Las Vegas

Inspired by the "What happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas" attitude, and that it usually happens after dark, nightlife impresarios keep dipping into their vast pockets to create over-the-top experiences where party-mad Visigoths—plus, well, you and me—can live out some wild fantasies. The number of high-profile nightclubs, trendy lounges, and sizzling strip bars continues to grow, each attempting to trump the other to attract not just high rollers, but A-list celebrities and the publicity that surrounds them.

Many of the newest clubs even have gambling. Though, we ask, Why bother when you can lounge beside the pool by day and bellow at the moon by night while dancing half clad at a club until noon the following day (when it's back into the pool you go)?

In the late 1990s, once the Vegas mandarins decided that the "family experience" just wasn't happening, Sin City nightlife got truly sinful again, drawing raves from clubbers worldwide. A wave of large dance clubs, such as the Luxor's (now-defunct) Ra, opened their doors, followed by a trendy batch of cozier ultralounges—lounges with dance floors and high-tech amenities.

The game of one-upmanship has continued—recent additions that have kept the city hopping include Light Nightclub at Mandalay Bay and the mammoth Hakkasan at the MGM Grand. What's more, bawdy 1950s-era burlesque lounges are continuing their comeback with a gaggle of clubs now dedicated to the art of striptease.

Few cities on Earth match Vegas in its dedication to upping the nightlife ante. So with all these choices, no one—not even the Visigoths—has an excuse for not having fun, however you define the "f" word.

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  • 1. Foundation Room

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    Ancient statues, tapestry-covered walls, pirated Mississippi road signs—the Foundation Room gets high marks for aesthetic appeal. Though it...Read More

  • 2. Hakkasan

    South Strip | Dance Clubs

    The 80,000-square-foot Vegas haunt is one of the latest iterations of the nightclub brand that started in London. The space is one part nightclub...Read More

  • 3. The Chandelier

    South Strip | Bars/Pubs

    True to its name, this swanky lounge sits in a chandelier with 2 million crystal beads, making it the largest chandelier in town (and, perhaps...Read More

  • 4. Brad Garrett's Comedy Club

    South Strip | Comedy Clubs

    Brad Garrett has returned to his stand-up roots in a classic comedy-club setting—a bar with plenty of photos of . . . Brad Garrett on the walls...Read More

  • 5. Carrot Top

    South Strip | Comedy Clubs

    After years on the college circuit, the prop comic moved his trunks full of tricks into the Luxor, where a lot of people realize he's funnier...Read More

  • 6. Chateau Nightclub and Gardens

    South Strip | Dance Clubs

    A staircase leads revelers straight from the Paris casino floor up to this French-inspired nightclub. The space itself offers three distinct...Read More

  • 7. Coyote Ugly

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    Barmaids in tight clothes break into choreographed bar-top dances intended to make Hooters look like a church picnic at this noisy tourist trap...Read More

  • 8. Eyecandy Sound Lounge

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    High technology hits the Strip at this vast "interactive" ultralounge in the center of Mandalay Bay's casino floor. For "future shock" freaks...Read More

  • 9. Franklin

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    Delano gives its classy lobby lounge a moniker that goes with its theme: the 32nd president. Bourbons, whiskeys, and barrel-aged drinks are...Read More

  • 10. House of Blues

    South Strip | Music Clubs

    This nightclub–concert hall hybrid at Mandalay Bay was the seventh entry in this chain of successful, intimate music clubs. As if the electric...Read More

  • 11. LAX

    South Strip | Dance Clubs

    At one point in recent Vegas history (circa 2007/08), this tremendous club was the hottest ticket in town. And although no single club in Vegas...Read More

  • 12. Light Nightclub

    South Strip | Dance Clubs

    Combining the acrobatics of co-creators Cirque du Soleil with a nightclub environment gives this hot spot an element of theatrics. State-of...Read More

  • 13. Marquee

    South Strip | Dance Clubs

    This cavernous joint boasts three different rooms spread across two levels, as well as 50-foot ceilings. In the main area, stadium-style seating...Read More

  • 14. Minus5 Ice Bar

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    Did you ever think you'd be wearing a winter parka in the Las Vegas desert? If not, then you've underestimated just how gimmicky these 21st...Read More

  • 15. Nine Fine Irishmen

    South Strip | Bars/Pubs

    Don't be surprised to see patrons break into impromptu bouts of step-dancing at this authentic Irish pub inside New York–New York. It's so authentic...Read More

  • 16. Press

    South Strip | Piano Bars/Lounges

    The very swanky but very inviting Press features fire pits with seating overlooking the private pool at the Four Seasons, cooled off by misters...Read More

  • 17. Rí Rá Irish Pub

    South Strip | Bars/Pubs

    Like the Statue of Liberty, this pub was constructed in Europe, then shipped over piecemeal and reassembled in Mandalay Place (yes, Lady Liberty...Read More

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