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If you’re looking for a unique and refreshing experience in Waikiki, look no further. Coming this August, right here in the heart of it all, is the annual Mixology Month at International Marketplace. Now, if you haven’t been part of this celebration before, you’re in for a real treat!
This is no ordinary event – we’re talking about a month-long bash all about our unique “Cocktail Culture,” an experience not to be missed.
Whether you’re a local resident or a visitor soaking in the magic of Hawaii, I hope you can join in on this exciting celebration. Not only will you get to sample some of the most delightful cocktails (and don’t worry, refreshing mocktails too), but you’ll also savor delectable appetizers from some of the top restaurants in town.
Imagine sipping on a cool summer libation while listening to live music or witnessing the thrilling Battle of the Bartenders. Let’s not forget about the special tribute to the legendary Don Ho, and the grand “Tiki in Waikiki” festival that wraps up the month.
Residents and tourists can partake in the month-long festivity which includes exclusive deals on cocktails, non-alcoholic beverages, and pupus (starters) at select eateries.
If this doesn’t keep you busy check out a full list of things to do on Oahu.
Special summer beverages from renowned eateries at the International Market Place, like Moani Waikiki, Shorefyre, Skybox Taphouse, and StripSteak Waikiki by acclaimed chef Michael Mina and Eating House 1849 by Roy Yamaguchi, are included. Also partaking in the event are Kuhio Avenue Food Hall, Crackin’ Kitchen, Herringbone, and DryBar.
There are plans for live music performances at various venues and a three-round Bartenders’ Clash. The Don Ho “Suck ‘Em Up” tribute show on August 11 will be the highlight of his birthday commemoration. The month concludes with the yearly “Tiki In Waikiki” festival.
Itinerary For Mixology Month At International Marketplace
August 1-31: Specially discounted cocktails and starters at participating eateries.
August 1-31: Tiki Cup Gift for purchases. Accumulated receipts of $250 or more will earn an IMP Tiki Cup.
Bartenders’ Clash on August 2, 9, and 16 in association with Kō Hana Rum, Moet-Hennessy & Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. Contestants compete for the title. Spectators are welcome. Admission is free.
Friday, August 11: Don Ho’s Birthday: A tribute to the legendary Don Ho!
10 a.m.: Lei draping ceremony at the statue, Banyan Court, Level 1.
5 to 6 p.m.: Don Ho “Suck ‘Em Up” Tribute Show with Henry Kapono & Friends, Queen’s Court, Level 1. No entry fee.
Kō Hana Rum Tastings in the Treehouse, August 3, 10, 17, 24, and 31.
Chandon Garden Spritz Pop-Up, August 4, 11, 18, and 25. In association with Moani Waikiki, Moet-Hennessy & Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits.
August 25-27: Tiki in Waikiki Festival. Tickets are necessary.
“We are thrilled to bring back Mixology Month and appreciate the ongoing support from both locals and tourists. Every year the event becomes even more enjoyable and is highly anticipated by our outlets,” said Malia Zannoni, the Marketing & Sponsorship Director at the International Market Place. “The International Market Place was relaunched in 2016 and our ‘Tiki-versary’ holds great importance. It is a modern take on the IMP experience that respects our roots and Old Waikiki.”
For more information, visit https://shopinternationalmarketplace.com/events
History of the Tiki Lounge
If you really want to impress during Mixology Month At International Marketplace then get a little knowledge under your best before heading down, you never know.
The history of the Tiki lounge, or Tiki bar, traces its roots back to the 1930s in the United States. During the Great Depression, two significant establishments opened: Don the Beachcomber in Hollywood, California, and Trader Vic’s in Oakland, California. These locations were designed as an exotic getaway, offering tropical escapism from everyday life.
The owner of Don the Beachcomber, Ernest Raymond Beaumont Gantt (who later legally changed his name to Donn Beach), was a world traveler who fell in love with the South Pacific. In 1933, he opened his first Tiki bar. It was decorated with items that Gantt had collected on his travels, like fishing nets, Polynesian artifacts, and bamboo. The bar served up potent rum cocktails and exotic Polynesian-inspired food. The establishment was a hit and sparked the Tiki trend.
Meanwhile, Victor Jules Bergeron Jr., known as Trader Vic, transformed his Oakland bar into a similar Polynesian-themed restaurant in 1937, complete with a Tiki lounge. Trader Vic’s expanded into a chain and also played a crucial role in spreading the Tiki bar trend. In fact, Trader Vic is credited with inventing the famous Mai Tai cocktail in 1944.
Following World War II, interest in Tiki culture exploded in the United States, partly driven by returning servicemen who had been stationed in the Pacific. Tiki lounges, Tiki bowling alleys, and even Tiki apartment buildings began to spring up around the country. This period, roughly from the end of World War II into the early 1960s, is often referred to as the Tiki era.
The popularity of the Tiki lounge started to wane in the late 1960s and 70s. However, in recent years, there’s been a revival of the Tiki culture, and modern Tiki lounges have been popping up around the world, capturing a sense of nostalgia while reinterpreting the concept for a new generation. These establishments continue to offer an exotic escape, complete with tropical decor, Polynesian-inspired dishes, and of course, an array of Tiki cocktails.