While the Sayers Club found inside definitely walks the old-school-is-the-new-cool line, the club spaces LiFE and Foxtail are firmly in the current era, along with the unique Umami Burger that includes a beer garden and sportsbook. Of course, nightclubs in general didn’t exist in their current form when the Sahara opened in 1952. It’s apples and oranges, for sure, but I was expecting a majority of the spaces to have the throwback vibe present in Sayers Club and Monkey Bar.
After touring the casino floor and certain venues including Sayers Club, Foxtail, LiFE, the various Fred Segal stores, Umami Burger, Monkey Bar and the pool area, optimism seems the appropriate word for SLS Las Vegas. A LOT is riding on this $415 million revamp, but from the first look, the potential is there.
LiFE nightclub featured impressive aerialists (both in costume and skill level) and an exciting feel akin to the heyday of the old Rain nightclub at Palms, due to the concentric levels leading to the central dance floor. The décor was decidedly modern and it felt like other Vegas nightclubs of a similar (medium, I would say) size.
Foxtail was another surprisingly modern venue. The comfortable booths at the tables coupled with the exuberant cocktail waitresses’ pleas to sit up on the backs of them for a better view were welcome additions to a sometimes uncomfortable booth experience. Most people who buy a table at a club either spent a good deal for it or are being comped because they gamble heavily. Either way, it can be pricey and the comfortable atmosphere isn't always guaranteed. Granted, this was a preview so the staff could get accustomed to service; things may go differently once the doors officially open to the entire property at midnight, August 23.
Foxtail opens out to one of the property’s pool venues, like Surrender opens to Encore Beach Club or Marquee and sister pool Marquee Dayclub. This LuckyDucky was pretty stoked about the rubber ducky icons on the doors and entry way to the pool, leading in from the casino side (Foxtail has its own separate pool access).
With so many tempting dining options, I almost didn’t know where to start but having heard about Umami Burger from LA burger snob friends, I knew what I wanted. After sampling starters and sides including the “boring salad” (looked like it lived up to its name), smashed potatoes, truffles fries and “secret menu cheesy tots” (they were all tasty but, duh!.. get the secret tots), my table tried the “Manly Burger” with beer-cheddar cheese, bacon lardons, smoked-salt onion strings, Umami house ketchup and mustard spread. I also nibbled on the “Truffle Especiale,” featuring Parmesan frico, fried egg, truffle butter and truffled arugula. Both get high marks, with the truffle burger being my first burger experience with a runny egg. Not sure why I’ve feared that for so long because I now wish to move in to Umami Burger, especially for the upcoming football season since the venue doubles as the SLS sportsbook. As a burger lover and ardent fan of the now closed LBS at Red Rock, I feel there is finally a successor in the flavorful meat department. Other burger places have tasty topping and unique creations, but Umami Burger has some killer meat to begin with.
Stay tuned to VegasChatter and our social media accounts on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for live coverage of the opening of SLS Las Vegas beginning Friday morning (PT). We'll bring you regular updates throughout the day and into the wee hours of the night. Or, as those of you who followed our live Sahara liquidation coverage may remember, as long as our smart phone batteries last. We promise to be armed with back-up juice and charger cords this time!