Las Vegas has a shrouded past, with its connection to the mob, corruption, skimming in the casinos, implosions of old iconic structures and rumblings of shady dealings. It comes as no surprise that one of the newest bars in town celebrates this mob connection, while others feature relaxed neighborhood bar atmospheres or a retro return to the past. You’ll even find a genuine roadhouse not far from town and a good ol’ fashioned Vegas Hitching Post Saloon. Then again, you may just prefer a touch of the Old Country, Dublin-style. Whatever your preference, pull up a bar stool and set a spell at these Vegas bars with history.

mob bar

Mob Bar
Across from the Mob Museum
240 N. 3rd St.
Las Vegas, NV 89101
(702) 259-9700

Situated in the heart of downtown Las Vegas, near Fremont Street and almost across from the newly opened Mob Museum, you will find the infamously named Mob Bar. This bar was opened on the anniversary of the end of prohibition – December 5, 2012.  The facade is dark and shrub-shaded while the bar’s decor is vintage. Italian food is featured with recipes and ingredients common during the 1920s. While the Mob Museum is just a bit gruesome in its displays and fascinating in its glimpse of Las Vegas’ place in the Cosa Nostra connection, the Mob Bar is a brooding, nostalgic journey back to the days when Vinnie would have broken your kneecap with a baseball bat while Louie got the cement overshoes ready. The food and booze is excellent and reasonably priced. This place has “atmosphere” <insert Brooklyn accent>.


Peppermill Fireside Lounge
2985 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
(702) 735-4177

The Peppermill Fireside Lounge features history of a different sort: dim lights, pink and blue lighting, mirrored ceilings and cocktail waitresses in black evening gowns. It’s retro with a capital “R”, housing fire pits with flames shooting from pools filling with glowing blue water, all surrounded by plush ’70s seating. Plasma screens notwithstanding, this is a great return to the lounges of that era. Got a polyester leisure suit? This is the perfect place to wear it!

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Bootlegger Italian Bistro
770 Las Vegas Blvd. S.
Las Vegas, NV 89101
(702) 736-4939

Those who say the Old Vegas is dead have never leaned on the Bootlegger bar. Here, the wine and cocktails flow with nostalgic headliners showcased seven nights a week in the adjacent dining room. On open-mic nights on Monday, you can catch professionals and amateurs belting out the classics, accompanied by a pianist. Mama Maria, the 94-year-old chef, presides over her kitchen as the crew prepares your meal, with a full menu available 24/7 at the bar. You might even find yourself next to a regular celebrity-type visitor.

Champagnes Canopy 03 2 x 3

Champagne’s Café
3557 S. Maryland Parkway
Las Vegas, NV 89169
(702) 737-1699

Champagne’s carries the scent of something vaguely sinister from days gone by when the joint was called The Old Inner Circle. The Rat Pack hung here, along with Tony “The Ant” Silotro. The atmosphere is authentic, with red-velvet wallpaper original to the old place, even after it was converted to Champagne’s in 1993. Clientele includes young hipsters and old drunks, along with those craving a taste of the real Vegas, hoping to rub elbows with a genuine mob type (not going to happen, but one can dream). The red-hued atmosphere may have changed a bit with new ownership, but the vibe of the old times remains. Vintage old men during the day, cool youngsters at night – that’s Vegas, baby!


1516 Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89104
(702) 382-3894

Dino’s has dubbed itself “The Last Neighborhood Bar in Las Vegas,” and this joint has done its best to live up to that reputation since 1960, when gangster Eddie Trascher opened the doors to Ringside Liquors. The joint was bought by the current owners, the Bartolomucci family, in 1962. Combined with this rich history are occasional live music, a “playfully infamous Drunk of the Month poll” and truly entertaining karaoke (Thursday-Saturday.) Dino’s might not be the last neighborhood bar in town, but it’s definitely established its niche as one of the oldest and best.

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Sharon Damon is a preschool specialist, avid reader, passionate writer and creative baker/ cook. She has been a cooking instructor at a local Rec Center in Henderson, NV since 2011, and has written for Examiner and other publications since 2010. She knows her way around the keyboard and the kitchen! Sharon moved from a small city in Canada to Las Vegas 6 years ago, to marry the love of her life, and has since been swept up in the whirlwind known as Sin City. Her work can be found at