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Tiki Central / Locating Tiki

Grand China, Salem, NH (restaurant)

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Name:Grand China
Street:7 Veteran's Memorial Parkway
Phone:(603) 893-9124

I'm guessing this was formerly a glorious tiki hideaway, now rapidly becoming a forgettable, all-Chinese restaurant.

My friends had mentioned taking us to the "scary tiki place" near them (Methuen, MA) for a while but I didn't give it any thought. Yesterday we found ourselves hungry way past lunch and made the decision to pack up four boys and four adults and go.

I wish I'd brought my camera; maybe next time. When you pull up, you notice the rather crude tikis painted on the outside. The overgrown shrubbery made the place look abandoned. I told my friends I was sure that outer garden was once full of tikis. The A-frame entrance was intriguing but the plants inside there looked suspiciously like weeds.
Once inside, you were greeted not only by two, big chinese dragon/dogs but by wonderful, giant 12-sides tiki lamps which I think are from the old OA catalog. Hanging over all the tables are maybe twenty tiki head lights and some smaller bamboo lights. This place must have been amazing in it's day. What was surprising was for such a large building, how low the ceiling was. It was done in a faux-hewed-beam-tudor kinda style with bamboo trim. Unfortunately, the ancient rug was a major negative. Not only was it stained black in the high traffic areas, if you stood too long in any spot, you STUCK! (gross!) Oh, yeah--the walls had some tropical murals too. This place is either going to close or remodel the rest of the tiki away soon (probably the former) so check it out if you can. It's got more tiki than the Tahiti in Dedham where johnman and I went. The difference was the Tahiti is clean. The Grand China at least has character and the food isn't bad. We didn't get drinks--long story.

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