Jason R. Latham

Writing obituaries is never fun, and though the Downtown Las Vegas nightlife scene is ever-changing, it stings when we must wave goodbye to a place that’s been so reliable for so long.

Vanguard Lounge was among the first bars to bloom on Fremont East in the 2010s, breathing life into the street’s formerly seedy northside façade and fitting in comfortably between fellow hall-of-famers Emergency Arts and Insert Coin(s). Come 2020, Vanguard will join them on our Fremont Wall of Remembrance, as owner Jennifer Metzger has announced the bar’s closure following New Year’s Eve.

With its street-side patio seating, modern industrial décor and always-inspired cocktail monikers (“That Escalated Quickly” and “The Ratio of People to Cake Is Too Big”), Vanguard played its part perfectly from the jump, whether you preferred it as a “starter” destination before the night really got going, or as a “closer” for one last sip before you sent yourself home.

And let’s not forget the way Vanguard helped pioneer afterhours programming on Fremont East with its First Friday “Naked Neon” party and a rotating lineup of resident DJs, many of whom we look forward to seeing one last time before the doors close for good after the final NYE bash. –Jason R. Latham

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