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Party on: Seven of 10 top-grossing U.S. nightclubs are in Las Vegas

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Afrojack and Steve Aoki at XS in the Encore on July 4, 2011.
Photo: Erik Kabik/Retna/ErikKabik.com

Trade publication Nightclub & Bar revealed its 2014 list of the nation’s 100 top-grossing nightlife venues, with Las Vegas once again dominating the rankings with 24 local hotspots making the list.

That total is up three from last year, with seven of the Top 10 earners calling Las Vegas home. Fifteen Las Vegas nightclubs, bars and lounges placed in the Top 30, with XS at Encore taking the top spot once again this year with a record-breaking annual revenue of $90 million-$95 million, up from last year’s $80 million-$90 million.

List rankings are based on estimates of each venue's total revenue in 2013. New nightlife heavyweights Hakkasan at MGM Grand and Light at Mandalay Bay received honorary placement on the list, as neither club has been open for a full year.

Nightclub & Bar, which hosts its annual convention and trade show in Las Vegas from March 24-26, reports the combined total revenue of $1.5 billion from the Top 100 earners, on par with last year’s total earnings. The bar and nightclub industry continued to enjoy overall growth, with 77 percent of operators surveyed experiencing a spike in revenue over the past year, one-third of whom saw more than 10 percent growth.

"Not only does our 2014 Top 100 survey show that Las Vegas has rightfully earned its reputation as the nation’s nightlife capital with 24 venues making the list, but also the results prove just how much patrons love nightlife venues across the entire country with ongoing growth in the industry,” said Jon Taffer, president of Nightclub & Bar and host and executive producer of Spike TV’s Bar Rescue.

“Seeing our 2014 list gets my heart racing because these venues continue to push each other day after day, and I can see the concrete results of their dedicated efforts through these revenue numbers. It’s an amazing time to operate a nightclub or bar."

So just how did Las Vegas' world famous nightclubs stack up? Take a look at the Top 10 earners below:

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      XS at Encore

      2013 total revenue: $90 million-$95 million

      Last year's rank: XS climbed around $10 million to lay solid claim to the top spot, which it shared last year with Marquee at the Cosmopolitan in a tie at $80 million-90 million. XS took second place in 2012 with a total revenue of $60 million to $70 million. The venue helped usher in the era of the mega-club when it opened on New Year's Eve in 2008 and continues to draw some of the biggest crowds on the Strip five years later with resident DJ royalty like Avicii, Zedd and Diplo.

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      Marquee at the Cosmopolitan

      2012 total revenue: $85 million-$90 million

      Last year's rank: Marquee slipped from the No. 1 spot it held on the list in its first two years of operation but nonetheless enjoyed unprecedented growth in 2013 with an earning increasing of about $5 million. The Cosmopolitan hotspot broke revenue records when it debuted in 2011, pulling in more than $70 million in its first year of operation. The 60,000 square-foot venue has lived up to its name since opening on New Year's Eve in 2010 as a premier clubbing destination. With three rooms of genre-spanning music and a thriving dayclub, Marquee makes a point of defining itself from its peers with ahead-of-the-curve DJs and a playful, anything-goes party atmosphere.

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      Hakkasan at MGM Grand (honorable placement)

      First year expected revenue: Nightclub & Bar expects Hakkasan's current high volume generating pace to bring in an estimated $90 million by the time the five-story behemoth celebrates its first anniversary in April, a feat practically unheard of for a club in its first year. That amount still isn't enough to offset the rumored $100 million it cost to build the club, not to mention the million-dollar contracts owners dished out to secure residencies from A-list DJs like Tiësto, Calvin Harris and Steve Aoki, but we have a feeling that won't be an issue for long.

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      Tao Nightclub at the Venetian

      2013 total revenue: $50 million-$55 million

      Last year's rank: The nightclub-restaurant-lounge continues to draw crowds with its globally recognized name and one-stop-shop nightlife model it helped pioneer, holding fast to its No. 3 spot on the list for a third year. Still, the venue saw an overall decline in earnings from the past two years, during which it brought in $60 million-$70 million annually.

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      Surrender at Encore

      2013 total revenue: $45 million-$50 million

      Last year's rank: Surrender has shared in the Wynn-Encore-property wealth of resident A-list DJs, and that's done the decadent outdoor venue a lot of good in the past year: Surrender moved up a rank yet again, pushing LIV Miami Beach out of fourth place with earnings on par with last year's bracket. The venue has continued to climb steadily up the list, jumping three spots last year from No. 8 in 2012, when it earned an estimated $35 million-$45 million.

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      LIV Miami Beach

      2013 total revenue: $45 million-$50 million

      Last year's rank: The chic Miami hotspot inside the famed Fontainebleau Resort slipped back to fifth place, although it maintained a higher revenue than last time it held the spot, keeping steady with last year's earning bracket. LIV—the Roman numerals for “54,” referring to Fontainebleau's 1954 opening—has established itself as a paradigm for the Miami club scene since opening in 2008, rivaling Las Vegas venues with a 52-table, 18,000-square-foot club space.

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      Pure at Caesars Palace

      2013 total revenue: $30 million-$35 million

      Last year's rank: Pure held onto last year's No. 6 spot, although it fell slightly from its total revenue of $35 million-$45 million. The nightclub slipped two spots on last year's list, down from fourth place and an earning bracket of $45 million-$60 million. Nonetheless, the sprawling, Top 40-friendly club opened in 2005 is still going strong among a list of newer, trendier competitors.

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      Lavo New York

      2013 total revenue: $30 million-$35 million

      Last year's rank: Lavo New York maintained last year's seventh-place rank, continuing to outperform its Las Vegas counterpart with a modest uptick from 2012's revenue of $25 million-$35 million.

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      Story Miami Beach

      2013 total revenue: $25 million-$30 million

      Last year's rank: Story makes its debut on the list this year, kicking Tryst at the Wynn out of the No. 8 spot. Formerly known as Amnesia, the South Beach nightclub opened to great fanfare in late 2012 and has been drawing crowds ever since with the likes of Avicii, Armin Van Buuren and Seth Troxler.

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      Lavo at Palazzo

      2013 total revenue: $25 million-$30 million

      Last year's rank: Dining hotspot and Tao counterpart Lavo held steady at ninth place this year, with earnings comparable to 2012's $25 million-$35 million bracket. The restaurant-lounge jumped up three slots last year from 12th place in 2012.

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      Hyde Bellagio

      2012 total revenue: $25 million-$30 million

      Last year's rank: Bellagio's fountain-side lounge climbed two spots from last year's list, cracking the Top 10 and staying on par with 2012's estimated earnings of $25 million-35 million. The club might be smaller than many of its Top 10 brethren, but it has made a name for itself since opening on New Year's Eve in 2011 with hip mixology, open-format DJs and celebrity guests.

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      Beyond the Top 10: Other Las Vegas venues that made the list

      11. Haze at Aria: $25 million-$30 million

      13. Tryst at Wynn: $20 million-$25 million

      14. 1 Oak at the Mirage: $20 million-$25 million

      Honorable mention: Light at Mandalay Bay

      24. Chandelier Bar at the Cosmpolitan: $15 million-$20 million

      25. The Bank at Bellagio: $15 million-$20 million

      26. LAX Nightclub at Luxor: $15 million-$20 million

      42. Chateau at Paris: $10 million-$15 million

      48. Ghostbar at Palms: $10 million-$15 million

      61. Moon at Palms: $5 million-$10 million

      73. Drai’s Afterhours: $5 million-$10 million

      79. Lagasse’s Stadium at Palazzo: $5 million-$10 million

      80. Body English at Hard Rock Hotel: $5 million-$10 million

      88. Gold Boutique Nightclub at Aria: $5 million-$10 million

      94. Lily Bar & Lounge at Bellagio: $5 million-$10 million

      96. Stoney’s Rockin' Country: $5 million-$10 million

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