Where to Watch the FIFA World Cup in Las Vegas
The FIFA World Cup is finally here again (between June 14 to July 15 to be exact) and chances are pretty good you don't have a ticket to attend the big soccer tournament in person. That's because the games are in Mother Russia this year, and it doesn't exactly top our list of summer travel destinations. That leaves Las Vegas as the best place to watch dudes kick a ball around -- at least on TV. Why? Because there's plenty of drinks, plenty of fun, and plenty of betting windows to take your money for a good wager. (We don't care if that new law in New Jersey has kicked in or not.) So check out the best bars for watching the World Cup in Sin City, and come back for updates as the games kick into gear.
Best for: A stadium-seating view of the action
Lagasse's Stadium is one of the best places for watching sports on the Strip. The place is frickin' huge with more than a hundred high-def TVs, including a giant big screen that's 9 by 16 feet and comes with its own stadium seating. There's also a betting window just steps away so you can blow money without wasting any time. Of course, the menu has the Emeril Lagasse seal of approval and features a few special dishes for the World Cup -- like spicy shrimp with vegetable gazpacho, beef stroganoff over penne, and beer-battered haddock with fries. Lagasse's Stadium will open early at 8am to accommodate Word Cup action, but will resume its normal 11am opening time once brackets filter down past the group stage.
Best for: Cheering on the British nonstop
This authentic British pub has two locations (east and west of the Strip) -- both open 24 hours so you can catch every minute of World Cup action regardless of when a game begins. Even better, the entire food menu is available round the clock. So feel free to nosh down on bangers and mash, cottage pie, and Yorkshire pudding in the middle of the night with a pint of Old Speckled Hen.
Best for: Bonding with Europeans on the Strip
Located in the lobby of the MGM Grand, this sports bar isn't always known as a hotspot for soccer -- eh, football -- but that all changes during the World Cup. In recent years, the bar has opened early to accommodate European tourists on the Strip -- and gets packed quickly. The venue is more of a "sport restaurant" than a sports bar, with a full menu and at least 60 high-def televisions. The whole place is decorated with sports photos and memorabilia. TAP is also near the MGM Sports Book, making it easy to place a last-minute bet.
Best for: Cheering on the Germans and inhaling pretzels and booze
A faithful recreation of the famous Bavarian beer hall, Hofbrauhaus Las Vegas will open early for all Germany games, kicking off on June 17 with a showdown against Mexico. A breakfast platter will be available, featuring scrambled eggs, potatoes, smoked pork loin, krainer sausage, and bacon with a pretzel on the side. A vegetarian version is also on the menu. Either way, it's never too early to order one of Hofbrauhaus' own German-style beers on tap -- especially in a massive liter-sized mug. Games that don't involved Germany will be shown during normal business hours after 11am.
Best for: Watching in Henderson, with five styles of French fries
As the name suggests, this gastropub is all about the Brits. Expect beer bucket specials and lots of swag giveaways: T-shirts, key chains, that sort of stuff. The menu mixes British faves like shepherd's pie and sausage rolls with traditional bar grub, including five French fry variations and four different sliders. But we just can't get enough of the fried avocado slices. Between bottles and drafts, there's more than a hundred beers to choose from. And bottomless mimosas are available all day.
Best for: Placing a bet or two
When the Wynn did a major overhaul and renovation of its sports book last year, it also added Charlie's Bar + Grill right next to it, which will be serving drinks throughout the World Cup matches. The menu is playful for a sports bar (cotton candy milkshakes anyone?), although food won't be served until 11:30am. (Pro tip: Early-rising soccer fans can order food from Allegro, a nearby Italian restaurant that's open all night until 6am.) Regardless of when you show up, the games will be seen live on the giant 1,600-square-foot LED screen that wraps around the sports book.
Best for: 24/7 Irish soccer fanatics
This Irish pub is open 24 hours a day and loves soccer, so you'll be able to catch the World Cup, no problem, even if they have to wheel an extra TV out on the patio. Jersey giveaways happen during the finals. Breakfast runs 11pm-11am, offering plenty of time to chow down on Irish bacon, corned beef hash, and black and white pudding (which is a fancy way to describe meat and oatmeal pounded into a patty). A rotating daily special serves up a 20-ounce pint for $4. Mix things up with one of three Bits O' Beer flights that consist of five tastings at the same time.
Best for: People-watching, drink deals, and a Tex-Mex breakfast
With a patio that overlooks the Strip, it's easy to grab some much-needed fresh air if your team isn't doing so great during the game. But in addition to prime Las Vegas people watching, it's also an opportunity to enjoy some Tex-Mex breakfast items, especially the cheese nachos topped with two fried eggs. Cabo Wabo will open at 8am for the World Cup with beer bucket specials and morning all-you-can-drink mimosas and Bellinis for $24.99.
Best for: Casual watching and hanging out with locals
In another year, this might be the best place to cheer on Team USA, but you know how things go. The latest edition of Born and Raised is in a prime tourist zone on the Strip (the Grand Bazaar Shops at Bally's), but its original locations in the Southwest and Henderson are both still big draws for locals. While they tend to be more interested in the Golden Knights or UNLV Rebels than soccer, the round-the-clock hours leave plenty of time to enjoy the World Cup -- with a soccer following growing each year. In other words, a visit to Born and Raised could be your best bet for checking out the action and enjoying a few drinks without too many rowdy fans screaming in your ear.
Best for: Lovers of patios and Persian and Mediterranean food
Known for more than 20 years as Habib's, this Indian and Pakistani restaurant is expanding its menu and changing its name to Shiraz Persian. Renovations to the bar area and patio should be done in time for World Cup Finals viewing parties on July 6, 7, 10, 11, 14, and 15. Show up and enjoy an international breakfast along with beer and cocktail specials.
Best for: One of the best drink deals on the Strip
Despite its shopping mall location, Blondie's is one of the few sports bars on the Strip with a "locals" vibe. So it tends to get busy fast, operating on a first-come-first-serve basis. A $20 all-you-can-drink deal applies to wells and drafts during the games, which you can catch on more than 60 televisions. But you may want to scope out a seat in front of the 12-foot-long big screen. Blondies stays open round the clock on weekends, making it easy to catch an important World Cup game.
Best for: An Irish breakfast during the games
Whether it's the imported limestone bar top or the imported breakfast meats, Rí Rá is full of Irish authenticity. A magnet for European tourists on the Strip, the bar is expected to be especially busy when it opens early for World Cup games. Guest can enjoy $5 Carlsberg pints and earn a chance to win Carlsberg merchandise while the action takes place on TVs throughout five distinctly different rooms -- although this Irish pub will always remain best known for knowing how to pour a perfect Guinness.
Best for: Fans of Peru or South America
In addition to being one of our favorite new restaurants in Las Vegas, Once (rhymes with cabernet) is hosting viewing parties to watch team Peru in the World Cup -- beginning with a battle against Denmark at 6am on June 16. Entry is $25 per person and includes a drink and breakfast bowl. Expect similar viewing parties if Peru advances in the tournament.
Best for: Finding a quick viewing location
Need to find a bar quick? PT's has more than 50 locations in the Las Vegas Valley under nearly as many names (PT's Pub, PT's Gold, PT's Ranch, PT's Brewing Company, Sean Patrick's, Sierra Gold, and SG Bar), which means the nearest one is just a quick drive away. Open 24 hours a day, these omnipresent locals hangouts will be serving $3 Modelo pints and half-price breakfast items during the World Cup games. Try the pancakes with powdered sugar and maple syrup -- they're addictive.
Best For: Cheering on Italy
With a prime location in St. Mark's Square, this Italian restaurant is the perfect meeting place for the World Cup. Catch the games live in the bar and lounge. If the action gets dull, the Venetian's famous gondola rides are just steps away.
Best For: Boozing on the Strip
Get ready to drink. World Cup specials include $5 Jagermeister shots, $6 Heineken bottles, $20 Mini Meister buckets, and $25 Heineken buckets. With four full service bars, you shouldn't have to wait long for your choice to arrive.
Best for: Eating flatbreads
This Stripside bar and cocktail lounge is wheeling in extra TVs to watch the games as early as 5am. The regular food and drink menu is available all day. We recommend the butternut squash flatbread.
Brightside Breakfast & BurgersThe Plaza
Best for: Viewing the games Downtown
Head downtown, where Brightside Breakfast & Burgers is showing all games after 7am through the championship final on July 15. Between seven high-def big-screens and two projector screens, it's hard to have a bad seat. Try something from the all-day $6.99 menu. On June 17 and 27, members of the Las Vegas Lights soccer team will be hanging out during the viewing parties.
Best for: Showing your loyalty with drinks
Easy to find in the lobby of Caesars Palace, Cafe Americano is open 24 hours a day. So you have no excuse to miss any of those early morning games. Sip on $10 caipirinhas (to cheer on Brazil) and Jager Bombs (to cheer on Germany).
Best for: Making a staycation out of it
The JW Marriott has a World Cup Stay/Play-cation package until July 16 -- just in case you don't want to go home between games. It includes a standard deluxe room, watermelon basil vodka-tini pedicure at Spa Aquae, two Rasberryoska cocktails at Hawthorn Grill, two White Russian cocktails at any casino bar, and somewhere in between all this, World Cup viewing at the recently remodeled Ract & Sports Book.
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