Tag: community
Palio Coffee Shop

I love Las Vegas, but sometimes it’s nice to take a break from all the action. In the city that never sleeps, sometimes it’s hard to find a place to chill unless you go back to your hotel room. Since Las Vegas is a tourist attraction, of course my expectations for coffee shops is different than say in my hometown of Phoenix. However, seeing how Las Vegas is a hub for extravagant shows and one-of-a-kind shops and galleries, I could see someone establishing a coffee shop that had a cool twist or a novel idea. I think this would definitely appeal to visitors because at some point you want to sit down and relax and escape the incessant crowds.


But while we wait for that coffee shop to appear, there’s a cozy and delicious coffee shop called Palio, which is tucked away in the Bellagio Hotel. I actually stumbled on this establishment by accident because I made a wrong turn and found myself wandering through the shops and small eateries. Styled in the fashion of a Tudor-like cafe, Palio offers amazing coffee drinks and tasty treats, such as muffins, pastries, and sandwiches. My friend and I enjoyed huge mugs of some of the most incredible lattes and chilled for a couple of hours. The coffee shop offers beautiful views of the pool area, so it’s a also nice spot to people watch. Considering the fact that most things are more expensive in Vegas, I thought the prices on the menu were reasonable. The portions are generous, so you don’t feel cheated, and the customer service is more than satisfactory.


I was very impressed with Palio, and it was so nice to be able to sit down and not worry about watching the clock or navigating crowds. To be honest, I think most people are unaware of this gem, but if you ever find yourself near the Bellagio and you want a place to sit and relax check out Palio. I’m sure you won’t be disappointed. 

Lux Coffee Review

Lux has to be the hottest hot spot I’ve ever reviewed. It doesn’t seem to matter what day or time I go to this place. They are always busy. It’s not hard to see why. Their menu is extensive and besides offering good coffee, they have breakfast, lunch, and dinner selections, baked goods, and even beer, wine, and cocktails. They are one of the few places that are open late at night. During the weekends, Lux keeps their doors open until 2AM.

Located on Central Avenue, between Camelback and Indian School, Lux is a hub for coffee dates, schoolwork, and business meetings. The inside of the café is made up of multiple smaller rooms, which all have a rustic European feel. The layout doesn’t necessarily flow and the stacks of supplies in the adjoining hallways sometimes feel chaotic, but the overall feel of the café is generally cozy. Plus, there’s plenty of outdoor seating.

During their peak hours, Lux can feel overwhelming. I don’t have a problem standing in line, but trying to maneuver through people and trying to figure out if people are in line or just waiting is not fun. However, once I do find a cozy table in the corner, it’s a great experience. I love bringing my work to Lux because I like the background noise, and I enjoy people watching. Also, everything Lux serves is high quality and delicious. I haven’t been disappointed once. In fact, my mother loves their crumb cake so much that she occasionally guilt trips me into going to Lux just for the cake.

The only other weakness about Lux is their parking. They do have a small parking lot and street parking, but, when it gets busy, even street parking gets limited.

Because I really like the coffee and atmosphere at Lux, I’ve learned to go when I know it’s not their busiest time. I’ve noticed that Meetup groups have met at Lux, which shows that it is an environment that encourages some sense of community. Lux attracts customers of all different ages and backgrounds. Most of my readers have probably already heard of and have been to Lux. For those of you who haven’t been to this coffeehouse, I definitely recommend checking it out. It’s one of those few places where you can go by yourself and not feel weird about it because you’re not the only one. There’s something for everyone at Lux.

Thanks A Latte Coffee Shop Review

I’m currently working on a book that involves me visiting antique stores throughout the valley. One afternoon, my friend and I went up to Camp Verde to rummage through their antique stores. Sweet Pea Antiques and Ruby Road Resale Road, by the way, offer some awesome finds. I found a couple of beautiful glassware pieces that you would have to spend a fortune on if you found them anywhere else.

Camp Verde has a chill feel, much like Flagstaff. In many ways, this town is a throwback to a time before social media and technology made so many of our connections virtual. I didn’t see so many people glued to their phones. People greeted me, when I walked into the stores. I didn’t feel invisible, which was nice. Plus, since it’s north of Phoenix, the temperature wasn’t quite as hot, which was also a bonus.

Before heading back to Phoenix, we decided to stop for coffee. Nothing like a dose of caffeine before you head into rush hour traffic, right? About a 10 minute drive from the antique stores, right on Main Street, was a small “mom and pop” coffee shop called Thanks A Latte. As soon as we walked in the door, the owner of the shop welcomed us. One of the first things I noticed was their vast menu selection. In addition, to offering coffee drinks like lattes, macchiatos, and cappuccinos, they also had a good selection of breakfast and lunch specials as well as non-coffee beverages like chai lattes, hot chocolate, and smoothies. As usual, I ordered a latte and a gluten free brownie and a coffee cake for my mother. Of all the things we ordered, the coffee cake was the best. I don’t typically eat coffee cake, but I did try a bite before I gave it to my mother (something I would only do with my mother). The latte was good, but I couldn’t eat the gluten free brownie. When I first went gluten free, I remember experiencing baked goods that had this peculiar taste. Not being someone who cooks or bakes anything more complicated than an omelet or rice, I can’t say for sure what that taste is. The adjective that comes to mind, however, is gritty. The owner mentioned that the recipe was something that he had created. Most likely it’s an ingredient or two that is the culprit, but since the coffee cake was really good, I think there is hope for the shop’s gluten free selections.

So far this coffee shop was the most physically comfortable. The seats were plush and it was well lit without it losing its coziness. What I found particularly interesting about this coffee shop was that I read on their website that they have special events like open mic, concerts, and workshops for musicians. However, the thing that really caught my attention is that every last Monday of the month you can enjoy a cup of coffee with a cop. Why do I think this is significant? No matter what field you’re in there are going to be good people and bad people. Yet, when we have bad experiences or we hear stories on the news, we begin to draw associations. It’s part of human nature. I think it’s great that this coffee shop gives people in the community a chance to connect with each other.

Of all the coffee shops, Thanks a Latte comes the closest to what I would like to see in a coffee shop. I realize that many people go to cafes to work or to meet up with their friends. However, I really like the idea of coffee shops providing a space for people to feel a sense of community and be exposed to things, which they wouldn’t otherwise get to experience.

I give this coffee shop a 5/5. Despite the fact that the gluten free brownie wasn’t so great, everything else was exceptional. Plus, I respect what this shop is providing it’s customers and community. I hope other coffee shops will follow their lead.