices.”

The contrast between his first and second store is by design, Demers said: Diego Pellicer aims to make customers, especially women, feel at ease by outfitting its shops with sleek fixtures from the likes of Restoration Hardware.

Demers is the first Colorado licensee of Seattle-based Diego Pellicer, a publicly traded firm that leases grow and dispensary space to cannabis businesses. But the Diego Pellicer parent company does not grow or sell marijuana products itself.

The appearance of luxury Demers is banking on has not come cheap.

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