What more responsible drinking location than a motel-adjacent bar.
The most direct Hover Dam to Las Vegas route skips a very worthwhile detour in the shape of Boulder City, the town that sprang to life as a means of housing the thousands of workers who labored on the Hoover Dam during its construction. On the northern tip of the Boulder City Historic District sits Maxx’s Food and Drink, a Boulder City dive bar throwback to the old school combination of roadside hotel and small restaurant in its parking lot.
As the outside of the structure proclaims, Maxx’s Food and Drink is also known as Maxx’s at the Oasis, a reference to sister business the Oasis Boutique Motel that surrounds the building. Picture a classic, outdoor hallway-lined, two-story motel and you’ve done a good job of picturing the Oasis Boutique Motel, fresh paint and thorough renovations applied to what was clearly a long-time mainstay on the Boulder City to Las Vegas pathway.
The Maxx’s Food and Drink signature amenity may just be its porch, an elevated, sizable platform above the Nevada Way road that borders the bar. Critical for Las Vegas weather and the unrelenting desert sun, the patio includes a section under a small, sloped roof that provides a bit of escape. Three rows of tables and a bench that rings the space all fit into the patio that includes a chalkboard sign pointed out toward the road with a rotating selection of sayings. On this reviewer’s visit, the inscription read “Hey! You! Get of that car and into this bar!”
The interior footprint here is small, enough room for an L-shaped bar in the center of the space and a row of hightop tables along the opposite wall. The Oasis Boutique Motel lends its light blue palette to the Maxx’s Food and Drink inside paint, many of the surfaces obviously refurbished during the renovations that swept both businesses. In back, a small kitchen is wedged into the space that features a surprisingly deep menu. Though there are numerous attractive menu options, the pizza seems to be the Maxx’s Food and Drink calling card.
Though the property borders a motel, the vibe inside Maxx’s Food and Drink is more a neighborhood bar than a traveler stopover. A running series of community events dot the calendar, including a weekly karaoke night on Saturdays. When the evening desert weather warms up enough to allow it, outdoor concerts run throughout the summer months, taking advantage of both the patio and the attached motel parking lot. And be warned that unlike other 24/7 Hoover Dam to Las Vegas bar stops, Maxx’s Food and Drink actually closes.
There are things to do in Boulder City other than visit the town’s selection of bars, but a crawl through the Boulder City Historic District is a great way to get a feel for what is a small town in Las Vegas’ immense shadow. No Boulder City bar crawl would be complete without a stop at Maxx’s, of course, one that could even turn into an overnight stay under the right circumstances.