89101 Travel Guide

/ / / / / / / / / /

First Impressions Of Downtown's Newly Opened Oak & Ivy Bar

Where: 707 Fremont St. [map], 89101
July 23, 2014 at 11:22 PM | by | Comments (0)

After eight months of operation, the opening roster of Downtown's Container Park has suffered some significant casualties. Cheffini's Hot Dogs replaced Pork & Beans, numerous little shops have changed hands, the putting-green grass (predictably) was replaced by astroturf, and now the Boozery vacates their spot to have Oak & Ivy step in. (Sadly, Big Ern's BBQ, despite their best efforts, is still open).

more ›

/ / / / / / / / /

If You've Never Heard Of Bunkhouse, Here's Why It Should Be On Your Vegas Radar

Where: 124 S. 11th Street [map], 89101
July 21, 2014 at 3:54 PM | by | Comments (5)

In 2009, we hailed it as our favorite place for a dependable ruckus. The Downtown Project’s re-imagination of Downtown Vegas continues with the reopening of Bunkhouse Saloon.

Purchased and closed by Tony Hsieh and company in 2013, the music venue will open again August 25 with a performance from Indie Rock stalwarts, Built To Spill. Heavy remodeling is lengthening the building to allow for a new kitchen serving sloppy joes, deviled eggs and other bar food. Guests will also find a new entrance from Fremont Street and a brand new sound system.

more ›

/ / / / / / / /

There's A New Worst Show In Town

Where: 202 Fremont Street [map], 89101
July 18, 2014 at 1:27 PM | by | Comments (11)

Imagine taking leftovers, carving it up and serving one semi-edible portion as the main course all over again. That's what Four Queens gives us with downtown’s biggest little train wreck, Broadway Rat Pack (BRP), which has been reworked and rechristened as The King and The Chairman Chairman of the Board That's Life. Unfortunately, BRP version 2.0 will have you wishing you brought along the air sickness bag from your last flight.

Last November, in a review of Broadway Rat Pack, this writer called it “a cheap amateurish production all the way.” The show, which shared Four Queen's Canyon Club Theater with the long-running hit Mike Hammer Comedy Magic, managed to stink up Fremont for eight months before quietly closing a few weeks ago. Just as the odor was starting to dissipate, Broadway Rat Pack rose from the grave.

more ›

/ / / / /

Hard Times For Downtown Grand

Where: 206 North 3rd Street [map], 89101
July 7, 2014 at 7:54 PM | by | Comments (23)

We were so taken with the promise of Downtown Grand, we named it the best opening of 2013. Fast forward seven months and it's a contender for most WTF of 2014.

We loved the design as well as the idea of it all when it came to the Vegas return of a renovated and renamed Lady Luck which made its debut October 2013. Gamblers, however, were almost instantly turned off by tight machines and pay tables that went from poor to bad. Fans of the old Mob Bar hated the new incarnation. Diners were less than impressed with the fare presented by the handful of available choices. It was hard to even find a cup of coffee. Eventual dining revamps were too little, too late for many. Pool season brought enough confusion when it came to who could and couldn't lay out on the rooftop deck, when and for how much (if anything), that we threw in the towel when it came to trying to keep things straight.

more ›

/ / / / / / / /

At Golden Nugget, Vic & Anthony's Wants You To Take Another Look

Where: 129 Fremont Street [map], 89101
July 3, 2014 at 6:17 PM | by | Comments (13)

Downtown's changing dining scene has been a roller coaster of big names and unique concepts hanging their shingle in the revamped retro spaces that define the area. One thing we haven't seen is a bigwig of old Vegas try and reposition themselves to rope in new attention... (wait for it)... until now.

Vic & Anthony's at Golden Nugget has been doing the classic Vegas steakhouse thing for a while, but their Executive Chef Eric Stetcher is now serving up some rather interesting dishes.

more ›

/ / / / / / / /

You Should Really Give MTO's Sunday Supper Series A Try

Where: 500 S Main St. [map], 89101
July 2, 2014 at 8:41 PM | by | Comment (1)

Downtown's MTO Cafe and chef/partner/mastermind Johnny Church have been organizing some extremely interesting multi-course meals. After nights of Mexican- and pork-inspired fare, they are putting on another of these acclaimed Sunday meals to showcase some of the early work that netted the chef his fame.

Chef Church serves up interesting twists on Americana breakfast/lunch favorites every day on Main Street before heading to Mandalay Bay to marshal the kitchen at RM Seafood/RX Boiler Room each night.

Yet, this is not enough for the workaholic! To satisfy his spontaneous cravings for pop-up dining and camaraderie with fellow Strip chefs, he started the monthly dining series, Sunday Suppers, at MTO.

more ›

/ / / / / / /

Kerry Simon Plants a Flag Downtown With Carson Kitchen

Where: 124 S Sixth St. [map], 89101
June 27, 2014 at 3:23 PM | by | Comments (0)

Celebrity Chef Kerry Simon is the first big name to cast his sights upon downtown with the debut of his newest concept, Carson Kitchen. After a year of waiting and quiet updates, the newest tenant of the revamped John E. Carson building (formerly a motel) is serving up some very cool cuisine to a packed house nightly.

There's a certain kind of atmosphere that Carson Kitchen emanates, a certain kind of aura (if that's a real thing and also something restaurants can have). It has a certain blend of that "neighborhood" communal feel, but still has plenty of creativity oozing out between the floorboards. It's the kind of place that, after a cocktail or two, makes you start to feel like you're on vacation in a much cooler city. Portland, Brooklyn, San Francisco, Denver... hell, it almost feels like some of the hip LA suburbs that have the bad names (LA suburbs with good-sounding names are almost always post-apocalyptic hellholes). Somehow that feel has been plucked from those cities, but without the humidity.

more ›

/ / / /

Gamble Or Eat if You Want To Park At Binion's

Where: 128 Fremont St. [map], 89101
June 24, 2014 at 3:27 PM | by | Comments (9)

Free self-parking options are quickly disappearing in downtown Las Vegas. With Main Street Station and The California now charging for parking and El Cortez's formerly “free lot” charging for “event parking,” it may be time to just accept the fact parking will come at a price.

VegasChatter friend John Mehaffey sent us this photo of the new parking restrictions at Binion’s. Once home to the last machine where anybody could walk up and get a parking ticket validated, Binion’s is changing its tune. As of June 15, parking validation is only available to guests who are actively gambling or dining inside the property.

more ›

/ / / / / /

Fremont Street Experience Soon to Become Red Solo Cup Experience?

Where: Fremont St. [map], 89101
June 19, 2014 at 8:31 PM | by | Comments (20)

After wading through all the new drinking laws for Downtown Vegas, we could really use a drink. Aside from the abundance of free self-parking options in town, visitors are typically blown away by the ability to carry open containers of alcohol on The Strip and the Fremont Street Experience (FSE).

Recent articles in the Las Vegas Sun and Review-Journal spell out new ordinances for downtown. Basically, if you want to enjoy a PBR tall boy can or glass bottle of Smirnoff Ice on the FSE, you have until Sunday to do so without a $250 fine ($500 for a second offense). When the new ordinances take effect, it will be illegal to consume alcoholic beverages in aluminum or glass containers anywhere on the FSE, not just the previously restricted areas within 1,000 feet of the souvenir and package liquor stores. How many people purchasing and drinking an abundance of such beverages could really measure out 1,000 feet, anyway? This certainly clarifies that by outlawing it altogether, much to the annoyance of many.

more ›

/ / / /

Grass Roots, A Juice Bar, Now Pouring In Downtown Vegas

Where: 124 S. Sixth Street [map], 89101
June 18, 2014 at 12:19 PM | by | Comments (3)

The old John E. Carson motel has a ton of new life these days. Recently, Carson Kitchen, O Face Doughnuts, and Bud & Vine, a flower shop, have all sprung to life in the renovated space. Today, another new business joins the fold.

more ›

/ / / / /

With The Scullery, The Ogden Gets Classy

Where: 150 Las Vegas Blvd [map], 89101
June 17, 2014 at 5:24 PM | by | Comment (1)

Among the great deluge of openings downtown, one of them has set a tone quite different than the rest. Nestled across from El Cortez in the corner of The Ogden (that residential high-rise just north of Fremont), there is now the Scullery. Is it a cocktail bar? A restaurant? An entertainment venue?

It's all three, actually, and they do them quite well. Frequented by the Zappos elite in their after work pow-wows (or after whatever they heck they do in the Ogden before they all stream out in the afternoon), the Scullery is another of the Future Restaurant Group's ventures and likely their most forward thinking. The hip, modern space is primarily a mixology bar whose cocktails are dreamed up by the powerhouse talent of the FRG flagship, Downtown Cocktail Room.

more ›

/ / / / / /

Golden Nugget Has A New 24 Karat Players Club

Where: 129 East Fremont [map], 89101
June 17, 2014 at 2:09 PM | by | Comments (9)

Golden Nugget is changing their 24 Karat players club and bringing it into the 21st century. The players club isn't quite being overhauled as much as it's being infused with today's technology.

Now, members will be able to instantly download the points they've earned to their slot machine for use as free play. The new 24K Club offers $1 in free slot play for every 100 points earned. Free slot play will be available directly on your card within a few minutes of being accumulated.

more ›