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Bars on the Strip: Nightlife in Las Vegas

Bars on the Strip: Nightlife in Las Vegas

The Las Vegas Strip offers a constantly growing bar scene, giving visitors on the Strip a vast number of choices on where to stop for a drink. One commonality the best bars share is a dedication to quality cocktails made with the best ingredients–you’re probably not going to find any mixes unless they’re house-made. The settings vary, but an overall theme of sophistication and class runs through most of the Strip’s best bars, each of which has its own distinctive ambiance.

The new Barbershop Cuts & Cocktails combines a barbershop with a speakeasy. During the day, gentlemen can stop in for a shave or cut, along with some whiskey to sip. At night, look for the janitor’s closet to find the way into The Parlor for an evening of fine drinks and entertainment.

Incredible views of the Strip can be found at many bars, but SkyBar is known for its sophistication and dazzling views of the Las Vegas Strip, as well as for its creative cocktails. At bars like this, the idea is to forget about your usual drink order and make a daring, different choice. The spirits are top shelf and the bartenders are more accurately described as mixologists, so come prepared to splurge.

Scroll down to read more about our recommendations on the Strip’s 10 best bars.

Ghost Donkey

Located in the Block 16 Urban Food Hall, Ghost Donkey is one of the establishments in this updated and improved version of a food court. Mezcal and tequila are the featured spirits at Ghost Donkey. Delicious artisanal cocktails are available, but the menu tilts heavily toward selections of mezcal and tequila, and even includes a few rare cousins, like sotol. Ask about their flights so you can enjoy a sampling of Ghost Donkey’s expansive offerings. If you’d rather have a mixed drink, it’s almost a crime to pass up the Stealth Margarita, made with fine Cazadores Blanco Tequila, St. Germain, cucumber, lime and chili. The Aloy Old Fashioned gives the classic drink a make-over with Peloton Mezcal, Rhum Clement, papalo, shiso and bitters. You may need to visit Ghost Donkey more than once to thoroughly sample their drinks, especially since their tasty creations pack a punch.


Photo courtesy of RHUMBAR

Consistently cited as one of Las Vegas’ most popular patios, Rhumbar is a highly stylized cocktail and cigar lounge inspired by the cool mood of the Caribbean. The plush outdoor patio, which is able to accommodate up to 300 guests, is reminiscent of a tropical retreat and offers a picturesque location for guests to mingle, sip cocktails and smoke cigars. The intimate interior is predominantly white with touches of cool greens accentuating the sleek décor. Must-try libations include the classic Zombie from Don the Beachcomber, with pineapple juice, lime juice, grenadine, brandy and bitters mixed with Cruzan, Bacardi 8 and Denizen White Rum; or another favorite, the Pina Colada with Mt. Gray XO, Coco Lopez, fresh pineapple and lime juice and coconut syrup.

Skyfall Lounge

Skyfall’s amazing 180-degree view of Las Vegas provides a stunning backdrop to its sophisticated space. A warm, inviting decor offers plentiful seating, and the expertly crafted drinks are sure to please (even if you like your martini shaken, not stirred–yes, there’s a slight Bond theme). The lounge evolves throughout the night, beginning the evening as a more relaxed space and getting its nightclub on later in the evening when the DJ starts the music. Inside and outdoor areas are available–if you’re there at sunset, be sure to step outside to see the sun going down behind the mountains. While the drinks and music are certainly worth coming to Skyfall for, it just may be the terrific view that keeps you around.

The Dorsey

The sleek, elegant interior design of The Dorsey tells a story all its own, but the drink menu is what’s truly captivating. Wine and Champagne are served by the glass or bottle, and you’ll find a selection of beer as well. It’s the cocktails that attract attention here, however, with drinks organized under sections with names like Light and Bright, Conversation Pieces, Shorties and Bubbly. The Penicillin’s blend of Scotch, lemon, ginger, honey and Islay float is popular, but the variety of cocktails makes it hard to pick just one. The Punch Bowls are also a hit, intended for sharing between four and six people. With all the choices here, you may have to make a few trips to try all of the drinks that catch your eye.


Juniper Cocktail Lounge is a gin-focused bar–in fact, it has the largest collection of gin in Las Vegas. Named after the berry that gives us gin, Juniper specializes in hand-crafted cocktails created with house-made juices and syrups and the finest spirits. Creativity is a key element here, and it’s on full display with drinks like the Dirty Martini, made with Bombay Dry Gin, dry vermouth, orange bitters, rosemary and olive foam. If you’re not a gin enthusiast, Juniper offers other delicious drinks, like the Maple Old Fashioned, with Whistle Pig 10-year-old rye whiskey, barrel-aged maple syrup and Angostura Bitters. With a location in the center of Park MGM’s casino, the atmosphere is classy and inviting, perfect for savoring one of the incredible drinks.


Bound isn’t your average hotel lobby bar, which has earned it praise as a hidden gem. The circular bar is the heart of the room, which is full of subtle tones, mood lighting and plush seating. The drink menu here has a distinctive pedigree. Noted mixologist Salvatore Calabrese, considered one of the world’s most respected bartenders, created the specialty drinks. Guests can enjoy creations like The Breakfast Martini, gin mixed with the finest orange marmalade, fresh lemon juice and Cointreau or The Cromwell Cocktail, with Ciroc Red Berry vodka, strawberry liqueur, strawberry puree, fresh orange juice, maple juice and a hint of balsamic vinegar. Drop in after 9 p.m. to enjoy a cocktail and live music.

The Chandelier

The Chandelier’s striking design makes stopping for a drink feel mandatory. Located in the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, this marvel of design combines more than two million crystal beads and three luxurious bars in a three-story space. Each floor houses its own unique bar experience where guests can enjoy interactive light shows along with their signature cocktails. The bottom floor offers a high-energy atmosphere that merges seamlessly with the surrounding casino floor, while the heart of The Chandelier provides a more swank and sophisticated experience and the top of The Chandelier overlooks the casino below. Look for inventive creations like the Afternoon Delight, made with La Nina Mezcal, Ruby Red Port, sweet vermouth and vanilla.

The Fireside Lounge at the Peppermill

Photo courtesy of Peppermill

If you’d like a taste of the mythical “Old Vegas,” you’ll enjoy the comfy, retro feel of the Fireside Lounge. This bar has been around for decades and delivers a piece of Las Vegas’ past–which is one of the reasons it’s been popular with movie makers. Sink into a cozy booth and nurse a mai tai or other nostalgic beverage served to you by a waitress in a 70s-style dress slit to mid-thigh. Mirrors lining the walls reflect the glow of the bubbling fire pit in a setting that’s popular with couples. Performances from Vegas legends are replayed on flat-screens dotted around the room, enhancing the yesteryear ambiance. Consistently voted one of the best date spots in Vegas, this lounge’s atmosphere is both nostalgic and sexy.

The Barbershop Cuts and Cocktails

The Barbershop Cuts and Cocktails has made quite a splash on the Las Vegas Strip, with a grooming-centric approach and a bit of split personality. From 10 a.m. to 12 a.m., the barbershop is open for gentlemen to indulge in a cut, beard trim, or straight razor shave. Fine aged whiskey is available for sipping while undergoing your beautification. At 5 p.m., The Parlor opens, serving top-shelf spirits, spiked juices and absinthe. The whiskey selection is enormous and includes Japanese, Irish and Canadian whiskey as well as bourbon. The speakeasy persona at The Parlor tips its hat to a prior age, with an interior design that matches the classic drinks.


Located on the 23rd floor of the non-gaming Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas, SkyBar is one of the city’s sleekest and most sophisticated nightlife venues. Guests can drink up the stunning Strip views courtesy of the bar’s floor-to-ceiling windows while imbibing one of its expertly crafted cocktails. In addition to a menu of creative alcoholic concoctions, the bar offers a variety of fine wines and delicious light bites, making it the perfect place to kick back and relax before or after dinner. Be sure to try one of their creative cocktails, like the Sinatra, with Jack Daniels Sinatra Select, Amaro Nonino, lemon juice and mesquite honey.

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