Grand Rapids is getting a huge tiki bar!

Now, I don't remember Tiki Bob's Cantina at 58 Ionia Avenue, but apparently that's what it was before McFadden's opened in 2005.

That building has seen A LOT of changes of changes over the years. Most recently it was Waldron Public House. BarFly Ventures (owners of Stella's and HopCat) took over management of McFadden's in 2010. They shut down McFadden's and reopened as Waldron in 2016, which became a private event space later that year.

And now it's come full circle. 58 Ionia Avenue will once again house a tiki bar: Max’s South Seas Hideaway is expected to open in August 2019.

According to MLive, the bar is a joint project between Mark Sellers, founder of BarFly Ventures; Martin Cate, an exotic cocktail expert and the creator of Smuggler’s Cove, a San Francisco tiki bar; and a Hawaii-based tiki and Polynesian artist who goes by  “Gecko”.

Max’s South Seas Hideaway will be owned and operated separately from BarFly Ventures.

Sellers said in a release,

“Some of the best people in the business are working together to create this oasis that will put Grand Rapids on the map for tiki enthusiasts around the world. More importantly, Max’s will serve as a unique and unforgettable getaway for people in West Michigan looking to escape reality – even if only for a few hours.”

A menu hasn't been announced yet, but MLive reports Max's will specialize in a fusion of Asian, Hawaiian, and American food.

According to Max's website, the bar and restaurant on the first and second floors "will transport guests into a fantasy world of perpetual tropical twilight outfitted with original and vintage tiki artwork and décor."

There will even be a custom-built saltwater aquarium.

Seven tiki-themed rental units are planned for the third floor, and pending approval from the city will open early next year.

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