Ushering in a New Era for Downtown Las Vegas – Classic Jewel Cocktail Lounge
When people outside of the city think about Las Vegas, there are some common stereotypes that come to mind. Most likely, they’ll envision the overwhelming display of neon lights and casinos that line the Las Vegas Strip and the downtown area. For those of us who reside here in the valley, we tend to see things a bit differently. Until recently, most of the local community had begun to shy away from these more crowded areas unless a friend was visiting from out of town.
Today, however, there has been a shift in the way that locals perceive the downtown area of our city. A large piece of the puzzle has been due to the efforts of business owners like Uri Vaknin, a partner at KRE Capital LLC, a private equity firm that oversees a $450 million portfolio of Las Vegas condominiums. Included in these developments is the Juhl Luxury Highrise, where the Classic Jewel Cocktail Lounge is conveniently located on the ground floor. Vaknin has been a big supporter of the lounge and has helped to spearhead the revitalization of downtown Las Vegas, with a concentration on creating a dynamic live/work environment that hasn’t been present in the past. The idea is to recreate a place where residing and working in the same building (or within walking distance) becomes more of the norm.
Classic Jewel has added to this movement in a major way. The owners and most of the staff live in the Juhl building. The lounge caters to locals that work in the downtown area, in addition to tourists and others who are interested in celebrating our rich history while experiencing classic Vegas glam.
Upon entering, there can be no mistaking the careful planning and consideration that went into creating the ideal elegant atmosphere. Plush seating is highlighted by a crystal chandelier overhead, and meticulous detail has been put into every piece of décor and design with a nod to Las Vegas’ vintage “Rat Pack” days. There are a number of hookah offerings available, as well. During the day, many people use the lounge as a workspace, plugging in laptops and conducting business meetings.
Co-owners and business partners Jerome Harry and Ryan Brown (winner of the 2019 Progressive Business Partner of the Year Award by Battle Born Progress) hold their family business close to their hearts.
“This is a place that’s important,” Brown declares proudly. “A community-based cocktail lounge was just what we needed in this city. We needed a ‘Cheers’ of our own.”
Jerome Harry’s wife, Sherri Y. Lewis of Vegas Living Realty and Management and Town Square Mall, is a well-known real estate broker and property manager in addition to being a proud co-founder of Classic Jewel. Having gained over twenty years of hands-on experience in all facets of the real estate industry, she has become the go-to person for many of the patrons who regularly visit the lounge.
Since opening in June of 2015, the lounge has been a magnet for a host of celebrities, athletes, and politicians who are eager to support the only black-owned bar/lounge in Las Vegas. Governor Steve Sisolak, Presidential Candidate Cory Booker, and Commissioner Lawrence Weekly have all visited Classic Jewel, as well as singer Teddy Riley; comedian Earthquake; and even entertainment mogul Damon Dash. It is evident that the movers and shakers of the city know that this is the place to be.
“We work hard with our team to ensure that we maintain the right atmosphere for all involved. People really respect our space,” owner Jerome Harry explains. “Because of that, everyone comes in with the right attitude. All ages, races, walks of life. We like to call our crowd a gumbo pot – there’s something for everyone.”
The bar is open Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday from 4PM - 12AM and on Friday and Saturday until 2AM. Live entertainment is offered on Wine Wednesday (including wine and cocktail specials). On Thursday, Chicago House music is featured. Fridays are Ladies Night, and classic R&B is the vibe. Come dressed to the nines on Classic Saturdays, and on Sunday enjoy Karaoke Night. The lounge also hosts private events and asks that interested parties phone or visit their website for up-to-date pricing and calendar availability. Happy hour is from 4PM-7PM daily, when well cocktails are only $6!
“We also believe in providing continuing education for our team. Continual training empowers our mixologists to be the very best in the city,” Ryan Brown adds.
If their reputation is what first drew you to Classic Jewel, the impressive craft cocktails will be what brings you back. The Classic Jewel Martini is always a good choice, but why not be adventurous and try the 20th Century (Gin, Crème de Cacao, Lillet Blanc, lemon) or the popular Mexican Firing Squad (Blanco Tequila, Grenadine, Angostura Seltzer, lime)? No matter the choice, you won’t be disappointed. Finger foods will be added within the coming months, also, which will only support the already impressive menu.
For more information on the Classic Jewel, located at 353 East Bonneville Avenue, Suite 111, in Las Vegas, Nevada, you can visit www.ClassicJewelLV.com or call (702) 722-6750.