The Best Spots in Downtown Las Vegas to Have a Nightcap with “Old Vegas” Nostalgia

Atomic Liquors Las Vegas Travel back in time to the days of Elvis, Frank Sinatra, mobsters and showgirls. Here  nightcaps are in style and cocktails are elaborate concoctions unique to every bar, lounge or speakeasy on the streets of Vegas. Flash forward to present day: The magic of Old Vegas is alive and well downtown. Many of the vintage bars and cocktail lounges have become a part of the downtown renaissance — destinations that are reminiscent of days long passed but with a decidedly modern twist. Here are some of the best spots to have a nightcap with Old Vegas nostalgia.

Atomic Liquors

The oldest freestanding bar in Vegas, Atomic Liquors has been around since 1952.  The name comes from what used to be the main attraction — watching nuclear blasts at the nearby atomic test site from the roof of the bar. This downtown gem has quite a history in show business and was frequented by the Rat Pack, the Smothers Brothers and Barbara Streisand. Today, it boasts a well-stocked bar, a fabulous drink menu, late night hours and special events just about every day. Step into the Atomic and head right back to the 1950s.

Downtown Cocktail Room

Located in the Fremont East Entertainment district, the Downtown Cocktail Room is an upscale cocktail lounge and speakeasy that serves up luscious libations in a Bohemian-Chic atmosphere. The handcrafted cocktails are one-of-a-kind creations that have acquired a huge following among locals and visitors alike. Be a part of the downtown scene that escapes the spectacle of the Strip — and embrace the glamour of Vegass’ past, present and future.

Oscar’s Steakhouse

Locatedin the iconicx dome at the Plaza Hotel and Casino, Oscar’s has been attracting discriminating visitors to its restaurant and bar since 2011. Oscar’s famous bar, adjacent to the steakhouse, serves up world-famous martinis in a glamorous, old-school Vegas atmosphere. Overlooking the Fremont Street Experience, Oscar’s also has the best view in town.

The Commonwealth

This swanky, 6,000-square-foot cocktail lounge was inspired by pre-prohibition era design. Serving a huge array of cocktails, craft beers and other libations, Commonwealth boasts over-the-top chandeliers, bow-tied bartenders, a dance floor and a rooftop patio. What more could you want in a classic, downtown bar? When you are ready to reminisce, there is no place like downtown to find that Old Vegas style. With such a unique array of nightlife opportunities, these are truly hidden gems, tucked away from the circus of the Strip. If you have been neglecting the downtown area, now is the time to visit these popular watering holes to see what you’ve been missing.

5 Spots that Showcase the Downtown Las Vegas Revival

Praying Mantis at Downtown Las Vegas Downtown Las Vegas may not be the first thing you think of when you think of Vegas, but in recent years it has done a fabulous job of rebranding itself. Instead of competing with the circus of the strip, downtown Las Vegas has worked hard to create an image that embraces art, music, and culture in a world-class destination. If you’re wondering why you should consider a stay in downtown Las Vegas, here are five must-visit spots that showcase the best of the downtown revival.

Mob Museum

Located in the heart of downtown, the Mob Museum shares the thrilling story of organized crime in Las Vegas. The mob scene played a huge role in the shaping of modern Las Vegas – helping it evolve and to become the “Entertainment Capital of the World.” At the Mob Museum, you’ll explore high-tech theater presentations, unique artifacts, and awesome interactive exhibits that tell both sides of the story; that of the mobs and that of the law’s. This intriguing presentation of Las Vegass’ colorful history will surprise and enthrall you. A must see.

Smith Center for the Performing Arts

From Broadway shows, to jazz, ballet, and the Las Vegas Philharmonic, there is always something happening at the Smith Center. This thriving cultural complex has enabled southern Nevada to take its place on the international stage, and the sprawling campus has become a mecca for world-class culture, art, and musical events. In fact, the Smith Center is an exhibit in-and-of itself, with unique architecture, outdoor sculptures, and beautifully landscaped grounds. A picnic in Symphony Park is almost as exciting as the first-rate performances.

Downtown Container Park

Downtown Container Park is a truly unique experience, unlike anything in Las Vegas. A Fremont Street destination built entirely of shipping containers, this urban gathering area features nightly music, boutique shopping, world-class cuisine, and a kids’ play area, complete with a 30-foot slide and water-play attraction. There’s always something going on at this hip, downtown destination.

The Neon Museum

Neon Museum Downtown Vegas

Founded in 1996, the spectacular Neon Museum is dedicated to collecting, preserving, and displaying the iconic Las Vegas signs that used to tower over Sin City. Indoor and outdoor display areas, with more than 150 rescued signs, chronicle the changes and trends in sign design and technology from the 1930s to the present day. This uniquely Las Vegas museum is located downtown on Las Vegas Boulevard.

Discovery Children’s Museum

Located in Symphony Park, adjacent to the Smith Center, the Discovery Children’s Museum has helped redefine downtown Las Vegas as a cultural and artistic destination. This huge, interactive and educational play space provides a vibrant and engaging experience for kids of all ages. The 58,000-square foot building has nine exhibition halls spread across three stories. Science, art, technology, music, and theater: It’s all here, just waiting for your family to discover. Over the years, Las Vegas has become so much more than an opulent gambling destination. Thanks to a modern revival, Downtown Las Vegas is now an attraction in its own right, helping to define Vegas as a culturally diverse and internationally renowned urban center.    

How to Make the Most of Your Convention in Las Vegas

Conventions in Las Vegas If the mere mention of the word convention has you hiding from your boss and hoping you won’t be the one that has to represent your company this year, you’re not alone. Chances are you’ve experienced a host of regular conventions in run-of-the-mill cities across the country. Enter: Las Vegas. Here, conventions are an entirely different experience altogether. Sure, you’ll do your fair share of networking and work, but forget heading back to your hotel room after hours to watch reruns. Vegas never sleeps and when your work is over for the day, the fun is just beginning. Here are some tips for making the most of your Las Vegas convention.

Navigating the Las Vegas Convention Center

For your conference or convention, chances are you’ll be situated in the Las Vegas Convention Center (LVCC). This 3.2-million square foot building is sprawling, crowded, and unique. When packing for your trip, the most important item to include is a pair of the most comfortable shoes you own. There is a lot of ground to cover, and your feet will feel like lead balls if you don’t coddle them from the start. The LVCC does a great job of keeping its visitors full and hydrated throughout the day. There is a food court, a Starbucks, and a plethora of vending machines. Note:  There really isn’t much within walking distance of the convention center any more.

Getting Around

The LVCC is conveniently located to Downtown Las Vegas and the Strip, making it easy to navigate the city after hours. While taxis are the most popular transportation choice, there are also RTC buses (subway like) that service both areas with single and multi-day passes available.


After a long day of networking, a world-class meal will refresh you and will help prepare you for a little nightlife. Downtown Las Vegas boasts some of the best restaurants in the area. Here are some suggestions to satiate your appetite.
  1. Tripe George Grill – This Downtown Las Vegas staple is a foodie favorite for their fresh-made, well-conceived cocktails and classically inspired, Bay-area style cuisine. The space is cozyand on the slightly smaller side, so it would be advised to get a reservation beforehand.
  1. The Peppermill Inn — Eat your fill whenever the urge strikes! This iconic restaurant on the strip is open 24 hours. The Peppermill Inn is famous for its giant portions and classic Vegas atmosphere.
  1. Oscar’s Las Vegas Steakhouse — Want a steak cooked to perfection served in a classic old-school Las Vegas atmosphere? Look no further than Oscar’s. This sophisticated restaurant features perfect martinis, excellent service and the best food around. It is located just three miles from the LVCC, in the iconic dome at the Plaza Hotel.

Paint the Town Red

Looking for a little nightlife before heading back to your hotel? Check out the Fremont Street Experience. Stroll the pedestrian promenade, watch the mesmerizing light show or fly on the Slotzilla Zipline. You can’t have these adventures anywhere but Vegas! Also, the Fremont East district offers a vibrant nightlife scene that goes until the wee hours of the morning. Catch a show, boogie down to some live music, or just sample the fantastic cocktail selections. No matter how much time you have in Vegas, you’ll never run out of new experiences. Make the most of your convention with a stroll Downtown, where anything can happen. Las Vegas is full of surprises.

Get Ready for the Ultimate Fight and Sports Weekend in Vegas This Year!

Vegas Fight WeekendThe long anticipated boxing match between Manny “Pac-Man” Pacquiao and the undefeated Floyd “Money” Mayweather will be held in Las Vegas on May 2. With the annual running of the Kentucky Derby also taking place, it is shaping up to be the ultimate fight and sports weekend of the year. If you still need a room for the excitement, take advantage of a special offer from the Plaza Hotel and Casino by entering the code “RUMBLE” when you book your room. Then take a look at some of the great events that will be happening in Las Vegas during your stay.

Mayweather vs. Pacquiao

Kick the weekend off with the official weigh-in on May 1. Tickets will be $10, so be sure to reserve your seat in advance. The main event will take place the next day at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. You can also watch the fight live from any of the MGM Resorts Properties in Las Vegas. Look for ticket availability on End your night with a little downtown revelry at the Fremont Country Club’s Pacquiao-Mayweather After-Party. The music will be provided by The Amazin Kreskin, The Old School Show, DJ Magreni, and DJ Tino.

Kentucky Derby

Easily the most highly anticipated event of the year in horse racing, The Kentucky Derby has become a full-day celebration that extends past the roughly two minutes of race time that is the main event.  On May 2nd, Churchill Downs in Louisville, Kentucky will be packed with race fans looking to get in the spirit for the annual “Running of the Roses;” however, Vegas will still command much of the attention as hotel sports books throw their own bashes.  Finding a good spot to take in the race is as easy as getting an early seat at the sports book and ordering the race’s traditional drink – a mint julep.

English Premier League

The first weekend in May kicks off the final month of the English Premier League 2015 schedule. Place your bets and watch a match or two in the newest William Hill Race and Sports Book at the Plaza Hotel and Casino. Enjoy the action on any of the 75 screens available in downtown’s largest sports book, while placing a bet in comfort and ease with the mobile sports wagering app and a self-service wagering kiosk. Whether you will be watching the big fight or not, it is sure to be this year’s ultimate sports weekend in Las Vegas. Book your room at the Plaza Hotel and Casino and get ready to rumble!

Vegas Hopes to Score with an MLS Team

soccer  player Las Vegas has almost everything – nightlife, casinos, world class entertainment, amazing food, haute couture and more. Despite all of that, Sin City is without a professional sports team. Venue proposals and pitches to various sports leagues and teams have come and gone for nearly 20 years, including baseball and hockey bids, but nothing has come to fruition. That could soon change. Bids to bring a Major League Soccer (MLS) team to Las Vegas began in 2011. A proposal was made for a multi-use stadium in the downtown area that would share space and construction dollars with UNLV, but MLS wanted a venue that was primarily dedicated to its sport. The idea has since been revived and talks started again earlier this year. MLS officials have visited the area and appear to be interested in discussing further. Additionally, it seems as if there is both the backing and the desire needed to have a pro team in Las Vegas, but there is no confirmed deal as of yet. In a recent interview with USA Today, Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman stated, “[Las Vegas is] the perfect place for people to come and enjoy all the amenities we have, and we’re certainly ready for major league sports. We’ve made so many advances in the medical community and in cultural offerings. Pro sports is the one little piece we haven’t quite gotten the hook around.” The population of the Las Vegas metro area has grown to nearly two million people, which is more than two metro areas currently home to MLS teams – Columbus, Ohio and Salt Lake City, Utah. Will Las Vegas become home to an MLS team? We’re hopeful, but cannot be sure. However, it is one of the largest cities in the country without a pro sports team.

Food Diary: Eating Our Way Through the Day

Plaza breakfast 7:00 a.m. The alarm clock went off and there was no hitting snooze. We had a lot to get to at the Plaza Hotel in Las Vegas, but before we could do anything, whether work or play, we needed to eat a solid breakfast. The best way to start the day is with breakfast at Hash House A Go Go. One of our favorite dishes there is the classic Boston Hash – crispy potatoes, mixed onions and fresh tomatoes crowned with blue crab cake drizzled with horseradish cream and served with eggs and fresh fruit. After a breakfast of that magnitude we were almost ready to begin the day. We just needed to stop by Cafelatte for a Lavazza coffee first. 12:32 p.m. Before we knew it, it was already time for lunch. We were still a little full from breakfast and were busy making the most of the day so we opted for something quick and easy at Pop Up Pizza. We indulged in a slice of cheese, but also had a salad. Mom always said eat your veggies! 5:00 p.m. Five o’clock rolled around. It was a busy and productive day, but now it was time to relax and enjoy the evening. It was a beautiful fall day in Vegas. Today’s sky was a mix of pink, orange and red as the sun set. We headed to the Bier Garten for a craft beer and to enjoy the sights and sounds of Downtown Las Vegas from the outdoor area. In addition to our beers, we ordered a giant pretzel and wurst to share as a snack before dinner. Bier Garten food and drinks 6:52 p.m. We had a reservation at Oscar’s for 7 p.m. so we headed upstairs to the restaurant. The decor of Oscar’s is glamorous. It incorporates memorabilia from Oscar Goodman’s 12-year tenure as mayor as well as classic photographs of Las Vegas from over the years. It makes you feel like a star. We started with some calamari and chose the pork chop for the entrée. The calamari was nice and crispy on the outside and the pork chop had been perfectly seared. Not a bad way to wrap up another fun day at the Plaza. Oscar's calamari Oscar's pork chop

Celebrate 10 Rockin’ Days of Country in Vegas with NFR and Bucky Covington

Bucky Covington to Perform at Plaza in Vegas One of the biggest draws in Vegas every year is the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo – and this year is no exception.  For 10 days, Las Vegas will be overrun with some of the most passionate rodeo sports fans from around the world as the best in their respective events are crowned champion.  Capping off all of the excitement will be country star, Bucky Covington, performing at the Showroom inside of Plaza Hotel Casino.

Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas

If you’ve ever visited Las Vegas in the beginning of December, then you’ve surely witnessed the way that the National Finals Rodeo takes over the city.  Fans from around the world don blue jeans, cowboy boots and hats to gather in anticipation for the largest rodeo competition of the year.  Casinos, nightclubs and restaurants alike will all be dishing out their own brand of “southern hospitality” to welcome these loyal fans and give them the experience of a lifetime during their stay. Starting Dec. 4, NFR will take hold of Las Vegas for 10 days of pure competition as the top 15 ranked competitors from a wide range events, including bull riding and steer wrestling, display their talents for the chance to be recognized as the best in their respective field. In addition to a noticeable impact on the culture and energy of Las Vegas during this special time, you can also expect to encounter some of the biggest stars in country music and entertainment while NFR is in town.

Bucky Covington to Perform at Plaza Hotel Casino

At Plaza Hotel Casino, we are throwing our own celebration by featuring country star and former American Idol contestant, Bucky Covington, in our very own showroom to cap off the event on Dec. 13. Best known for hits like “A Different World,” “It’s Good to be Us” and “I’ll Walk,” Covington’s debut, self-titled studio album reached #1 on the US Country Charts in 2007 following his appearance and eigth-place finish on Idol. His latest single, “Buzzin’,” was released earlier this year on iTunes and we are sure that he’ll provide a proper sendoff to the 10-day celebration in Vegas with his passion and energy as he graces our stage. For tickets and information, please visit our entertainment page.

Holiday Shopping in Downtown Las Vegas

Downtown Container Park

holiday shopping downtown Everyone knows Vegas is one of the best cities to shop ’til you drop.  Whether it’s high end couture, beautiful boutiques or fantastic outlets, there are tons of places and a variety of ways to shop in Sin City.  Those who like to find special pieces that no one else will have should explore Downtown Container Park. It’s only a short walk from Plaza and has beautiful boutiques and a quirky design. And foor the bargain mavens there is Las Vegas North Premium Outlets, which offer an unparalleled combination of quality and great deals and are also located close to Plaza. Holiday shopping doesn’t have to be stressful or just a task to cross off your to-do list. It can be quality, relaxing alone time or a destination event for the whole family. Container Park has an amazing array of stores (art, apparel, décor, toys), dining options (BBQ, Mexican, extravagant hot dogs, whiskey bar, wine bar) and activities (treehouse and play area for kids and adults, live music). You can bring the fun back to holiday shopping with a visit to this popular Downtown Las Vegas destination. It’s a fresh urban landscape and more than a collection of stores. The area is constructed from shipping containers stacked on one another and was created as a place everyone can enjoy. Spend the day perusing the boutiques, sampling the different food options and having fun in the park. While you can pay top dollar for anything you want in Las Vegas, you also can find amazing brand name goods at bargain prices if you visit the Las Vegas North Premium Outlets. Tell everyone you picked a little something up for them in Vegas – just don’t tell them you bought designer wear for less than designer costs! With 150 stores, the outlets offer all of the high end designers you’d find at malls and destination shopping venues.  Come visit Las Vegas and shop it up – you’ll love what you find!

Downtown Las Vegas Buzzes as Life is Beautiful Returns

Life is Beautiful
Fred Morledge –
Downtown Las Vegas is a vibrant area that speaks to both a great past and promising future. The Life is Beautiful festival, which returns to Downtown Las Vegas on Friday, is a testament of this. The festival will bring some of today’s greatest musicians, chefs, artists and speakers to the art district for a three day inspirational social platform. The Plaza Hotel and Casino has defined Downtown Las Vegas throughout its historic past. Today, as the area continues to undergo substantial change and growth we continue to create the perfect combination of comfort and sophistication. The effort put forth by the Life is Beautiful team is something we admire. And as a fellow Downtown Las Vegas business we certainly appreciate the buzz it creates for our community. Adjacent to the arts district, the Plaza was a hub for those who attended last year’s inaugural Life is Beautiful festival and we be one this year as well. Whether you need a room to rest between days, something to eat or drink or just some help with directions, we are here to help make your Life is Beautiful experience as enjoyable and empowering as possible. For the full festival lineup, please visit

5 Things You Didn’t Know About Louie Anderson

Meet Lou Magelwitz, our resident host at Bonkerz Comedy Club, where some of the best downtown Vegas shows can be found. Not only is he the host at Bonkerz, he opens for some of our clubs comedians, including Louie Anderson. Lou is also happens to be good friends with Louie, so we asked him, what are five things that nobody knows about Louie Anderson? Here is what he told us:  


Lou Magelwitz and Louie Anderson

  1. Louie is a funny guy, but he is serious about getting healthy. He works out in his dressing room before every show.
  2. Louie is a friendly guy, but we figured that! He likes to hang out in the employee dining room and say hi to all the Plaza employees.
  3. Louie is a huge football fan. His favorite team? The Minnesota Vikings, he is from Minnesota after all.
  4. Louie gave up carbs because of his new healthy diet and lifestyle. What carb-filled food does he miss most? Toast with butter.
  5. Louie learned to swim only four years ago! Yet, he competed on the ABC show “Splash” this past January. Amazing!
Thank you, Lou, for letting us get to know Louie a little better. Make sure to catch Louie’s show right here in downtown Las Vegas.