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VOLTERRE VOYAGES: ALTERNA-VEGAS

 
The hidden charm of Vegas' rich, unusual history is often overshadowed by the modern attractions of the Strip. We teamed up with photographer and Vegas local Luther Redd to explore the 'vintage' side of Vegas - a retro desert oasis born out of dreams, danger, and a Dam (the Hoover Dam, that is). The glamour of the Glitter Gulch, which developed in 1950's, is what inspired our Dunes cateye frame - named after the famous Dunes Casino.
 
 
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Luther Redd's Picks

 
 

The Uluwatu frame in black. Shop the style.

The Étienne Marcel in Black/Silver mirror.  Shop the style

 
 

Luther Redd is a Chicago native who ventured to the bright vivid city of Las Vegas in pursuit of an artistic vision as a creative photographer. HIs vision: to provide unique captures on everything ranging from fashion, music, travel & entertainment. Below are his top 3 places in Vegas. 

Check out more of his work at: www.luthercredd.com or @luther.redd.

 
 
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Fremont Street.

The Fremont Street, located in the heart of downtown, holds endless entertainment: famous casinos, free concerts, street performers, and most importantly, age-old classic neon signs from the times of the Vegas Boom. Whether you're a tourist looking for attractions (there's Viva Vision, the world’s largest LED screen, has an incredible light show for visitors and a SlotZilla Zip Line that allows tourists to fly down the street) or an artsy type looking for inspiration from the 1950's architecture, speakeasy-themed pubs, and graffiti-covered murals in East Fremont, you'll definitely find a spectacle.

Why Fremont Street is one of his Luther's favorite places? "The local feel and the old school lights! Every time I go to Fremont it's like the first time." 

 
 

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The Plaza Hotel & Casino.

The Plaza Hotel and Casino is located in downtown Las Vegas and has been a site for many TV and movie scenes, including James Bond. With it's glittering lights, it's a historical icon on Fremont Street that played a key role in establishing Vegas' reputation for extravagance.

 

1 S Main St, Las Vegas, NV 89101

(702) 386-2110

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Binion's Gambling Hall.

Binion’s is the OG gambling hall of Vegas. Constructed by Benny Binion, one of Vegas' first opportunistic businessmen to make his fortune developing casinos along Fremont Street, and Binion's remains as both a showpiece of the 1950's Glitter Gulch and a long-standing gambling mecca. Quite different from the modern casinos on the strip, Binion's retains the same retro charm from when it was the first casino with carpet and air conditioning.

 

 128 Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 8910

(702) 382-1600

 
 
 
 
 

Eat

 
 
Courtesy of Rose. Rabbit. Lie.

Courtesy of Rose. Rabbit. Lie.

 
 

Rose. Rabbit. Lie.

Take a trip down the rabbit hole at this ultra-chic yet strangely trippy fine dining experience. Feast on entirely edible "terrariums," caviar tacos, and puff pastry atriums filled with foie gras, king trumpets and black truffle-garnished meats --all while musing at burlesque dancers and jugglers that perform as part of the Nocturne show.

 

3708 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

www.cosmopolitanlasvegas.com

+1 702-698-7440

 
 
Courtesy of Chada Street.

Courtesy of Chada Street.

Chada Street.

Nope, not all dining in Vegas involves a 16 oz steak at a 5-star resort. Chada Street may be off the radar for visitors, but it's a favorite to locals who are looking for delicious, inexpensive Asian eats in a casual environment. Come here for authentic Thai dishes and an extensive wine list, all for a great value.

 

3839 Spring Mountain Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89102

www.chadastreet.com

+1 702-579-0207

Courtesy of Raku.

Courtesy of Raku.

Raku.

Raku is an authentic Japanese charcoal grill famous for its flavorful robata skewers: try the kobe beef, foie gras egg custard, or butter sautéed scallop with special house brewed soy sauce - all at around $3 a pop.

 

5030 W Spring Mountain Rd #2, Las Vegas, NV 89146

raku-grill.com

+1 702-367-3511

 
 
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Courtesy of Yonaka Modern Japanese.

Yonaka Modern Japanese.

Sushi like you've never seen it - generous arrangements of fresh fish, beautifully served in contemporary, experimental arrangements. Uni lovers rejoice - the menu is filled with unusual uni dishes like uni panna cotta and sashimi served inside full, live sea urchin. Pictured to the left: Uni, Oyster, and Caviar and also the Garden of Eden, which might just be the most complex dessert we've ever heard of: whipped ricotta, cranberry curd, cranberry caramel, chocolate balsamic ganache, cointreau gelee, matcha dusted kataifi, spiced streusel, ricotta powder, warm spiced cake, brandy apple chocolate glaze, sesame tuille, matcha leaf, pretzel stem, strusel creamgelato, and shiso. PHEW.

 

4983 W Flamingo Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89103

www.yonakajapaneserestaurant.com

+1 702-685-8358

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Peppermill Fireside Lounge.

A retro diner with decor reminiscent of Alice in Wonderland - Floral tree branches swoop from the ceiling, pancakes and treats are served with funky faces and rainbow sugar crystals, and purple and blue lights plus a dugout indoor campfire give this place a festive playland vibe.

 

2985 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

www.peppermilllasvegas.com

+1 702-735-7635

Sweets Raku.

A gastronomic venture by Raku, this restaurant features strictly desserts - and serious ones at that. Battle for one of the few seats here and sit down for a three-course dessert menu featuring an apertif, appetizer and 'main,' some of which melt to reveal underlying treats and others that are torched before your eyes. 

 

5040 W Spring Mountain Rd #3, Las Vegas, NV 89146

raku-sweets.com

+1 702-290-7181

 
 
Copyright © 2017 Holsteins Shakes and Buns

Copyright © 2017 Holsteins Shakes and Buns

Copyright © 2017 Holsteins Shakes and Buns

Copyright © 2017 Holsteins Shakes and Buns

 
 

Holstein's Shakes and Buns.

One of the Cosmopolitan's famously delicious eateries serving over-the-top stacked burgers, brownie-adorned shakes, and unique surprises like nitro meringues and Rising Sun fries (a secret menu item with fries topped with cheese and fried avocado).

 

3708 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

www.holsteinsburgers.com

+1 702-698-7940

 
 

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Hash House A Go Go.

Disgustingly delicious breakfast chain serving famously oversized portions: a record-breaking tower of chicken 'n waffles, jumbo smores chocolate lattes, and fried chicken benedict the size of an small child, smothered in housemade gravy. Definitely not for those on a diet.

 

3700 W Flamingo Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89103

www.caesars.com

+1 702-777-7777

Babystacks Cafe.

Casual diner chain with a renown brunch - for its pancakes and beyond, including loaded omelettes, Freedom French Toast made with challah bread rolled in cereal, and Cookie Butter French Toast. But let's focus on the pancakes: flavors range from red velvet, peppermint chocolate, tirimisu, german chocolate, 3 different types of banana panakes, and even orange creamsicle. Believe it.

 

4135 S Buffalo Dr #101, Las Vegas, NV 89147

www.babystackscafe.com

+1 702-207-6432

 
 
 

SEE

 
 

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Neon Museum. 

Discover neon signs that reveal Las Vegas' past - guided tours offer a fascinating and comprehensive history of how Vegas came to be while also providing colorful backdrops for your photos. Book a tour either during the daytime or at night. 

 

770 N Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89101

www.neonmuseum.org

+1 702-387-6366

 
 
Photo courtesy of Downtown Container Park

Photo courtesy of Downtown Container Park

Downtown Container Park.

Created from shipping containers and brimming with art, music, and food, the Downtown Container Park offers a quirky and family-friendly place to relax at the heart of Las Vegas. Come for the 40-foot tall fire-breathing mantis, and stay for the four story playground slides. 

 

707 Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101

downtowncontainerpark.com

+1 702-359-9982

 

Photo courtesy of Chihuly

Photo courtesy of Chihuly

Chihuly.

If you’re looking for world-renowned contemporary art, look no further than the Las Vegas city center. Inside is a 4,350-square foot gallery of vivid sculpted glass by Dale Chihuly. His work can also be seen in the lobby of the Bellagio, where the ceiling is adorned with a piece “Fiori di Como.” 

 

3600 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89109

www.chihuly.com

+1 702-693-7995

 
 
The Dunes frame, named after the Dunes Casino in Vegas, at Seven Magic Mountains. Shop the style.

The Dunes frame, named after the Dunes Casino in Vegas, at Seven Magic Mountains. Shop the style.

 
 
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Seven Magic Mountains.

A special temporary exhibit on the fringe of Las Vegas by Swiss artist Ugo Rondinone, stacks of neon-colored rocks liven the desert and look especially gorgeous against the Mojave sunset. Check it out before it's too late!

 

S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89054

sevenmagicmountains.com

+1 775-636-2567

 

 
 
Photo courtesy of the Las Vegas Review

Photo courtesy of the Las Vegas Review

The Smith Center for the Performing Arts.

The Broadway Theater of Las Vegas not only has Tony-award winning productions every night of the week (including Hamilton, starting next May), but it also boasts a whimsical sculpture garden on the same property, including  "Pipe Dream" by Tim Bavington. 

 

361 Symphony Park Avenue, Las Vegas, NV 89106

www.thesmithcenter.com

+1 702-749-2012

 

Photo courtesy of The Mob Museum.

Photo courtesy of The Mob Museum.

Mob Museum.

A far cry from the archetypal depiction of mob members in the movies, the Mob Museum is the real deal: pictures, memorabilia, and raw footage (that doesn't hold back in terms of blood and gore) take visitors straight to Vegas' beginnings. The museum's patrons have consistently commented on the museum's intriguing, engaging presentation of the city's crime-riddled history, often staying for several hours to learn just how pivotal was the mob in creating the city we enjoy today.
 

300 Stewart Ave, Las Vegas, NV 89101

themobmuseum.org

+1 702-229-2734

 
 
 
 
 
 

DO

 
 
Photo courtesy of ADARAS

Photo courtesy of ADARAS

Flightlinez Bootleg Canyon.

SlotZilla ziplining on Fremont was just practice - enjoy a more exhilarating zipline tour over expansive desert views.Thrill-seekers can ride 1.5 miles at speeds of over 60 mph for an off-the-strip Vegas experience. 

 

1644 Nevada Why, Boulder City, NV 89005

flightlinezbootleg.com

+1 702-293-6885

Photo courtesy of Pacific Coast News

Photo courtesy of Pacific Coast News

The Nevada Preservation Foundation Tours.

Tired of hearing that Las Vegas was just a soulless city of sin, the members of the Nevada Preservation Foundation gathered to "cultivate a presence around cultural heritage" and show the world the city's rich architectural history - which happens to be filled with retro, quirky midcentury masterpieces that could be the long lost siblings of those in Palm Desert. Check the NPF website for tours and events like the Neon Bus Tour or a Martini Tour at the Liberace Mansion. 

 

330 W Washington Ave suite 106, Las Vegas, NV 89106

nevadapreservation.org

+1 855-968-3973

 
 

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Valley of Fire State Park.

Comprising of 40,000 acres of red Aztec sandstone and limestone, Valley of Fire State Park is a beautiful and appropriately named wonder of Nevada. The park contains ancient, petrified trees and petroglyphs dating back more than 2,000 years. The park contains numerous campsites and hikes and costs just $10 to enter. 

 

29450 Valley of Fire Hwy, Overton, NV 89040

parks.nv.gov

+1 702-397-2088

 

 
 

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Delano Spa.

Stripped away from the grandeur and fake crystals that decorate many of the resort spas nearby, the Delano hotels offers a refreshing tranquility with its minimal stone spa. Oh, and just $30 gets you a day pass in the pools. 

 

3940 S Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89119

www.delanolasvegas.com

+1 702-632-4760

 

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Red Rock Canyon.

Nevermind Sedona and the Grand Canyon - the national parks in Nevada rival Arizona's awe-inducing landscapes. Red Rock Canyon consists of 19 hiking trails, unique wildlife, and a 13-mile scenic drive that, at just 22 minutes from the Strip, would be a sin to miss.

 

State Highway 159, Las Vegas, NV 89161

www.redrockcanyonlv.org

+1 702-515-5350

 
 

Salt Room.

Step into this sanctuary of warm salt crystals for the finest Halotherapy in all the land. Halotherapy is the heavenly practice of salt therapy (and has an angelic name to boot) and has countless health benefits in the skin, immune, and respiratory department. At Salt Room Las Vegas, one can enjoy yoga, meditation, and pilates in their room of genuine Himalayan crystals as well as spa treatments. 

 

1958 Village Center Cir, Las Vegas, NV 89134

www.saltroomlv.com

+1 702-228-7258

 

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Hoover Dam.

Believe it or not, there's lots to do above and below the Hoover Dam: Swim in Lake Mead, cliff jump into the Colorado River, hop on a Kayak tour and check out the awesome views of the quarry from within, or check out the jawdropping view from the top. Kayak tours: https://evolutionexpeditions.com/kayak-hoover-dam-express.html

 

Nevada 89005

www.usbr.gov

+1 702-494-2517

 

 
 
 

DRINK

 
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Photos courtesy of Beauty Bar. 

Beauty Bar.

Two words: GLITTER WALLS. By day, this place looks like a legitimate beauty salon from the 50's, complete with retro hair dryers and salon mirrors. But Beauty Bar is, indeed, a bar in the heart of old downtown Las Vegas at the end of historic Fremont Street. Along with this *fabulous* ambiance, this place has a weekly calendar of live music that takes place in their back patio. 

 

517 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101

thebeautybar.com

+1 702-598-3757

 
 
Photos Courtesy of Double Down.

Photos Courtesy of Double Down.

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Double Down Saloon.

Enter at your own risk - Double Down is descried as both "extremely gritty" and "the best dive bar ever." Enjoy $3 cocktails during happy hour, bacon martinis, their signature ASS juice, arcade games that, in the style of the nearby casinos, offers free drinks while you play, live music, and the luxury of "Puke Insurance" for $20 in case of an accident (not sure if this is actually real). Not for the faint of heart, but definitely a spectacle. 

 

4640 Paradise Rd, Las Vegas, NV 89169

doubledownsaloon.com

+1 702-791-5775

 
 

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Frankie's Tiki Room.

If you like a good tropical theme and strong, fruity drinks, look no further than Frankie's Tiki Room. This place has hand-carved bamboo seating, blowfish lighting, and is open 24/7.

 

1712 W Charleston Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89102

www.frankiestikiroom.com

+1 702-385-3110

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Gold Spike.

Gold spike is a playground for adults, complete with giant beer pong, giant chess, octopong, cornhole, skeeball, shuffleboard and more in a giant, indoor/outdoor bar space.

 

217 Las Vegas Blvd, Las Vegas, NV 89101

www.goldspike.com

+1 702-476-1082

 

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The Laundry Room.

Guests claim to feel like they've entered a different era at this 1920's secret speakeasy hidden inside the larger nightclub Commonwealth. The Laundry Room oozes ambiance with salvaged vintage decor, dim lighting and ornate glassware and is accessible only to those with reservations via a secret door.

 

USA, 525 E Fremont St, Las Vegas, NV 89101

commonwealthlv.com

+1 702-701-1466

Paymon's Mediterranean Cafe & Lounge.

Quite a switch-up from the bar and club scene, Paymon's is an insane Barbie-meets-Alladin hookah lounge - just look at the pink interior! Check out this Mediterranean cafe fit for a long, late night with friends where you can actually rest your feet and much on dolmas and baba ganosh til the sun rises. 

 

4147 S Maryland Pkwy, Las Vegas, NV 89119

http://paymons.com/

+1 702-731-6030

 
 

VOYage to VEGAS in The Dunes FRAME

 
 
 

copy this nifty map to your google drive and reference it on your journey!

(full screen -> click the 3 dots at the top of the menu -> copy map)