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Tiki Central Forums » » General Tiki » » Tiki is dying fast in Waikiki - International Market
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Tiki is dying fast in Waikiki - International Market
Koolau
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 23, 2006
Posts: 323
From: Oahu, Hawaii
Posted: 2007-01-07 11:05 pm   Permalink

Truth be told, the place is kind of a pit. With the exception of the two old buildings that front Kalakaua, the International Market Place is a confusing mix of 70's era buildings, abandoned shops, and winding paths choked with carts selling the worst tourist crap imaginable. The Romantic Past is long gone - even those great photos above show the weathered and hideously painted tikis emblematic of the site. The tikis that aren't painted are crowded in by sunglass, mac nut, and T-shirt displays.

There really isn't much of the charming Don the Beachcomber International Market Place left to restore. A clean sweep may be the best solution, but I would certainly like to see the two oldest buildings retained.

As to the tikis being removed - remember that the International Market Place is owned by the Queen Emma Foundation. Many native Hawaiians aren't too keen on perceived exploitation of their culture (at least by non-Hawaiians), and Poly Pop tikis could be viewed negatively. Perhaps that's why they're being removed. I would hope they're offered to those who want them instead of being destroyed - that would be a shame.


 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3818
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2007-01-08 12:52 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-01-07 23:05, Koolau wrote:
Truth be told, the place is kind of a pit. With the exception of the two old buildings that front Kalakaua, the International Market Place is a confusing mix of 70's era buildings, abandoned shops, and winding paths choked with carts selling the worst tourist crap imaginable. The Romantic Past is long gone - even those great photos above show the weathered and hideously painted tikis emblematic of the site. The tikis that aren't painted are crowded in by sunglass, mac nut, and T-shirt displays.





I think you are being a little to hard. Yes, it does sell stuff to tourists, but that is hardly unusual in the islands. A nice, open air mall with a cultural museum like Whaler's Village in Maui is nice, but it lacks the historical charm of the IMP.

In my opinion, there are enough clean, ABC stores around to balance out the IMP.


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11265
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2007-01-08 06:01 am   Permalink

It needs the eye of a romantic to appreciate even the little that was left of the International Market Place.

The Book of Tiki, Chapter 1:

"But just as Paul Gauguin was fascinated with the melancholy atmosphere of decay in Papeete, Tahiti's capital, detecting the 'blurred surface of some unfathomable enigma' in this already tainted paradise, so can today's urban archeologist appreciate remnants of that Paradise Lost we call American Tiki style."

Tiki Modern, Chapter 7:

“In the midst of desolation and ruin we looked back to the past, cleared away the gloomy forest, and fancied every building perfect, with its terraces and pyramids, its sculptured and painted ornaments, grand, lofty, and imposing”

John L. Stephens, “Incidents of Travel in Central America”, 1841


 
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Jeff Central
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 23, 2002
Posts: 1611
From: Columbus, Ohio
Posted: 2007-01-08 06:49 am   Permalink

Sven has a point here. When I visited the IMP for the first time I was just in AWE to be there. Sure it didn't look like it did when they were shooting Hawaiian Eye but I just felt like it was a very historical place even though it had gone through many changes.

Crap, I was asking people at the Hilton Hawaiian Village where the Kaiser Aluminum Dome was back in 2003!!! I kid you not. After about 3 or four trys and a lot of blank stares I came across an elderly lady who worked at one of the gift stores and she said "Oh, they tore that down years ago."

I felt a lttle embarrased but then laughed about for hours!! It still brings a smile to my face when I think about it.

Cheers,
Jeff


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11265
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2007-01-08 07:13 am   Permalink

That's because were are all kooks, off-the-rocker weirdos, Jeff!
The Kaiser Dome was still there in 1999...when I saw it, I was struck by how relatively small it was.


 
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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2007-01-08 10:25 am   Permalink

These photos are not mine. Someone else here posted a link to them a while back. These are from around 1960 I believe.







Closeups of the last picture (Arthur Lyman!):






 
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Jeff Central
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 23, 2002
Posts: 1611
From: Columbus, Ohio
Posted: 2007-01-08 11:51 am   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-01-08 07:13, bigbrotiki wrote:
That's because were are all kooks, off-the-rocker weirdos, Jeff!
The Kaiser Dome was still there in 1999...when I saw it, I was struck by how relatively small it was.



True!!

That's cool you got to see the Dome before they tore it down. Did you happen to take any pictures? If it was relatively small this may explain why those Arthur Lyman records sound so good!

Cool pictures GatorRob. Thanks for posting those. Boy, what a show that would have been Arthur Lyman and Chick Floyd "live" at Don the Beachcombers!!!

Damn, where is that blasted time machine!!!

Cheers and Mahalo,
Jeff


 
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Swanky
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 03, 2002
Posts: 5065
From: Hapa Haole Hideaway, TN
Posted: 2007-01-08 12:22 pm   Permalink

Sven, that sentiment is why I really want to get to Cuba before the day comes when it is open again and is immediately renovated. Today I imagine it as a decaying time capsule. In ten years, it may look like every American beach resort, with every car on the street being new and shiney. It won't change that fast, but I bet over night there will be changes you can't begin to imagine.
_________________

Announcing Swank Pad and Crazy Al's Molokai Maiden!


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PremEx
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 23, 2006
Posts: 299
From: Houston, Texas
Posted: 2007-01-08 12:36 pm   Permalink

Quote:
That's cool you got to see the Dome before they tore it down.



We used to go to the Dome all the time. It was Don Ho's "home" for a lotta years, and he packed that not-so-tiny bubble to the gills almost every night! After Ho left the Dome...actor/perfomer Al Harrington (Det. Ben Kokua on Hawaii Five-O) took over as headliner there.

When they tore down the Dome, they replaced part of it with a mini-golf course for awhile...and then eventually added the Hilton's Kalia Tower there too.

Quote:



Thanks Tiki Royale! That's exactly the Vic's sign I posted about and was lusting after.

And Thanks everyone else for the great vintage photos. It really is a crying shame such a iconic and cultural landmark as IMP, can have it's core urban architecture gutted like what is happening. Many other places of similar construction and condition have been "saved" with a little refurbishment and renovation work...rather than gutting and modernizing. Wish someone would have done that with IMP.

Just a shame that future generations will never get to experience the original...and will only have another modern shopping plaza to reference to the name.


 
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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1771
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2007-01-08 1:02 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-01-08 11:51, Jeff Central wrote:
Boy, what a show that would have been Arthur Lyman and Chick Floyd "live" at Don the Beachcombers!!!


Yes, could you just imagine being greeted at the door by Donn Beach himself (where he reminds you that the orchid lei he is wearing is for sale in the gift shop), then settle in to watch and listen to the Arthur Lyman Group perform selections from "Taboo", while sipping on a Zombie. Ahhhhh.....


 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3818
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2007-01-08 10:19 pm   Permalink

The present is not all that bad, either.

I loved purchasing a Hawaiian-made "Ku" tiki, in the midst of the Banyan tree, water features and orchids.

I also liked being able to go on my urban archeology tiki hunt, for tikis of eras past.



 
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Mo-Eye
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 17, 2006
Posts: 629
From: Costa Mesa, CA
Posted: 2007-01-09 12:51 am   Permalink

Tiki Royale!

Great Tiki Pics! Sadly, out of all of your photos, only 3 of those tikis, as well as the stairs, still exist. All of the others are gone.

Here are some photos I took this morning. They have a big green fence around the whole building, so it is hard to take a photo from the ground.


I'm keeping my eye on these carved doors:







The awesome roofline:



PremEx - Here is the pole that held your Trader Vic sign. Still has the tiki bird and overhang. Not less than a month ago, there was a carved wood sign that read Trader Vic's Parrot Walk, but that disappeared recently too.





Traces of Tiki:



This is the cool design that is on the side of the building. I've walked by it tons of times, but never noticed until now that the carving is actually styrofoam.



Right now, even the guys working there don't know what is going on. Some say the whole thing is coming down, others say it is just being gutted. I also noticed today that the entire food court is closed now, but there is a sign that says temporary. Not only have they taken away my tikis, now they have taken away my cheap mexican food for lunch!!!!

Personally, I have learned to hate the market. Nothing but rude people who don't speak english who get pissed off at you when you don't buy the crap they are selling, which is the same crap that is on the next 30 carts you are going to walk by.

I always thought the market would be amazing if they turned it into more of an artist's bazaar, where local artists and craftsmen could sell their work. But that would mean someone would actually have to manage the place.


 
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TikiPhil
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 21, 2004
Posts: 149
From: Riverside, CA
Posted: 2007-01-09 10:10 pm   Permalink

Here are some articles from the Honolulu Star Bulletin concerning the IMP renovation.

http://starbulletin.com/2003/09/11/business/story2.html
http://starbulletin.com/2005/07/21/news/story1.html
http://starbulletin.com/2005/08/13/business/story1.html


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tikibars
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 11, 2002
Posts: 2024
From: Aku Hall, Chicago
Posted: 2007-01-09 11:05 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-01-08 12:22, Swanky wrote:
Sven, that sentiment is why I really want to get to Cuba before the day comes when it is open again and is immediately renovated. Today I imagine it as a decaying time capsule. In ten years, it may look like every American beach resort, with every car on the street being new and shiney. It won't change that fast, but I bet over night there will be changes you can't begin to imagine.



Damn right, Tim.

I've been saying for years that a week after Castro dies, there'll be a Wal Mart, a McDonalds, and a Starbucks in downtown Havana.

I was in Cuba a month ago, but I was on the GitMo base the whole time, so I didn't see much. Really reinforced my urge to get down there ASAP though...


 
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christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3818
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2007-01-09 11:27 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2007-01-09 22:10, TikiPhil wrote:
Here are some articles from the Honolulu Star Bulletin concerning the IMP renovation.




According to the most recent article, the Queen Emma Foundation, the landowner, is merely waiting until 2010, when 14 additional acres come on line and a large, hotel village and mall can be created:



In 2010, the leases expire on about half the other 14 acres," Hastert said. Included are the Miramar Hotel next door to the center on Kuhio and land across Kuhio that houses a restaurant and the Food Pantry store. Some other properties coming back to the foundation in 2010 are of "fairly significant sizes" and there are many opportunities for profitable redevelopment, Hastert said.

One of the properties that reverts to Queen Emma when its lease runs out in 2010 is the Ohana Waikiki West hotel at 2330 Kuhio, near the Market Place, according to Mel Kaneshige, Outrigger Enterprises Inc. senior vice president and chief operating officer.

Kaneshige said the Queen Emma Foundation is right when it says the garden-like complex will enhance the value of the foundation's other holdings in the area.

"It could be sort of like the Hilton Hawaiian Village," where hotel towers surround gardens and retailing, Kaneshige said. In this case, it could be Queen Emma-owned hotel towers surrounding the trees and gardens and low-rise entertainment and dining of the new International Market Place, Kaneshige said."



 
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