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Name:La Mariana Sailing Club
Type:restaurant
Street:50 Sand Island Access Road
City:Honolulu
State:HI
Zip:
country:USA
Phone:
Status:operational

Description:
Approximately 8 miles from Waikiki in an industrial park. Open for 50+ years, the restaurant has about 16 tables, and the bar seats approx 8.

V

Visited the legendary La Mariana Sailing club on a recent trip to Honolulu. It's a little off the beaten path, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.

The taxi drops us off at a gap in a chain-link fence in the middle of an industrial park. As we make our way inside we are quite happy to find a treasure trove of tiki and marine artifacts, including many carvings, blowfish lamps, rattan chairs, colored balls, etc. The collection was simply amazing (without being overwhelming).

Ever-present owner/operator 86-year-old Annette Nahinu was there to greet us. The lunchtime crowd was larger than we expected. The food was okay, and the drinks were decent. My impression was that it was more of a beer-and-shot place catering to regular clientele, and less of a toursit trap pouring out Lava Flow's and Mai Tai's.

That said, a single visit at lunchtime mid-week can't possibly do justice to this place. If in Honolulu, a side trip to this place is highly recommended -- before it's gone forever. Vic

L

On 2004-06-21 13:03, vegasvic wrote:
Visited the legendary La Mariana Sailing club on a recent trip to Honolulu.

It's a little off the beaten path, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.

makes no difference; many great Hawaiian locales you gotta see is "off the beaten path" (whatever that is...)
...besides it is a well worn beaten path to la mar for many.
it's on a main road (sand island access ) just along da path from da airport to yer hotel. And with the awful beiruit road conditions the City and County and state like to keep our roads in, you need a maitai or three at about this point.

The taxi drops us off at a gap in a chain-link fence in the middle of an industrial park. As we make our way inside we are quite happy to find a treasure trove of tiki and marine artifacts, including many carvings, blowfish lamps, rattan chairs, colored balls, etc. The collection was simply amazing (without being overwhelming).

Ever-present owner/operator 86-year-old Annette Nahinu was there to greet us. The lunchtime crowd was larger than we expected. The food was okay, and the drinks were decent. My impression was that it was more of a beer-and-shot place catering to regular clientele,

we locals drink da tropicals as often as da beer...

and less of a toursit trap pouring out Lava Flow's and Mai Tai's.

thankfully la mar will NEVER trap tourists.

you want tourist trap, Tiki's is yer cuppatea.

a single visit at lunchtime mid-week can't possibly do justice to this place.

to appreciate the ambiance of la Mar, go at bout 4. you see the place in sunlite and then later the sunset. It's situated on the keehi harbor and the view thru yer maitai glass of the indigenous tropical foliage, boat masts and the Hawaiian setting sun in the fiery reds, yellows, oranges... of the sky.. and the reflection on the water... how you say it; "does it justice."

If in Honolulu, a side trip to this place is highly recommended -- before it's gone forever.

...or even a front trip to this place is highly recommended...

it will never be gone totally forever; just as the decor has filled in for years from the demise of other great polynesian eateries and bars, the artifacts will migrate to its next incarnation.


malama ki'i kahiko

[ Edited by: lanikai on 2004-06-21 13:29 ]

[ Edited by: lanikai on 2004-06-21 13:30 ]

L

On 2004-06-21 13:03, vegasvic wrote:
Visited the legendary La Mariana Sailing club on a recent trip to Honolulu. It's a little off the beaten path, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.

here is a map to da Tiki palace:

Map link

see that 92? thats the road from the airport. you will be at sand island road just about 5 minutes, max, as you leave the airport.

ignore that star in da map.
The side road la mar is on, is just above the 64, at the curve on the right side as you drive makai. Cant miss is; you see a sign there.

[ Edited by Humuhumu to fix overly long URL ]


malama ki'i kahiko

[ Edited by: Humuhumu on 2004-06-24 00:20 ]

L

On 2004-06-21 14:03, lanikai wrote:

On 2004-06-21 13:03, vegasvic wrote:
Visited the legendary La Mariana Sailing club on a recent trip to Honolulu. It's a little off the beaten path, which can be good or bad depending on your point of view.

here is a map to da Tiki palace:

Map link

see that 92? thats the road from the airport. you will be at sand island road just about 5 minutes, max, as you leave the airport.

ignore that star in da map.
The side road la mar is on, is just above the 64, at the curve on the right side as you drive makai. Cant miss is; you see a sign there.

[ Edited by Humuhumu to fix overly long URL ]


malama ki'i kahiko

[ Edited by: Humuhumu on 2004-06-24 00:20 ]

thanks, Humu! I shoulda done that!

"to appreciate the ambiance of la Mar, go at bout 4. you see the place in sunlite and then later the sunset. It's situated on the keehi harbor and the view thru yer maitai glass of the indigenous tropical foliage, boat masts and the Hawaiian setting sun in the fiery reds, yellows, oranges... of the sky.. and the reflection on the water... how you say it; "does it justice."

Oh Lanikai,
You killin' me. I was there in November and had drinks with bruddah Gecko, his ohana and Dogbytes. It's magic when the sun sets and the cats from the Tahatian Lanai hit the piano... La Mariana is as it should be.
Aloha,
:tiki:

L

Oh Lanikai,
You killin' me. I was there in November and had drinks with bruddah Gecko, his ohana and Dogbytes. It's magic when the sun sets and the cats from the Tahatian Lanai hit the piano... La Mariana is as it should be.

all those cats for the most part have migrated lately to da pagoda. Ronny plays there only on Fridays now.
Ron Miyashiro, traditional Hawaiian and Broadway, 8-11 p.m., Pagoda Hotel, LaSalle Lounge.
Unfortunately, the new venue is modern decor and nowhere near the ambiance of La mar....

H

I was there last Feb. met Annette, the nicest lady. Fabulous place. I hope no one buys it and tears it down. By the way was that a blind piano player, playing music from the 30's and 40's. Or did I have too many Mai Tais. Anyone knows. I could swear he was blind.

T

Be careful, Tikiheads! The authenticity of La Mariana will be a bit of a shock for those used to Hollywood glitz. Sidle up to the wraparound bar and you may be sitting next to a real life Leeteg, gin-soaked and full of tall tales about big fish, pretty wahines and the South Pacific! This can be more 'invigorating' than expected. Locals abound here, fishermen, sailors and dock workers. For the old-timers and the lovers of authentic nostalgia this wonderful throw-back has an air of familiarity...I imagine any time traveler from the 40's would feel only truly at home in this place.There used to be a bonified 'sailing club' operating out of this establishment and there are a few of us that would love to see it revamped!(ps you can still buy t-shirts and ballcaps with the La Mariana logo on them, even if the gift shop is closed. Ask the bartender and they will usually open it for you). Hats off to Annette for keeping it alive and well for so many years! Well worth the time to travel out to and enjoy the totally-tiki clubhouse and an actual, factual, marine enviroment.
the tikitwo, andy n' lono!

T

Hey I just got back from the Sailing Club, and it's a fantastic place! Here's a couple of pics, first the outside:

and the bar:

Then there's inside, and the tables:

and then there's the walkway into the place from the other side:

They make real good mai tais, and the aquarium is real. It is a cool place.

[ Edited by: tikigap 2006-08-25 09:02 ]

H

I can't believe how different it looks in the daytime, amazing. I went at night and it had a completely different feel. Both are very inviting. Like I said I can't wait to go again.

T

Me too - I wish I could have been there at night, but we were just too busy. Next time I'll have my priorities straight!

Glad to see that La Mar was just listed as one of the Greatest Bars in America in this month's issue of Esquire.

A

our photos from La Mariana, March '06


My roomate/travel partner Melissa


entry path...sorry for the rain drops!


Melissa with our hosts and old friends, Noe and Dawn.

T

On 2006-05-14 10:38, vegasvic wrote:
Glad to see that La Mar was just listed as one of the Greatest Bars in America in this month's issue of Esquire.

They didn't have a lot to say though. Here's the whole mention:

"LA MARIANA SAILING CLUB
Honolulu
You're having: Mai tais at sundown.
Here, where old tiki bars go to die,
is the real thing.
(50 Sand Island Access Road; 808-848-2800)"

Where old tiki bars go to die?

Hmmm.

I hung out here for the first time with Kit Ebersbach (of Don Tiki), Sherry Shaoling, and a couple of other folks. Here are the pics from my visit. We played a tune - Girl from Ipanema - and had a grand ol' time.

A view of the lounge floor

**L to R: Perry Como (Kit Ebersbach), me (PHF of Waitiki), Sherry Shaoling, Desmond **

We made our second trip ever to the Sailing Club last week on our trip to Oahu. Still as fun as ever. Drinks seemed slightly off - my Zombies arrived in a Steinlager pint glass and were not as strong as expected. Otherwise, everything was perfect.

Definite highlight of the evening was the blind piano players taking up a request for "Quiet Village" and dedicating the song to the bird in the cage up near the entrance, then making great bird sqauk noises during the whole song.

Also, our waitress had no clue what I was talking about when I asked about the Kava bowl. I had to use other means to get ahold of the special "blue hawaiian" version of the bowl during the trip.

Went back two nights later, and a completely different blind piano player was behind the keys. Awesome.



[ Edited by: TikiDiego 2007-05-21 18:05 ]

T

Sweet!

I was there several times last week, and I got to meet Annette! She signed my copy of Tiki Roadtrip!

The Mai Tais and Pu pu are still excellent.

And you got a pic of Bombay, Annette's dog too!

We were there in January this year (07)...
Great Mai Tais!!

Walking up the entrance La Mariana's

Steven, the blind piano player

Annette the owner with friend and Bombay her dog

After a few Mai Tais, TikiMookie is incognito

This was our last full night, we went early due to our having to drive way up north by the Polynesian Cultural Center where we stayed nearby. At La Mariana we read the back of the dinner menu, information about the tsunami way back when that demolished the area. As we drove back up north, there was a tsunami warning on the radio! it was soon downgraded to a "tsunami watch" but rather a strange coincidence I think... Hawaii weather in January is unpredictable...

I need to go to La Mariana sometime...oh Inky, how about Wednesday evening Sept 3rd, 2008? Sounds zazz!

Sounds good, say 6pm????

What a great place. We went there three times during our week in Oahu. It was really one of the best experiences (and Zombies) on oahu. The SOS show was fun too. Here are some pics of our visit...

La Mariana - Primo Kimo's World in Pictures

[ Edited by: Primo Kimo 2008-08-20 07:00 ]

L

Whenever friends visit from the mainland, La Mariana is always the first place I take them. And if it's someone I've taken there before, they want it as their first stop again. I've even taken lots of locals there who weren't aware of it. Amazing.
But I haven't seen any posts here with the latest news. Those of you on Oahu surely know, but the rest of you better sit down for this.
I'm very sad to say that Annette passed away recently.
http://archives.starbulletin.com/2008/08/05/news/story14.html
La Mariana is still open, and allegedly there are no plans to close it. But of course there are no guarantees. Go while you still can! And go to support them and help keep it open.

[ Edited by: LikaNui 2008-10-19 22:22 ]

M

Here's an interesting and odd update for you:

It sounds like the state or county is making La Mariana abide by some outdated rules/laws that they are supposed to be a private sailing club. Don't know the whole story - I'll find out more next time I'm there. We had to rush to get people to the airport. Has something to do with being attached to the marina.

Anyway, I was just there yesterday, and they had signs up saying that La Mariana is a private club and is for members only. No need to worry though, they now offer a "social membership" which is free, you just need to fill out a form when you get there and you get your own little membership card. They also offer a $50 associate and $100 full membership. Both get you 10% off on drinks, and the full adds food and lots of other benefits.

Just a great example of how the state makes it difficult to run a business out here!

So, who out there has their Official La Mariana Membership Card? I do!

One great thing to note. They have hired back their old maintenance guy who had some "disagreements" with Annette, and he is really cleaning up the place. Everything from cleaning the dead bugs out of the float lights, to putting new coats of varnish on the tikis and bamboo railings. The place is looking its best in years.

Aloha!!

That's great to hear! I loved that place when I was out there last! It would be great to bring my band of haolies (sp?) out there and play a show at La Mariana!

K

I'll agree that La Mariana looks as good as I've ever seen it - I never tire of seeing those old cannibal tiki poles (capture - eat - full belly) from the old Waikiki Kon Tiki - they put modern tiki carving to shame.

In another thread it was noted that La Mariana has new, logo'd tiki mugs made by one of the waitresses. I've pinched the following images from eBay - there's a Boy mug, a Girl mug, and shot glasses. I purchased the Boy Mug - I think it cost $20, as the total for the mug and a Zombie was $30.

The Boy Mug:

The Girl Mug:

Shot Glasses:

K

We went to La Mariana again last Thursday night - the place was very busy; all the tables were taken - only a few booths remained open. Very good to see - I didn't expect a big crowd on a Thursday night. The piano player was playing standards and some exotica - he even did the bird calls while playing Quiet Village.

Friends who hadn't been there in a while were impressed - they all said "It looks much cleaner". That's a big deal - the place was getting pretty run down and grubby. Everybody I've sent there recently has had a good experience.

K
KuKu posted on Mon, Feb 2, 2009 1:27 PM

I'm so excited I'll get to see it next week, can't wait...

K

There was an odd mention of La Mariana in an AP news story today - the Navy cruiser Port Royale ran aground near the entrance of Pearl Harbor a couple of days ago. Today's update on efforts to free the ship included this paragraph:

The vessel is currently lodged just off Honolulu International Airport, visible to all those flying in and out of Oahu. It's also in clear view of a nearby public beach park and a famous local bar, La Mariana Sailing Club.

The mention is odd because the ship is visible from so many other places.

I wonder if this has anything to do with where reporter has elected to spend much of his time watching the story unfold.

i have some friends who are going to HI in two weeks... i want to send them to la mariana... everything still up and running? hours still the same?

[ Edited by: Johnny Dollar 2009-07-08 06:38 ]

A

August 2009

January 2010

La Mariana is a special place that transports you to a time of when tiki was in its prime. Nothing fabricated here. The sunset leads into the glow of the fish floats and string lights illuminate the place and you feel like you are back in the womb. The blind piano players played Quiet Village and made bird calls with big smiles on their faces. It is an escape like no other!














Looks like you's had the palace to your selves... awesome!

L

The blind piano player you mentioned is the same guy that used to rule The Tahitian Lanai before it was closed. Auntie Annette brought him and the regular Friday night lounge singers over from TTL after it closed.

Anyone know if La Mariana still sells tiki mugs?

A friend says she's going there soon, and she's cool with picking something up for me...but I just wanna know what is available.

Here's an article from The Honolulu Advertiser 3/98 that goes into some of the history. Anyone know who is running it now in the post Annette era?

[ Edited by: naugatiki 2011-01-29 08:13 ]

L

Annette's former assistant is running the place now. Do a search on the Honolulu Star-Advertiser's website and you'll find more info.
I just ate there last week for the first time in about six months (I live on the windward side and rarely go over to the other side). Food was fine and the interior looks exactly the same. No damage from the tsunami a couple of months ago, at least not to the bar and restaurant. The docks in front got torn to shreads!
The service last week was fabulous. Even if it had been six months they remembered me and brought over my favorite drink before I said a word. Gotta love it.

Aloha!

In my humble opinion, not only have the food and drinks been upgraded, but also the decor with some swell pieces from the Hawaiian Hut. Mugs, and last I checked, Salt and Pepper shakers were available. Plenty of shots of the place in Waikiki Tiki.


Waikiki Tiki; Art, History, and Photographs.
Available now from Bess Press Hawaii.

[ Edited by: Phillip Roberts 2011-06-18 13:10 ]

Back in Sept. 2001 my wife and I went with my sister on her first trip to Hawaii. We all had a great time but on our next to last night I made sure we took her to La Mariana for dinner and drinks, my wife and I had been there once before. It was terrific, great atmosphere, good food and drinks and the pianist calling people up to sing, all good. But then he said we were in for a special treat , I looked behind him and got chicken skin, "oh my god thats Martin Denny!" . The next few moments were a little odd with the blind pianist helping Denny out of his wheelchair and onto the bench. Then he started playing, incredible music for the next 20-30 minutes, a non stop medley of tunes (the one I remember was Chinatown My Chinatown). I guess thats my most perfect tiki/exotica moment.
aloha, tikicoma

HOK

2 great authors, one great bar...

Phillip Roberts (Waikiki Tiki) and Jeff "BeachBum" Berry at La Mariana


[ Edited by: HOUSE OF KU 2011-08-21 02:04 ]

Here is a set of S & P shakers from the La Mariana. I found them in Michigan of all places, so this place gets around.

Aloha,

On 2011-09-03 19:33, ErkNoLikeFire wrote:
Here is a set of S & P shakers from the La Mariana. I found them in Michigan of all places, so this place gets around.

It is quite fascinating to see the migration of artifacts out of the islands, and where they turn up.

And, those are a special pair, not being produced anymore.

I didnt know that they were rare, cool. Thanks!

I so want to check this place out.

HOK

La Mariana sould be in Tonights episode of Hawaii 5-0... :) Freddie

D
Dagg posted on Fri, Mar 8, 2013 7:31 PM

March 4 2013
great drinks ok food wicked decor!

bought two mugs


[ Edited by: Dagg 2013-03-08 22:07 ]

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