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Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop

Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop

Tiki Central is a place to celebrate the classic Tiki Bars of the mid-century and the design aesthetic they established. This movement grew in popularity after World War II when America had a new fascination with the South Seas and Hawaii. Tiki Bars sought to bring an idealized tropical paradise into the concrete jungle of the Modern World. Very little of it was genuine -- born mostly out of the likes of Hollywood art directors and modern architects -- but it all seemed real to a then-naïve public’s eye. The Tiki style started in bars and restaurants but soon spilled over into all forms of popular culture, including music, food, dress, TV and movies, and other forms of architecture.

The Tiki that Tiki Central focuses on is a mid-century American invention that is Polynesia-inspired. We’re here to discuss classic Tiki, what made it great, how to celebrate it and preserve it today, and how to create and influence new Tiki that isn’t generic, watered down, or misguided. The definitive guide is The Book Of Tiki, and we highly recommend that everyone on Tiki Central get the book and read up.

What Tiki Central Isn't

Everyone here at Tiki Central is passionate about the Polynesian Pop movement. While the exact edges are blurry, we can give you a bit of insight into what Tiki Central is not about:

  • is not about Jimmy Buffett and Parrotheads
  • is not about modern plastic, brightly-colored tiki party decorations
  • is not about the Caribbean/Key west design aesthetic
  • is not about Disney, Star Wars, Adventure Land
  • is not about Creature From the Black Lagoon or other monster fantasy
  • is not about African-art inspired masks/carvings/design
  • is not about Margaritas and tequila-based drinks
  • is not about simply anything that has a tiki on it or in it

It is okay to like one or more of the above and be a member of Tiki Central, just remember that it's not our focus. There are plenty of places on the web for that. We encourage new users who may not know what Tiki is to read up, search our forums, and ask questions.

Further Reading

If you’d like to know more about the kind of Tiki that Tiki Central focuses on, and what we don't, we recommend the following: