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 » » JOHN-O's Zombie Road Trip...
Goto page ( Previous Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 Next Page )
JOHN-O's Zombie Road Trip...
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2689
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-11-04 6:44 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-11-02 11:24, tikilongbeach wrote:
John-O,
Have you checked out Melody Bar & Grill in Westchester? I found the place by looking up tiki bar on yelp.com. From looking at their pics online it looks like there are a few different theme rooms in the bar/restaurant. The place opened in 1952 and looks cleaned up and old school. I haven't been to the place, but thought it looked interesting.


Quote:

On 2012-11-03 08:58, christiki295 wrote:
One of the rooms does have palm thatching, bamboo and Hawaiian wall coverings. It cold be worth a look-see before heading to the Purple Orchid.



I was driving near the Melody bar today so I popped in. This place might have been a down and dirty dive bar oozing with 1950's character at one point but that seems to have been remodeled away.

The "Tiki bar" at the time of my visit didn't seem to be in use...



but they did have a Mai Tai on the menu at the main bar.

It read: Captain Morgan rum, Malibu rum, pineapple juice, orange juice, with a float of raspberry liquor.

The pictures on their web site make the place appear Rat Pack stylish but I saw more backward baseball caps, wife beaters, and Raiders jerseys than sharkskin suits.

I go into these places so you guys don't have to !!


[ This Message was edited by: John-o 2012-11-04 20:45 ]


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
tikilongbeach
Grand Member (first year)  

Joined: Aug 05, 2011
Posts: 1309
From: Long Beach, CA via Dallas, TX
Posted: 2012-11-04 6:54 pm   Permalink

Oh no! I'm disappointed. Thank you for checking it out. Raspberry liquer in a mai tai?
_________________
-Lori


 
View Profile of tikilongbeach Send a personal message to tikilongbeach      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Atomic Tiki Punk
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 19, 2009
Posts: 5996
From: Costa Misery
Posted: 2012-11-04 7:36 pm   Permalink

John-O, you Glorious Bastard!

 
View Profile of Atomic Tiki Punk Send a personal message to Atomic Tiki Punk      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
tikicoma
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Jan 16, 2010
Posts: 371
From: wakinekona
Posted: 2012-11-04 8:19 pm   Permalink

How did it taste?

 
View Profile of tikicoma Send a personal message to tikicoma      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3813
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2012-11-04 8:22 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-11-04 18:44, JOHN-O wrote:
The "Tiki bar" at the time of my visit didn't seem to be in use...





WTF?
The Tiki bar used as a storage room?


 
View Profile of christiki295 Send a personal message to christiki295  Email christiki295     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2689
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-11-04 8:37 pm   Permalink

Well to be fair I think that was just a temporary thing on a Sunday night.  One of the waitresses saw me snap the picture and got quite concerned, insisting that it usually didn't look that way.  She ran and got the manager who wanted to know what I was going to do with the picture.  When I tried to describe TC and the Tiki Revival in my standard 30 second Tiki sound bite, she looked at me like I was nuts.

 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
bigtikidude
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8868
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2012-11-04 10:48 pm   Permalink

aren't you nuts?


Jeff(btd)



 
View Profile of bigtikidude Send a personal message to bigtikidude  Email bigtikidude     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2689
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-11-07 7:55 pm   Permalink

BTD, you don't know the half of it.

Here's the 2nd part of that Sunday evening. Since the Melody Bar was a shutout, I decided to check off a long standing item on my Tiki "to do" list as I was driving west on Pico Blvd back to Santa Monica.

For those of you familiar with your Tiki geography, you should know my destination was the famous Kelbo's, "Home of the Habit-forming Spare Ribs". Or rather I should say the FORMER Kelbo's, as that location now houses the Fantasy Island "strip club".

Unlike other long gone Tiki landmarks, the Kelbo's building wasn't razed but instead re-purposed. And the new business wasn't some unimaginative retail outlet but rather an establishment that still held the promise of an alcohol-fueled "exotic" experience. Could Kelbo's ghosts of Tiki past be haunting the place?



Now we've seen exterior pictures of Kelbo's surviving Tiki signage and lighthouse tower, but no urban archeology reports on the interior have ever been posted. Yeah I know after all this time someone must have checked it out, but nothing that's ever been reported on TC.

I've always assumed based on the Westside address, Fantasy Island was an upscale Vegas-style Gentlemen's Club staffed by MAWs (model/actress/whatever) looking to get discovered by slumming Hollywood producers. That expectation was reinforced last year when I and another prominent Tiki Centralite took a rum-fueled field trip to the (now defunct) Cheetah club down the street from the Tiki-Ti. There we met a former Miss Chinese Seattle looking for her big Hollywood break, she even provided me with her personal website info and IMDB resume !!

So after paying a $10 cover I entered into Fantasy Island and encountered an environment very different from what I expected. The place was virtually empty with the exception of a bunch of sad sack guys watching football at the bar. Also F.I. really wasn't that upscale, it vibed more like a seedy Mexican bordello with its blood red walls. Actually that's a lowbrow aesthetic I can appreciate, if it wasn't for the fact the place was just too darn brightly lit for such a den of iniquity.

And where were all of the wahines?, at Sunday dinner? I was was told to come back later at night, especially on Fri or Sat, for the bump and grind action. BTW contrary to popular belief, F.I. is a bikini bar only, no nudity.

Well since I was there in search of Tikis rather than titties, I asked the young door lady if she knew anything about the former Kelbo's. "What do you mean elbows?" she replied. I then went into my standard 30 second Tiki sound bite. From there all I got was a more puzzled (and annoyed) response than at the Melody Bar. I felt like I was reliving the scene in "Taxi Driver" where Travis Bickle tries to make small talk with the concession stand girl at a Time Square porn theater.

Falling short on any Tiki intel, I grabbed a $6 beer at the bar and started to explore the place with the thoroughness of an LAFD building inspector. So do you want to know what's sadder than a devolved Tiki bar? It's wandering around deserted stripper pole stages with a "$16" beer in your hand while suspiciously being eyed by the management.

So as you might expect by now, there were absolutely NO traces of Tiki found inside the low ceiling-ed building.

After finishing my beer, I crossed F.I. off my Tiki list and walked out the door. As my gauze turned downward after looking up at the Kelbo's lighthouse, I did notice street-level stain glass windows depicting tropical birds. Remnants from Kelbo's? I would really like to think so.

So is Fantasy Island worth anyone's Tiki time? Probably not, but perhaps in some small way F.I. is carrying on the tradition of T&A inside the (former) Tiki bar...


(Left to right - Tiki Bob's, Zamboanga, Tropics)


And hey it's still better than a Wallgreens, right? (RIP Kahiki)


(EDITED - I noticed I used "inequity" instead of "iniquity", although you could argue it was all a Tiki injustice anyway, haha.)

[ This Message was edited by: JOHN-O 2012-11-10 09:35 ]


 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
nui 'umi 'umi
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Feb 21, 2011
Posts: 1051
From: La Mirada Atoll
Posted: 2012-11-07 10:46 pm   Permalink

Yer amazing John-o

 
View Profile of nui 'umi 'umi Send a personal message to nui 'umi 'umi  Email nui 'umi 'umi     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Dagg
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jun 26, 2012
Posts: 321
From: Van Isle BC CA
Posted: 2012-11-07 11:07 pm   Permalink

Just read the whole thread. Awesome. I look forward to more!

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

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 1016
From: Redondo Beach
Posted: 2012-11-07 11:39 pm   Permalink

The windows and tower are remnants of Kelbo's, but that is all that is left. I went to F.I. after it first opened, and there was still some Kelbo's left there. There was a "shipwreck" room that still had some of the old Kelbo's decor, but it was realy the lounge connected to the bar and had no dancing in the room itself. There was also a "dungeon" room and a "harem" room with some cute girls dancing there. I have been back twice since then, and each time it had deteriorated more than the time before. The last time I was there was maybe 10 years ago and all traces of Kelbo's, tiki, and even the fantasy rooms were gone. It was much as you describe now. I saw no reason to ever return.

I used to go to the Melody frequently. They used to have a Wednesday night show called "Guitarology". The food and drinks are decent, but despite having a "tiki" room there are no tiki drinks there. The tiki room is a tacky tiki decorated room where they store the pool tables. There is a tiki bar that I have never seen used, some bamboo and matting and a tiki mask or two and that is all there is. I like the place, but I don't go there for tiki. Unfortunately, the guitarology night is over so I doubt I'll be going there quite as often.


 
View Profile of PiPhiRho Send a personal message to PiPhiRho  Email PiPhiRho Goto the website of PiPhiRho     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
christiki295
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Apr 09, 2003
Posts: 3813
From: LA-2547 mls east Hawaii &5500 Easter Is
Posted: 2012-11-08 12:38 pm   Permalink

Quote:

[i]On 2012-11-07 19:55, JOHN-O wrote:

Unlike other long gone Tiki landmarks, the Kelbo's building wasn't razed but instead re-purposed. And the new business wasn't some unimaginative retail outlet but rather an establishment that still held the promise of an alcohol-fueled "exotic" experience.



A travesty. Neither Tiki, nor exotic entertainment.


 
View Profile of christiki295 Send a personal message to christiki295  Email christiki295     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
JOHN-O
Tiki Socialite

Joined: May 16, 2008
Posts: 2689
From: Dogtown, USA
Posted: 2012-11-08 1:10 pm   Permalink

Hey it's still better than a Wallgreens, right?

 
View Profile of JOHN-O Send a personal message to JOHN-O      Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
bigtikidude
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Aug 10, 2004
Posts: 8868
From: Anaheim,Ca.
Posted: 2012-11-08 7:42 pm   Permalink

right


 
View Profile of bigtikidude Send a personal message to bigtikidude  Email bigtikidude     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Jason Wickedly
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jan 01, 2008
Posts: 704
From: LBCTIKI
Posted: 2012-11-09 10:02 am   Permalink

I think you just weren't looking hard enough John. I propose we take a field trip...on a Friday or Saturday night to provide further uh, "intelligence". Yeah, that's it.

 
View Profile of Jason Wickedly Send a personal message to Jason Wickedly  Email Jason Wickedly Goto the website of Jason Wickedly     Edit/Delete This Post Reply with quote
Goto page ( Previous Page 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27 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