A Midcentury Icon: 50 Years of the Boettcher Tropical Conservatory

February celebration and panel discussion honors mid-century architectural landmark at Denver Botanic Gardens.

Boettcher Memorial Tropical Conservatory

Designed by architects Victor Hornbein and Ed White, the Boettcher Tropical Conservatory at the Denver Botanic Gardens celebrates its 50th anniversary in 2016. The 11,500-square-foot building took two years to build and is the only conservatory in the country made of cast-in-place concrete. Completed in 1966, the building has been a mid-century architectural landmark for 50 years. (See the original construction photos below.) 


To commemorate the occasion, the Gardens will host a special event in February. Guests are invited to enjoy 60s-themed appetizers, tours of the conservatory, and a presentation featuring a video interview with lead architect Ed White, Dan Havekost associate architect, and Richard Breaker from GH Phipps Construction. A panel discussion with architecture and history experts further explores how this building has been an icon on Denver’s architectural landscape and continues to inspire architects and enthusiasts of mid-century design. The conservatory will open to allow the rare opportunity to tour the space with horticulturists and docents after dark. Markers will identify plants that have been present since 1966. Visit the Denver Botanic Gardens website to purchase tickets.

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