The Best Las Vegas Nightlife
Published: April 2009
By Andrea Bennett
The Inside Track A few things to know before you hit the scene: cover charges can be steep, but there’s little reason to pay. The city is thick with promoters handing out VIP passes, and getting on the list can be as easy as calling in advance. The free online newsletter at thecircuitlv.com gives the latest on what’s on when—and how to get on those VIP lists. Also check the listings in Las Vegas Weekly, published every Thursday.
Where It’s At Open for nearly two years, PURE, in Caesars Palace, is approaching icon status. Tuesday (locals’ night) is the choice night at the club, whose interiors range from the stark white main room to the extravagant Red Room, with its immense chandeliers. The Terrace, a 14,000-square-foot deck overlooking the Strip with a long, sunken fire pit and private cabanas, has some of the city’s best people-watching.
Wynn’s Tryst had a false start as La Bête, after which Steve Wynn partnered with Vegas’s king of nightlife, Victor Drai, to relaunch the place in its gorgeous current incarnation: velvet walls, alligator-skin booths, and a 90-foot waterfall cascading into a pool topped by a dance floor that extends partly over the water.
Opened this past Labor Day in the newly revved-up Luxor, LAX Nightclub has 26,000 square feet of (very public) opulence, with black chandeliers and Art Nouveau balustrades over the dance floor.
Downtown’s Fremont Street holds strong as the locals’ favorite under-the-radar bar scene. It’s easy to miss the Downtown Cocktail Room (look for the tiny downtown sign), set in a renovated wedding chapel, now a sexy, dark room with selectively lit nooks. Nearby, the Griffin bar has a perplexing but appealing aesthetic: medieval castle meets parking garage, with vaulted stone archways in a vast airy space.
Best Way to See a Show In June, Wynn Las Vegas’s mesmerizing Le Rêve production removed 480 seats from their "aqua theater-in- the-round" and replaced them with plush, comfortable new lounges. For an extra treat, spring for the Champagne Circle tier, complete with video monitors showing close-ups of onstage acrobatics, not to mention Perrier-Jouët bottle service and chocolate-covered strawberries.
The Hot Party Rock ’n Roll Wine hardly needs to advertise, and besides, Las Vegans would prefer to keep the action to themselves. Every month, up to 800 revelers gather at an ever-shifting location—a club, a restaurant, a resort pool—to taste wines from as many as 50 visiting wineries and hear live bands, with tickets starting at $30. Get in on the scene by signing up for the e-mail newsletter at rocknrollwine.com.