Shane Stuart continues Vegas vegan revolution with his latest dream
— By Diana Edelman —
Updated April 8, 2017: For the latest on Panacea’s opening, check out Diana’s story in Vegas Seven.
- a solution or remedy for all difficulties or diseases.
And, this summer when Las Vegas native and raw mixologist expert Shane Stuart and partner Dillon Berkabile of Summerlin’s Acai to the T, open the part-restaurant-part-bar-part-healing center, Panacea — the business — is set to elevate Las Vegas in the health and wellness world.
Meet Shane Stuart
Located in Boca Park, Panacea is the culmination of Stuart’s decades-long love affair with health and wellness in the form of raw food. The owner of the now defunct Downtown Las Vegas gem, GrassRoots, Stuart has become a regular in the juice bar scene. But, his career in this realm started in 2003 when he signed on with VitaMix, the maker of the high-powered (don’t call it a blender) mixing machine.
For almost 10 years, he traveled around the world learning and educating others about the benefits of a plant-powered lifestyle, creating healthy and tasty juices, soups and ice creams along the way. Then, in 2011, Stuart signed on with Greens and Proteins, one of the first health-based restaurants in town, and leant his talents to create their comprehensive juice menu.
“When I first came back to Las Vegas to open Greens and Proteins, there were only a few juice bars in town — Jamba Juice and Tropical Smoothie,” he said.
Times have changed a lot since then.
The Vegan Evolution in Las Vegas
With the opening of GrassRoots and other juice bars in town, “the cold press juice craze has flooded into the Vegas area, opening up all kinds of healthy vegan options and juice cleansing programs in all corners of our community.”
And, that’s a good thing.
“Panacea is the next step in the health and wellness world here,” said Stuart. “I hope it can be influential in the progression of awareness within our community, and to create dialog about our habits and lifestyles we choose to live.”
The Panacea Concept
Designed to make a healthier lifestyle more approachable, Stuart also wants to infuse a little flair and creativity, making it a game-changer in the juice bar/health and wellness industry in Vegas and beyond. And, if all goes according to plan, Panacea isn’t simply going to be a restaurant. It’s going to become the main artery of the health and wellness community in Vegas.
The concept itself is simple: Las Vegas is a nightlife town, but not everyone is involved in the nightlife scene.
But, instead of alcohol, it’s super food-infused non-alcoholic cocktails. Instead of the normal grub, it’s all vegan. Instead of your average hookah bar, it’s all about vaping the world’s most potent (and healthiest) essential oils. And, it’s far from your normal restaurant.
Unlike Stuart’s tiny GrassRoots, Panacea spans an impressive 2,200-square-feet and comes complete with a mezzanine where patrons can use laptops and work. Downstairs, it’s all about being in the moment and being healthy. Cell phone use in the establishment will be discouraged.
“The goal of Panacea is to be a community atmosphere,” said Stuart. “It’s designed for facilitating conversations, learning and sharing. Vegas needs a place like this … it’s an alternative to the nightlife scene. We want to give people a place to hang out and be social, and be healthy at the same time.”
Health & Wellness in Las Vegas
Based on herbology, vegan dining and learning, current plans for the location even include a Himalayan salt room for classes like Qigong, raw mixology, yoga, meditational tea ceremonies, and, according to Stuart, “anything else that fits with health, wellness and achieving a higher consciousness.”
Panacea services include using a biofeedback, which measures the micronutrient deficiencies through the condensation in your skin, similar to lie detector tests, to create personalized cleanse programs for individuals. The plans also call for health coaches to assist people on their journeys to a healthier life.
Nightlife, With a Twist
Forget the booze-y cocktails. Panacea serves up superfood ones instead.
Sourcing organic fair trade tea from the world over, Panacea will offer private tea ceremonies and meditational tea ceremonies, which was a part of Stuart’s original plan when creating Tea Bar. However, Tea Bar outgrew Stuart’s plans, and now continues as a part of Panacea.
It’s also the first bar in Las Vegas to serve kombucha on tap in frosted beer mugs. To complete the bar feel, tea pumps will be pumped with nitrogen so drinks are dispersed like beer.
By night, Panacea morphs from a being all about the food to being all about the social atmosphere, pumping out healthy cocktails, essential oil vapes and tapas.
Bringing in his own nutritional background, Stuart, who is certified as an holistic health coach from the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, aims to offer a raw food element to the mix, making it easier for those who are interested in trying a holistic, raw food lifestyle to jump in here.
All employees must take a one-week course that immerses them in the world of herbology, the study of superfoods, world medicines, and the mixing of various plants and essential oils, ultimately becoming certified raw mixologists.
Panacea opens spring 2017 in Boca Park.
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Diana Edelman is the founder of Vegans, Baby. She previously lived and worked in Thailand where she spent years working for an elephant sanctuary and has traveled around the world speaking about the realities of elephant tourism. She is a public speaker who has appeared at SEED Food + Wine, VegFest Puerto Rico, VegFest Toronto and more, a journalist and entrepreneur. Diana is also behind the Vegas Vegan Dinners at James Beard Foundation’s James Beard House.