Mai-Kai: History & Mystery of The Iconic Tiki Restaurant

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About the Book

History, Mystery, and Adventure
Be transported to the mid-century

In 1956 a few brash young men created the Mai-Kai by way of a coup at Don the Beachcomber’s and went on to eclipse the old guard restaurants. The Mai-Kai became the playground of celebrities and playboys, and the beautiful women working there used it as a jumping-off point for adventure and fame. Through first-hand stories, images, and ephemera, this book documents the history and enduring legacy of the pinnacle of the Mid-Century Tiki era. This is the story of how the Mai-Kai and its iconic elements came to exist, and the tales of the men and women who shaped it and went on to shape the world.

  • Rare images

    Hundreds of rare and unseen images

  • First hand interviews

    Tales from those who lived them

  • Don the beachcomber

    New insights into the father of Tiki

  • Powerful women

    Adventures of the Mai-Kai maidens


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Tim Glazner

He has been collecting and researching the midcentury for decades. He has shared his knowledge in documentaries, articles, seminars and other media. He is an expert on the Tiki era’s music, cocktails, ephemera, and history.
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Stephanie Romer

A partner in the research and collecting of images, she made Swanky’s stories more readable.


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