Partying in Vegas is on the top of the list of things that tourists and locals alike want to experience. But waiting hours to get into a high-end club can put a damper on the evening, to say nothing about the cost, and even more waiting in long lines to get a cab when you want to try another club. A group of guys will hardly ever get into a nightclub here on the weekends. Enter Darin Feth, owner and operator of Nite Tours. For a nominal sum, you can board one of his limo buses, enjoy all the free drinks you’d like on your limo bus ride, go to three top clubs and get VIP access and treatment, and party the night away to your heart’s content, without ever having to worry about the safety issues of driving. Darin says 93% of his clients are return customers, and 80% are 3, 4, and 5-time returning clients. The average age of a Nite Tours customer is 28, but clientele ages range from 21 to 65. It’s very diverse. Groups of women book all the time and outnumber the men customers (great excuse to book, guys). Darin, who’s mostly German with a little Russian thrown in, grew up in Edmonton, Canada. His grandfather’s parents fled Germany and moved towards Russia, then came across the ocean to Canada. On their trip through international waters, Darin’s grandfather was born. He was literally a man without a country. Darin’s grandmother left Austria to go to Canada at age fifteen. She ended up in a small town where she lived and worked and became ‘a tough old bird’, according to Darin. With this kind of ancestry, it’s no wonder that Darin Feth wants to tackle the world with his entrepreneurial ideas.
SLV: Tell me a how Nite Tours got started.
DARIN: In 1984, I was doing standup comedy at the Comedy Store, Laugh Factory, and the Comedy Magic Club, all through Pasadena and Los Angeles. I did that for a little over six years, and then I got tired of it. It’s just drinking and womanizing, which is great, but I thought there’s got to be a better career out there. So I came home to Edmonton and started a thing called Club Crawls. I still wanted to entertain, and I loved seeing people be happy going out for an evening, but how could I do that, since I didn’t want to do comedy anymore? I bought an old double-decker bus from England. We fixed it up, put a stereo system in with a microphone, and I learned to drive this old piece of shit tractor (that’s what it was like) and we started the tours in 1990. No one understood what the hell I was doing. It’s a simple concept. Pick people up, take them in a safe environment, entertain them and give them the time of their life, treat them like a VIP, get them in and out of the clubs quickly. People didn’t get it, and a lot of the clubs wouldn’t give me an opportunity, until finally one did. I said ‘Let me prove myself. And if they don’t spend any money, then it’s over with and I’ll never bring you business again.’ Sure as shit, they spent anywhere from sixty to eighty dollars per person, per stop, per venue. They were dropping big money. This owner got it, and he told other people and more people came to us. I used to drive the bus, having my best friends dancing with the people and getting them pumped up and then we would stop at the first pub. As we stopped at the first pub, I’d get out, run around and hop inside the double-decker bus and go: ‘Hey, how’s everybody doing tonight?’ I’d do some standup and get everyone even more pumped up. We’d then do a conga line into the pub, and we would dance and drink (I wouldn’t, because I was driving) and we’d have a great time and then we’d get them back in the double-decker bus again, do a little more comedy and then drive to the next stop. I’d repeat this again for the second stop, but I’d never do comedy for the third stop, because they were drunk and wasted, so I didn’t bother. That’s how we started.
SLV: So Edmonton, Canada, is the home base?
DARIN: Yes, but I wanted to expand, so I took it to Milan, Italy. I had no money. I flew out there basically on all the money that I had, but I had a friend who was going to help me. We did the tours basically for all the big top models and modeling companies. I wanted to see if the product was diverse enough to take it around the world. I had a meeting with these Italians [about the buses] over dinner. They only spoke Italian and I only spoke English, so we spoke through an interpreter. The reason they liked me so much was because I listened, even though I didn’t understand a word they were saying. You actually mentally, physically, think you can understand, because of their gestures. Afterwards we did lots of Grappa, lots of Grappa, and all of us got drunk. Because I drank Grappa like a man, I paid attention, and I didn’t interrupt and just listened, they just fell in love with me, and they gave me the use of the buses for free.
SLV: It proved to be a success in Italy?
DARIN: Yes, then I went back to Canada. I opened up Nite Tours in Barbados for a while, then in Atlanta and Denver. I’d always go home, save a little money and then spend it to test a new market.
SLV: Tell me how Nite Tours works here in Vegas.
DARIN: The signature product is the Club Crawl. It’s taking people out in a safe, entertaining environment, on high-end limo buses, to go to the best clubs in the city. Not the second best, not the third best, but the best clubs in the city. So here in Las Vegas, it’s Tryst, LAX, Pure, Studio 54, The Bank, Tao, clubs like that. Out of those clubs, we have a set schedule and there are three or four set schedules per night. Once the first one is sold out with eight people, the second one will sell out and onto the third. You can go on Nite Tours every single night of the week and never hit the same clubs. I discount the tours enough that the people still have money in their pockets to spend.
SLV: How do you know what club you will be going to?
DARIN: You get to see which clubs before you signup.
SLV: How do you book Nite Tours?
DARIN: You book online or book with the people in our office. You meet at the first ultra lounge, where you get 2-for-1 drinks. You then get your wristbands and meet all the people on your tour. Each limo bus holds approximately 40 people and that’s all you’re going to see on your limo bus throughout the night. If you’re in a club like Pure, you might see 400-500 people with different colored wristbands, but you never see them throughout the night, because they’re all coming from different areas. If you all end up at Pure tonight and there’s 400 people from Nite Tours, they’ll have come from LAX, from Studio 54, from Gilley’s, from Christian Audigier, so they all come into the ending point of Pure.
SLV: What happens when you arrive at a club?
DARIN: When we get to the club, you’ve got 1,000 to 2,000 people standing outside these clubs. Nite Tours has a special line when we show up with your tour host. The management will show up and greet your Nite Tours host, and all you have to do is have your I.D. ready and you start going in right away. If you’re not with Nite Tours, your wait time in line would be a long hour to two hours, minimum. With Nite Tours, it’s 5-7 minutes, and if you’re not with Nite Tours, after waiting for two hours, you’re going to pay $40 bucks, just to get in. Nite Tours is $69 for 3 clubs, no line, no cover, VIP entrance right away, limo bus, and all-you-can-drink on the limo bus, as you go from club to club. We stay at each club an hour and a half.
SLV: Do they have to be aware when the hour and a half is up?
DARIN: We tell them. You’ll get a 10-minute warning on your phone via text message.
SLV: What happens if some people want to stay longer at a particular club?
DARIN: We have people do that. Sometimes they meet new people and want to bring them on the tour, but we never let outsiders on the tour. We never sell our tours at the clubs.
SLV: What happens if somebody gets out of control?
DARIN: They get kicked off the tour. We’ll get them kicked out of the club by security. We have direct lines with all security from each hotel. When security comes, we’ll point the person out and we’ll get them kicked out of the hotel. The worst thing that happened was one night some guy started grabbing boobs in a club and he was kicked out.
SLV: So people have to get to the first ultra lounge.
DARIN: 99% of our tourists are from conventions visiting our city. Most of them are either staying on the Strip or have transportation to the Strip. For example, Red Rock Casino has transportation back and forth to the Strip. We’re very blessed that this works very well for tourists.
SLV: On the limo buses, are the hosts multilingual?
DARIN: Most of them are. Multilingual to them would mean English and Spanish, but we have some that speak French and Italian. We have one person that speaks seven languages.
SLV: Tell me more about the limo buses. You said there were free drinks?
DARIN: When you get on our bus, our host will tell you how everything is going to play out for the night. The bus is pumping with energy and music and it’s so much fun! There are different kinds of beer, coolers, and champagne for the ladies. So this way they’re not drinking and driving. Isn’t that great!?! We pick up, and bring them all into a party. They’re safe, they’re not drinking and driving, they’re having the time of their life, they’re bonding, there’s no care in the world, they’re full of love and happiness and the beautiful thing is it’s structured. I can’t tell you how many times I want my wife to take care of an evening, so I don’t have to think. That’s what Nite Tours does. You just have to show up and we do all the thinking for you. You just sit back and relax and you meet people from every corner of the globe, from Russia to Italy to Asia, you name it...singles too, and a lot of backpackers from Australia that we integrate into the group. We also have contests on the limo bus, so if you’re a sexy pole dancer, you might win a shirt or coupons for dinners or shows.
SLV: What dress is considered appropriate?
DARIN: Dress to impress. Nightclubs in Las Vegas have very strict dress codes. Men should wear dress pants, dress shoes and button down shirts or similar dress shirt. Ladies should wear skirts, dresses, dress sandals or pumps. No sweat suits, baggy t-shirts, beachwear, open toe sandals or other such casual wear. The night club has the last say on who gets in according to their Club’s dress code, because they only let the elite in.
SLV: Tell me about the StripLV Nite Tour available with Nite Tours.
DARIN: The tour starts at an ultra lounge like Caramel, then we go to a club like Pure or The Bank. We then stop at the Las Vegas Sign for a photo op, and then it’s off to the new Hustler Club or Spearmint Rhino for the gentlemen’s club experience. All cover is paid at all venues and all your drinks are free on the limo bus. Front-of-line entry everywhere, and no waiting.
SLV: Tell us what else Nite Tours has in the works.
DARIN: We’re in the process of setting up a martini/wine crawl at the Venetian/Palazzo that takes you to five locations and you sample wines from around the world. The sommelier will greet you in the restaurant and tell you the wine of the day, its region where it’s from, how it was made, what to smell, what to taste, and it makes it a lot of fun. It’s priced at $39 all-inclusive and lasts about 4 ½ hours. We are also in the process of firming up a martini/wine crawl with the MGM properties. It will leave on a limo bus with different kinds of wines and champagnes that you can drink while going to the next location. Another one in the works is the culinary crawl where you go to 5 restaurants and you taste samples of food from around the world: Thailand, Italy, and France, as you go from restaurant to restaurant. That’s $89 all-inclusive. You can buy wine or anything while you’re there and you can buy more food or make reservations for the next day. We get letters from mayors and senators saying, “I went on your tour,” or “I’ve heard about your tour. Is it something you’d like to bring to our city?” It’s very complimentary to hear that this is something their city can use. It makes you feel good. SLV
Issue 52 featuring: Alexis Ford, Kimberly, Gia Jordan and Kagney Linn Karter