Entries in the 'Ft. Lauderdale & Miami' Category

September 2, 2006

Hukilau Mugs On Sale Soon

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 8:07 am
Hukilau 2006 Souvenir Mug
Hukilau 2006 Souvenir Mug

The souvenir mug for this year’s Hukilau is being created by Munktiki, and is a decanter-like replica of this tiki, found in the Mai-Kai’s front gardens. The number of mugs available has been increased to 300, from the initial plan of 150. The mugs are only available to those who have purchased passes for the event, and are being pre-sold (because who wants to spend hours of their precious Hukilau time standing in line?). You need your confirmation number from your ticket order in order to purchase your mug. No word yet on the price of the mug, or exactly when they’ll go on sale — but the word is SOON. Keep an eye on the Hukilau website for details.

August 7, 2006

Mai Kai Calendar from 1977

Filed under: Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,History,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:25 pm
1977 Mai Kai Calendar, from the collection of Swanky
1977 Mai Kai Calendar,
from the collection of Swanky

Swanky has posted some images from his 1977 Mai Kai calendar on his Swank Blather blog. The Mai Kai produced these calendars for many years, but stopped some time ago. The calendars typically showcase their beautiful, barely-clothed serving wahines, but occasionally depict other scenes of life at the restaurant. The image at left gives a great view of a side dining room, with its cases full of shrunken heads. Another image Swanky has posted gives a rare peek at the brightly-lit, behind-the-scenes area in the Molokai Bar where all the drinks are made. If you ask at the Mai Kai Gift Shop, they can usually scare up a few old calendars for you.

August 1, 2006

Lots o’ Hukilau News

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 4:28 pm
Postcard from the Yankee Clipper
Postcard from the Yankee Clipper

A bunch of important announcements about this year’s Hukilau:

Sunday Schedule Announced
Here are the activities for Sunday, Oct. 8, to take place at the Yankee Clipper’s Ballroom A from 11 a.m. until 2 p.m.:

  • Sven Kirsten – Book of Tiki
  • Jeff Beachbum Berry – Grog Log/Intoxica/Taboo Table
  • Otto Von Stroheim – Tiki Art Now 1 & 2 and soon to com 3!/Tiki News
  • Charles Phoenix – Americana the Beautiful/Southern Californialand/ God Bless Americana/Southern California in the ’50s
  • Also meet Tiki artists Crazy Al, Basement Kahuna, Derek Yaniger, Pooch and Hukilau performers such as I Belli Di Waikiki as you have a chance to purchase CDs and merchandise
  • Storytime with Aunt Bungy! Bungy plans to have her new book Top of the Mast available, as well as reprints of the old Eli Hedley catalog.
  • Video from previous years’ Hukilau events, and a last chance to look at the Mai Kai photo exhibit

Also, due to the incredibly quick sell out of the Beachbum Berry Mixology seminar, a second, identical seminar has been added for Sunday, at 2 p.m. at the Yankee Clipper. Like the first seminar, seating is very limited, and tickets must be purchased separately.

Last Chance for Tickets at Discount Pricing
The scheduled ticket price increase that was set for August 1 has been pushed back — you now have until the end of the day this Thursday, August 3 to get tickets at the current discount pricing — the full pricing rolls out this Friday.

Mai Kai Nearing Sell-Out
There are only a few seats still available for the first seating of the dinner show at the Mai Kai, and the second seating is half-gone… remember that your Hukilau passes don’t get you a seat at the Mai Kai! You must call the Mai Kai to make your dinner reservations.

Yankee Clipper Rooms Available
The Bahia Cabana has completely sold out, but the Yankee Clipper (which is where much of Hukilau is taking place) still has rooms available. Yankee Clipper rooms cost a smidge more, but the discount available through the Hukilau can’t be beat, and it’s going to be far, far more comfortable in the gross Florida humidity. Besides, it’s right across the street, which means you’re practically at the Cabana anyhow, and won’t be missing out on any of the always-fabulous Cabana room parties.

We found the above postcard from the Yankee Clipper a few weeks ago at an antique mall, and we couldn’t pass it up.

To get your Hukilau tickets and learn how to make your hotel and Mai-Kai reservations, visit the Hukilau website.

June 12, 2006

Hawaiian Isle – 1966

Filed under: Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,History,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:36 am
Hawaiian Isle - 1966, from Mai Tai Online
Hawaiian Isle – 1966, from Mai Tai Online

John Trivisonno has shared one of his family’s home movies in the video section of his site, Mai Tai Online. It’s from a trip to the Hawaiian Isle Motel in Miami Beach in 1966, when he was just 1-1/2 years old. It’s a great step back into time, with a glimpse of the great big tiki at the entrance, the nifty Hawaiian Isle sign — and a long, steady look at some lovely hula dancers, courtesy of John’s dad.

June 3, 2006

Ft. Lauderdale: The Hukilau 2006

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 4:41 pm
Website for Hukilau 2006
Website for Hukilau 2006

The website for the Hukilau was launched just a couple of days ago, and tickets are now available for purchase! The event — the fifth year of Hukilau — will take place October 5-8, 2006, in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida.

The annual Hukilau event has always been eagerly anticipated, but the interest in this year’s event has been especially high, as it is also the celebration of the 50th year of the Mai-Kai, which is without a doubt the finest of all Polynesian Pop palaces. Those who have already experienced and fallen in love with the Mai-Kai are saying they won’t miss this event, and those who have been wanting to make it to the Tiki Mecca are making this the year.

A new addition to the Hukilau roster this year is a series of special presentations by tiki luminaries:

  • Sven Kirsten – The author of The Book of Tiki will be presenting a preview of his next book, with his talk “Tiki Modern and the Wild World of Witco”
  • Jeff “Beachbum” Berry – The author of the Grog Log, Intoxica! and Taboo Table will be presenting “Mixology 101: The Beachbum on the Beachcomber” – a look at the drinks of Don the Beachcomber, complete with live mixing and drink samples for the audience
  • Geoff Sundstrom – The Florida resident, tiki collector and urban archaeologist will be talking about the unique history of Polynesian Pop in the Sunshine State, complete with rare views of items from his extensive collection of postcards, brochures and other items
  • Jeff Chenault – Music historian and Exotica DJ Jeff Chenault will be offering reflections on the history of Exotica music, from its genesis to today’s performers

Plus, the Mai-Kai family is making available one-of-a-kind images and items from their archives to create a special exhibit, “The Mai-Kai: A Look at the Past.” This exhibit will be on display adjacent to the Tiki Bazaar, where unqiue tiki items will be on sale from a variety of vendors (including the event mug, created this year by Munktiki!).

Musically, Hukilau will not disappoint, either — past favorites I Belli di Waikiki are returning, all the way from Italy, and in a very special performance, California band APE will be joined by their own hero and inspiration, the great Billy Mure. Other performers will include the Haole Kats, the Intoxicators, Combo Mahalo and Selector Lopaka. Non-musical performances that are not-to-be-missed: Charles Phoenix will be giving a slide presentation (Charles was a breakout hit last year), and burlesque by Torchy Taboo.

The centerpiece of the event is of course a magical evening spent at the Mai-Kai itself. Each year, the Mai-Kai staff (which is huge — large enough to form not just a softball team, but an entire league) looks forward to this event, and they really put their heart into making the night special for their guests, even creating special dance routines just for that night. For many who have spent time at the Mai-Kai during Hukilau, it is the very definition of “enchantment.” They really go all-out, and with this being their 50th anniversary, it will be rarefied air that night.

Tickets are going quickly, especially for the special guest speakers, where room for attendees is limited. Everything you need to know to get yourself to Hukilau is at the website — this year, there is a handy-dandy Hukilau To-Do List, to walk you through getting your tickets, your lodging and your Mai-Kai reservations. I was extraordinarily honored to be asked by Tiki Kiliki to do this year’s website, and I’m so glad I finally get to spill the event details! Tiki Kiliki will be keeping a blog on the Hukilau website, be sure to stay tuned to hear more about this once-in-a-lifetime event.

December 19, 2005

Tiki New Year’s Eve 2006 Parties

Filed under: Chicago,Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Hawaii,Los Angeles,San Diego,San Francisco,Tiki,Trader Vic's — Humuhumu @ 1:38 am
Hanford Lemoore at the Reef Bar in Palm Springs for NYE 2005
Hanford Lemoore at the Reef Bar in
Palm Springs for NYE 2005

If you’re still pondering the right place to be for New Year’s Eve 2006, you’re running out of time! You can probably still get into these great events happening around the country:

San Diego NYE Tiki Weekend: Last year’s tiki event at the Caliente Tropics was hugely successful, but the hotel has gone seriously downhill in terms of tiki-friendliness this past year. Thanks to the organizational efforts of Monkeyman, this year’s big Tiki Central New Year’s event is happening in San Diego. A home bar tour is planned for daytime Saturday, and the main event is taking place with a Polynesian spectacular at the Bali Hai restaurant. Things will also be afoot on Sunday, with possibilities including brunch, bowling and trips to downtown San Diego. It’s sure to be a special evening. The number of tickets available for the Bali Hai is dwindling, if you’re interested, read the thread on Tiki Central for details on how to make reservations.

San Francisco Trader Vic’s: A special dinner event is planned for NYE, with a floor show by Spirit of Polynesia dance troupe, and a full multi-course prix fixe meal. This is where Hanford & I will be spending our NYE. For reservations, call Trader Vic’s at (415) 775-6300.

Forbidden World of Don Tiki in Waikiki: A special performance by Don Tiki in Hawaii, at the Pacific Beach Hotel Grand Ballroom. Tickets to the show are $80 and include two drinks; in addition a bar & buffet are available. Visit the Pacific Beach Hotel website (link below) for details.

Dave’s Birthday at the Purple Orchid in El Segundo: I haven’t seen an official announcement, but New Year’s Eve is the birthday of Dave, owner of the Purple Orchid in El Segundo (near Los Angeles). In years past, there’s been a great band booked, and birthday cake & appetizers for all. Contact the Purple Orchid for details at (310) 322-5829.

Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale: A group is getting together to celebrate New Year’s Eve at the Mai Kai — if I lived in southern Florida, this would be a no-brainer. To make reservations, contact the Mai Kai at (954) 563-3272, if you’d like to be included in the Tiki Central group, read the thread on TC for details.

Chicago area, Trader Vic’s: New Year’s Eve is the last night that the Chicago Trader Vic’s will be open. It has the potential to be rather depressing, and not for the faint of heart, but it also might be special to be there for the final night.

Chicago area, Chef Shangri-La: Performances by the Windy City Islanders, a roast pig buffet for $18, full regular menu available, drink specials, and no cover — an unsually affordable tiki NYE event, and the bar and drinks at Chef Shangri-La are above par. Call (708) 442-7080 for reservations.

Chicago area, Tiki Terrace: This new bar & restaurant is having a New Year’s Eve event with a performance by the Cocktail Preachers, and a raffle featuring a tiki by Lake Surfer. Contact Tiki Terrace for details at (630) 788-0395.

If your part of the country isn’t listed here, don’t fret — simply look for a bar near you in Critiki, and give them a call. Many places will have something planned for the evening.

November 1, 2005

Ahhhh… Waitiki!

Filed under: Events,Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Mexico,Music,New England,Shopping,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:30 pm
Mr. Ho of Waitiki
Mr. Ho of Waitiki

In my recap of Hukilau, I made mention of one of my best finds — the Boston-based Exotica group, Waitiki. Waitiki is four guys: Tim Mayer, “The Mayor of Exotica;” Brian O’Neill “Mr. Ho;” Abe Lagrimas, Jr., “Space Kadet;” and Randy Wong, “Professah Humming Flower.” Randy and Abe met as youngsters in Hawaii; both made their way to Boston, where they met up with Brian and Tim — all four are graduates of prestigious music schools there. Randy’s parents knew Arthur Lyman, and he had a strong impact on Randy.

The Waitiki boys are very, very silly. A very nutty and bright sort of silly that struck a serious chord with me. They are a lot of fun — a LOT of fun — to spend time with. This wacky tone carries over into their original songs, which touch on such topics as watermelon sacrifice and the intersection of adorable furry animals and proper grammar. However, their set at the Mai Kai was a tribute to Martin Denny, with an all-classic Exotica set. Listening to Waitiki play at the Mai Kai, I was struck by two things.

First, any Exotica composed after the ’60s just doesn’t sound the same to me, even those pieces by the greats such as Martin Denny and Robert Drasnin. They aren’t bad works, they just don’t evoke that same feel of the exotic and the mysterious. Randy Wong’s original composition, Sweet Pikake Serenade, was the first time I had heard a modern composition that sounded ready to take its place alongside those great classic songs. Halfway through hearing it, I had forgotten that it was a new piece. Stunning, beautiful, and moving.

Second, their entire set was Exotica as I’d never experienced it before. These songs are ones I’ve heard, and loved, dozens and dozens of times over. Over years of hearing them, I’d created a scene in my head of middle-aged, somewhat-serious men playing these songs quietly and intently. The Waitiki boys have every bit the intent and serious focus while they’re playing, but they play with so much life, so much vibrancy, and so much energy. They made Exotica fun. They brought Exotica completely to life for me in a new way. They made me look at Exotica music in a whole new way. Fabulous.

Okay, so here’s the latest in Waitiki Appreciation: They have a new album out, “Charred Mammal Flesh.” Their expanded 20-piece configuration, called Waitiki Orchestrotica, which was created for the purpose of playing faithful recreations of Esquivel songs, will be playing at an Esquivel tribute concert in Mexico City on April 1, 2006. A few tracks from a September performance of the Orchestrotica is available for download on the Waitiki website. Uh, what else… oh yes, they’ve also been wanting to get a show together in NYC somewhere, hopefully at Otto’s Shrunken Head (where another favorite of mine, Fisherman Vibraphonic Trio, plays on Mondays). And also, the guys are on the lookout for radio stations around the country that would be a fit for their music (KEXP in Seattle leaps to mind, and Senor Amor’s Molotov Cocktail Hour on L.A.’s KXLU).

Waitiki is now on your radar — take advantage of their existence! Get to see them if you can, and get their album & all that stuff. Okonkuluku!

October 27, 2005

Mai Kai Hurricane Wilma Damage Update

Filed under: Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:20 am

An update on the condition of the Mai Kai, courtesy of Tiki Kiliki, after speaking with Pia Dahlquist, the Mai Kai’s Director of Sales and Marketing:

The Mai Kai is completely intact on the inside. Yes, the outside sustained a good bit of damage but the debris along the front of the Mai Kai is now cleared away and they are working on the roof as we speak. The phones are still unoperational and the power has not yet been restored. As soon as the power and phones are up so is the Mai Kai.

October 25, 2005

Mai Kai Damaged by Hurricane Wilma

Filed under: Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,News,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 1:49 pm

The historic Mai Kai in Ft. Lauderdale, site of the recent Hukilau event, suffered damage from Hurricane Wilma. Wilma hit the area the harder than any storm in 50+ years. Early reports are that the damage is mostly to the exterior, including the plank bridge at the entrance, but the interior seems to be alright, with only some minor flooding behind the stage. It’s too early yet to know what repairs will be needed.

October 20, 2005

Stolen Tiki Alert: Hawaiian Gardens in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida

Filed under: Ft. Lauderdale & Miami,Stolen Tiki Alert,Tiki — Humuhumu @ 11:08 am
Stolen Tiki from Hawaiian Gardens
Stolen Tiki from Hawaiian Gardens

The tiki pictured here was stolen within the past three weeks from Hawaiian Gardens, a retirement community in Lauderdale Lakes, Florida, near Ft. Lauderdale and Miami. Tiki Kiliki, who lives near the complex, is helping the management search for this tiki. If you spot this tiki, or have any information about what happened to it, contact Tiki Kiliki at tiki_kiliki@tikikiliki.com.


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About Humuhumu
Humuhumu
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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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