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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki JOHN-O's Las Vegas (& Honolulu pg 8) Thread
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JOHN-O's Las Vegas (& Honolulu pg 8) Thread
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2690
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2008-12-01 7:04 pm   Permalink

Ok so this really isn't a tiki guide. Frankly (Frankie, ha, ha) there isn't enough tiki left in Las Vegas for such a guide. You'd need a time machine to visit the Aku-Aku in 1960 for classic tiki, or even the Taboo Cove in 2001 for neo tiki. Both RIP. Sure there's the new Trader Vic's, but I think it's pretty lame and the drinks are pretty bad. Skip it. (UPDATE - since closed)

So if you're into tiki, what else do you like? If you're like me, you love classic and kitschy mid-century design, Kennedy-era history and culture, Film Noir, Hawaiiana, Surf Music (Dick Dale not Beach Boys), and 1st and 2nd generation Punk Rock (1976-1984). I also love Las Vegas, both for the action (gambling) as well as the general surreal nature of the place. Maybe you do too.

Las Vegas also has the most interesting history of an American city which it just loves to blow up. Gone are classic places like the Sands, Desert Inn, Stardust, Dunes, and Frontier (well actually I don't miss that one). Sure the Flamingo, Sahara, Riviera, and Tropicana still exist, but only in name. The original casino areas and bungalows have been demolished or remodeled away. So where do you go if you're looking for some old-school Las Vegas soul to go with your Frankie's tiki drink. Read on. And remember even if Frankie's is open 24 hours a day that doesn't mean you have to spend your whole vacation there.

Where to stay.

1. On the strip, there's Caesars Place (opened 1966). Caesars is the only old-school hotel on the strip which still maintains a high reputation. All of the aforementioned 1950's places are shells of their former selves. This also applies to Caesars to some extent. In order to keep up with the Venetians and the Bellagios, Caesars remodeled away most of their classic mafia-style decor. I remember the original towers had a soft blue/green lighting glowing through metal screens but they got rid of that. The rooms used to have round beds with mirrors on the ceilings and the showers were in the main living area (not in the bathroom). Those rooms are all gone. So what's still left? Well the circular Palace casino is still intact under the original domed chandelier. If you squint your eyes, you can still imagine it's 1966 and Frank Sinatra is walking by. Also amazingly Cleopatra's Barge is still there. It's an early 1970's disco on an actual barge "floating" on water. Caesars still gets points because it's Caesars but it's probably overpriced for what you get now.




2. Better on the strip (and I know many of you will be horrified) is Circus Circus (1968). Why does Circus Circus still have old-school soul? Because for over 40 years, it's remained true to its seedy low-roller circus theme. If you look at a picture of CC now compared to when it opened in 1968, it's still essentially a concrete circus tent. Also CC is iconic. No other Vegas casino has had the same pop culture exposure. Please refer to "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" (the book) or "Diamonds are Forever" (the movie). Hey the place was good enough for Dr. Gonzo and James Bond. Places of interest include the classic Horse-A-Round Bar that Hunter Thompson rode while high on drugs. I'm not sure if the bar still rotates since it's been broken the last couple of times I've been there. (UPDATE - Now a snack stand?) The Steak House at CC is also considered one of the best (if not best value) places to get a steak in a classic old-school environment. Note - if you don't like swarms of screaming children then stay away. But isn't that what the circus is supposed to be like anyway?




3. Ground-zero for historic Las Vegas soul, in my opinion, is Downtown. This is also very close to where Frankie's is located, making for an inexpensive cab ride.

My favorite place to stay in downtown is the El Cortez (1941). Bugsy Siegel flipped this place to finance the Flamingo in 1947 and its outer facade is exactly the same today as when it had a minor remodel in the late 1940's. The El Cortez used to have a horrible reputation as a smokey dirty low-roller place but a recent refurbishment has really turned the place around. The Tower room I recently stayed in was large, clean, comfortable and priced right at under $100 a night. The clientele tends to be value conscious locals and retirees but I did notice a good number of rockabilly and indie club kids drinking there on weekend nights. This is due to the emerging club and bar scene along East Fremont where the El Cortez is located.




4. Another great downtown place is the Golden Gate casino (1955). Actually the building dates back to 1906 when it was just a hotel. This makes it one of the oldest buildings in Las Vegas. You can just smell the history in this place (no really you can, this place smells). Don't stay here but get the classic 99-cent (which I think is now $2.00) shrimp cocktail. The coffee shop here is also one of the better places downtown to eat.




Where to Drink (This also includes the off-beat as well as old-school/historic).

1. Frankie's Tiki Room - Duh. Ok, so after you've had your fill of rum-based drinks what-s next to explore. I would recommend the following:

2. Atomic Liquors - This place opened in 1952 and is supposed to be the oldest licensed bar in Las Vegas. The Rat Pack used to drink here after shows. The place gets its name from when people used to watch atomic testing blasts from the roof. Some of the bar scenes in the movie "Casino" were filmed here. It's only two blocks east of the El Cortez on Fremont and 9th. It's a "long" two blocks though. The whole Fremont East area used to be (some say still is) the skid row of Vegas full of crime, drug addicts, and prostitution. Because of the recent renovation by the city, East Fremont is patrolled by private security up to the El Cortez. The area has been cleaned up considerably but still I would only walk to the Atomic during the day. Because of problems from several years past, the Atomic closes at 11pm. You have to be buzzed inside. I know it sounds like a cliche, but really this is the type of place Charles Bukowski would have hung out if he lived in Las Vegas. It's a colorful and interesting clientele to say the least. Busch beer is $1 can and mixed drinks and shots go for $3. Don't go there to have a laugh at the expense of those less fortunate than you, but go to experience another side of Vegas different from fake volcanoes, dancing fountains, and pirate shows. Hands downs, one of the most historic, real, and unique places in Vegas. I love it. 917 Fremont St. (UPDATE - Closed since 1/2011)




3. Downtown Cocktail Room - This is the polar opposite of Atomic Liquors. Opened in 2007, it's a sleek sophisticated ultra-lounge frequented primarily by hipster locals. This place is located on corner of Las Vegas Blvd and Fremont (the patrolled part). This makes it only 4 blocks from Atomic Liquors !! There is no visible door, you have to push on the left "wall" of where the black glass is. I guess that's the secret handshake. The drinks are pretty tasty and unique, based primarily on gin, vodka, and absinthe. These guys know their mixology. Try their signature drink, the Huntridge. It tastes like a Tiki-Ti Dr. Funk but with less of a licorice taste. I love this place too. Note, other hipster places nearby include the Beauty Bar and the Griffin. Fun for the club kids but branches also exist in LA. DCR is a Vegas original. 111 Las Vegas Boulevard.




4. Peppermill Fireside Lounge - Been around since the early 1970's. It's pretty well known so I'm sure you've heard of it. Image if a bar was based on the 1970's TV show "Love American Style". There are "make out" couches surrounding a flaming fire pit. Blue and purple neon adorn the walls. A very unique place. They're supposed to make a good Mai Tai and maybe some other tiki drinks but I've never tried them. 2985 Las Vegas Blvd (a few blocks south of the Riviera).




5. Double Down Saloon - Punk rock in Las Vegas. Signature drink is "Ass Juice" which tastes like grape cough syrup mixed with vodka. Try it. Avoid the Bacon Martini which I think is gross. Bar motto is "You Puke, You Clean". You know what really makes this place Punk rock? Bands play their own music nightly and there is never a cover charge. This is P. Moss's first bar before Frankie's. If Moss knows and respects Tiki culture the same way he does punk ethos then you know Frankie's is going to be spot on. 4640 Paradise Rd (a few blocks south of the Hard Rock Hotel).




6. Dino's Lounge - A local's bar (since 1960) with the motto "Last Neighborhood Bar in Las Vegas" as part of its neon sign. Noteworthy for its karaoke nights. What I really like about this place is that it's part of a "golden triangle" midway between Downtown and the main part of the Strip. The 1st point of the triangle is Dino's. The 2nd point of the triangle is the infamous Olympic Garden strip club across the street (beware these greedy girls will empty your wallet faster than a cold craps table). The 3rd point is White Cross Drugs (1964) which is a few blocks south of Dino's. This historic drug store (which used to be located Downtown where the Four Queens Hotel now sits) houses a 24-hour diner that's popular among taxi drivers and local club kids. Vegas locals would argue Luv-it Frozen Custard located around the block from Olympic Garden should be a 4th point making it a "golden square". Sorry I don't eat sweet stuff but the place does seem to draw a cult following.

How to enjoy the "golden triangle"? You can start out your night by downing some shots and singing your favorite Don Ho or Frank Sinatra song, walk across the street and get a really nasty lap dance, and then walk across the street again to soak up the booze with good greasy diner food inside a drug store. And because this is Las Vegas, you can do it all at 4:00 in the morning (but please be careful since this neighborhood can get dicey). Dino's is located at 1516 Las Vegas Blvd.




7. Champagnes - Another fun dive bar popular with the locals. This dark place is decorated with gold and red velvet bordello wallpaper and Marilyn Monroe portraits. Their jukebox has an eclectic mix of classic and contemporary hits. I think it opened in the early 1990's but it vibes much older. I wouldn't go out of my way for a visit (unlike the aforementioned bars) but it's a cool place to pop in for a few last drinks on the way to the airport from downtown. 3557 Maryland Parkway (across from the Boulevard Mall).




-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

PART II

If you enjoyed the first part of this post, here's some additional information you might like. Obviously this has nothing to do with Tiki, but if you appreciate Tiki for its mid-century appeal then you might find the following facts and observations interesting when visiting Vegas.

When I referred to the existing Strip hotels from the 1950's I pointed out that most of the original architecture had been demolished or remodeled away. The following are the small exceptions. I believe it's accurate but please correct me if you have any first-hand knowledge.

1. Sahara - The coffee shop is original from 1952. I think that makes it the oldest on-going operation on the strip. (UPDATE - The entire hotel closed in 2011).

2. Riviera - The first nine stories of the Mediterranean Tower are original from 1955 but obviously the rooms have been remodeled.

3. Tropicana - The low-rise Garden Wing rooms surrounding the pool are original from 1957. They're slated for destruction if any further development on the property is done. Stay there while you can but be warned they're very basic.

4. Flamingo - Sadly no exceptions, unless someone unearths the secret getaway tunnels that Bugsy Siegel built under the hotel in 1947.


With regards to Downtown, I noted the El Cortez and the Golden Gate for their old-school significance. Here are my comments on some other places.

1. Golden Nugget - The Good: Hands down it's the most posh place to stay downtown and is fantastic value when compared to the high-end strip hotels. The Bad: All of the cool architecture from the 1940's and 1950's has been removed. This includes the iconic old sign which used to be on top of the building as well as the large "GOLDEN NUGGET" lettering which ran along the sides. I guess former owner Steve Wynn thought it was a good idea during the 1980's to update the place but man did the original exterior look old-school cool.




2. Binon's - I wish I could say the Horseshoe but Harrah's owns the rights to that name after it bought and sold the place in 2004. Harrah's also stole the World Series of Poker and moved it to the Rio. The biggest physical change is when they removed the neon "HORSESHOE" lettering from the outside facade and replaced it with just the "BINON'S".

The Horseshoe was opened in 1951 by Texas bootlegger Benny Binion and it earned the reputation in Vegas for "stone cold gambling". The Horseshoe offered the best odds in town and would take on any size wager as long as it was your first. In 1980, a single craps bet of $777,000 was made on the "don't pass" line (it won). Even Caesars Palace wouldn't take that level of action. The Horseshoe was also known for cowboy justice being inflicted on cheats, hotel burglars, and petty thieves. In 1979, an angry customer who accused the house of cheating him was later found shot point-blank in the head. The gun was found in the casino vault. Because there were no witnesses, charges were never pressed !! After Benny Binion died in 1989, his children drove the Horseshoe into financial ruin. Especially sensational was son Ted Binion's 1998 drug overdose death attributed to his scheming girlfriend (who he met dancing at Cheetahs strip club). Two days later, the girlfriend's secret lover was found digging up Ted's buried treasure of $7M in silver bars. You just don't get this type of history at places like the Wynn or Venetian. You can still get a good steak (and a great view) in the penthouse steakhouse (even though they don't come from the family ranch anymore).




3. California Hotel & Main St. Station - Both casino hotels are connected by an enclosed bridge and are owned by Boyd Gaming that targets the Hawaiian market. People fly the 5 hours from Hawaii, arrive at the Cal, change into their Hawaii attire of tank tops, shorts and flip-flops, eat the same local "grinds" as at home, and for an average 5-day stay, NEVER leave the property !!

Both are fun places to wear your Aloha shirt and roll the bones with the visiting "brahs" and "sistahs". These island locals are such crazy crapshooters that the Cal has a "Golden Arm" award for those who hold the dice for over an hour. Also check out Main St. Station, they have 20x odds, the best in town !!

The Hawaiian food in these places is pretty good, especially the cafe in the upstairs mall.

Are there any good Mai Tais or Zombies to be found here? The answer is NO.




Also here's another recommendation for those who want to go off the beaten path. This is certainly true if you're going to visit Frankie's. (I doubt that many cab drivers are going to know where it's located unless you use the University Medical Center as a reference).

One place in Vegas that's fun to explore from a culinary standpoint is the Las Vegas Chinatown. Ever wonder where those Chinese, Korean, Filipino, or Vietnamese dealers eat after their shifts? They come here. Tasty Chinese seafood and dim sum, Korean BBQ, Filipino adobo stew, and Vietnamese pho noodles are located within these blocks. Now I know that visitors from places like Los Angeles or San Francisco might not find this a big deal, but for those who don't get a chance to eat authentic Asian cuisine in their home towns will find it all here on Spring Mountain Road (Just north of the Palms hotel and west of TI). Also the food is really inexpensive when compared to the restaurants in the mid to high-end casino hotels. You can start your search where it all began:
http://www.lvchinatown.com or you can just chat up your Asian blackjack dealer and ask what she recommends.




-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

PART III

Ok, I finally made it to these places.

1. Huntridge Tavern - After Atomic Liquors, this might be the next oldest bar in Las Vegas. It's been at its current location since 1962, but I think it may have originally opened in the 1950's (which would make it pre-date Dino's Lounge). The bar is part of a business which also includes a pharmacy and a lunch counter. I guess this model was common in the 1950's and 60's and the Huntridge is notable for being one of the few remaining examples.

The lunch counter was closed in the last year but is scheduled to reopen in Jan 2009 (hours from 7am-2pm). This area of the building is a cool snapshot of the early 1960's with its avocado colored walls and bright red vinyl stools. As for the tavern, its grim entrance opens into a classic dive bar space with Christmas lights and promotional beer signs adorning wood-paneled walls. The clientele is appropriately weathered and Runyonesque, enjoying $1 drafts of beer.

Not as significant as Atomic Liquors with its Bar #1/Rat Pack/Mondo Atomic/classic neon sign history but essential if you want to be a Las Vegas dive bar completist. 1122 E. Charleston Blvd (corner of Maryland Pkwy).




2. Golden Steer - Opened in 1958, it's the oldest steakhouse in Las Vegas. Red meat the way Frank and Sammy enjoyed it (Elvis too). They also claim that Tony "the Ant" Spilotro was a customer as well. Joe Pesci's character in the movie "Casino" was based on this guy. Hey if the food was good enough for a psychopathic mobster then it's good enough for me too. The place probably hasn't changed in 50 years with its dark elegant space, red leather booths, tuxedo-clad waiters (who look like Sopranos extras), and Dino crooning in the background. The food is pricey but good. I like that it's located in a dumpy mini-mall. I rate it 5 golden steers. 308 W. Sahara Ave.




3. Cheetahs - 2112 Western Ave. This strip club is notable for the following reasons:

- It was the location for "Showgirls". Now I know this movie has the reputation of being one of the worst films ever made, but I thought Elizabeth "Saved by the Bell" Berkley did some great full-frontal, uh acting in it.

- This is the real life place where Ted Binion met the femme fatale who led to his untimely death (see my review above on Binion's casino).

- It has the most extensive collection of Edgar Leeteg art that I've ever seen. (OK, I made that up but why admire a black-velvet painting of a topless wahine when you can have the real life inspiration sitting in your lap?)




4. Frankie's Tiki Room - At last. Actually I'm a snob for classic original Tiki, but that's easy for me to say since I live 30 minutes from Tiki-Ti, can walk to the Galley in Santa Monica (since 1934, the greatest Tiki bar that has no tikis) and went to high school across the street from the Bahooka. For me with neo-Tiki, if you don't have the old-school history then it has to be all about the cocktails. I don't care how many tikis you have if you're serving cheap rum mixed with Hawaiian Punch.

So how does Frankie's Tiki Room measure up?

Let's start with those cocktails. I tasted 5 and they were all great !! The drink menu features 5 classic drinks along with 15 new concoctions. The new drinks have very good descriptions as well as potency ratings measured in skulls. Very helpful. (This is in stark contrast to the Tiki-Ti drink menu. For newcomers, that menu might as well be written in Chinese. You guys know what I'm talking about.) Some of the new concoctions have an ingredient not usually associated with classic tiki - energy drinks. Is this tiki blasphemy or an evolution of the culture? I dunno but the "Green Gasser" that I tried was especially tasty. My other favorite drink of the evening was the "Murky Lagoon". This isn't on the menu but bartender Allison (aka Rumshaker) can make one up for you. So how do the classics measure up? Well the Mai Tai that I had was very good. I was planning on a 2nd visit for the weekend to try the Zombie and Navy Grog, but I got busy with a hot craps table at the El Cortez. (What about the mugs? Sorry, I don't do mugs. I'd rather use the money to buy another cocktail).

Cocktails - check, so what about the rest?

Well to begin with, the original building (1964) does vibe history. Maybe not Tiki history, but old-school Vegas history especially with its Spanish arched entrance. I'd love to learn more about the place when it was just plain old Frankie's. Maybe this is where the "black book" mobsters met in the 1960's when they were banned from entering the strip casinos.

The location is off the beaten path. It's not in an area where a casual tourist might stumble across it, ensuring that those who visit have targeted it as a specific destination (unless they've escaped from the hospital next door). This is a good thing. Also in Vegas, if you're sitting on too valuable a piece of real estate then chances are you will be blown up or reinvented. Look at the fate of Taboo Cove at the Venetian and the Trader Vic's next to Planet Hollywood (even though few will miss it).

So what does the interior look like? By now most of you have seen the great photos already posted on this site. While all of the individual pieces (tikis, paintings, blowfish lamps, etc) are great, Frankie's really shines as a sum of all its parts. The entire room is an orchestrated work of Tiki art. From every angle that you look, there is a different perspective by which to appreciate the space. The only things that seem out of place in my opinion, are the two flat-screen TV's mounted behind the bar. OK so they're broadcasting some kind of kitschy retro video rather than ESPN, but still I think they take away from the overall mid-century mood.

What really rocks at Frankie's (and I mean that literally) is their soundtrack. While it's cool to have space-age bachelor pad music or Exotica playing in the background, Frankie's takes it up a notch with 60's-era garage rock and surf music (at least when I was there). Very groovy. It's not just vintage-era music, I heard them play the 5.6.7.8's (that cool Japanese girl band that played in "Kill Bill"). I thought to myself what other place sounds this good and then I remembered, the Double Down Saloon (also brought to you by P. Moss).

OK, so by now you can tell that Frankie's is a place made by tiki-philes for tiki-philes. The drinks, the decor, and the music are all spot on. Not only that, it's all uniquely available 24x7. So now for the first time in almost 30 years, genuine Tiki culture is again synonymous with Sin City. For a place like Las Vegas, it never should have gone away in the first place.

The Aku Aku moai in Sunset Park is smiling once again.



I hope you enjoyed this post.

JOHN-O

[ This Message was edited by: JOHN-O 2012-10-28 08:26 ]


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Luckydesigns
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 15, 2002
Posts: 2177
From: Costa Mesa
Posted: 2008-12-01 8:41 pm   Permalink

Nice post, John-O. I'm sure I'll be referring to it in the future.... It's such a bummer that in Vegas, the land is worth way more than any bit of cultural history is. At least there's the Neon museum to keep it alive....

Also, it's a bummer how they have changed the Peppermill.... I mean, it's still kinda the same, but they put in all kinds of flat screen TVs all over the place. You can't escape them... Plus, from what I'm told, it's not the seedy hooker hangout that it once was. What's the world coming too? Definitely worth seeing though.

I'm looking forward to checking out the Atomic Liquors too... Never heard of it before.
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bananabobs
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 16, 2003
Posts: 824
Posted: 2008-12-02 06:41 am   Permalink

Great post JOHN-O, welcome aboard.

 
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ThreeTikis
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jun 24, 2006
Posts: 62
From: Las Vegas, Nv
Posted: 2008-12-02 07:50 am   Permalink

Thanks John-O for a very interesting post. Even though I am currently a full time resident of LV and previously a frequent visitor, I learned quite a lot. I will definitely try some of your suggestions. Love this place.
Brady


 
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little lost tiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 12, 2006
Posts: 7581
From: Orange,CA-right near the Circle!
Posted: 2008-12-02 07:52 am   Permalink

Very informative john-O!
Mahalos!


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11141
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2008-12-02 11:59 am   Permalink

Yes, a nicely written write-up, it ALMOST makes me want to go back to the the city that I am so dis...enchanted with that I vowed never to return (having stayed at the El Morocco, visited Don the Beachcomber at the Sahara, and having seen The MINT in the 80s)...

But what is that Italian place called that has the miniature liquor bottle collection? That seems like one of the few original places left, decor-wise.


 
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Psycho Tiki D
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 13, 2006
Posts: 1808
From: The river Styx, can you pay the toll?
Posted: 2008-12-02 12:41 pm   Permalink

Quote:


But what is that Italian place called that has the miniature liquor bottle collection? That seems like one of the few original places left, decor-wise.



That would be Battista's Hole in the Wall.

PTD


 
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Coco Joe
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 27, 2008
Posts: 721
From: Los Angeles
Posted: 2008-12-02 12:50 pm   Permalink

Here's a website with some images of these places

http://www.latimemachines.com/new_page_9.htm



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mrsmiley
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 3172
From: Las Vegas, NV
Posted: 2008-12-03 7:30 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2008-12-01 20:41, Luckydesigns wrote:


I'm looking forward to checking out the Atomic Liquors too... Never heard of it before.



The Atomic Liquors sign is great. A word of caution-last call is 10:30 pm!!! Yes, before midnight-the bar closes at 11pm.
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Big Kahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2007
Posts: 2330
From: SoMass
Posted: 2008-12-03 7:48 pm   Permalink

Great tips, but you're a month too late for me. I'll have to wait til next year. One note about the Peppermill. It's very kool, but also very couples. My buddy & I were definitely out of place. We had one drink & gone. If you're with a chick, it's one of the koolest places in town. I can't believe I'm already counting down to next November!

 
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Luckydesigns
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 15, 2002
Posts: 2177
From: Costa Mesa
Posted: 2008-12-03 11:36 pm   Permalink

Why is last call before mid-night?? Is the place that seedy that they have to shut it down on the early side?
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JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2690
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2008-12-04 07:31 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2008-12-03 23:36, Luckydesigns wrote:
Why is last call before mid-night?? Is the place that seedy that they have to shut it down on the early side?




The answer to that question is yes. This however is based on conditions from 5 years ago. I'm not sure why they aren't open 24x7 again.

Even with the recent renovation of East Fremont 2 blocks west, I would consider the immediate area around Atomic Liquors (and it's neighbor the Western Casino) still seedy. I would recommend a daytime visit.

Here's a link explaining the early closure:

http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2003/nov/24/owners-of-bar-overrun-by-crime-fight-back

Actually that last link made Atomic Liquors seem pretty grim. Remember it's from 2003.

Here's a recent article from 5 months ago:

http://www.lasvegascitylife.com/articles/2008/07/31/eat_and_drink/crawl/iq_23015693.txt



[ This Message was edited by: JOHN-O 2008-12-21 08:48 ]


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Dr. Zarkov
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 07, 2008
Posts: 364
Posted: 2008-12-06 1:55 pm   Permalink

This might generate controversy since it is off-topic, in a way. I got a kick out of visiting the Star Trek experience at the Hilton in Las Vegas. On the other hand, Star Trek -- at least the original series -- was culturally Ur-sixties.

 
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JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2690
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2008-12-07 08:45 am   Permalink

I think classic Star Trek definitely falls into the same 1960's kitsch category as does tiki. Remember the episode where the Enterprise visited the planet which based their society on tiki culture.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Apple_(Star_Trek)

However instead of going native, Capt. Kirk blew up the pagan idol and forced the locals to start wearing clothes. And if you think about it, tiki culture in the U.S. started to go downhill after that. Hmmm...

FYI, the Star Trek Experience closed down at the Hilton. There's talk about it reopening it at the Neonopolis complex in downtown. Wouldn't it would be cool to see fans wearing the original Star Trek uniforms and mini-skirts sipping Zombies at Frankie's? Throw in some Elvis impersonators and some shark-skin suited Swingers (Vegas baby, Vegas!!) and you have a scene that could only happen in Vegas.

[ This Message was edited by: JOHN-O 2008-12-21 08:46 ]


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hiltiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 10, 2004
Posts: 3102
From: Reseda, calif.
Posted: 2008-12-15 7:02 pm   Permalink

I love this thread, it makes me want to go back there and see them all. You have done a great job with all the info and the pictures. Is there any more old bars anywhere in this town from the 40's or 50's?

 
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