Location: North/West of The Strip
1980 Festival Plaza Dr.
Las Vegas, NV 89135
Hours: Mon-Sat 10am-9pm
Store Hours May Vary
Vegas4Visitors Rating: B+
At a Glance
What is it?
An outdoor mall with a mixture of big stores, small boutiques, and restaurants.
Where is it?
Next door to Red Rock Resort in the northwest section of town.
What do they sell?
There about 125 stores ranging from big (Macy’s, Dillards) to small (Guess, Hot Topic, Forever 21, etc.).
What are the prices like?
Average for these kinds of retailers.
What should I be sure to check out?
There is a branch of the beloved Capriotti’s.
Why should I shop here?
Because you are in the neighborhood and you need a new pair of shoes.
What else do I need to know?
It’s an outdoor mall so be prepared for weather.
What’s the bottom line?
A cool shopping experience but probably not worth the drive for most Vegas visitors.
I still don’t totally get the idea of outdoor shopping experiences in Las Vegas. For those who haven’t been paying attention, it gets really hot here in the summer and often very chilly during the winter. Why people think that being out in, you now, weather when they could be enjoying climate controlling air condition is beyond me, but I guess that’s why I don’t design shopping centers.
I bring this up because of Las Vegas’ latest mega-shopping complex, Downtown Summerlin. Located in the suburban neighborhood on the west edge of town, right next door to Red Rock Resort, the long delayed facility finally opened in late 2014. It’s designed as an urban downtown, with buildings full of shops, restaurants, and entertainment on the ground floor and office space above in some cases. There are drivable and walkable streets throughout with curbside meter parking plus big lots surrounding it on all sides where you can park for free.
It’s similar in concept to Town Square, the village themed shopping center just south of The Strip, but whereas that one looks like small-town America, this one looks more like medium-sized city America. The buildings here feel more “real” – if you got dropped, blindfolded, into the middle of it, you might think you were in some city’s downtown, albeit one that is probably too nice and clean for reality purposes.
There are about 150 stores and restaurants so far, a lot of which are pretty familiar to anyone who has been in a mall lately. Dillard’s and Macy’s have big anchor stores while smaller outlets are filled by brands like American Eagle, Banana Republic, Bath & Body Works, Ethan Allen, Forever 21, Gap, GUESS, Hot Topic, J. Jill, Lane Bryant, L’occitane, Michael Kors, Nordstrom Rack, Old Navy, Sephora, Skechers, Sur La Table, True Religion, and Victoria’s Secret (which apparently is required by law in every American shopping center). There are quite a few independent and local stores as well so it isn’t all national chains.
There is a long list of dining options including a full Trader Joe’s grocery store, a Wolfgang Puck Bar & Grill, California Pizza Kitchen, Red Robin, and several fast food options including Capriotti’s, Earl of Sandwich, Five Guys Burgers, and Panda Express. There are also several local eateries including a branch of the popular MTO Cafe.
A five screen cinema represents for the entertainment portion of the program and, as mentioned, Red Rock Resort is next door where you’ll find a casino, another 16 screen movie complex including an IMAX theater, a bowling alley, and more.
All of this is the first phase. They are planning on more than doubling the size of the facility in the coming years and adding a residential component.
So it’s a pretty cool facility with a lot of popular stores and eateries, but most Vegas visitors will probably never actually visit it. Why? For the same reason they don’t often visit Red Rock Resort – located about 12 miles west of The Strip, it’s just too far for most visitors. If you have a car at your disposal and traffic is in your favor, you could probably make it in about 20 minutes, but most tourists don’t and traffic usually isn’t. To be honest, the selection of shopping and dining options here isn’t anything radically different than you can find at malls closer to where you’ll probably be staying, including Town Square. The prices, while certainly cheaper than what you’ll pay at similar stores on The Strip, are not so much cheaper that it would make it worth the while for most folks.
This is one that should be reserved for the explorers among you – those that have a car and want to get out and experience more of Las Vegas than is contained on the four mile long strip of hotels and casinos where most people spend the bulk of their time. If that’s you, check it out on your next trip. For everyone else, go to the Fashion Show or Town Square and you’ll save yourself a lot of time.