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Tiki Central Forums General Tiki TRADER VIC's Warehouse Sale
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TRADER VIC's Warehouse Sale
bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11130
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2008-03-01 07:38 am   Permalink

I still do not fully understand the meaning of this happening. What DOES this really mean for the future "look" of Trader Vic franchises? The fact that the architects of the new Trader Vic's demand Tikis and decor in specific measurements is one thing, so it would make sense that the poles and the panels would be sold (but can't one cut the poles to size?), and that would affect the tall 10 foot Tikis too (yet does that mean NO exterior entrance Tikis anywhere anymore?).
But all the freestanding statues, nautical decor, fish traps, floats, South Sea art, Papua New Guinea masks and shields? Some of that stuff DID find its way into the newer, white wall look Trader Vic's (x-ept Vegas) before, why is that stuff considered not usable anymore???

My fear is that the new CEO from Australia took one look at the warehouse and deemed it all "clutter" and kitsch, (just like their new guy in the 80s did), and that the new look is going to be much more uniform and bland than ever. Against that stands the fact that they did an outstanding job with the Dallas Trader Vic's (well it was already there) and are supposedly holding carvings and decor for the new Chicago one, which is suppose to be more old school.

The reason the sale makes sense must have something to do with the way the franchisees pay for the decor (do the they buy it, or just rent it?)

OR, Trader Vic's HAS finally seen the light and they are purging their Asian Tikis (!?) ...which, incidentally, 99% percent of the unsold ones in the pictures above are:

(Jeez, what an abomination! )

But then, to my surprise, there supposedly was a large amount of vintage items at the sale, too, like my S.F. " Rosebud" Tiki.

I am also unsure if they sold these to generate quick cash ? ...or if that money isn't just a drop in the bucket, and if all the loot we have seen here and are blown away by is just small potatoes for them and can be easily duplicated again.

Questions, questions, but I cannot shake the feeling of a stylistic "purge". Hope I am wrong.


 
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Koolau
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 23, 2006
Posts: 323
From: Oahu, Hawaii
Posted: 2008-03-01 08:35 am   Permalink

Well, if storage of the big pieces costs more than replacement and there's really no short-term need, then it makes business sense to sell them off. I'm more mystified at the selling of the plates, mugs and glassware - things that are being used, broken, pilfered, etc., and need to be replaced on a daily basis at their restaurants. Even crazy desirable items like the Port/Starboard Light glasses, and the Trader Vic Pig Mug were there. That seems short sighted.

 
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tiki1963
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Sep 12, 2003
Posts: 208
From: los angeles
Posted: 2008-03-01 09:17 am   Permalink

sven...

although i'm as guilty as the next guy for helping to clean them out, your concern was mine from the very beginning. i kept asking, "why in the world would they sell this stuff?"

much of the early sale stock cannot be replaced. the original carvers, the specific styles and the sheer history of the older pieces are something we'll probably not see again.

i came to the conclusion that the newer locations, especially in places like Dubai and Kuwait probably look down on the older material. i can just see some rich Sheik-type character looking at the older poles and figures, noticing a scratch or two, and thinking they were being ripped off...."Why do you sell be broken Tiki!? I want new, fresh! Bring now!"

also, Eve told me that many of the mid-eastern locations, because of religious reasons, will only install phallus-less and hand-less figures and poles. many times, they will take the original pieces and "trim" them of their manhood. and the weirdest, they DON'T SERVE ALCOHOL at those TV locations.

i think a lot of this is why the older stock was in a position to be cleared out. for the future authenticity of TV locations, i'm worried. for my home TV location, i'm filled with happy-talk.

[ This Message was edited by: tiki1963 2008-03-01 09:18 ]


 
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Psycho Tiki D
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 13, 2006
Posts: 1808
From: The river Styx, can you pay the toll?
Posted: 2008-03-01 2:01 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2008-03-01 07:38, bigbrotiki wrote:
I still do not fully understand the meaning of this happening. What DOES this really mean for the future "look" of Trader Vic franchises? The fact that the architects of the new Trader Vic's demand Tikis and decor in specific measurements is one thing, so it would make sense that the poles and the panels would be sold (but can't one cut the poles to size?), and that would affect the tall 10 foot Tikis too (yet does that mean NO exterior entrance Tikis anywhere anymore?).



Nearly every tiki less than 9' tall from Osaka had been altered. Most had a section of the top, including the forehead above the eyes cut off to modify the use. The other poles had damage from rails being cut off from the sides. It was sick to see! I waited for most of them to be unwrapped, in attempt to find one similar to my earlier purchase. Still, there was a chance to own a piece of history and I would have bought one if this were my only choice.

Michelle did say they were waiting tor the tiki and decor from the Egypt TV to be returned, that the franchisees had not yet done so.

So it appears the legacy of the true tiki culture from establishments long gone will be preserved by those lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time and do whatever can be done to afford it,

PTD


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11130
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2008-03-01 3:18 pm   Permalink

Good, that seems to confirm the "exactly fitted Tikis only" response we heard. Maybe it is a combination of that, and some other aspects: MAYBE, just maybe, they also realized that some of their Asian carvings were just plain wrong. And then, the "not clean enough" reason brought up by Tiki1963 could be the motivation for selling some vintage pieces....thought that seems absurd: The more antique the pieces look, the more they would represent the atmosphere of a South Seas Trading post.
But we all know now that our taste for patina is not what corporate America believes the customer wants. Rather the customer seems to want generic, no-risk, clean, unexiting sameness. Let's hope TVs is not heading in that direction any more than they already have in some cases.


 
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I-Tiki
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jun 25, 2004
Posts: 50
From: Falls Church, VA
Posted: 2008-03-02 09:58 am   Permalink

Anybody know if there is anything worthwhile left, and if so how to contact them by phone for a mail order?
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Mai Tai
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 21, 2004
Posts: 1435
From: Exotic Isle of Alameda
Posted: 2008-03-02 12:03 pm   Permalink

Oh my god!!! There was a warehouse sale?
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bLOCKhEAD
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Jul 16, 2007
Posts: 39
Posted: 2008-03-02 12:30 pm   Permalink

I believe the sale is over. I went back on Friday and picked up a few more items. Gotta says the tv girls are the best.

Cheers Will

Got this bloke on left last monday



Then this on friday





my Wife loved this little table , which was said to come from the sf tv.


[ This Message was edited by: bLOCKhEAD 2008-03-02 12:31 ]


 
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midnite
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 1230
From: 37? 47' N, 122? 26' W
Posted: 2008-03-02 11:30 pm   Permalink

Mai Tai wrote:
Oh my god!!! There was a warehouse sale?



Either that or we're going steady. Quicksand!


Quite a week it was, indeed. I made it for the open last Saturday and was there when the door was finally lowered Friday evening. There are so many memories I shall take away from my numerous visits to the warehouse sale. Saturday was akin to an actual Tiki event with many fellow TC members sharing a moment for the collecting ages. We were mulling about in stupefied wonder gazing at all the Vic's treasures. For me it was somewhere between the fevered giggles of discovering Ali Baba's cave and reverent Sunday go to church quiet. It was a gas. So many great times, so many friends, new and old, to name. My favorite aspect of the sale is the realization that many of my tiki pals acquired some great pieces of Trader Vic's history and that these relics will be appreciated for many years.

Fortunately, I was able to purchase what I believe are some fine, and one extremely fine, items. I was a bit reluctant to talk about this one purchase, for a number of reasons. However, now that the sale is over I can reveal this particular item which I was so very lucky to acquire. Some back story: While my eager presence and appreciative fan boy attitude was genuine and pure I did hope I could exhibit enough Trade Vic bona fides to Kier and Michelie and thereby eventually be shown the good stuff. The real creme de la creme of the inventory, so to speak. You know, the VIP, high dollar collectors' eyes only, private reserve, the rarest of the rare.

My various charms and dogged persistent bore fruit as I found myself alone with the warehouse girls one afternoon last week. It was at this time they quietly offered me one incredible object. Many could call it a grail, holy or otherwise. I had never seen it in person and frankly doubted it still even existed. Through my many years of tiki/Trader Vic's collecting I had heard stories of this vaunted relic, this gem in the crown of Vic's memorabilia. Kier held it out in front of me and whispered, "It's yours, go ahead." Dumbstruck, in awe from what sat before me, I was barely able to inquire, "Uhh, um, how much?" Well, you know, the old refrain, if you have to ask...

It was expensive, most assuredly. Still, what price glory, what cost to possess the unattainable? Does beauty have a price, is there a ready quote for holding history? My kingdom for a horse? Hardly. This, this is the true stuff of legend, tiki collecting or otherwise:







It's mine, all mine!

My precious,
midnite



 
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dogbytes
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Mar 24, 2002
Posts: 2242
From: seattle, wa
Posted: 2008-03-02 11:41 pm   Permalink

is it a bong?

 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11130
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2008-03-03 11:51 am   Permalink

Oh my god! THIS must be the "Maltese Falcon" of Tiki! The portrait of Trader Vic's PET CHICKEN, sculpted by the Trader himself!

When Vic was a young boy, he was a vegetarian, and his family was very poor. One day at the market, he saw a woman who was just going to wring a chicken's neck, and Vic saved it by offering to work for the witch for ten years for free. From that day on, the boy and the chicken were inseparable. But when the family came upon especially hard times and had not eaten for a week, it was decided to slaughter the chicken for nourishment. Vic knew that family came first, and killed the chicken himself. But to get up the nerve to do so, he asked for some liquor, and all that was in the house was some old rum. When they ate the chicken, he joined in out of hungry desperation, and to his surprise, he really liked it. He turned into a meat-loving connoisseur over night, but was only able to get the stuff down with ample amounts of rum. Vic then decided that he had hit upon a formula that might work with other people, too, .....and the rest is history!

Years later, after he had become a successful business man, he remembered his initial inspiration and sculpted this replica of his long gone pal. But one of his sons snuck into his studio while he was taking a break, and, being a little child, he thought daddy's sculpture looked kind of boring, and he got out his finger paints and put garish stripes of color all over the clay. When the Trader saw this, he became so furious that he disinherited his son. This son later went into business with the son of Steve CRANE to start a rival restaurant chain called "Trader Chick", but it miserably failed. The End.

And don't get me started with the weird tubes in the chicken, that's a whole nother tragic story....



[ This Message was edited by: bigbrotiki 2008-03-03 14:44 ]


 
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GatorRob
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 20, 2004
Posts: 1770
From: 3 hrs 33 mins to paradise
Posted: 2008-03-03 11:58 am   Permalink

Naaawwwww. It's a bong. Definitely.

 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11130
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2008-03-03 12:13 pm   Permalink

You're right. The tubes were added later by one of Trader Vic's other sons, who became a dope smoking hippie. I tell you, having children is just asking for trouble.

 
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Tipsy McStagger
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 21, 2004
Posts: 3516
From: HELL
Posted: 2008-03-03 12:20 pm   Permalink

yikes!! what a ghastly bird......

as to the trader vics stuff, perhaps the reason they didn't reuse it was due to sanitation reasons?? in these days of folks sueing over the slightest thing, perhaps some musty ol tikis that have collected who knows how many germs from the fecal covered hands of small children touching them over the years, as well as a nicotine sheen covering them throughout, that trader vics decided. "fuck it"...get rid of the shit and install all new product and not have to worry about it....



oh yeah, i saw a report the other day on childrens playgrounds throughout the U.S. and how infested they are with germs....trust me, you will never go near a playground again....YUCK!!
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[ This Message was edited by: Tipsy McStagger 2008-03-03 12:23 ]


 
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TikiLaLe
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 09, 2006
Posts: 891
From: Largo, Floriduh
Posted: 2008-03-03 12:35 pm   Permalink

I saw that last night on 'Breaking Bad'!!!

 
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