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Luau - The Governor's Mansion, Myrtle Beach, SC (restaurant)

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Name:Luau - The Governor's Mansion
Street:1107 South Ocean Blvd
City:Myrtle Beach

Menu from Ebay tells a nice tale of WWII men stationed on the Soloman's Islanf coming home and starting this place. Imagery stolen from the Dobb's Luau menu and others and some more original. Prices make it likely very early 50's.

[ Edited by: Swanky 2010-02-16 18:44 ]

Love the cover rendering! It's based on the Trader Vic/ Kona Kai logo Tiki, but unique in its graphic style.
The name reminds me of "Christian's Hut". This would fit into Babalu's threat on WWII veterans.
OR in DC's Myrtle Beach posts...OR in Mo-Eye's Florida Gulf coast threads... :)

[ Edited by: bigbrotiki 2010-02-16 21:42 ]

A double header post of all things.


[ Edited by: Dustycajun 2010-02-16 23:00 ]

Damn I wanted those menus! Thanks for posting the images Swanky. Great little story.

Just like Babalu's post:

On 2010-02-15 14:04, Babalu wrote:

Joe, If we ever get outta this place, we should open a bar....

By far one of the top Tikis of Myrtle Beach. I would love to see the inside of the drink menu.


[ Edited by: Dustycajun 2010-02-16 23:05 ]


Could this place really have been around in the early 1950s? I agree with the borrowed images from Dobb's House, but was there a Dobb's House around in the early 50s? This goes against BigBro's Tiki timeline chart that we seem to be seeing a lot of lately.


Judging by the graphic style of the Tiki, and that Vic did not use it before the mid-fifties, I would estimate it to be late 50s.

On 2010-02-16 23:09, Dustycajun wrote:
This goes against BigBro's Tiki timeline chart that we seem to be seeing a lot of lately.

Show me a quicker way to explain the concepts of "Pre-Tiki" and "Tiki" within Polynesian Pop to folks who are not familiar with it, and I will gladly vary my posts.


Early 60's, let's say. First Luau in ATL was in 1958-59. But, that pig image may have been lifted from elsewhere, but all in all, I'd say it is post Dobb's Luau, which would make it very early 1960. You have that ATL Luau menu. Does it have that pig image in it, or did that come later. If it does, 1959 is a possible early date for this place. Prices are very cheap though.

I also really like the "hidden" giant penis on the tiki on the cover....

[ Edited by: Swanky 2010-02-17 08:38 ]


Here is the image of the Pig from the Dobb's House menu posted by Uncle Trav. Looks to be a dead ringer for the pig on the menu.

They also stole the main Tiki image from the front of the menu and the boat image.



Don't get me wrong, I love the Tiki time line chart. In fact, I think its time we get a new chart for Tiki drinks, or architecture or music or something.

Ha, vary your posts, that's a good one.


Haaa! I was wondering about that weird leg and knee design! :D

Late 60s makes it even further removed from the actual WWII experience. The little menu bio shows how the Pacific war became part of, and was incorporated into Polynesian pop mythology, rather than the actual thing influencing Polynesian pop. Which is not to say that the Pacific War didn't have a big overall effect on the American awareness of the South Pacific, by it having been part of the American experience, that general "we were there" feeling. It might be this lack of a connection that makes it hard for today's average American to relate to new Tiki bars.


The Luau restaurant was part of the Hawaii Kai Motel. Ben Holmes "the govenor" was also the manager of the hotel.
Here is the layout of the complex.

Here is a letter from the Hawaii kai.

Here is a letter from the Luau restaurant.


add #1

add #2

They also served drinks in tiki mugs.

the also had a tiki gift shop.

brochure #1

brochure #2

brochure #3

brochure #4

brochure #5

here is the minature menu

Luau breakfast with grits

P.S. : When we receive the dinner and drink menu in the mail we will post proper scans of both.


That post was ........ amazing!

Thanks for putting that all together. Can't wait to see what's inside that drink menu.

Got any other Tiki from Myrtle Beach?


Thanks Dusty for calling this post to my attention, wonderful. I love how a heretofore completely unknown Poly pop place's mysteries all of a sudden unravel in front of your eyes!

Looks like that Tiki mask on the brochures actually sat in the gable of that one A-frame on the left in the postcard. Can you zoom in on that, biffcoz?

I recently bought this weird plaster wall Tiki at the International Tiki Marketplace at Don's, because he somehow triggered my Tiki memory. To begin: That Govener's Luau logo Tiki has an obvious predecessor: The perhaps most prolific logo Tiki in Poly pop, the Trader Vic Maori Tiki from the De Young Museum:

And here the recent find, (bought also because I have this strange fascination with tacky GOLDEN Tikis!)

The face is like a bad parody of the Luau/Vic Tiki, but the body is EXACTLY ALIKE, down to the dimensions! That's why it seemed familiar when I saw it.
The only explanation I have why that wall sculpture body is so much the same but the face looks like the original's retarded bastard brother is that someone decided to copy the Luau design, but then thought that he'd better make the face look different so there wouldn't be any copyright issues - kinda like the Kon Tiki Hotel mug being made very different than the original Kon Tiki mask on the raft's sail.

Well, this proves again that it is not given to everyone to get the characteristics of the Tiki countenance correctly....

...I felt so sorry for this ugly duckling that I bought him. Or...shall we call him NERD-TIKI !? - "The body of a Tiki, the face of a NERD !!!"

[ Edited by: bigbrotiki 2013-03-19 17:21 ]

Time to bump this awesome thread.

Matchbook with the Hawaii Kai and the Luau Restaurant.

I picked up a nice brochure from the Hawaii Kai that has this rendering of the grounds on the cover. It shows a new tower building located near the beack in front of the older A-frame structure - I'm not sure that this was ever built.

The entrance with the floating Tiki head on the left.

Some of the hotel rooms with a "slight" Polynesian design spirit.

The restaurant - a bit sparse

And the Banquet room

Views of the pool and beachside - you don't see the big tower building in this photo.

Lastly some renderings from the brochure.

This place clearly showed some Tiki devolution over the years.


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