In places across the country – including Los Angeles, Las Vegas and New York – cannabis lounges are making a comeback, picking up where the trend left off in early 2020 when the pandemic forced developers to temporarily put weed bar plans on the shelf.
That’s good news for cannabis consumers who want the chance to enjoy weed with others in a safe, social environment. As things return to something resembling pre-pandemic normalcy, business owners hope cannabis lounges will experience a business boom.
Even the Original Cannabis Cafe in West Hollywood, California, which opened with great fanfare in 2019, is set to reopen in 2022. And Jay Z’s company recently bought a dispensary just steps from the cafe, where his weed brand, Monogram, is sold, according to L.A. Eater.
West Hollywood Is Epicenter for Cannabis Lounges
The idea behind a cannabis lounge is to offer a place when consumers can buy and use cannabis products, much like people do with alcohol in a bar. Some, like the Original Cannabis Cafe, offer a menu with dishes that incorporate the cannabis plant.
The small West Hollywood neighborhood quickly emerged as an epicenter for cannabis lounge plans in 2019. Before the pandemic, businesses planned no less than 16 cannabis lounges for West Hollywood. Now, plans for new cannabis lounges are on track.
They include a lounge from cannabis company Artist Tree expected to open in March. Aeon Botanika, co-founded by certified nutritionist Nicole Fox, is expected to open in April or May and will focus on using cannabis for wellness. Monica’s House, which has celebrity investors that include Woody Harrelson and Bill Maher, is set to open in the early summer.
Examples of Lounges Opening Across the Country
Not surprisingly, Las Vegas is also ahead of the curve on cannabis lounges. Travel Weekly reports that cannabis lounges may open in Las Vegas and other areas as soon as the fall of 2022. While state lawmakers hammer out new regulations, businesses have already developed creative approaches to cannabis lounges. They include restaurants, music venues, bowling alleys, comedy clubs, arcades and yoga studios.
Other areas that have approved cannabis lounges include Michigan, San Francisco, Denver, and New York. Cova Software, the leading Point of Sale software company for the cannabis industry, recently put together a list of some of the best cannabis lounges. In addition to the Original Cannabis Café, they include:
- NuWu Cannabis in Las Vegas (this is a huge dispensary expected to soon open a lounge called The Reserve and Raider.)
- SPARC and More Greens in San Francisco
- The Luna Lounge in Sesser, Ill., the first cannabis lounge in the state
Expect this list to grow rapidly as more local and state governments allow cannabis lounges to open within their jurisdiction. It’s a moment cannabis business leaders, and the cannabis-consuming public, have looked forward to for a long time.