A downtown nightclub could effectively be forced to close by the city of Denver over a list of alleged violations, including having inadequate security and allowing the distribution of narcotics.
The city’s Department of Excise and Licenses will hold a hearing Oct. 18 to determine whether Beta Nightclub should be fined and have its “dance cabaret” and “tavern liquor license(s)” suspended or revoked.
The nightclub is at 1909 Blake St., and can continue to operate through the hearing date.
According to an order from Excise and Licenses obtained on Monday by BusinessDen, the Denver Police Department, Denver Fire Department and Excise and Licenses investigated Beta between June and August after receiving several complaints and seeing an increase in recent 911 calls near the business.
Beta faces 10 alleged violations of the Denver municipal code and Colorado state law, according to the order. The owner of Beta goes by Valentes Corleons, although his legal name is Hussan Kayali.
Corleons’ attorney Aaron Acker said Beta has not received evidence from the city to respond to the allegations and that the nightclub is conducting its own investigation into the matters.
“Notwithstanding, the order to show cause contains numerous inconsistencies and exaggerations and there are notable factual omissions, which serve to falsely paint a picture of Beta as a lawless old west saloon and unfairly assign blame for problems that exist beyond its doors,” Acker told BusinessDen in an email.
Acker said Beta has contacted DPD to address its concerns, but those invitations “have gone unanswered.”
“The order to show cause is the latest effort by the city to close Beta, and it intends to defend the allegations and expose the city’s motivations and biases through the administrative hearing process and the courts if necessary,” Acker said.
DPD stated it found several instances where there was inadequate security at the Beta following a shooting in front of the club on May 23.
On June 11, bouncers who patted down undercover officers failed to notice their concealed weapons. After they entered the club, the officers spoke with a 19-year-old woman who said she was admitted using a fake ID. Another man in the club provided the undercover officers with cocaine, the order states.
In another incident on June 18, different undercover police officers returned, asked a man at the club where to buy cocaine, and were directed to the basement where they purchased the substance in a women’s bathroom. No security guards were observed in the basement, DPD stated.
On July 19, DPD alleges the owner of Beta became “very aggressive and hostile” to firefighters and police officers who were checking to see if the club was over its capacity.
“The officers further stated that they had expressed their concerns to the management of the club and those concerns had been ignored,” Excise and Licenses documents stated. “The Denver Fire inspector requested to see the occupancy permits for the premises. The manager of the business was not able to find the permits.”
Beta offers a variety of entertainment, according to its website, including live cabaret, DJs and rappers.
In 2020, Beta settled with the city for $5,000 over a complaint that they were operating during Safer at Home orders, when bars, nightclubs and similar businesses were ordered to close or severely reduce patronage.
Per the settlement, the Excise and Licenses director ordered the club to be closed for 20 days if new violations occurred within a year.
As BusinessDen reported in July, Corleons took over El Chapultepec jazz club when it closed in December after nearly nine decades. He also purchased the 5,184-square-foot building next to Beta — previously home to Falling Rock Tap House — in July for $2.5 million in cash, according to property records.
Corleons also owns Dorchester Social and Purple Martini in downtown Denver and is currently looking to open a second Purple Martini in Miami, according to previous reporting.
However, court records show that the Denver Purple Martini was in default on a loan and in July an Arapahoe County District Court judge ruled Corleons (documents have him named as Kayali) must pay almost $28,000 to his lending bank.