There’s no denying that Vegas nightlife emanates from the heart of the Strip, where world-class dining, fabulous shows and decadent nightclubs beckon amidst a steady pulsing neon glow. But locals know there’s other options for Vegas nightlife.
Beginning as the proverbial Main Street found in most any town U.S.A., Fremont Street metamorphosed into Glitter Gulch with the onset of legalized gambling in 1930s Nevada. Eventually bigger and glitzier hotel-casinos grew up along Las Vegas Boulevard further south of Fremont, and Glitter Gulch gave way to the Strip. Once in danger of being outshone by the Strip, Fremont survived and revitalized, erecting the spectacular Fremont Street Experience sound and light show. Beneath the canopy, bands entertain the crowds along with sidewalk vendors and artists. Fremont draws plenty of tourists, but locals also enjoy the outdoor party atmosphere and free concerts.
More Vegas nightlife awaits if you continue on Fremont until it meets up with Las Vegas Boulevard and stop in at the popular Beauty Bar Las Vegas (500 Fremont Street, #A). An outdoor patio showcases live acts at this kitschy establishment retrofitted with genuine beauty salon decor. Or try Commonwealth, with its rooftop bar, plus a hidden speakeasy, the Laundry Room.
From Fremont head south on Las Vegas Boulevard for about a mile to Las Vegas Arts District, also known as “18b,” an 18-block zone dedicated to encouraging art and artists. A fun place to hang out on any night of the week, the district also hosts “First Friday” once a month, when an ever-changing assortment of artists, acrobats, street performers, vendors and more fill the streets for an open-air cultural event.
Further south of The Strip on Las Vegas Boulevard, this shopping, dining and entertainment complex attracts residents from all over town who enjoy the Vegas nightlife at any one of several venues here. The Blue Martini, on the upper level, draws crowds nightly to enjoy live DJ entertainment, tapas menu, upscale atmosphere with outdoor patio and one of 42 different martinis served here. Stoney’s offers a very different vibe, attracting its own huge following. This rockin’ country western bar features live acts, a sizeable dance floor and of course, a mechanical bull!
Now totaling 10 different casino hotels dotted all around the Valley, the Station brand has catered to Las Vegas locals for decades. Movie theaters, bowling, dining, and gaming all come together under one roof. Some of the properties even offer “kidsquest” childcare facilities. The various lounges, showrooms and concert venues at the locations draw many Las Vegans out for the Vegas nightlife in their local Station casino.
The great thing about Las Vegas is that you can always choose to dine on celebrity chef cuisine or see and be seen at certain nightcubs. But while the Strip may prove worthwhile for a night on the town, it’s certainly not the only game in town.