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Celebrating classic and modern Polynesian Pop

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M
Mo-Eye posted on Wed, Nov 4, 2009 2:11 AM

Name:The Polynesia
Type:restaurant
Street:
City:Spokane
State:WA
Zip:
country:USA
Phone:
Status:defunct

Description:

M
Mo-Eye posted on Wed, Nov 4, 2009 2:39 AM

Found this photo in the November 11th, 1964 Spokane Daily Chronicle of the construction of the Polynesia Restaurant.

Could not find a whole lot of info on this place. It overlooked the Spokane River Upper Falls and was located near the corner of Bridge and Lincoln. It was owned by David L. Cohen, who also owned the Polynesia in Seattle. Construction on this place was supposed to start in the fall of 1962, when it was stated it would be delayed until Spring of 1963, but actually didn't start until the fall of 1964. It was being built at a cost of $350,000 and Raymond Peck was the architect. At the time of this photo, it was slated for completion on March 1, 1965, but who knows if that actually happened. In the photo you can see the A frames lying on the ground.

Anyone got any other images?

you better check the recent posts to the other polynesia thread.....has much more info for you there.

On 2009-11-04 05:05, Tipsy McStagger wrote:
you better check the recent posts to the other polynesia thread.....has much more info for you there.

Tipsy,

This is a different one in Spokane - not Seattle. First I have heard of a second one, would love to see some more info.

DC

M

Yeah, I saw the other posts on the Seattle location. One interesting thing - both places were designed by the same architect, and those A-Frames on the ground in this photo look quite similar to the ones used on the Seattle location. Wonder if the architect got lazy and just used the same plans on both?

W

"you better check the recent posts to the other polynesia thread.....has much more info for you there." -Tipsy McStagger-

I couldn't locate anything on the Polynesia in Spokane in the one Polynesia thread I know of. If there's another other thread with the Spokane info I'd like to know.

"...both places were designed by the same architect, and those A-Frames on the ground in this photo look quite similar to the ones used on the Seattle location. Wonder if the architect got lazy and just used the same plans on both?" -Mo-Eye-

It was probably identical to the Seattle location because the owner wanted it that way.

The Seattle joint was pretty swell:

J
JoeB posted on Wed, Mar 30, 2011 4:40 AM

This restaurant is now Anthony's. Related to the Anthony's chain in Seattle I believe. The City bought the restaurant a few years back for the purpose of building a bridge across the river so that a person could exit I-90 onto Lincoln Street and drive directly north across the river without the cumbersome zigzagging using other routes. Look at the google map, you'll see what I mean. But the bridge would have gone directly over the region's most famous landmark -- the Spokane Falls. That didn't bother the politicians or downtown business interests but the people rebelled and the City Council was forced to abandon the bridge idea. They then leased the site for special events for a year or two, and ultimately leased it to Anthony's. There's a fantastic view from the restaurant of the river as it enters the falls. Very impressive during the spring runoff in late March, April, and early May. Massive volumes of water. Not a bad place to have a steak or lobster tail dinner. Best restaurant view in Spokane. Not polynesian though. Dinners run $20-$35.

Looks like the triple A-frames are still standing, cool:

Found some more info digging around on google news archives.

The restaurant was completed in 1965 and was a copy of the Polynesia in Seattle. Here is a news article about the new manager with picture of a nice PNG mask on the restaurant wall.


Always wondered why there has been no trace of ephemera from this place. Turns out that it was sold to the Black Angus chain just a short year later in 1966 and remodeled with a "western" theme.




Wonder what happened to all of the south seas artifacts?

DC

DC, what a remarkable and rare find!
I ate in this building in the late 60's and mid 70's both times under different monickers, and yes a great view of the river (a lit view of falls at night if I remember right). Though I don't remember any polynesian decor I did run across a blog a couple of months ago in which the blogger said that the carved beams are still evident in storerooms of the restaurant and that the carved beams in the dinning room are just encased in a wood surround. As to the artifacts, the Seattle Polynesia had sparse tiki decor, one interior tiki, postcards, a menu and a three face bucket mug (only two in ooga-mooga) marked seattle-spokane, so no surprise no artifacts. As a side note, the Islander in Tacoma and the Polynesia in Spokane were both replaced by Black Angus restaurants (great beef until the 80's when they sold to a Japanese company and stopped raising their own), new western seemed to mean rough-cut wood not cowboy-western (to bad I like cowboy).
So to sum it up, carved beams still there but hidden.

aloha, tikicoma

Spotted these old Tiki door handles on ebay that came from the Polynesia in Spokane.

One is marked inside and one is marked outside. Maybe from the front door?

Looks like maybe the same carver as the Tiki in the press photo I posted earlier.

DC

And they went for a pretty penny, too. I am glad, cuz they are worth it, being from an actual Tiki temple.

I believe they are O.A.-made, the mask in the photo is also.

News archive photo of the Polynesia Restaurant triple A-frame structure in Spokane that sold on ebay a while back.

Cant' quite figure out what the Tiki mask-like pole sign is, maybe a torch with the gas pipe in the back?

DC

Spokesman-Review photo from 1965 nearing completion.

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