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Tiki Central Forums » » Locating Tiki » » Polynesia, South Miami, FL (restaurant)
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Polynesia, South Miami, FL (restaurant)
Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4271
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2012-11-28 4:04 pm   Permalink

Name:Polynesia
Type:restaurant
Street:US 1 and 200th Street
City:South Miami
State:FL
Zip:
country:USA
Phone:
Status:defunct

Description:
Found these ads for the Polynesia Restaurant and Lounge located in South Miami.

The gala opening ad was from July 1963.


This ad seems to show a Mystery Girl theme.


Music by Stanley and the Polynesians! The proprietor was Trader Joe.


A research project for Tiki Tom D.

DC



 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-29 06:49 am   Permalink

Assignment accepted, DC!

From this Herb Rau gossip column, we learn that saronged girls are featured...

The Miami News July 27, 1963 (page 27)



And there is an outrigger canoe hanging from the ceiling...

The Miami News August 2, 1963 (page 5)



Here's an ad from the same date...




-Tom


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Or Got Rum?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2009
Posts: 331
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2012-11-29 07:42 am   Permalink

Also from THE MIAMI NEWS AUG 1 1963 Merry Go Round---"The "Notorious Comparsa Cocktail" is being featured at Polynesia in South Miami Heights. Spot has a tie-in with Old Florida Rum for the drink. Customer gets the glass, too..." So a special glass may exist. BTW, How do you cut and paste from those damn Google archives? Thanks...OGR

 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-29 08:43 am   Permalink

OGR, here's several tips on the mechanics of acquiring Google News images, assuming that you have a Windows operating system on your PC. If you have a Mac, there should be analogs for doing the same thing...

1. To get rid of highlighting, take a note of the date and page number of the article of interest, then go to the link menu at the top and click on "Browse this newspaper >>"... the newspaper editions will be listed by month in columns, with the month of interest on the leftmost column. Click on the link "View all" and then scroll horizontally until you get to the right date and click. Enter the page number in the box at the top and hit return.

2. Zoom in as much as you can and center the article, then hit the <Print Scrn> key on your keyboard. An image is now stored in the clipboard memory.

3. Open up the Microsoft Paint application that came with your Windows operating system, or if you have a better image application, use it. Paste the image from the clipboard memory into Paint and then crop it to get rid of extraneous material. Save the cropped image as a JPG file. You're now ready to load it into your Tiki Central post using the "Add Images To Your Post" link. If it's too big an article, you may have to divide it up and save it as a series of JPG files. Best to try to make the text sections of an article about the same size so the resulting TC images are displayed the same size, if possible.

I recommend a fairly low cost application that makes the pasting, cropping and saving steps a snap: SnagIt by TechSmith Corporation.

Hope this helps.

-Tom


 
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Or Got Rum?
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Jul 29, 2009
Posts: 331
From: Wisconsin
Posted: 2012-11-29 08:47 am   Permalink

Tom, Thank you very much, OGR

 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-29 08:56 am   Permalink

You're welcome, OGR.

Joe Elvena of the Polynesia scaled up his operation to host a luau for thousands...

The Miami News December 8, 1963 (page 80)



A jazz combo and island revue served as entertainment at the Polynesia in early 1964...

The Miami News January 20, 1964 (page 41)



Here's another ad from the same newspaper edition...




-Tom


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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-29 12:20 pm   Permalink

From these two articles, we learn that Joe Elvena aka Trader Joe, the manager of the Polynesia, is a Filipino veteran of World War II who fought in the South Pacific...

The Miami News October 17, 1948 (page 32)




The Miami News October 17, 1948 (page 50)



Joe had some Chinese-Polynesian restaurant experience before the Polynesia...

The Miami News March 6, 1958 (page 2



Joe has beautiful daughters who performed as Polynesian dancers at the Polynesia Restaurant and at luaus in the area hosted by Joe...

The Miami News October 26, 1963 (page 31)



-Tom


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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-29 6:05 pm   Permalink

Found another article via Google News that states Joe Elvena (misspelled “Alvina” here) had extensive Polynesian restaurant experience before the Polynesia, much more than just the Lotus Eaters I cited earlier...

The Miami News August 3, 1963 (page 35)




So, according to the article, Trader Joe previously worked at these places with their own Tiki Central threads:

Club Samoa

Monty Proser’s Beachcombers at Boston and Miami Beach

South Pacific

Joe Elvena passed away at 81 years of age on February 18, 1991. His obituary focused on his WWII service in the South Pacific...




-Tom


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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4271
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2012-11-29 8:41 pm   Permalink

Nice research Tom. That is an all-star line-up of Tiki history for Mr. Elvena!

DC


 
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TikiTomD
Grand Member (4 years)  

Joined: Sep 20, 2009
Posts: 675
From: Flagler Beach, FL
Posted: 2012-11-30 04:36 am   Permalink

It seems that someone stole a statue (Tiki?) from the Polynesia...

The Miami News November 10, 1963 (page 71)



The digital footprints of the Polynesia seem to evaporate after 1964, perhaps suggesting that it went out of business after only a year or two.

Martin aka Marty Woolin was apparently the principal investor / owner of the Polynesia. He was a wealthy Miami based land developer. Among other things, he was the commodore of the Miami Beach Anglers and Boating Club. In 1960, this club proposed dumping one thousand old car bodies in groups of five two miles off the shore of Miami to form an artificial reef, noting that old streetcars had been used to successfully create an artificial reef off of Redondo Beach, California.

Life ended badly for Martin Woolin, unlike Joe Elvena, who appears to have enjoyed life to the fullest in the service of family, community and country, and then departed of natural causes. In 2002, Martin Woolin “accidentally” shot himself in his home after an argument with his wife, dying at the age of 72. There were subsequent lawsuits, one alleging that the wife and stepson “were the cause of or participated” in his death...

The Florida Times-Union May 22, 2002




Then came foreclosure actions on the Miami Beach mansion...

Daily Business Review.com September 21, 2009




Alas, at the end of his years, Martin appears to have escaped to hell instead of paradise...

-Tom


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Otto
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 852
From: NorCal
Posted: 2012-11-30 6:27 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-11-29 12:20, TikiTomD wrote:
From these two articles, we learn that Joe Elvena aka Trader Joe, the manager of the Polynesia,

-Tom



Add Joe to the lexicon of Trader Vic followers

Trader Nick, Trad'r Sam, and Trader Dick in Calif
Trader Frank of Tiki Gardens
Etc


 
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Otto
Grand Member (3 years)  

Joined: Mar 29, 2002
Posts: 852
From: NorCal
Posted: 2012-11-30 6:28 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-11-29 12:20, TikiTomD wrote:
From these two articles, we learn that Joe Elvena aka Trader Joe, the manager of the Polynesia,

-Tom



Add Joe to the lexicon of Trader Vic followers

Trader Nick, Trad'r Sam, and Trader Dick in Calif
Trader Frank of Tiki Gardens
Etc


 
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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4271
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2012-11-30 9:21 pm   Permalink

Quote:

On 2012-11-30 18:28, Otto wrote:
Quote:

On 2012-11-29 12:20, TikiTomD wrote:
From these two articles, we learn that Joe Elvena aka Trader Joe, the manager of the Polynesia,

-Tom



Add Joe to the lexicon of Trader Vic followers

Trader Nick, Trad'r Sam, and Trader Dick in Calif
Trader Frank of Tiki Gardens
Etc



More can be seen on that topic here:

Trader Vic Copycats


DC


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bigbrotiki
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Mar 25, 2002
Posts: 11127
From: Tiki Island, above the Silverlake
Posted: 2012-12-01 01:44 am   Permalink

Wow Tom, wonderful work again! We have an unsung East Coast version of Trader Vic here, almost! Even if his level of involvement in all these places is not known, he definitely contributed to the spreading of the style on the East Coast!

 
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Dustycajun
Tiki Socialite

Joined: Nov 16, 2007
Posts: 4271
From: Santa Barbara, CA
Posted: 2013-04-23 4:16 pm   Permalink

Some more info on our man Joe Elvena, a photo and article from ebay.





Looks like Joe was pretty good at catering a Luau.

DC


 
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