Help me throw a Hawaii-themed party in LA!
September 18, 2012 9:17 AM   Subscribe

My lovely girlfriend has been throwing me fantastic birthday parties for a few years, and this year (in November, in Los Angeles) I want to return the favor in kind. She lived in Hawaii in her youth, and has visited every year except this one, so I thought I'd try to bring the big island to her for her birthday party. I'm thinking 25-30 people, suggestions for any level of fancy from not fancy at all up to very posh appreciated.
posted by thedaniel to Society & Culture (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Do you want to do this at home (or at someone else's home) or in a restaurant/bar type place?
posted by elizardbits at 9:37 AM on September 18, 2012

Do you have a backyard or someplace where you could roast a kalua pig?
posted by cazoo at 9:51 AM on September 18, 2012

Trader Vic's
posted by brujita at 9:51 AM on September 18, 2012

You might want to check out the Hidden Village Room at Don the Beachcomber in Huntington Beach. A friend of mine had a Hawaiian/Tiki-themed party there a few months ago and it was pretty cute, and the food was decent.
posted by erst at 9:52 AM on September 18, 2012

Have the guests all wear Locals? Not posh, but I strongly associate them with the Big Island.
posted by postcommunism at 10:00 AM on September 18, 2012

Get some Tiki torches and hire a fire juggler. Your profile says you're in LA, so it shouldn't be very expensive at all.
posted by Sphinx at 10:34 AM on September 18, 2012

I have never been to Tiki-Ti, but have heard wonderful things about it. You could also look for other tiki bars in your area on Critiki (a friend's project). Of course, these are tiki suggestions, which may or may not be what your girlfriend thinks of when she thinks of Hawaii.
posted by Kpele at 11:04 AM on September 18, 2012

Her standards for authenticity are probably pretty high so I'm thinking try to get a couple things right, rather than create a total environment. If it was me, it would be all about the sounds and smells. I also like the idea of having fire dancers, or actual Hawaiian musicians, or maybe you can find someone to make lei for everyone. And maybe a signature drink with Hawaiian ingredients.
posted by BibiRose at 11:08 AM on September 18, 2012

A note about Tiki-Ti (Kpele's suggestion) -- I've been to Tiki-Ti a bunch of times, and it's fun, but it's a really tiny little place. From the bar's own website: "The bar is small -- only 12 stools, with a handful of tables against the walls." It's also one of the few bars in LA that still allows smoking, so depending on your preference that's either a positive or a negative, and they don't serve beer or wine, so you go there just for the super-sweet tropical-style drinks, which may not be everyone's taste.

I love that place, but I definitely wouldn't recommend it for a group of 25-30 people for a party.
posted by erst at 11:58 AM on September 18, 2012

I didn't grow up here, and that might explain my inability to appreciate it, but in my experience the one song that causes Hawaii ex-pats to get all maudlin and weepy and homesick is Honolulu City Lights, by Keola Beamer. So you might see if you can manage to get that song played, along with other Hawaiian music (which I agree with the above, is key).
posted by lex mercatoria at 2:02 PM on September 18, 2012

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