SF Crawl 2008, Tonga Room

Posted by TraderTiki on October 11th, 2008 — Posted in Events, Places

Tonga Room Entrance

Though not the first stop on the crawl, our first stop in San Francisco found us at the Tonga Room in the Fairmont Hotel.  The Tonga Room has been around in various forms since the 1920s, making it a regular watering hole for San Francisco tiki-philes.  Speaking of water, it’s one of the only restaurants you’re going to find with its own floating band stage, and rain storms on the hour every hour.  At one point in its lifespan, it was the hotel pool.  If there’s anyplace to catch a glimpse of what Tiki was in San Francisco, this is it, as you dine underneath the thatched roof of a long house, where outrigger canoes and tiki masks hang amidst balinese statues and a buffet bar you’d swear was about to set sail.

Tonga Room Pineapple

You can find their famous Tonga Room Mai Tai and Tonga Zombie in Sippin’ Safari and Intoxica, respectively.  Each drink comes in its own souvenir mug, which are NOT to take home, though a few have found their way out in random legwarmers and purses.

Tonga Longhouse

The Tonga Room recently underwent a renovation, and tikiphiles everywhere were able to breath a sigh of relief as “renovation” typically means “turning into a discoteque”.  This was more of a restoration, bringing back a bit of the original shine of the walls and matting, as well as a thorough cleaning of the pool.  Whoever got to pick up the pennies that day could surely own their own island today.

The Tonga hut is just the first stop for us, then it’s off to the Bamboo Hut!

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