Benjamin Leatherman

Stardust Pinbar

Stardust Pinbar co-owner Ariel Bracamonte had one goal for the David Bowie-inspired pinball lounge he opened in 2019 next to the The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix: He wanted it to be big on fun. (Or, to paraphrase the late pop/rock icon as Ziggy Stardust, he promised it wouldn’t be boring.) Mixing Bowie-esque glam with geek chic, the lounge is lined with pinball machines, has an illuminated disco dance floor, a fuzzy DJ booth, and gig posters of Bowie as Aladdin Sane. A speakeasy-like secret entrance is rigged up like a walk-up freezer in the pizza parlor next door, which went viral on TikTok after Bracamonte uploaded a video of it in 2020. There are also 8,000 pinballs encased in the glass bar top, cocktails inspired by songs and stools covered in glittering vinyl. Somewhere, Ziggy Stardust is watching on and smiling.