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Tiki Central Forums » » Locating Tiki » » Royal Hawaiian Motel, Daytona Beach, FL (motel)
Royal Hawaiian Motel, Daytona Beach, FL (motel)
TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-01-26 11:06 am   Permalink

Name:Royal Hawaiian Motel
Type:motel
Street:925 S Atlantic Ave
City:Daytona Beach
State:FL
Zip:32118
country:USA
Phone:CLinton 3-8522
Status:defunct

Description:
The Royal Hawaiian Motel was a classic mid-century Florida beachside motor inn. It originally had 51 units, a pool and a cocktail lounge. A postcard description reads: Florida’s most unique vacation resort featuring the authentic gracious atmosphere of exotic Hawaii – Apartments & Motel Rooms – Air Conditioned & Heated – Swimming Pool – Coffee Shop, and the intimate Grass Shack Lounge for your entertainment.

Images of the Royal Hawaiian Motel have been scattered among past threads of Tiki Central, principally on these posts by DustyCajun:

Hawaiian/Tiki Hotel Postcard Art

Need info/pictures of Tiki and Poly buildings, bars, etc... that have been demolished

Florida Hawaiian/Tiki Resorts

Sabu also posted an image on the following thread, but all the images of his post have since gone missing:

Vintage Tiki Artwork - Favorite Artist's Renderings

This thread recaps those images in one place and adds some information on what became of the Royal Hawaiian Motel.

A postcard I have that appears to be postmarked 1959 (note the futuristic car)...






Another I have...






From DC’s earlier posts...






Here’s an image posted by ricklebee1964 on Flickr...




The following article from the Google News archives indicates that Marvin Cooper, a Miami resident, built and owned the Royal Hawaiian Motel, operating under a corporate name (Royal Hawaiian Corporation); the opening date isn’t stated and I couldn’t find anything online to pin it down, but one can infer from the article that it was 1957 or 1958 (“Cooper has been active on the Daytona Beach motel scene for several years”)...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal November 1, 1959 (page 22)



Note Cooper’s observation in the article: “Cocktail lounges in motels, he said, are more trouble than they’re worth.”

Also note that the architect’s sketch of the proposed Daytona Cabana office in the above article looks to be styled much like that of The Castaways in Miami Beach...




The Royal Hawaiian postcards mention apartments as well as motel rooms. Here’s an apartment ad from the 1960s...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal November 30, 1966 (page 10)



In the following article, we learn that Del & Kiki Perkins purchased the Royal Hawaiian Motel in 1968 from Marvin Cooper, then renovated it and renamed it to the Windjammer Motel...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal January 4, 1975 (page 43)



Here’s a Windjammer Beach Motel postcard that I have...






In the fall of 1971, Del Perkins, operating with his wife as the Schooner Corporation, began a renovation which combined the Windjammer Beach Motel (formerly the Royal Hawaiian Motel) with the adjacent Reef Beach Motel (a Quality Courts establishment), another property that he had purchased in 1964. Here’s a postcard of the Reef Beach Motel after Perkins purchased it...




This postcard, for sale at CardCow.com, shows the Reef Beach Motel before Perkins purchased it...






Here’s a close-up postcard image of the Reef Beach Motel pool area posted on Flickr by Edge and corner wear...




This article describes the merging of the two motels to form the 95-unit Quality Inn Reef with a street address of 921 S Atlantic Ave...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal September 25, 1971 (page 44)






To be continued...

-Tom

[ This Message was edited by: TikiTomD 2012-01-27 11:49 ]


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11133
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2012-01-26 1:09 pm   Permalink

Wow, Tom, another excellent piece of research! What I especially like here is the rich visuals, each one interesting by themselves, woven together to tell a story. I had been intrigued by the naive charm of the Royal Hawaiian hotel ever since I saw the postcards with the rendering, and then its realization. Fun fun fun, thank you!

 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-01-27 12:43 pm   Permalink

Thank you, Sven, for the very nice words. Armchair archaeology, while not Indiana Jones exciting, can be quite effective when you are chasing ghosts. It’s still a thrill to connect the dots on a story about people and places that no longer inhabit the physical realm.

I did some fine tuning on the dials of my time machine (search engine) last night and came up with a July 14, 1957 article that indicated the Royal Hawaiian Motel was constructed in 1957. It noted that Marvin Cooper had pulled the biggest motel permit in the first half of that year for $145,000 to build 51 units (exactly the size of the Royal Hawaiian Motel). Another article mentioned that the Reef Beach Motel was built in 1958.

The following diagram summarizes the progression to date on tracing the history of the Royal Hawaiian Motel...




I came across another close-up of the Reef Beach Motel pool, prior to its acquisition by Perkins, posted on
Flickr by Edge and corner wear...




In the next article, we learn that Del Perkins, owner of the Quality Inn Reef (which includes the old Royal Hawaiian Motel) holds an interest in a new hotel venture, the Marco Polo Oceanside; that fact will become significant later...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal August 30, 1969 (page 29)



The new 150-unit hotel opened in 1970...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal September 6, 1970 (page 27)



Here’s an old postcard of the Marco Polo Oceanside, for sale at CardCow.com...






And here is another postcard photo showing the beach end of the Marco Polo Oceanside, posted on Flickr by Edge and corner wear. A portion of the Quality Inn Reef can be seen just to the north in this view...




In 1975, Del Perkins and a new business partner, Jim Bazemore, operating as Reef Tower, Inc., took over the Marco Polo Oceanside and merged it with the Quality Inn Reef, renaming the Marco Polo part of the enlarged motel-hotel complex as the Reef Tower. The old Quality Inn Reef office at 921 South Atlantic Avenue moved southward into the new acquisition at 935 South Atlantic Avenue. The new complex went by the name Quality Inn Reef...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal January 4, 1975 (page 45)







Also in 1975, a restaurant and a lounge were added to the newly expanded Quality Inn Reef complex, the latter feature in spite of Marvin Cooper’s cautionary advice as the original Royal Hawaiian Motel owner...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal October 5, 1975 (page 89)



Here’s an ad for the new lounge...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal May 13, 1976 (page 26)



And here is an ad for the new restaurant, and another one for the ice cream parlor...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal October 19, 1975 (page 85)





Then, in 1979, Del & Kiki Perkins sold the Quality Inn Reef for $4.6M to a New York investment group; from that point on the archival records refer to it as the Reef Hotel...

Daytona Beach Morning Journal August 11, 1979 (page 116)



In 1987, the hotel complex went into bankruptcy proceedings, and, in 1988, SouthTrust Bank of Volusia County in South Daytona took over the hotel through foreclosure.

In 1989, a new 20's Jazz Club opened on the sixth floor of the Reef, featuring a bar that was once Al Capone’s...

The Daytona Beach News-Journal August 19, 1989 (page 33)



In 1996, the Reef Hotel property was purchased by Developer Investment Equities out of Miami, Florida and converted into a hotel-condominium called Ocean Jewels Club...

Orlando Sentinel June 6, 1996



As of 2012, Ocean Jewels Club remains as the last incarnation of the old Royal Hawaiian Motel, in the first block or so north of the Silver Beach Avenue Causeway on A1A. I drive by it at least twice a week. Here are a couple of street side Google Map photos of it...








And here are a couple of beach side views...








The completed event diagram tracing key milestones from the old Royal Hawaiian Motel in 1957 to today...




-Tom

[ This Message was edited by: TikiTomD 2012-01-27 18:26 ]


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11133
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2012-01-27 6:32 pm   Permalink

Wow, welcome to the new blandness. What a generic, un-fun environment.

Also, it is striking how beginning in the late 60s, the change in the look of architecture and design is symbolic for the castration of the optimistic spirit of the late 50s/early 60s:

As the cars lost their tail fins and the Tikis were being felled, the soaring outrigger beams....



were sawed off, and the once sharply peaked gables of the Tiki A-frame...



...and were replaced by the lopped off, stunted, faux mansard roof look:



 
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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4272
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2012-01-27 6:52 pm   Permalink

And of course, one of the worst offenses...the Trader Vic's in Scottsdale.





Very comprehensive post as usual Tiki Tom D. I have been looking for that Windjammer card.

DC


 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-04 5:56 pm   Permalink

With the help of the DustyCajun, located another vintage postcard of the Royal Hawaiian Motel, this one at night; note that there was no mention of the Grass Shack Lounge extolled in the earliest postcards...






-Tom


 
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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11133
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2012-11-04 10:23 pm   Permalink

Yeah, that one belonged here, it's a nice one. Wonder why on ALL of the postcards, they cropped off their roadside neon sign you showed above:



That would have looked good in this card! (Love the VW Karman-Ghia in that shot)


 
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