The 18b Arts District in Downtown Las Vegas, otherwise known as the Las Vegas Arts District, consists of an eclectic mix of independent art galleries, one-of-a-kind stores and unique eateries. Its name comes from the original Arts District that was created in 1988 when 18 blocks were set aside to encourage and boost the arts. Today, the 18b Arts District has sprawled out well beyond these original 18 blocks and is definitely a must-visit when in Vegas.
18b Art Galleries
The 18b Arts District is home to a number of exciting independent art galleries. 303 North Studio is owned by artist James Henninger and showcases upcoming and established artists from the Las Vegas and Los Angeles areas. The Brett Wesley Gallery features contemporary paintings, photography and sculpture, while Clay Arts Vegas focuses on ceramics, with fantastic exhibitions as well as classes. Gainsburg Studio is a stone carving studio that is always worth a visit, while Sandman Studios is run by an artist that specializes in glass etchings.
The shops in the 18b Arts District are beautifully diverse, and a stroll through the area will have you coming across a number of one-of-a-kind stores. For vintage clothing and accessories, head to Amberjoy’s Vintage Closet, as well as Electric Lemonade, a fun vintage and new lifestyle boutique. Armstrong’s Emporium is always a hot spot for antiques, while Corner Store Furniture Co. usually has some unique vintage furniture finds. JJC Clocks, Antiques and Collectables pride themselves on being the largest antique clock shop in the Tri-state area, and also boast quite an impressive rare clock collection. For those looking for gifts, Gaia Flowers specializes in sustainably grown flowers and locally made gifts, as well as stationary and other quirky items.
Las Vegas is known for its thriving food scene, and the restaurants found in 18b are the perfect reflection of this. Bar Bistro @ The Arts Factory is always a happening spot, because not only do they serve up some of the tastiest Latin fusion dishes in town, but they also have 16 art galleries, live music performances, body painting, and live artist painting sessions. Pop Up Pizza is another popular restaurant, mostly due to the quality of their food thanks to fresh ingredients, homemade tomato sauce, and the perfect crust. Casa Don Juan is a vibrant Mexican joint, while Bier Garten prides themselves on their “Beercraft and Foodery”, serving up a delectable selection of artisan sausages and craft beers. Just like many other thriving arts communities around the world, 18b caters well to vegans and vegetarians, with the Bronze Café and the Pura Vida Bakey and Bystro in particular, the latter of which serves up unforgettable Caribbean fusion dishes.
18b is also where First Friday is hosted each month, an arts festival that is considered to be the premier arts event in all of Las Vegas, attracting a diverse crowd, one-of-a-kind art, street performances, and guaranteed fun. The 18b Arts District is always an exciting area of Vegas to spend some time in, whether you have particular shops or restaurants in mind or are just browsing through the fantastic mix of offerings, so do check it out the next time you are in the city if you haven’t already done so.