Artisan HotelA stone’s throw from Las Vegas’ downtown-Strip nexus, the Artisan Hotel has always existed in the cognitive space between the kitsch of the former and the spectacle of the latter.

One of the few properties in the city for which the word boutique is apropos, the 64-room hotel on West Sahara Avenue has always been an island unto itself, accessible via an off-Strip side street that leads to an unassuming, white, valet-parking-only building shrouded by vegetation.

You enter through one of the funkiest lobbies in the city. Swathed in dark, earthy hues, it’s equal parts museum (reproductions of works by da Vinci, Monet and Picasso), ritzy runway, hangout spot and hoarders’ paradise (paintings, statues, chairs, candles, a water feature).

Farther in, the small, intimate bar contrasts with the large, noisy meat markets in Strip properties. The lounge is cozy, a perfect place for conversation.

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