Highway to Hoeftland

Adventures with Kristin & Mike

Someone once said that Las Vegas is like a theater show—it changes all the time. Downtown and the East Fremont District are prime examples of positive transformation occurring in the city. According to the locals who live in Las Vegas, the area is rapidly turning into one of the most enjoyable places to visit in the Las Vegas area; often times, it is even preferable to the world-famous Las Vegas Strip.

Downtown Las Vegas – It’s More than Just the Fremont Street Experience

The Santa Run in 2013, with the Fremont Street Experience in the background.

The Santa Run in 2013, with the Fremont Street Experience in the background.

When you imagine Downtown Las Vegas, you might picture the Fremont Street Experience. As grand and impressive as the attraction is, there is so much more to do downtown.

Thanks to revitalization efforts over the past few years, Las Vegas’ downtown is showing clear signs of a vibrant and walkable-livable neighborhood community feel, but with a Vegas twist.

Imagine your favorite downtown neighborhood—with condominiums, restaurants, and a grocery store, and then add in neon lights and bold signs, casinos, and a fire-shooting praying mantis. It sounds weird, but it is actually a wonderful mix of diversity, creativity, community, excitement, and entertainment.

The food, drink, and entertainment options are terrific in Downtown Las Vegas. There are many talented local small business start-ups cropping up, from restaurants, to bars, to the tastiest donut shop. It is also easy to get around, whether by car, bus, bike, or foot.

East Fremont District, Downtown – Artistic, Hip, and Genuine

Fremont.The East Fremont District is so much fun; it is a treasure trove of cute bars and eateries. Local business owners build their spaces with love, creativity, and care. The drinks—often inventive and unique concoctions that you would not find anywhere else—are fun and delicious. The prices downtown are reasonable too (and not disturbingly inflated, as they usually are in the mega casinos on the Strip).

Downtown Is the Place to Be

Downtown artworkIn Downtown Las Vegas, you will find authenticity and quality. You will find locals hanging out after work. You will find diversity. You will find creativity, passion, and enthusiasm. It is the true, bona fide center of the Las Vegas population. Therefore, if you want to experience the city as a real place—besides just a grand playground for the millions of tourists around the globe—then head downtown.

If Downtown and East Fremont sounds like places you would like to visit, below are a list of examples of good local businesses worth checking out.

Local Businesses worth Checking Out in Downtown Las Vegas

Atomic Liquors – This is the oldest freestanding bar in Vegas. They used to watch the atomic bombs explode from the rooftops here. They have impressive drinks. They know their stuff. Try the Strawberry Fields and the sour beers.

Park on Fremont – The best ambiance is out back, where the patio is enchanting and delightful. They have gone to great lengths to decorate the space with lights, plants, trees, paintings, and an outdoor fireplace, to name a few features of the locale.

The Griffin – Such a cozy atmosphere with fireplaces and a cave like atmosphere. Try a Black Russian cocktail.

Pizza Rock – Pizza Rock makes excellent, award-winning pizza. You can choose to sit at the bar for a comfortable setting near the wood burning pizza oven.

O Face Doughnuts – The most delicious doughnut in the world is the Rosemary curd at O Face. The coffees are smooth and delicious.

Container Park – This is a unique Park where small businesses run their operations out of containers. In the middle of the park, there is a playground for kids and a stage where live music entertains the patrons.

MTO Café – This diner serves quality food, refreshing vegetable juice drinks, exceptional customer service, all in a cute and comfortable café.

The Neon Museum – This distinctive museum is a place where you can learn about the history of Las Vegas’ love affair with neon signs.

Banger BreweryBanger Brewery is a local brewery near the Fremont Street experience. Try the Jalapeño Hefe.

The Beat Coffeehouse and Records – You’ll likely find artists, telecommuters, and music lovers at the Beat Coffeehouse. Step inside and relax in an inviting and intellectual space.

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts – This is a grand and beautiful old world building with brilliant entertainers to see from around the globe.

There are many more great options downtown. Check them out here.

This post first appeared on Highway to Hoeftland. All rights reserved.

Thank you to Kimberly C. for contributing pictures to this article. You can find more of Kim’s pictures on Instagram. All other pictures are by Highway to Hoeftland.

6 thoughts on “Why You Should Spend Time in Downtown Las Vegas

  1. Sharron says:

    Great post about downtown Las Vegas. Yes, it has been revitalized and changed, mostly due to the efforts of our former mayor, Oscar Goodman, and current mayor, Carolyn Goodman. Add to that the purchase and occupation of one of our old buildings by Zappos, and voila, you have new life pumped into the city. You have done a great job of listing and describing some of our new restaurants, shopping and stores. Thanks!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your comment Sharron! I hope that the revitalization downtown continues with additional places to live and work. They’re doing a great job so far.

      Are there any other favorite places that you would recommend to the readers?


  2. Kimberly says:

    Awesome! You’ve really captured what is so special about each one of these places. Thanks for sharing it!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. macygan says:

    I have loved Fremont street and always recommend it to anyone travelling to Vegas. Makes me want to go again…

    Liked by 1 person

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