Fabulous Story Tours with Brian ‘Paco’ Alvarez

Fabulous Story Tours is a great way to get to know this town from Paco, an individual who is very well versed in Las Vegas art, culture, history, and architecture.  Brian ‘Paco’ Alvarez is a native of Las Vegas, born, raised and educated here.  His extensive list of board appointments and employment history gives this colorful individual a unique perspective of Las Vegas.  

The tour started at the Historic Fifth Street School,

Today we took advantage of a weather perfect day to accompany Paco on the Bauhaus Centenary Tour, his celebratory tour of downtown architecture.  What was there to celebrate?  The 100th anniversary of Bauhaus, a German art school that from 1919 to 1933 combined crafts and fine arts, and whose profound influence can still be found in modern art, architecture, furniture, graphic design, interior design,  typography and industrial design. 

How often do you drive through town and not notice the buildings you are passing?  Or perhaps you have business to attend to in one of the massive downtown structures – have you taken notice of the lines of that building, the style of the windows, the details of the signage?  Many of us don’t.  Paco’s 1.5 hour walking tour of downtown Las Vegas showed us fine examples of mid century modern and Modernist styles of architecture and pointed out details that while decorative, serve a specific purpose.

His discussion included not only names and dates, but intriguing tidbits about various locations, such as the downtown parking structure that once served as a bomb shelter during the period of history when the dam, the nearby military installations and the atomic test site some 65 miles away made Las Vegas a potential target.  

This parking structure was designated as a fallout shelter.

I first met Paco six years ago shortly after moving to Las Vegas from California.  He gave a walking tour of Fremont Street via a Yelp event.  Since I was just getting to know Las Vegas, I excitedly signed up to take the tour.  I found Paco to be interesting, engaging, and entertaining.  Not only did he give us historical information, he had brought black and white photographs from the Las Vegas News Bureau archives.  I could envision the characters he described moving to this desolate, unsettled desert following the Las Vegas Townsite Auction in 1905.

Fabulous Story Tours can take you places! From walking tours that start at $25 per participant, to a 3 hour tour via Mercedes Sprinter to destinations such as Red Rock Canyon, Valley of Fire, Lake Mead, Historic Boulder City and Hoover Dam, Paco has something for everyone.  There are special tours for people who are interested in relocating to Las Vegas and want assistance finding where to live, where the best schools are, and basically show you how locals live, work and play.   He even has a specialized tour for Architects, Designers, City Planners, City Leaders and Urban Professionals who are interested in Las Vegas architecture and city planning.

You can get more information on his Facebook page “Fabulous Story Tours” or by calling 702-498-3041.

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