Cold Case File #3992 – Mai Kai tiki heist

Did I mention I am a Mai Kai geek? Forget about it being the current best tiki palace, maybe best ever. The owner(s) certainly have been and are mai kai (the best).

When it opened, it was out on its own on Highway 1. They quickly transformed the area around them to match their tropical interior. Very early on they had a few large tikis installed at the road side. Those tiki stand as sentinels to this day, except one.

Here is an image of the area in question.


To the left you see the classic Barney West tiki that was the inspiration for the Hukilau 2006 mug. But what is that one in the center? Artist’s imagination?


Here it is again in one of the more common long postcrads with a man in a suit and a woman in a red dress, lovingly caressing the mystery tiki.


And here we have a group of folks huddled around the spot where he once was, wondering just what happened. Did he ever exist? The answer is yes.

That tiki was part of the decor out front. As they widened US 1 over the years, the Mai Kai had to squeeze itself back a bit to make room for the road. I am told the big tikis were moved a few times. But the tiki in question was stone and huge. It was moved permanently some time in the night in the sixties. Someone came in with a crane and grabbed it and it was never seen again. Here is a photo for identification.


If you have seen this tiki, please call LOgan 6-1513 with any and all leads. Or email me.

2 Replies to “Cold Case File #3992 – Mai Kai tiki heist”

  1. The last photo, the one with the ladies…. I have the original of that photo if you want something better than a photo of a print under glass……

    And, I have a few others all featuring the Moai in question. If you look at all of them and triangulate the views to the buildings, that Moai stood (for a while at least) directly in front of what is now the Bora Bora Room. There is a huge pile of concrete and rock there now that make up one of the many waterfalls on the property.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.