6 new bars in downtown Las Vegas and on the Strip

Overlook Lounge in Wynn Las Vegas conjures an opulent mood. (Credit Wynn Las Vegas)

For enthusiastic tipplers, for occasional imbibers and for social sippers in between, Las Vegas abounds in opportunities to wet the whistle, to dip the beak. Vegas is to cocktails what Yountville is to wine, and new bars regularly open to serve a thirsty city.

These six newcomers in the center of things — downtown Vegas and the Strip — range from neighborhood casual to proudly plush. Your shaker awaits.

Aft Cocktail Deck

Parties held on superyachts inspired this bar docked on the Lake of Dreams at Wynn Las Vegas. Two terraces — the upper and lower decks — feature ship railings, plump curving banquettes, swivel deck chairs, and crenellated white umbrellas with nautical blue tassels.

The cocktail program includes drinks like the Turks & Caicos, a guava and passion fruit rendition of a mojito; a Monaco spritz that calls on lemon juice, lemon verbena and lemon basil organic vodka; and the Ibiza, which celebrates a top stop for superyachts with vanilla vodka, Kahlua and cold-brewed espresso.


Bar Parasol

Bar Parasol (the reimagined Parasol Down) lies just across the gangway from Aft Cocktail Deck at Wynn, in a colorful soaring alcove fitted with parasol-inspired fixtures above, parasols sheltering the tables below, and a bar that runs the length of the space crowned by a parasol canopy.

Bar Parasol offers great people-watching as they descend the escalators on either side. (Is electric blue sateen back in fashion?). No matter. The drinks are stylish enough. Like the Havana, a rum and cardamom-spiked take on an Old Fashioned. Or the Jet Set, pairing a bump of sturgeon caviar with a shot of Perrier-Jouët. A tasting of three roes and three Champagnes expands this pairing.

F the Bar

F the Bar occupies a low-slung section of the renovated former motel at the Fergusons Downtown block. The bar, lying across the lawn from Peyote restaurant, sports wooden booths, roughly textured walls, brass accents and, as a counterpoint, a profusion of potted plants.

Craft cocktails take pride of place. A Vegas Playground, smack on trend, marries Ketel One, St. Germain, hibiscus, lavender syrup, lemon juice and a float of prosecco. Low-intervention wines, including a rosé of the rare Chambourcin grape, make an appearance, as do canned beers from across Nevada.

Folks can F it Thursdays through Sundays, with pop-up foods, drinks priced $6-8 and live music on Saturdays and Sundays.

Overlook Lounge

Two sculpted chimeras — part rabbit, part mermaid, part winged bull — command the bar at Overlook Lounge at Wynn Las Vegas. The sculptures help convene an opulent mood, one also created by gleaming crystal, polished wood, silver chandeliers, chinoiserie upholstery and lamps that cast a skin-enhancing glow.

And yet, for all that, the former Parasol Up doesn’t feel stuffy. The other evening, a young guy in kicks nuzzles a shot of tequila while a woman at the bar in a white Le Smoking (wearing diamonds the size of Chiclets) makes nice with a flute of bubbles. Both seem right at home.

Looking across Overlook to the Lake of Dreams, you also might sip a Brando, a twist on a New York sour fashioned from WhistlePig Rye, malbec, lemon and jabs of cardamom.

Rhumbar Tropical Ultra Lounge

Rhumbar reopened in mid-April as Rhumbar Tropical Ultra Lounge at The Mirage. Inside, Rhumbar features a pink and ochre palette and a 40-foot brass bar set with pink fluted tile. On the terrace, there are steel umbrellas with custom fringe, ’60s pink bucket seats and sinuous velvet banquettes.

The new bar program showcases cocktails like a Surfrider Mai Tai with two rums, pineapple juice and almond orgeat syrup, and a large-format Violet Revolver harnessing Botanist gin, passion fruit puree, and rum and cane syrup falernum.

Soak up the spirits with a collision of wings, chili lime fries and croissant pigs in a blanket. If your pleasure inhabits the smoke, spark up with a selection from the cigar menu.

The Sand Dollar Lounge

The Sand Dollar Lounge debuted its second location, this time downtown, in early May. The latest iteration of the blues bar incorporates elements of the original — vintage chandeliers, stained wainscoting, rock art — but in larger premises that allow for a bigger stage, more dance space and expanded booth seating.

Free live music nightly, craft cocktails (look for the blended-scotch Paranoid), pizza and pool tables continue at the new bar. Although The Sand Dollar Lounge lies adjacent to the hotel’s casino floor, there’s also a Main Street entrance (created by removing a wall) so folks can skip the casino walk.

Contact Johnathan L. Wright at jwright@reviewjournal.com. Follow @ItsJLW on Twitter.