New Downtown Lounge Classic Jewel Has Old-School Vegas Luster

A treasure has been unearthed at the Juhl. Like a time capsule from the 1950s comes Classic Jewel, a retro-themed lounge located on Juhl’s north side. Classic Jewel soft-opened on June 27, but a proper grand opening party is planned for sometime in the near future.

Decked out with chandeliers, tufted wall panels, an ornate banquette, a hand-crafted concrete bar, and a giant mural of ‘50s-era Vegas created by local artist Miguel Rodriguez, this swanky concept exudes classy cool. And though it’s the first nightlife business venture for co-owners Jerome “Rome” Harry and Selina Brown, they look to be doing everything right.

As we talk, workers put finishing touches on the space. Harry says he needs to frame some photos of Fremont Street from UNLV’s archives, add a few accents and tidy up: “We’ll be ready to rock and roll after that.”

“A lot of the people who work Downtown want to have a place that they can call home.”

Harry and Brown have devoted a generous amount of time to conceiving and planning the space, beginning six years ago, when Harry moved Downtown to the Juhl.

“We wanted to be a part of something that was growing and cater to the community,” Brown says. “A lot of the people who work Downtown want to have a place that they can call home. We want to get our regulars that when they walk in the door, we know exactly what drink they want.”

Harry, a former indie music label honcho from Los Angeles, and Brown, who’s worked at various Strip properties for the past five years, are going all-out with the theme. They plan to screen classic films and concert footage from the vintage Vegas era. Though you might see Sammy on the screens and hear Frank on the speakers, there will be contemporary tunes, too, provided on weekends by DJs, live bands and lounge singers.

Classic Jewel's Jerome “Rome” Harry and Selina Brown

Classic Jewel’s Jerome “Rome” Harry and Selina Brown

As a member of the Las Vegas Cruisin’ Association classic car club, Harry also wants to showcase some sweet rides in front on the weekends. But if it’s the retro vibe and classic rides that drew you to the Classic Jewel, it’s the drinks will keep you in their cushy seats.

The menu, designed by family friend Kimberly Etol, features 10 cocktails that fit the theme like an evening glove. You’ll find drinks with names like Pink Cadi and Oh Audrey!, along with their own spins on staples such as the Old-Fashioned, Vesper and Martini. If you enjoy a little kick, Brown recommends The Heat, a jalapeno margarita.

And if you’d prefer a cold brew instead, they’ve got a few local breweries on tap, too.

“We have slim kegs, so we’ll be switching them out regularly,” Brown says.

But you don’t have to be a lush to lounge at Classic Jewel. With such close proximity to legal offices and the courthouse, Harry hopes 9-to-5ers might drop in for meetings.

“Even if they don’t want to have a cocktail, they can grab an Arnold Palmer or an iced tea and it’ll be a nice place for them to meet,” he says.

Though Classic Jewel takes its cues from the old school, Harry wants to be clear that this isn’t a speakeasy. There will be bright, neon signage in front, unlike the shuttered Lady Silvia at the Soho Lofts.

“We want people to know exactly where we are,” says Harry.

Classic Jewel, 353 E. Bonneville Ave. #111., (702) 722-6750. Hours: 4 p.m.-2 a.m. Fri. and Sat., 4 p.m.-midnight Sun-Thurs.

Vegas Seven