While it may be intimidating to brave the crowds for one of the most notoriously erratic nights on the already chaotic Strip, an unforgettable experience is always in store for New Year’s Eve partygoers on Las Vegas Boulevard. Instead of hitting the clubs, consider these unconventional venues that are hosting their own unique New Year’s countdowns.
Las Vegas Monorail
For the first time, the Las Vegas Monorail will host a New Year’s Eve extravaganza at its Third Rail Lounge, a luxury event venue at the Convention Center station. Guests will be treated to music provided by Taj and DJ Livinh, plus a Champagne toast at midnight. Plus, the lounge’s floor-to-ceiling windows provide the ideal vantage point for the Strip’s numerous fireworks displays. Perhaps best of all, though, attendees will be given unlimited rides on the monorail for 24 hours, with all party guests receiving complimentary reusable cups to enjoy specialty cocktails at “refill stations” on select stops throughout the route. 3150 Paradise Rd., $175 per person, $300 per couple, 8 p.m.-1 a.m., lvmonorail.com
The Ice Rink
While ice skating is typically more popular in the early half of December, don’t count The Cosmopolitan’s rink out as a club alternative for your NYE celebration. Ticket holders have access to an open bar and skate rentals for the night, and the Boulevard Pool’s rooftop venue serves as a perfect lookout for the dazzling Strip fireworks. $99, 8 p.m.–1 a.m., cosmopolitanlasvegas.com
For an unmatched view of the fireworks displays throughout the Valley, as well as a bird’s-eye view of the chaos ensuing on the Strip, ring in the New Year on The Linq’s observation wheel. Purchase an individual ticket or splurge on one of six exclusive packages. True “high rollers” might consider buying out an entire “bubble” for the all-inclusive Diamond Cabin package—with premium upper-tier midnight fireworks viewing, an open bar within the cabin and VIP treatment, including an exclusive preparty and priority boarding for a top-notch experience. $275–$10,000,
For a family-friendly NYE option, the Rainforest Cafe at Harmon Corner will host a G-rated New Year’s Eve party, with plenty of space for fireworks views on its outdoor patio. Sit back and relax while the kids enjoy a variety of entertainment, including dancing to a live DJ, tricks from an in-house magician, souvenirs from a balloon artist and body art from a face-painting station. The restaurant will offer a buffet throughout the affair, with entrees such as carved roast beef and coconut shrimp with mango sauce. 3717 Las Vegas Blvd. South, $25–$99, 9 p.m.- 1 a.m., rainforestcafe.com