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Tiki Central Forums Locating Tiki Don The Beachcomber, Kona, HI (restaurant)
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Don The Beachcomber, Kona, HI (restaurant)
bifcozz
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Nov 17, 2004
Posts: 64
Posted: 2005-12-28 9:26 pm   Permalink



[ This Message was edited by: bifcozz 2007-02-09 21:57 ]


 
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Tiki Shark Art
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 31, 2006
Posts: 3541
From: The volcanic Big Island of Hawaii
Posted: 2007-03-06 10:42 am   Permalink

Kailua-Kona, Big Island, Hawaii~
Hey TC,
I was down at the "Don the Beach Comber" restaurant last Sunday evening. The restaurant is attached to the Lobby of the Royal Kona Hotel. lots of tikis, with some GIANT maoi heads inside restaurant. Also tikis in the lobby around the restaurant. the lobby itself is open to the sea, and you have amazing views of Kona Bay. It's a great place for sunsets and drinks.

Also attached to the lobby is a open patio/dance bar that they have been working on for a while. Looks like they've put in a nice new floor. This bar is called "Don's Mai Tai Bar". It's got great drinks, and the Tsunami Shrimp is excellent. But It's been closed for a while, while they were fixing it up.

Anyways, as we were walking through the lobby I heard cool "tiki bar" music. I was delighted to find the Mai Tai bar open, with the floor almost finished, and live music! A classy looking guy playing a Vibraphone! Very Tiki!

I know the restaurant in the lobby is a new Don the Beach Comber, and it was many lack luster things before. But now, who ever is in charge there, has truly embraced the Tiki Theme. They are making a really good effort. and it seems to be palying off. I'm always pleased to see the place packed. and that Sunday night, couples were actualy dancing on the newly made floor to the tiki tones of the live Vibraphone! It seems that it's sometimes hard to find real "Tiki vibe " here on the islands, (go figure) - so this new tiki temple of polynesian pleasure is very pleaseing!

Now, if I can just get the Royal Kona to book Don Tiki to play there!!!!!!!


Entrance from the lobby

Tiki out side on back exit area

Same with night lighting

Tiki facing out towards ocean from lobby entrance

Giant Moai head inside

First tiki I've seen with breasts!

Tiki above a fish tank

_________________
Tiki Shark

[ This Message was edited by: Tiki Shark Art 2007-03-06 20:49 ]


 
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PremEx
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 23, 2006
Posts: 292
From: Houston, Texas
Posted: 2007-03-06 5:29 pm   Permalink

Looks great! Thanks!

But you might want to edit your post and insert RETURNS after/inbetween each photo so the stack vertically instead of stretching horizontally across the page.

The way it is now makes it hard to read the text portion of the post due to the need to scroll horizontally.



 
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tikiyaki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 18, 2004
Posts: 2710
From: The Exotic Port of REDONDO BEACH, CA
Posted: 2007-03-06 11:41 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-03-06 10:42, Tiki Shark Art wrote:
Kailua-Kona, Big Island, Hawaii~
Hey TC,
I was down at the "Don the Beach Comber" restaurant last Sunday evening. The restaurant is attached to the Lobby of the Royal Kona Hotel. lots of tikis, with some GIANT maoi heads inside restaurant. Also tikis in the lobby around the restaurant. the lobby itself is open to the sea, and you have amazing views of Kona Bay. It's a great place for sunsets and drinks.

Also attached to the lobby is a open patio/dance bar that they have been working on for a while. Looks like they've put in a nice new floor. This bar is called "Don's Mai Tai Bar". It's got great drinks, and the Tsunami Shrimp is excellent. But It's been closed for a while, while they were fixing it up.

Anyways, as we were walking through the lobby I heard cool "tiki bar" music. I was delighted to find the Mai Tai bar open, with the floor almost finished, and live music! A classy looking guy playing a Vibraphone! Very Tiki!

I know the restaurant in the lobby is a new Don the Beach Comber, and it was many lack luster things before. But now, who ever is in charge there, has truly embraced the Tiki Theme. They are making a really good effort. and it seems to be palying off. I'm always pleased to see the place packed. and that Sunday night, couples were actualy dancing on the newly made floor to the tiki tones of the live Vibraphone! It seems that it's sometimes hard to find real "Tiki vibe " here on the islands, (go figure) - so this new tiki temple of polynesian pleasure is very pleaseing!

Now, if I can just get the Royal Kona to book Don Tiki to play there!!!!!!!


Entrance from the lobby

Tiki out side on back exit area

Same with night lighting

Tiki facing out towards ocean from lobby entrance

Giant Moai head inside

First tiki I've seen with breasts!

Tiki above a fish tank

_________________
Tiki Shark

[ This Message was edited by: Tiki Shark Art 2007-03-06 20:49 ]



I was there in December. I saw that guy playing vibes...awesome. I was at that restaurant in 2004, PRE-Don's and it was a good place. The big tikis were there, and they had these cool carved poles which they replaced with straighter ones...so all was not an improvement. I'm really glad that Kona really embraces classic hawaiiana, unlike Waikiki which seems to be decimating it day by day and turning everything into that gross neuveau stucco garbage tha seems to be infecting Califronia at an alarming rate. . Kona seems to be preserving alot of the classic elements of Hawaii, which is why I love it there, and all of the Big Island, actually.




 
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GatorRob
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Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2007-03-07 08:22 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-03-06 10:42, Tiki Shark Art wrote:
Now, if I can just get the Royal Kona to book Don Tiki to play there!!!!!!!


Wouldn't THAT be something. Thanks for the report. We'll be sure to check it out when we're in Kailua-Kona this June.


 
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Rum Hunter
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Nov 15, 2006
Posts: 26
From: Gold River, CA
Posted: 2007-03-07 1:15 pm   Permalink

My wife and I had dinner at Don's last month. It was the best meal we had on the Big Island. The drinks were good too, I ordered and received a proper Tropical Itch complete with an 18" back scratch-er!

 
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Tiki Shark Art
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 31, 2006
Posts: 3541
From: The volcanic Big Island of Hawaii
Posted: 2007-03-07 9:03 pm   Permalink

I went down to the Royal Kona Hotel, to see if the vibraphone player was at the Mai Tai Bar, but Wed night is the big Luau next to the hotel's pool, which is so loud as to make any other music redundant in the lobby, or the Bar area. I'll check this weekend.

Lobby entrance to the restaurant.

Here's the sign for the Mai Tai bar "Home of the original Mai Tai" it says...

Here's the Mai Tai bar area, still under construction, but open for business.

Here's the view from the mai tai bar looking back at the hotel lobby.

On the Restaurant's back patio I noticed a new sign. Tiki Grill!

And a shot of a tiki on the back patio I didn't show before.

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Tiki Shark

[ This Message was edited by: Tiki Shark Art 2007-03-07 21:05 ]


 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3818
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2007-03-09 10:17 pm   Permalink

I spent New Years Eve 2007 there. What a tiki mecca!
Tikis galore, right off the Pacific. Sunset, tropical rain and tiki mugs!

To boot, there was a 70+ white-haired gentlemen, in a tuxedo, playing the vibes.

My favorite tiki place on Planet Earth!


 
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Passerby
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 19, 2007
Posts: 22
From: Swampscott, MA
Posted: 2008-05-01 9:19 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-03-09 22:17, christiki295 wrote:
I spent New Years Eve 2007 there. What a tiki mecca!
Tikis galore, right off the Pacific. Sunset, tropical rain and tiki mugs!

To boot, there was a 70+ white-haired gentlemen, in a tuxedo, playing the vibes.

My favorite tiki place on Planet Earth!



I just got back from this place!
The Mai Tai Bar is complete, still has that guy on the vibraphone, and still makes some of the best Mai Tais in the world!
The Missus and I were there for a week, and we did a LOT of stuff in Kona, but this place is my new favorite place on Earth as well!






 
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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2008-05-02 07:20 am   Permalink

I dunno guys. We were there last summer and I found the place to be a bit of a disappointment. I mean, the location is spectacular, but the tikis all looked plastic-y to me. The drinks, including the Mai-Tai, were just so-so and the food was way overpriced. I was expecting the overpriced part, but I was hoping for better quality all around. Sorry to rain on the parade! But if people read this thread and then go there with really high expectations, they may come away disappointed.

 
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Passerby
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jan 19, 2007
Posts: 22
From: Swampscott, MA
Posted: 2008-05-02 3:09 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2008-05-02 07:20, GatorRob wrote:
I dunno guys. We were there last summer and I found the place to be a bit of a disappointment. I mean, the location is spectacular, but the tikis all looked plastic-y to me. The drinks, including the Mai-Tai, were just so-so and the food was way overpriced. I was expecting the overpriced part, but I was hoping for better quality all around. Sorry to rain on the parade! But if people read this thread and then go there with really high expectations, they may come away disappointed.



I fully agree with GatorRob regarding the food prices at Don the Beachcombers'... Incredibly overpriced, (even for Hawaii!)
But after being repelled by these prices, the missus and I grabbed a seat at the Mai Tai bar and NOT the restaurant proper, got sashimi, and a pupu sampler appetizer, (along with a bevy or two... or three,) at quite affordable prices! Or at least comparable prices. We sampled a coupla' different appetizers during our stay, (as we were right upstairs, anyways!) as well as many different Mai Tais, (they have a good selection of different ones, my fave was the "Volcanic Mai Tai," the wife's was the "Original.")

In fairness, we never did eat at the restaurant itself, despite some serious-looking entree's arriving at neighboring tables, so comparisons are totally theoretical, but I enjoyed "Don's Mai Tai Bar" moreso than the other places that we dined at last week, including "Huggo's," (talk about pricey!) "Fishhopper's," "Bongo Ben's," "Drysdale's," (at the Keauhou Mall,) and "The Aloha Theatre" at Kainaliu, (with its incredibly slow service.)

In any case, if anyone is in Kailua-Kona, you really should check this place out, no matter what... show up for the sunset, but get yer drink orders in early. Last call comes at a sobering 9:00PM!!!


 
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tikiyaki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 18, 2004
Posts: 2710
From: The Exotic Port of REDONDO BEACH, CA
Posted: 2008-05-02 4:23 pm   Permalink

I have to disagree with gator Rob's assessment...except for the prices. Yes, expensive. Definitely a special occasion dinner place, where you have your on nice, expensive dinner on your vacation, then eat a burger with your toes in the sand at Huggos (the cheaper outdoor bar, not the restaurant portion) , closeby the rest of the time.

BUT....while it may not be a super high TIPSY factory restaurant, it is VERY cool inside, and it has one thing that NONE of the mainland Tiki restaurants have but tried to emulate with murals etc...The amazing Hawaii Ocean view. While most places have a really nice mural, the view that spans the entire DTB restaurant is priceless. It's the real deal. The sound of the waves beating against the lava rock shoreline, just 8 feet below, only reinforces the ambiance.

Also, the classic Royal Kona Hotel that houses the restaurant is as Tiki as it gets in Kona. Lots of sculpted wood, concrete...all in the classic Mid Century Modern / Tiki Style, a great water feature, and the entire lanai area between the restaurant and the Mai Tai Bar has comfortable lounge chairs where you can sit, put your feet up on the short wall, sip a drink and watch the sun set over the Kona Kai....PARADISE !


The view from the Lanai at Don's....ahhhhh....


Royal Kona Resort...Hut at entrance.


Cool sculpted wall at the Royal Kona


The food, I have to say, at least what I had, was damn good. The main centerpiece with a plaster/plastic Giant Moai, amongst a waterfall and fake foliage looks out over the dining room...yea, it's fake, but in the best possible Polynesian Pop kinda way..

At night the entire length of the wall of the restaurant over the ocean blazes with tiki torches, and creates a perfect Polynesian, super relaxing vibe.


Don's Torches a blazin'

Meanwhile, the bar is basically an open air, patio bar, with a few tikis, and that great swimming pool right next to it, throwing off a great blue glow at night time. On the Luau nights, the Luau stage is right on the other side of the pool, so you can hear the Luau loud and clear, and see alot of it too. This was the first Luau I ever attended on my first ever Hawaii trip in 04' (before the DTB was built)

So, please make sure you visit DTB if you're on the Big Island, if, for nothing else, to have a drink and watch the sun set.


Sunset on the Kona Kai




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[ This Message was edited by: tikiyaki 2008-05-02 17:59 ]

[ This Message was edited by: tikiyaki 2008-05-02 18:01 ]


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beadtiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 24, 2007
Posts: 929
From: Bothell, Washington
Posted: 2008-05-06 9:15 pm   Permalink

Thanks all for the wonderful photos. I'm SOOOOO wishing I could be there now. Oh sure, the weather is getting a LITTLE better here in the Pacific Northwest, but just 6 short hours away is a little slice of the only thing I could possibly consider heaven. SSSSSSIIIIIGGGGGHHHHH.

 
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tikiyaki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 18, 2004
Posts: 2710
From: The Exotic Port of REDONDO BEACH, CA
Posted: 2008-05-06 10:27 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2008-05-06 21:15, beadtiki wrote:
Thanks all for the wonderful photos. I'm SOOOOO wishing I could be there now. Oh sure, the weather is getting a LITTLE better here in the Pacific Northwest, but just 6 short hours away is a little slice of the only thing I could possibly consider heaven. SSSSSSIIIIIGGGGGHHHHH.



You and me both...I miss KONA.


 
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Quince_at_Dannys
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 29, 2004
Posts: 162
From: Command Records International HQ
Posted: 2008-05-26 3:53 pm   Permalink

Here's a few more pictures from Don the Beachcomber's from when my wife and I visited last August.

As an aside, this hotel used to be the Kona Hilton, and the old dining room that is now Don's dates back to at least the 60s. There is a photo of it in Sippin' Safari, on page 106. You can see the tiki pillars that are still there today. Frankly, I think they've done a great job of not only preserving the vintage feel in the restaurant, but improving on it as well.














 
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