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Jade Restaurant & Tahitian Lounge, Kingman, AZ (restaurant)

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Name:Jade Restaurant & Tahitian Lounge
Street:Route 66

1950s images of the Jade Restaurant in Kingman, AZ show a classic modernist building.

Even in the early 1960s, the building lacks any indication of tiki:

Then, sometime in the Sixties, the Chinese restaurant added Polynesian items to the menu and built the "Tahitian Lounge", a thatched add-on to the side of the building, with a garishly-painted root-ball tiki out front:

The back of this postcard states: "JADE RESTAURANT and COCKTAIL LOUNGE. American, Polynesian, Cantonese Foodes. Pride of Highway 66. Polynesian Dining Room. Kingman, Arizona. Phone 753-2644. Tommy & Gracie Choy."

I was in Kingman a few weeks ago and visited the old site, right next the still-operating Arcadia Lodge (909 E. Andy Devine). Remarkably, the old Jade Restaurant building is still there, but no trace of Tiki is left. It looks like it is vacant and available for lease. Here's a photo I took:



Here's an old matchcover from the Jade Restaurant:

Decided to do a little updating of the dreaded Red Xs for this one.

I picked up this postcard from the Jade Restaurant in Kingman, Arizona. One of those classic roadside spots along Route 66.

Here is a close-up of the sign and the painted Tiki out front.

Here are a couple more postcards showing early versions of the Jade Restaurant.

I found this information about the original owner Charlie Lum from a Kingman Cookbook on-line.

Here is another photo postcard of Charlie Lum at the Lewis Restaurant.

Charlie Lum must have sold the Jade at some point as the back of the postcard I have says the owners were Tommy and Gracie Choy.


Forgot to inlcude this ashtray and advertisement from the Jade. They also show Tommy Choy as the owner.


Here are a couple of matchbooks with both owners names.

That tiki needs a cowboy hat. If anyone has doubts about how pervasive tiki was, postcards like this prove it. Kingman is pretty much in the middle of nowhere on the Arizona stretch of route 66.

I found a few ads for the Jade that show it went more Tiki than just the rootball.

They changed the sign and added a Tiki (a little hard to see).

A similar Tiki that can be seen on this Mauna Loa sign.

They also added two big Tiki torches to the roof.

Finally this ad where they "borrowed" some Tiki imagery - that's the girl from Shanghai Lil's in Chicago.

Anybody know here the A-Frame restaurant image was borrowed from? It looks familiar....


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