DENVER — Amid a revival in vinyl, one of the leading turntable manufacturers in the U.S. has found a new home for its headquarters in the River North Art District.
Victrola was started in Camden, N.J., in 1906, when it was known as The Victor Talking Machine Co. Last year, the company moved its headquarters from New York City to Denver.
“Our company was located just outside of Queens and Long Island, New York, on the North Shore,” said CEO Scott Hagen. “There’s all sorts of benefits in being in a great city like (Denver) from a people and economic perspective. But again, it’s the culture and the appreciation for music that we really admire and want to participate and be part of.”
Hagen said the 115-year-old company moved the core operations of about 20 people – finance, operations, sales support and their marketing team – to their current location at 3513 Brighton Blvd.
The decision to move was partially based on Denver’s popular music scene and the company’s focus on keeping up with the demand of listening to music on vinyl that’s been making a comeback since 2007, he said.
“People wanted higher quality record players for their home,” Hagen said. “They started actually going back and listening to all the old records from their parents or that they just had in storage.”
Over the past few years, the music industry has seen an increase in the sale of vinyl. According to Billboard magazine, more than 41 million vinyl records were sold in 2021 in the United States alone.
Through research, Victrola is finding that the fastest-growing and the largest segment of vinyl buyers are 18- to 36-year-olds.
Because of the resurgence of listening to music on vinyl, more consumers are buying Victrola record players, Hagen said.
“There’s a new kind of 'old' way to listen that we’re finding that people aren’t going to let go of,” Hagen said. “This tactile experience of being able to search and discover, not only in the record store but when they’re at home with their friends, is something that’s appealing.”
The experience is what caught the ear of Amanda Parsons, general manager of the Thompson Denver hotel. She said that listening to a record brings back memories.
“Growing up, my father had an epic record collection, and I have some of my fondest memories just sitting in front of that and listening to music,” Parsons said. “One of the things I love about the experience is that it’s the ceremony of listening to a record. … It’s the anticipation right before the needle hits the vinyl that’s unparalleled in life.”
It was that feeling of nostalgia that she wanted to bring to her guests at the new hotel in Lower Downtown, at 1616 Market St.
Parsons reached out to Victrola, and now the hotel has a wide assortment of record players in the suites and in the sixth floor listening room, called Reynard Social.
“Sometimes in our fast-paced world, we don’t slow down and celebrate those moments,” Parsons said. “Our guests are allowed to come in and enjoy and find their favorite vinyl and sit back and relax and really create their own atmosphere.”
“That awesome sit-down experience is something that vinyl’s providing that you can’t get in other places,” Hagen added.
“There certainly has been a smaller kind of network of people that we all hang out with over the last few years, and there’s that communal experience that you can have when you’re sitting down and listening to a record together or searching records together and having fun,” he said.
This past year, Victrola has been busy with hiring and making sure they understand more about Denver’s music scene to help vinyl listeners create more music memories, Hagen said.
“We are here and want to learn," he said. “And want to be part of the culture and want to experience Denver and its music right along your side.”
For more information about Victrola, click here: https://victrola.com/.
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