Entries in the 'Detroit' Category

May 9, 2007

Detroit’s Chin Tiki to Make Way for New Arena?

Filed under: Detroit,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:55 am
Chin Tiki, photo by Feelin' Zombified
Chin Tiki, photo by Feelin’ Zombified

It’s been a while since my last update about the Chin Tiki in Detroit. It’s been a very, very long time since Chin Tiki was operational — 1980 — but all the interiors were still there sitting unused in the decades that followed, leading locals to hope that perhaps Chin Tiki’s days were not quite over. But Marvin Chin died last year, and I believe much of the decor was sold or moved to his son’s restaurant, Chin’s in nearby Livonia.

The parking lot surrounding Chin Tiki had been sold years ago to Ilitch Holdings, and in February of this year, they took deed of the restaurant building, too. According to The Detroit News, Ilitch Holdings has been quietly purchasing other properties in this desolate area of Detroit, leading to speculation that there may be plans to build a new hockey arena — Mike Ilitch owns the Detroit Red Wings. Even if a hockey arena isn’t the ultimate outcome, it appears likely that the Chin Tiki building is destined to be razed for a larger development — developers don’t buy up four blocks of contiguous land because they really like the sidewalks.

December 27, 2005

Chin Tiki Entry on SNWEB.ORG

Filed under: Detroit,History,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 8:26 pm
Chin Tiki advertisement, from SNWEB.ORG
Chin Tiki advertisement, from SNWEB.ORG

A website dedicated to Detroit Urban Archaeology, SNWEB.ORG, has a page dedicated to Chin Tiki. The page has a bit of background, latest information, the above advertisement, and lots of photos of the exterior that look pretty recent.

September 9, 2005

Chin Tiki in Detroit: An Update

Filed under: Detroit,Events,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 6:55 pm

James Teitelbaum has an update on the Chin Tiki:

Marvin and his son Marlon would like to reopen Chin Tiki’s upstairs floor for private events, and possibly as a full time night club. If that goes well, they would like to reopen the (more severely wrecked) downstairs at some point as well. They would like to have the upstairs space ready in time for the Superbowl in January, 2006, which is being held in Detroit. The stadium is walking distance from Chin Tiki. They have a lot of hurdles to overcome, such as plumming problems, water damage, and others.

Also, Feelin’ Zombified and mattfink both have pictures from the tour of the Chin Tiki during the Motor City Tiki Art Show.

August 29, 2005

Opportunity to See Chin Tiki in Detroit

Filed under: Art,Detroit,Events,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 10:51 am

Chin Tiki in Detroit opened in 1967 and has been closed for many years, but is still somewhat intact. There was been much speculation over the years regarding what the eventual fate of the Chin Tiki will be: whether it will be reopened by the owner Marvin Chin, sold and reopened by another owner, or whether it will disappear entirely. The restaurant was used in filming the movie 8 Mile, and was reportedly damaged by the film crew.

Now, as part of the Jungle Madness Motor City Tiki Art show happening the first weekend of September, the Chin Tiki will be open again, albeit briefly. The Jungle Madness main event will be taking place Saturday, September 3 at Marvin Chin’s other, less-tiki restuarant, Chin’s Chop Suey in nearby Livonia. The organizers have arranged with Chin to offer a tour of Chin Tiki in Detroit the next day, on Sunday, September 4. Marvin Chin will be there to answer questions, I’m sure the first one will be “What’s going to happen to the Chin Tiki?”


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Humuhumu is the creator of several tiki websites. She is a designer and programmer based out of San Francisco.

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