July 22, 2012

Totally tiki!

It's time to learn about tiki bars! 

The words "tiki culture" refer to the Polynesian style bars and tribal art that started to pop up in America in the mid 1930s. When American soldiers returned home after World War II they brought back a huge South Pacific influence along with them and tried to achieve a similar feeling in America. A number of Polynesian themed restaurants and tiki bars started opening up across the United States, which were based off of the ones in the South Pacific however the American ones were quite a bit more kitschy (which we have no problem with!)

Don the Beachcomber was one of the first restaurants to open in the states and the interior was decorated in a very beachy tribal style, which meant that there were plenty of torches, tropical flowers, rattan furniture, wood carvings and dim lighting. The menu consisted of exotic South Pacific cuisine and more importantly they served very strong rum & punch drinks served in the now iconic tiki mugs and glasses.

There aren't many original authentic tiki bars still standing today, but if you do stumble upon one in your travels you are in for a treat! (I had the privilege of checking one out last year in L.A. and it was even better than I imagined!) A good solution to the lack of tiki bars nowadays is to start your own little bar at home! Here are a few mugs and glasses currently for sale that will either start your tiki bar off on the right foot or that you can add to your ever-growing tiki collection!

Shop here:
one, two, three, four, five, six, seven.

Happy mixing, lovelies!


  1. Awh what a cool post! Thanks for sharing. :)

    Lauren xox


  2. I love tiki bars! Anything Hawaiian is just lovely. I have two vintage Hawaiian dresses and my beloved ukulele!



  3. Nice! Love that first picture. If you're ever in Minneapolis you should go to Psycho Suzi's - I haven't been since they reopened in a much bigger space, but I always had a blast at their old spot.
    Can't argue with a stiff Mai Tai on a summer's day. ;)

  4. Do you know the name of the original tiki bar you went to in L.A.? I live super close and I'd love to give it a visit!
    Drey - highdollarhippie.blogspot.com

  5. What a fabulous post! I love those vintage photos!

  6. Love this! Our teal kitchen table chairs supposedly came from a Tiki bar in Florida. A neighbor found them at a yard sale. I love these styles!

  7. I love the collection of mugs and glasses, they would be amazing for a tiki-themed party!
    Faye x

  8. What tiki bar did you visit in LA? I love TIKI and will be visiting LA next January. Love this article! :) (Oh and you need to go to The Tonga Room in San Francisco, if you haven't already. Tiki Heaven!!)

    Lisa Strawberry

  9. My husband collects all things Tiki, I am loving your post on the culture :)

    Brooke x

  10. Tiki style is its own ballgame, that's for sure! And that photo with the babes in bikinis -- so good!

    1. Nice trick of "tiki culture"! It's a cool idea of making refresh the wounded and tired soldiers and it seems that it worked, too. Thanks for inform about an exclusive part of culture.
      iconic furniture