Tennessee Tiki History Page


I started this page years ago and forgot about it. Just started fleshing it out further and published it this morning. A work in progress, but a start.

Tennessee Tiki History

Omni Hut – Smyrna, TN

A few images from another fantastic meal at the Omni Hut, established in 1960.


Weapons are a great classic tiki bar theme.


Lamp 2

Lamp 1


Eliston Place Soda Shop – Nashville


This soda shop is not a place made to look like an old soda shop. It is an old soda shop, vintage 1934. I have been here before, but never got pictures of the awesome interior until this trip.

Juke box

A wurlitzer juke box has a box at every booth. And they work. The music is a weird mix from about 1978. Disco Duck and country you never heard of.

Juke box detail




These doors have seen a lot of use!


Froot Loops…

Uncovering Tennessee Tiki History

Dobb's House

When Basement Kahuna visited last weekend, he handed me a postcard for Dobb’s House Luau, with locations in Memphis and Atlanta. I had known there was a Dobb’s House in Memphis at 3135 Poplar (Is the building still there?) and am always on the lookout for items from that long lost tiki place. What was interesting about the card was that it was a Dinkler property. This ties it in with the Dinkler Andrew Jackson Hotel in Nashville, which had in it the “Surf Rider.” I had this card which appears to date from the 1960s.


The Dinkler in Nashville was a noted flop house for country music stars. It was demolished some time ago.

Dinkler closeup

Which came first, the Memphis Dobb’s House or the Surf Rider? I don’t know. If anyone in either city has any knowledge to share, please do. A visit to the library to peek at phone book listings would likely get us further towards the answers. There is a Dobb’s Management Group in Memphis which is owner of the restaurant chain such as it is. I am inquiring to find out more from them.

Also, anyone with knowledge of the Islander which was in the 5th floor of the Uptain Building in Chattanooga, TN, please speak up! Here are better images of the Mahi Mahi postcard from his collection:

Mahi Mahi

Mahi Mahi left Mahi Mahi middle

Mahi Mahi right

My research into the Mahi Mahi and Blue Hawaii in Nashville is here on Tiki Central.