Urban Enthusiasts: Dana Satterwhite and Kristen Hertzenberg

Dana Satterwhite and Kristen Hertzenberg are East Coast transplants (by way of Texas in Herzenberg’s case), creatives and urban enthusiasts. Hertzenberg is a performer (look for her in Cabaret Jazz at the Smith Center later this year) and Satterwhite is a writer, creative director, brand consultant and owner of the TastySpace gallery in Emergency Arts. The couple moved here when Hertzenberg was cast in a Vegas production of Phantom of the Opera in 2006. These days the duo and their daughter share a home in the Glen Heather neighborhood. Here they share some of their favorite things about DTLV:

What made you want to move to in DTLV?

We’ve always been more drawn to homes with unique architectural character and neighborhoods with some history. I grew up in suburban homes and when I met Dana, he introduced me to a different aesthetic. I fell in love. We discovered downtown when we started going to The Beat a few years ago. We found a concentration of creative souls there and that very much felt like home in a way we hadn’t found before in Las Vegas. –KH

What do you think sets DTLV apart from other neighborhoods in Las Vegas?

Downtown Las Vegas attracts a different kind of person. You will have sought out a more urban lifestyle if you find yourself there…and that isn’t for everyone. It’s full of people who want to have the cultural offerings of Las Vegas at their fingertips and who want to be near the other people who are seeking the same. Artists, musicians, writers, performers, designers, jewelers, chefs. For me, that’s a lot of it. I love having neighbors who are involved in our cultural community. Also, the neighborhoods are older, have history, the homes are unique. To me, there’s an authenticity I don’t feel in other parts of town. -KH

There’s a certain grit and pioneer spirit that I associate with downtown. This city is still often referred to as “the wild west.” The downtown development is so new that it’s hard to say or know how things may take shape five, ten, fifty years from now. The limitless potential seems to be a driving force. Downtown seems, at the moment, the perfect storm of the two. -DS

What are some of your favorite attractions of the neighborhood?

The Smith Center. I love that it is moments away and I think it’s a complete game changer for this city. I feel privileged to live near it. Primarily I love it because I always see familiar faces from the downtown community. I can sit down and have a chat about art or music almost any time I go there. I love that. I also love that it really feels like a neighborhood. It’s a great family environment. -KH

When Le Thai first opened, I couldn’t get enough. If I could’ve permanently inserted a braised short rib fried rice feeding tube, I would’ve. The Beat or Inspire News for coffee in the morning and The Scullery for something to take the edge off in the evening—and that can come in the form of a stiff drink or Matt Donnelly and Paul Mattingly’s improv comedy. There’s also Chicago Joe’s around the way if you want to kick it old school. The list goes on. -DS

Photo: Kristen Hertzenberg and Dana Satterwhite by Lucky Wenzel

  • Dayvid Figler and Rae Lathrop

    DF: Downtown was great as a kid and it is even greater as an adult. I love all of downtown’s hidden gems, its vibrancy, history and sense of connection. Rae is relatively newer to Las Vegas, but just as passionate about downtown. Downtown lends itself to the shared experience, and as a couple we both love seeing this part of the city through each other's eyes. Photo: Lucky Wenzel


  • Rob Ponte

    Some of the best nights I’ve experienced started out with no plan other than walking around to check out what’s going on. The great thing about having so many bars and restaurants downtown is the ability to move around if you’re not feeling the vibe in one place. There are plenty of options just outside the door. Photo: Lucky Wenzel

  • Brandon Wiegand

    The downtown Las Vegas of today has much to attract residents - a burgeoning restaurant and nightlife scene, growing diversity of businesses, and major centers of art and culture. Plus, living downtown I am easily within walking or biking distance of it all. Photo: Lucky Wenzel

  • Hank Gordon, Chairman of Laurich Properties

    It is always a pleasure to deal with the city of Las Vegas’ economic development department. The staff is really interested in helping create a positive business environment to work with.

  • Jonathan Jenkins, Founder & CEO of OrderWithMe

    As our company continues its rapid growth, we quickly realized the need to set up a formal U.S. headquarters. We explored multiple cities and were about to make the move to San Francisco, and then we heard about the complete reinvention of downtown Las Vegas. Coming from China where things are booming and growing, we love that downtown Vegas now has a similar vibe of energy and change. Not only is there an exciting tech community here and much lower costs than the Bay Area, but we love the fact that almost every industry group brings their conventions to our front door once a year.

  • Andy Hsieh, Owner of Lux Delux

    We love the vibrancy and energy of Las Vegas, and downtown is at the heart of it all. That's why we've launched our mobile platform with a focus on downtown. This is an exciting time in Las Vegas history, where community, commerce and technology are all converging at once. Downtown is our city's hidden gem.

  • Ramesh Srinivasan, Chief Marketing Officer & Head of Partnerships of SocialWellth

    We chose to relocate from the suburbs to downtown for several reasons. Our brand image and that of downtown’s mesh perfectly. The new downtown Las Vegas reflects a more hip, startup, social media-style image. Additionally, downtown’s emerging technology corridor, anchored by Zappos, is an environment that enhances our ability to recruit the types of technical skill sets required for our continued growth and success.

  • Mark Brandenburg, President of Golden Gate

    I think downtown Las Vegas is a unique blend of intimacy and great energy. Plus, in contrast to The Strip, it’s so easy to walk around…The Golden Gate has been here for over 100 years and with all the changes going on downtown, it feels like a new era. It truly is a renaissance—the rebirth of a classic.

  • Roberto Mendoza, Co-owner of Banger Brewing

    The city has been great in helping us with the licensing and procedures necessary to start a business. There hasn't been a brewery built in the city of Las Vegas for probably 10 years. So for them it hasn't been a typical ‘cut and paste’ thing. We're something different. It was a team work process to get us opened – a lot of talk and listening on both sides. And now the city started opening up the doors for other breweries once we were up and running. Good news for us and good news for the future. (Photo: Lucky Wenzel)

  • Alexandra Epstein, Executive Vice President of El Cortez Casino Hotel

    This downtown area… is emerging and where many events are happening.

  • Meghan Mossler, Owner of Stitch Factory

    The city and the department of economic development have been very helpful to us and all the other downtown business owners. It’s such a community here, and everyone asks you what you need. That kind of help launching a business is amazing and priceless.

  • Pamela Dylag, Co-owner of Velveteen Rabbit

    The city is so supportive of new businesses. Things are popping up constantly. (Photo: Lucky Wenzel)

  • Marc Abelman, CFO & Co-owner of Inside Style

    Downtown is becoming very much in demand…there’s a limited supply. Run fast, don’t walk.

  • Sam Cherry, CEO of Cherry Development

    For a while, downtown was one of the only places in the valley you would see cranes when you drove around. It was nice that city government stepped up and the private sector married with the public sector to create amazing projects that filled the gap. That was very important for us.

  • Johnny Jimenez, Owner of Toy Shack of Las Vegas

    Our business is booming amid the foot traffic on Fremont Street, and we’ve started to see how tourists are falling in love with downtown as they discover it. In the past year, we’re increasingly hearing things like, ‘Wow, next time we’ll stay downtown instead of on The Strip,’ or ‘We’ve visited downtown many times, but this is the first year we’ve actually stayed in a downtown hotel.’ They like that there is more to do within a smaller walking radius.

  • Rich Worthington, President and CEO of The Molasky Group of Companies

    Historically, downtown Las Vegas has not been a top destination for many locals, but in recent years… that trend is reversing itself. Given all the recent openings and progress, there’s much to explore and experience downtown.