When Rumor Design + reDesign owners Lindsey Jamison and Valerie Stafford started looking to find a new space for their growing interior design and decor business, which was established in 2008, they knew it had to be downtown.
“We were going to move out to the west side of town and then this came into our vision and we switched gears,” Stafford said of moving the business to the historic Hugus Building at 912 Lincoln Ave. “We have been downtown for our whole existence, and it felt like home to be downtown.”
The two couldn’t escape the energy they found downtown, so they found a new spot.
The Hugus Building, which was also known as the Thiesen Mall and more recently Steamboat Smokehouse, has been a landmark of rich Western history since it was built in 1897. It was originally the site of J.W. Hugus & Co., which was one the nation’s first general store chains.
Jamison and Stafford were not sure about the building until they got the chance to walk inside and quickly fell in love with the space, particularly with its exposed stonewalls that featured rocks brought in from the quarry on Emerald Mountain.
“We kept the walls exposed and natural to give the space an industrial feel, honoring the historical architecture of its past while updating most everything else that was damaged in the 2019 fire,” Stafford said.
Jamison and Stafford purchased the building in summer 2020 from Fritz Aurin, who had opened the Smokehouse barbecue in 1991. Aurin ran the Smokehouse for 23 years before selling in 2014, but he remained the building’s owner until selling last summer.
The building has been vacant since a fire caused substantial damage to the interior and smoke damage to surrounding businesses in December 2019.
“When it came time to sell after the fire, I was lucky to find Valerie and Lindsey as buyers who wanted to protect and enhance the rustic character of this local landmark,” Aurin said in a news release. “I am excited for the building for which I have grown incredibly attached, and for the heritage of Steamboat Springs to evolve with this addition.”
Jamison said the completely renovated 4,000-square-foot space will serve as a creative hub for anyone designing their home, with a dedicated fabric nook plus detail drawing services and samples for custom cabinetry, tile, plumbing, flooring and more.
The large space allows the store to expand its retail presence with more furniture and home items, and a space that allows people to come in and see the items. It also provides large meeting rooms where Rumor Design staff can meet with clients. The space also includes a coffee bar, offering crafted coffee and tea drinks with grab-and-go snack and lunch items.
Rumor Design has been recognized as one of Colorado’s Top Interior Design Firms by Colorado Homes and Mountain Living magazine, and locally a seven-time Best of the Boat winner, known for their contemporary and mountain-modern interior design style.
The owners plan to open Rumor in early June, but will host a grand opening later this summer.
“The entire space will be an elevated home design shopping experience for our clients and anyone who wants to feel inspired or make improvements in their home,” Stafford said.
The retail showroom and coffee bar will be open to the community from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Sunday.
“We’ve always believed that a sense of well-being stems from the home environment, and we want everyone to experience that same inspiration we have provided for our clients over the last 13 years,” Stafford said. “As we evolve, our space should too, so if you’re stuck with the same style, changing up your space may be the key to getting unstuck in your routines and outlook.”
To reach John F. Russell, call 970-871-4209, email [email protected] or follow him on Twitter @Framp1966.