When the center-of-the-casino Lucky Bar was sealed off for renovations a few months back, we got scared. Years ago, we used to hang out at the similar Drop Bar at Green Valley Ranch Resort, which originally had a fun space-retro vibe. That lounge was renovated into a weird, cartoon-gothic, purple-and-paisley thing. It feels like going for a drink at Disneyland’s Haunted Mansion. We didn’t like it. So we were worried Red Rock Resort’s Lucky Bar would take a similarly bizarre route.
Not only did we have nothing to worry about, but the new Lucky has gone in a completely different direction. The old version had the feel of an ultra-lounge. It was something of an escape from casino clatter, though the music was too loud at times and you could play blackjack inside. Now, everything is completely open. The walls have been torn down, making it much more of a true casino bar and lounge, like the ones in Strip resorts. There’s a lot more space, and different kinds of corners to carve into. Maybe you want to sit at a tall table with a bunch of beers and watch the game. Maybe you want to tuck into low leather swivel chairs with your date. (It seems less loud in Lucky, too, so let the conversation flow.)
The servers and bartenders, formerly decked in black leather, now shimmer in gold. And we don’t remember Lucky having a cocktail menu before. This one’s got a classic martini for two, a Matador (tequila with blood orange) and an Old Havana (8-year-old Bacardi, fresh mint and lime and a splash of champagne). The Scarborough Fair ($12) is simple and delightful, the drink you can easily drink too many of. Hendrick’s gin plus cucumber and lime sour and a bit of sage liqueur create fresh flavor, and we were happy to see no actual cucumbers of sage sprigs floating around—just clear boozy goodness.
Now that we’re able to observe all the casino action from within this spruced-up venue, we couldn’t help but gaze over at Cherry nightclub and wonder what else the Red Rock has up its sleeve. A renovation is imminent there, too. Maybe, like Lucky, it will become a little more open and welcoming.