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A Moody New Cocktail Lounge Just Opened Nearby LAX

Wood-lined, low lights, and just a few blocks from the airport

Sam First Bar
Farley Elliott is the Senior Editor at Eater LA and the author of Los Angeles Street Food: A History From Tamaleros to Taco Trucks. He covers restaurants in every form, from breaking news to the culture, people, and history that surrounds LA's dining landscape.

A cozy new cocktail lounge has opened up practically on the runway near LAX. It’s called Sam First Bar, and it lands inside a remodeled office building along Century Boulevard.

Opened last night, Sam First adds new life to the so-called Gateway district of Los Angeles, immediately surrounding LAX. There has been a big improvement initiative over the past several years to revamp the airport business community with new nightlife and dining opportunities for travelers as well as locals, and much of that outside the usual hotel bar or fast food dining options. The Proud Bird’s new food hall-lite build-out is a primary example of a rethought property just a short cab ride from the terminals.

Sam First continues that tradition as a moody, wood-lined bar as the Last Word Hospitality (Same Same, Brack Shop Tavern) team will run the show here. There’s a fully stocked back bar on offer to go along with the working piano in the corner, plus some craft beer and wine options for those in need. Right now Last Word has not installed a complete cocktail menu, instead sticking with a rotating array of different classic cocktails that should be easily accessible for all. Hours for Sam First run 4 p.m. to midnight most days, with a jump to 2 a.m. on Friday and Saturday.

Sam First Bar
6171 W. Century Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA