Annual’s less than a month away but that doesn’t mean it has to be ALL business.’  We’ve got the low down on the best eats, entertainment and nightlife for those who are able to get away and enjoy what Vegas has to offer!

Good Eats

Fruit plate

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The Peppermill: $$ American & Breakfast Food

Located just down the street from the Convention Center, The Peppermill is a must see while in Vegas.’  From the 70’s swanky vibe décor to the large portions of delicious food to the variety of unique and classic drinks, The Peppermill has been a Vegas favorite for over 40 years.’  And not only is it open 24/7 but we are also having our YALSA Happy Hour shindig there on Saturday, June 28th from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.

Holstein’s Shakes and Buns: $$ Burgers

You can’t go wrong with a good ol’ fashion burger and shake, except that Holstein’s is far from old fashioned. Designed specifically for the Cosmopolitan Hotel, this restaurant strives to use fresh, natural and organic ingredients in unique ways.’  From their Rising Sun Kobe beef burger with teriyaki glaze, nori furikake, crispy yam, spicy mayo and tempura avocado to The Fat Boy Shake with UV Candy Bar vodka, Reese’s, pretzels, sprinkles, chocolate and caramel popcorn, this place will guarantee to surprise and delight you.


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Monta Ramen: $ Ramen and Japanese Food

If you’ve never had a traditional bowl of ramen, you have to try out Monta.’  Located in Chinatown and seating a maximum of 28 people, this ramen shop is heavenly.’  Their menu only consists of ten items: four types of ramen + toppings and six additional Japanese dishes but that’s all you’ll need for a mouthwatering meal.’  The broth is rich and topped with green onion, mushroom, bamboo and melt-in-your mouth Chashu pork.’  You’ll never look at dry ramen the same again.

Mon Ami Gabi: $$ French Food

I never had an interest in French food until I ate at Mon Ami Gabi located in the Paris Hotel. ‘ ‘ Just a peek at the menu includes paté, tapenade, escargot, all sorts of cheese, 12 different types of steaks and a variety of fresh seafood including trout, salmon, scallops, shrimp and shellfish.’  There are several Annual events being held at the Paris as well, so it’s doubly convenient to hit up this restaurant while you’re there!

Lotus of siam

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Lotus of Siam: $$ Thai Food

This restaurant is famous, as it has been featured on many TV shows, magazine and foodie sites and is frequented by all sorts of celebrities!’  The reason is simple: the food is authentic, delicious Thai food and it’s the best in town.’  It’s in a small shopping center off the Strip and looks a little rundown from the outside but it’s amazing on the inside and so worth the wait to be seated.’  Especially the $10 lunch buffet from 11:30-2:00 p.m. every day.’  This is a Vegas must!

For more good eats, check out the YALSA Wiki page for all types of cuisines, prices and locations.

Favorite Bars and Nightlife

Nightlife Downtown: Downtown Las Vegas has come a loooong way and is quite hip nowadays especially when it comes to the bar scene.’  Fremont Street hosts most of the most popular bars now including barcades, lounges and dive bars:


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  • The Griffin: A cozy, ritzy lounge with fireplaces and comfy sofas where you can order unique cocktails.
  • Banger Brewery: Locally owned and brewed, this bar only serves unique, hand crafted specialty beers.
  • Insert Coins: Filled with classic arcade games from Street Fighter to Space Invaders.
  • Downtown Cocktail Room: Has a great happy hour from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. featuring original cocktails and classics.
  • Gold Spike: This hotel downtown has turned its entire first floor into a game room, with ice skating, giant Jenga, pool and a lounge for late night fun.’ (photo from

Nightlife on the Strip:


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Here are some of the top clubs, lounges and bars on the Strip!

  • XS Nightclub: In the Wynn Hotel and always jumpin’, this is one of our hippest night clubs with great DJ’s, dance mixes and drinks.
  • The Chandelier: An upscale lounge located in the Cosmopolitan Hotel, their unique and delicious drinks and classy ambiance will pull you in.
  • Mandarin Bar: Great view of the Strip, creative cocktails and chic atmosphere located in Mandarin Oriental Hotel.
  • Marquee Nightclub and Dayclub: Dayclub and pool by day and dance and nightclub by night in the Cosmopolitan as well, Marquee is one of our most popular night life venues by far.
  • Parasol Up / Parasol Down: Elegant décor with waterfalls and flowers, this trendy lounge in the Wynn is definitely a unique Vegas experience.



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Bellagio Conservatory, Fountains and Art: The Bellagio in general has an excellent assortment of entertainment from the amazing water shows every 15 minutes out front to the intricate 20 ft. tall flower creations in the Conservatory to the various art pieces around the hotel.’  And it’s all free which makes for an excellent walking excursion around the Strip.

Adventuredome Theme Park: Vegas’s one and only theme park located right off the Strip includes all sorts of fun for adults and children alike. With roller coasters, laser challenges, whirly gigs, 4D rides, and carnival games, it’s a great way to get away from all the business and just relax and have a good time.


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Container Park:
Live music almost every night, a giant playground for your little ones, and all sorts of venues to eat, drink, and shop, the Container Park is the hip central location for Downtown Las Vegas.’  Check out the fire breathing praying mantis, get some froyo with delicious toppings and hit up some of the unique bars while lounging outside listening to some upbeat music on the concert stage.

Madame Tussauds: Want to hang out with your favorite celebrities?’  Take some selfies together?’  Then check out Madame Tussaud’s Wax Museum with its insanely detailed replicas of your favorite famous persons, from movie stars to professional sports players, Playboy bunnies to musicians, and most recently, the Marvel Superhero attraction!

Amusement Park

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The LINQ: This is one of Vegas’s newest attractions complete with an outdoor mall, shopping and eating options galore and a giant Ferris Wheel that gives you one of the best views of the city in town.’ The cupcake shop is delicious; there’s also a bowling alley bar, a Ghirardelli chocolate café and so much more!

For a more comprehensive list of things to do in Vegas, check out our other Wiki page.

I hope you all have a fabulous time visiting our unique city!’  If you need more info definitely hit up our comprehensive summary of Vegas on the YALSA wiki page.’ Looking forward to Annual everyone!’  We’re almost there!

By Soraya Silverman-Montano: Manga Queen, Mad Science Master, and Geeky Youth Services Librarian Extraordinaire!


One Thought on “Vegas Local Favorites: Food, Drinks, Entertainment and More!

  1. Awesome tips! One thing, though- the YALSA Happy Hour is Saturday June *28th* (It’s my birthday otherwise I wouldn’t have picked up on this. 🙂 )

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