Joe Downtown: Speakeasy-inspired lounge opening in Las Vegas Arts District

The Hawthorne, a speakeasy-inspired urban lounge, will cover two floors in the Art Haus building, 1115 S. Casino Center Drive.

A new urban lounge will bring more competition to downtown’s loaded bar scene, but it won’t be located on East Fremont Street, where much of the property is already owned by Downtown Project.

With a special-use permit recently approved by the City Council, The Hawthorne will cover two floors in the Art Haus building, 1115 S. Casino Center Drive. The building is owned by Proview Series LLC but is being developed by Creative Beverages LLC.

The two-story tavern in 900 square feet will be designed in the style of a Prohibition-era speakeasy, said Brittany Davis, speaking to the City Council two weeks ago.

“It will be a bar like no other, implementing history and telling the story of Prohibition within the bar (with) class, sophistication, a full wine list, classic cocktails and beer,” Davis said.

The lounge will be two blocks east of the Velveteen Rabbit, a bar that opened this summer and has quickly become a downtown hot spot.

Both are located in the Arts District, a mile southwest of the Fremont East Entertainment District and is home to the monthly First Friday art walk.

Davis said the bar will create 20 full- and part-time jobs. “It will help bring revenue to the Arts District and downtown and be one step closer to making the Arts District a walkable community,” she said.

Davis also plans to do something pretty novel for downtown businesses. While most Fremont Street business do not advertise, Davis said, she plans to market the lounge nationally.

“We want to make it a landmark that tourists seek out and locals visit,” she said.