Clubs, Bars and Shows: Las Vegas' 10 Best Nightlife Spots

Las Vegas nightlife is legendary. For many visitors, it’s the main attraction. Fortunately, no matter what kind of nightlife you like, Las Vegas has something for you.

Nightclubs are the most well-known Vegas nightlife--lavishly designed spaces with celebrity hosts, star DJs, and thumping music all night long. These extravagant places are both expensive and sometimes difficult to get into. Reserve a table if possible for the best experience.

If dance clubs aren’t your style, Las Vegas offers a wealth of other things to do. Plenty of bars and lounges offer a more upscale (and quiet) experience. The sophisticated lounge Skyfall gives you a jaw-dropping view of the city, food, fabulous cocktails and music later in the evening.

In Downtown Las Vegas, the bars and lounges are a little grittier than on the Strip, which isn’t a bad thing. The Downtown Cocktail Room is a perennial favorite, serving hand-crafted cocktails in a comfortable room that feels like it could be in NYC.

If nightclubs and lounges don’t sound appealing, consider seeing a show, where you can enjoy a few drinks and see a terrific performance. Absinthe, for instance, will have you laughing and gasping, possibly at the same time.

When you’re ready to head out for a night in Las Vegas, make sure you’re prepared: check the dress codes, brace for cover charges, and steel yourself for the drink prices on the Strip.

Scroll down to read more of our recommendations on the best nightlife in Las Vegas.


You may be in Las Vegas, but you'll feel like you're in the tropics at The Golden Tiki. The drink menu features a hearty array of strong and affordable drinks. This is the place to find drinks like the Mai Tai and Singapore Sling, along with generously sized bowls of Scorpions or Zombies that are meant to be shared. There's a backstory here, a fun tall tale about a pirate named William Tobias Faulkner and his search for gold. The themed interior includes thatched "roofs," an abundance of paintings featuring scantily clad ladies, and, of course, tiki gods. The Golden Tiki is located in Chinatown, just a short drive west of the Strip.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: An evening at the Golden Tiki will transport you to a land full of strong tropical drinks, music, wild decor and lots of fun kitsch.

Terrisa's expert tip: Happy Hour happens daily at the Golden Tiki from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m., but that's far from the only thing going on here. They offer live music every night and regularly feature bands.

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Once you successfully navigate the front door at the Downtown Cocktail Room--or DCR--you'll find a warm and inviting space, a good, old-fashioned bar. More importantly, you'll get to sample some of the drinks. The music doesn't drown out conversation here, and the custom-made cocktails are worth talking about. Fresh ingredients, including homemade bitters, are a specialty here. The menu ranks the complexity of each original cocktail and includes wine, beer, punch and absinthe. A "hidden" bar can is also located within DCR--Mike Morey's Sip 'N'Tip. Look for the entrance to this secretive place in alley by the bar. And while DCR itself doesn't serve food, the Fremont East area is full of restaurants within an easy walk.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: The Downtown Cocktail Room's inviting vibe and extensive cocktail menu make it one of the city's best bars.

Terrisa's expert tip: You'll find plenty of parking near DCR on Carson Street, in one of the parking garages on Fremont Street or across the street at the El Cortez.

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This popular downtown Las Vegas dive bar features local music as well as national independent acts, showcasing genres ranging from indie and rock to blues and rockabilly. The friendly crowd is of all ages, and the party often spills over into the outdoor areas around the building. Bunkhouse's unpretentious atmosphere, intimate size and reasonable food and drink prices make it a favorite of locals and in-the-know visitors alike. The sound is fantastic for such a small venue, and the diverse range of bands gives music lovers a wide selection of groups to hear. Prices all around are very affordable, another reason the venue is so popular.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: For live music in a fun dive bar, the Bunkhouse is one of the best places to go in Vegas.

Terrisa's expert tip: The Bunkhouse is located a little east of the Fremont East area and although the neighborhood gives some visitors a bit of pause, it's not as rough as it looks.

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The colorful interior of Casa Fuente is custom-made to offer a comfortable ambiance for quality cigar selections and drinks. Cocktails include a Tangerine Mojito with Botran Solera 1893 Rum, tangerine, mint, simple syrup and a float of Mandarine Napoleon and a Peach and Chipotle Margarita: 1800 Tequila, Grand Marnier, Tobasco, chipotle sauce and peach chipotle jam--and many other intriguing creations. They serve imported Kavalan Sherry Cask Strength Whisky from Taiwan made in their own barrels as well as their own barrel of Jack Daniel's Casa Fuente Single Barrel Whiskey. Their extensive humidor features a wide selection of quality cigars to go along with the spirits.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: Stop at Casa Fuente to enjoy their classic club design, unique spirits and quality cigars.

Terrisa's expert tip: Casa Fuente is conveniently located in the Forum Shops at Caesars Palace, putting it within easy walking distance of many of the central Strip's attractions.

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Located on the 23rd floor of the exclusive Waldorf Astoria Las Vegas, SkyBar is a sleek and sophisticated nightlife venue with an unequaled view. Guests can savor 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. Try one of the many specialty drinks on the menu, all created with fresh and innovative ingredients with top shelf spirits.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: The intimate space at the SkyBar overlooks the Las Vegas Strip and serves delicious cocktails.

Terrisa's expert tip: SkyBar was previously known as the Mandarin Bar, when the hotel was the Mandarin Oriental. The property became a Waldorf Astoria in August of 2018.

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Skyfall was created when the space it is in was renovated, but the spectacular 180-degree views of Las Vegas remain the same. A warm, inviting décor offers plentiful seating, and the expertly crafted drinks are sure to please (they'll understand 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, and the upscale restaurant, Rivea, is just next door. But while the drinks and music are certainly worth coming to Skyfall for, it may be the terrific view that keeps you around.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: Offering a panoramic view of the Strip and a menu full of sophisticated cocktails, Skyfall is a place for a classy evening.

Terrisa's expert tip: No cover is charged and reservations are not required at Skyfall. You can reserve a VIP table with bottle service in the lounge or on the outdoor patio if you'd like.

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The music of the Beatles and the acrobatics of Cirque du Soleil come together in LOVE. Beatles fans will find a lot to like about the show, and even if the Fab Four aren't your usual listening preference, the performances of Cirque are mesmerizing regardless of the music. Classic Beatles songs are used as inspiration for the acts, like Yesterday, which comes to life with a trapeze duet, or Help! where the performers do an amazing number of flips, twists and jumps. Lucy is literally in the sky during this show. Like all Cirque performances, LOVE will leave you amazed and the timeless music of the Beatles provides a perfect canvas for the talented acrobats, aerialists and other performers.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: Cirque du Soleil's talented performers bring the music of the Beatles to life with stunning feats of skill and grace.

Terrisa's expert tip: The Mirage offers deals on early bookings for LOVE, plus a VIP Experience (which includes a behind the scenes tour and artist meet and greet) or Producer Seats, which offer the best view.

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Absinthe is full of raunchy jokes and incredible displays of physical skill, all in a atmosphere that lives up to the show's name. The show takes place in the fanciful Spiegelworld tent, and the small space makes it easy to draw the audience into this bawdy and amazing show. The main characters, Penny and the Gazillionaire, drive the show forward and keep everyone laughing (or gasping), but you get much more than comedy at Absinthe. This adults-only version of the circus is filled with extremes of both comedy and athletic bravery. Daring feats of balance and strength are performed up close and personal in this intimate space. If you're sitting close, not only will you feel the tension of the more daring acts, it's likely you'll also be drawn into some interesting exchanges.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: Step into the world of Absinthe with the Gazillionaire as your host and see a line-up of daring, bawdy, funny, adults-only entertainment.

Terrisa's expert tip: Absinthe is held in an actual tent, which you'll find on the Roman Plaza, close to the Strip. If you're driving, the show recommends you park in the front valet.

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Hakkasan Nightclub
Photo courtesy of Angel Management Group

Hakkasan Nightclub is both momentous in scale and ambition. The club is a bold evolution of the well-known global restaurant brand into an all-encompassing nightlife experience, presented in a five-level space filled with a variety of atmospheres. Hakkasan works with some of today's top musical talent, who tailor their performances to suit the unique capabilities of the venue and to compliment their own versatile styles. Guests can see everyone from Calvin Harris to Tiësto performing at the club. Hakkasan was created through partnerships with several leading international design firms, including Gilles & Bossier from Paris and New York's 212 Design, to offer guests an amazing experience.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: Hakkasan's multi-level, multi-room nightclub hosts performances by some of the best DJs in the business.

Terrisa's expert tip: Hakkasan Restaurant serves acclaimed Cantonese food and it's definitely worth considering for an upscale meal before an evening out in the nightclub. The restaurant is as noted for its food as the nightclub is for its DJs.

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TAO Nightclub
Photo courtesy of TAO

The entrance to TAO gives guests an interesting introduction to the club: it's lined with bathtubs filled with rose petals, and sometimes models clad only in rose petals. For several years it's been one of the Strip's most desirable nightlife destinations and a haunt of A-listers in the sports and entertainment worlds, bringing a bit of Zen ambiance to the desert. The atmospheric club is adorned with Asian artifacts, decor and statuary, and soft lighting sets the scene admirably, along with alluring performance artists. Over the main dance floor sits the DJ booth, raining down house, hip-hop and R&B over stylish, of-the-moment patrons. An outdoor terrace and multiple bars ensure that there are plenty of places to hang out.

Recommended for Best Nightlife because: The Asian-influenced design at TAO creates a memorable background for the popular nightclub.

Terrisa's expert tip: TAO offers more than a nightclub - their Asian Bistro serves noted dishes and the popular dayclub, TAO Beachclub, is open during the warmer seasons. It's set to reopen in March 2019.

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Meet Terrisa Meeks

Terrisa Meeks is a native born, life-long resident of Las Vegas. She's watched Las Vegas grow and change over the years, especially the ever-evolving Las Vegas Strip. She still enjoys hanging...  More About Terrisa