FEATURES | MUSIC | BOOKS | DRINKS | FORUMS | GAMES | LINKS | ABOUT


advertise on Tiki Central

Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop
  [Edit Profile]  [Edit Preferences]  [Search] [Sign Up]
[Personal Messages]  [Member List]  [Help/FAQ]  [Rules]  [Login]
Tiki Central Forums General Tiki Tiki Tour of San Pedro, CA
Goto page ( 1 | 2 Next Page )
Tiki Tour of San Pedro, CA
Sabu The Coconut Boy
Tiki Central Poet Laureate

Joined: Aug 20, 2002
Posts: 2793
From: Carson, California
Posted: 2004-02-11 3:33 pm   Permalink

I'm going to post both these locations in the Locating Tiki forum, but thought you might like to see them together here as kind of a "driving tour" of some tiki sites in San Pedro.

The first stop is the Samoan Sea apartments at 661 N. Harbor Drive. These are a little hard to get to. You have to be travelling South on Harbor Drive. If you're travelling North, there's no entrance and you have to drive past several onramps for the 110 Fwy before you can turn around and head back. But once you get there, you're in for a treat:



These apartments are right up against the Harbor Fwy (110) on the back side and right against the harbor on the front. I found them in the phonebook and had been wanting to visit for some time. Tiki Steve, who lives in the area, also suggested I see them.

Here are the two fantastic cement tikis that still stand guard over the harbor:



They remind me of the Tiki Drums at Walt Disney World:

Here are a few more views of the apartments:

Inside the A-Frame, looking out at the cruise ships and the Vincent St. Thomas Bridge.

A side view of the A-frame.


Continue South down Harbor Drive and in no time you come to the entrance of Ports-O-Call village to the left. This is an old tourist stop full of Cape-Cod style shops and restaurants. Today, the local Latino community has made it their own and the adjoining fish markets are packed with literally thousands of families buying huge, freshly-cooked fish and shrimp dinners out on the bay-front patios. On a Sunday afternoon it's really a sight to see.

However, back to the reason for my visit. Among all the faux New-England architecture, my postcards show that there was once an exotic Tiki locale called the "Ports-O-Call Restaurant", surrounded by a Lagoon:

Here is the Ports-O-Call as it looks today:

The A-Frame is still there, but the glass floats are gone, as is the jutting beam at the top. The lagoon has diminished to a small stream with a bridge.


I don't know what the interior looked like in it's heyday, but nowdays it's a pretty typical carpets & brass restaurant (like an upscale Marie Callendar's), with banquet rooms for weddings or large gatherings, and not a single Polynesian item on the menu.

The only hint of the glory of the old days lies in the gorgeous collection of beachcomber lamps and glass floats in the main patio room:





There were also large displays of fresh tropical flowers throughout:
http://images.snapfish.com/344%3A982723232%7Ffp58%3Dot%3E2327%3D999%3D33%3C%3DXROQDF%3E2323%3A9944%3A4%3C8ot1lsi[/img]

I went to the bar and ordered a Mai Tai. The bartender said the old recipes for the rum drinks they used to serve 30 years ago are long-lost. His Mai Tai was strong with not too much pineapple juice, and fairly tasty:


If you're a fan of taxidermy fish, be sure to go over to the adjoining fish markets:




I did a little more driving around San Pedro and found this apartment building at 502 40th street. No Tikis to mention, and just a hint of Poly-pop architecture:



There's got to be other tiki sites in San Pedro, either alive or extinct. Is anyone else familiar with this area?

Sabu


_________________



[ This Message was edited by: Sabu The Coconut Boy 2005-09-26 10:14 ]


 View Profile of Sabu The Coconut Boy Send a personal message to Sabu The Coconut Boy  Email Sabu The Coconut Boy     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
thejab
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2986
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2004-02-11 6:03 pm   Permalink

As always a great post Sabu! It gave me a thrill to see that picture of the Tradewinds apartments because I just put a deposit down on an apartment at the Tradewinds Apartments in Alameda, CA, where I'm moving next month.

_________________
____
_ _
/
/
/
_

[ This Message was edited by: thejab on 2004-02-13 11:25 ]


 
View Profile of thejab Send a personal message to thejab  Goto the website of thejab     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Basement Kahuna
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Oct 14, 2002
Posts: 3591
From: Jawja Province, Isle of North America
Posted: 2004-02-11 8:55 pm   Permalink

"We learned punk rock in Hollywood, grew up in Pedro...We were fucking corndogs...we used to go drink and pogo...Punk rock changed our lives..." -D.Boone

 
View Profile of Basement Kahuna Send a personal message to Basement Kahuna  Email Basement Kahuna     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Polynesiac
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Jan 29, 2004
Posts: 2079
From: San Pedro, CA
Posted: 2004-02-11 8:56 pm   Permalink

Okay, Sabu
You beat me to it!
Off the top my head...

There are two tikis at the Korean Friendship Bell at the top of the hill at about Gaffy and 37th. Here is the picture:



E-mail next time your in the area! (I know Carson really isn't that far either!)

_________________
"Hey! Careful, man! There's a beverage!" - The Dude

[ This Message was edited by: polynesiac on 2004-02-27 13:10 ]


 
View Profile of Polynesiac Send a personal message to Polynesiac  Email Polynesiac Goto the website of Polynesiac     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
bongofury
Grand Member (6 years)  

Joined: Oct 15, 2002
Posts: 1544
From: Ventura County
Posted: 2004-02-12 7:39 pm   Permalink

In the mid 70s I lived in Harbor City, next to San Pedro. We went to the Ports O Call restaurant a few times.....don't remember if it had tikis, but do remember when there was a wait we would hang outside and look at the lagoon.

San Pedro also had the Channel Heights Housing Project.....designed by Richard Neutra.


 
View Profile of bongofury Send a personal message to bongofury  Email bongofury     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
stentiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 24, 2002
Posts: 892
From: Huntington Beach
Posted: 2004-02-12 8:13 pm   Permalink

Sabu,

Once again, your research is most impressive!

I haven't been to Ports O'Call Village in years, but I remember when it was the place to be. My senior prom was there and I recall walking with my date along the lagoon looking fab in my white tails and lavender ruffles. Ah, good times!

BK - Great pop reference from the Minutemen. I often think of that song when I'm on the freeway near San Pedro. Yeah, "fucking corndogs!"

Thanks for the pix, Sabu!

_________________
Aloha,

Arty



 
View Profile of stentiki Send a personal message to stentiki  Email stentiki     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
tikitony
Grand Member (8 years)  

Joined: Aug 18, 2002
Posts: 860
From: Ventura, CA
Posted: 2004-02-12 9:44 pm   Permalink

great pictures, I love to see the different tikis of the old skool. THe slit in the tiki is a characteristic of the New Hebrides Isles. They were ancestor spirits, which visually represented the spirit and also "verbaly" represented the ancestor. The noise made from the drum represented the "breath" and voice of the relative. I have one on the drawing board, just waiting to be carved..
thanks for the pictures!
_________________

Live like a Beachcomber!
www.TikiTony.com www.facebook.com/tikitonybeachcomber

 View Profile of tikitony Send a personal message to tikitony  Email tikitony Goto the website of tikitony     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
RevBambooBen
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 12, 2002
Posts: 7454
From: Huntikington Beach
Posted: 2004-02-12 11:38 pm   Permalink

I was waiting for something "grand" for my 1k post and you got me, Sabu!

There's a little place at the very end of Western Ave., now a county park on the map called Whites Point. Go to the right of the playground and pay the dude $5 and proceed down the hill. Wait!!! Stop the Car!!! Take a look straight ahead. See the palm trees? Remember that view. Ok, drive slowly down the hill. Park your car at the bottom. Now, walk towards the palms. You will pass a couple of pilings, hmmmmm, they look like they might have had gates attached at one time. Beyond the public bathrooms you see some sort of marble floor. And, to the right, built inside the hill slope, you see a couple of fire places. Then you keep walking north. You come across some "very old foundation slabs" along the coast. Oh wait! Go back to the marble floor. Look for a plaque in the middle. Read it. Ok, now you know. Back to the "very old slabs." This is where the house was. An old spanish fort converted into a house and halfway built with "Driftwood." Beyond the fireplaces rests the grounds of the work sheds where history took place back in the 40's. This coastal land was home to Eli Hedley, Malcom Hedley and their 4 daughters, one being my Mom. As you have now learned, the plaque is dedicated to the Hedley family. You are at "The Cove."

Bamboo Ben

The Hedley sisters talk story and this is how it goes.
"The Cove was a spot for many to eventually discover. As children it was our "playground by the sea." Our family was known as "The Beachcombing Hedleys." It was a happy time for us all. Not easy, as I came to distaste "potato soup," which we ate often. As time passed, Mama and Daddy were the hosts with the toasts. Movie stars as famous as Cary Grant would moor their boats off the rock and come ashore for a luau to remember. Sailors of the sea, some known and some silent, would gather. Raymond Burr often came to call for a hand to a high school prom. He fancied Marilyn, the second daughter. Nothing would come to be, but a long lasting friendship amongst us all.

Planning and preparing for a "happening" was busy yet careless. The tables would be set with lovely cloth, flowers placed and food simmering. Mama was a relaxed hostess. Nothing was too big for her, nor too small. Mama loved entertaining no matter who came to call. The same amount of graciousness went out to every visitor.

The times at The Cove slipped away when my sisters and I were in upper high school. However, the love we hold for these shores has never died. This is our home, our childhood, our past. Fond memories and "happenings" are in our hearts today and forever. Thank you Mama and Daddy."

Ba Hedley

I need a beer,
Bamboo Ben


 
View Profile of RevBambooBen Send a personal message to RevBambooBen  Email RevBambooBen Goto the website of RevBambooBen     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
thejab
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 2986
From: Tradewinds Apartments, Alameda, CA
Posted: 2004-02-13 12:13 pm   Permalink

Welcome back Ben! Your 1000th post was a doozy. Somebody buy that man a beer!

 
View Profile of thejab Send a personal message to thejab  Goto the website of thejab     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Sabu The Coconut Boy
Tiki Central Poet Laureate

Joined: Aug 20, 2002
Posts: 2793
From: Carson, California
Posted: 2004-02-13 12:35 pm   Permalink

Thanks for the doozy of a post, Ben!

I promise to go investigate the place soon. (And take pictures).

Sabu


 
View Profile of Sabu The Coconut Boy Send a personal message to Sabu The Coconut Boy  Email Sabu The Coconut Boy     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
sirginn
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Oct 20, 2003
Posts: 279
From: Sunset Cliffs , CA
Posted: 2004-02-13 1:36 pm   Permalink

Thanks Sabu-
Brings back a lot of memories, grew up in PV. I haven't been to Ports of Call in decades, I used to love it when I was little, they had a belgian waffle house, and helicopter rides over the harbor too.
BK-
Nice minutmen reference, I was fortunate to see Mike Watt rock out a few times.


 
View Profile of sirginn Send a personal message to sirginn      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Polynesiac
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Jan 29, 2004
Posts: 2079
From: San Pedro, CA
Posted: 2004-02-13 4:08 pm   Permalink

Ben - I read a great little article about your extended family in the local paper recently and it included your business too. What a great way to live. With all the development it's hard to believe that you could beach comb any where in Los Angeles and find cool stuff.
BK (and all other Minutemen fans) - Mike Watt plays gigs here in 'Pedro all the time. He's in, what seems like, a bazillion different bands but the one he's been doing most recently was "lets go speedro"
Sabu - this is a great thread. Thanks for starting it. I never took the time to really look at all these Tiki places (that I happen to pass every day) until this post. Nice job!

Another (not-so-tiki-but-super-nautical) local is Tally-Ho Marine Salvage on the corner of 22nd and S Mesa st. He is a nautical "relia" supplier for hollywood and has been the nautical supplier and coordinator for such movies as Hook and Hildago (maybe Pirates of the Carribean too because all the ship shots were done in LA harbor!). Anyway, he has a TON of antiques (like lights and floats and most anything else) inside and a TON more nautical brik-a-brac outside. The owner is a great guy and a lot of fun to talk to even if you don't want to buy anything. Tell him "Mr. D" recommended him to you - he'll get a kick out of that!
I'll get some pictures in here soon and a contact number if anyone in intersted. Everything on his lot is for sale.
_________________

OMG! I'm on Instagram!


 View Profile of Polynesiac Send a personal message to Polynesiac  Email Polynesiac Goto the website of Polynesiac     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Traderpup
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 26, 2002
Posts: 1049
From: Long Beach, CA
Posted: 2004-02-13 4:28 pm   Permalink

Great set of photos! I remember the Samoan.... my dad lived there briefly in the 70s after my parents divorced.... but I remember it being a motel at the time....

 
View Profile of Traderpup Send a personal message to Traderpup  Email Traderpup Goto the website of Traderpup     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
ZuluMagoo
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 26, 2002
Posts: 469
From: Denver, CO
Posted: 2005-09-22 8:59 pm   Permalink

This is a postcard folder (very common) found on eBay for the Ports of Call Village



Interestingly, one of the pictures inside of the folder is of the Vincent Thomas Bridge in San Pedro.



The large vacant grass lot in the center of the photo is the site where the Samoan Seas apartments now stand.


 
View Profile of ZuluMagoo Send a personal message to ZuluMagoo  Email ZuluMagoo     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
El Bastardo
Tiki Centralite

Joined: Aug 27, 2005
Posts: 47
Posted: 2005-09-23 12:46 am   Permalink

Sabu, when I view your pic post I get a lot of grey squares (as opposed to red Xs) is there something additional I need to know reguarding your images?
_________________


 
View Profile of El Bastardo Send a personal message to El Bastardo  Goto the website of El Bastardo     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Goto page ( 1 | 2 Next Page )
U-Moderate:
  
v1.5

[ About Tiki Central | Contact Tiki Central | Advertise on Tiki Central ]
(c) 2000-2014 Tikiroom.com (tm), Tiki Central (tm)

Credits & copyright infomation