As is the case with the other, maybe the only, US city where you can consume alcohol 24 hours a day and up until recently could smoke indoors, New Orleans (duh), Las Vegas provides one of the more democratic drinking experiences you’ll probably find in this country. I guess vice is a middle-age magnet. Or maybe it’s that you could spend all day and night drinking for free-to-$3 a beverage and that’s a boon to those on fixed incomes.
You’ll notice, though, that while I stayed two nights on the strip and two nights downtown, I did not hang out at any bars on the main drag so I’m really only speaking to off-strip characteristics.
Fireside Lounge: Yes, girl’s nights and 40something dates.
Hennessey’s Tavern: Yes, white-haired couples.
All sitting outside (I was the only one indoors during the day) because these Vegas good-timers do not care one lick about sun damage.
Freedom Beat: Yes, more white-haired couples.
The Parlour Bar: Yes. In fact, at the 4pm-7pm and 11pm-to-close happy hours, you’d be hard pressed to find anyone under 40. I was fascinated by a va-va-voom 40-ish Asian woman with a mixed race mildly hip man two decades younger because I assumed it was a mother and son, but why would I assume that? A nice “functioning alcoholic” (his words) with gout decided to chat with me until security threw him out because he’d already been banned from the El Cortez. The guy on my other side threw himself out and started screaming obscenities at the man next to him. I patronized this bar four times.
All casino floors: Not technically bars but free drinks are available from roving waitresses (and they are all waitresses) if you can flag them down, and little matters like walkers, scooters, and oxygen tanks do not prevent any women from planting themselves at slot machines for hours on end.