Neonopolis, the promised mega-shopping center on Fremont Street and Fourth, has struggled over the last few years. Since its opening in 2002 ownership has changed hands several times with the last being just two years ago. Its original purpose was to help revitalize and develop the Downtown area by bringing in tourists and residents for a unique and contemporary shopping experience. Unfortunately that hasn’t happened yet.
One of the biggest issue seems to be that they charge for parking whereas most other malls in the valley don’t. They’ll validate if you take in a movie or you can park in the less expensive underground parking.
If you’re walking around anyway and don’t need to bother with parking, you can take a load off and cool down at the 14-screen Galaxy Neonopolis movie theater.
Once you’re rested you’ve got three stories of mall to cover, though tenants have been moving in in stops and starts. There aren’t many shopping opportunities yet as the mall continues to recover from weak management that promised incoming opportunities that never materialized. There is, however, a beautiful open atrium in the center of the mall connecting all the retail and dining areas and decorated with lots of vintage neon signs from Vegas’s past.
Some people find it creepy to be in a shopping mall that just isn’t very busy, while others find it a welcome break from the usual hustle and bustle of Vegas. You’ll have to check it out and decide for yourself!
So far, the biggest draw for the center, aside from the movie theater, is Jillian’s, a 42,000-square-foot entertainment and dining complex. It has giant TV screens, multi-media bowling alley, billiard tables, a game room with electronic games and an American cuisine menu. The powers-that-be seem to know what they have with it, and hopefully are continuing to work to make Neonpolis the mega-plex that it deserves to be!