Trader Vic's

Bar & Restaurant
6850 E. Main Street
Scottsdale, Arizona, United States
Website
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Opened in 2006
Closed in 2011
Defunct tiki not included,
distances are as the crow flies.
Giligin's Kon Tiki Lounge, Scottsdale 0.6 mi
0.9 km
Hula's Modern Tiki, Phoenix 8.2 mi
13.2 km
Bikini Lounge, Phoenix 9.4 mi
15.2 km
Cocomo Joe's, Cave Creek 17.3 mi
27.9 km
The Hut, Tucson 104.1 mi
167.6 km
Promotional photo of Trader Vic's in Scottsdale
circa 2006, from the collection of John S. james
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Humuhumu’s description:
Newer Trader Vic's location, a freestanding building on the grounds of the newly renovated vintage hotel, Valley Ho. The restaurant opened in Summer 2006, and closed in 2011.
There are 3 comments.
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September 6, 2010, 11:18 AM
Trader Vic's in Scottsdale presents an interesting quandary: I certainly enjoyed my visit, but left with a feeling of unfulfilled potential - so I'm not really sure what to think about it. As others have noted, this is a heavily modernized take on the classic tiki bar, in what seems to be the prevailing style around Scottsdale - exposed ductwork, sleek lines, high ceilings, and not much traditional tiki decor to speak of. That being said, there are some beautiful decorative touches throughout, including an impressive wall of masks (maybe from Papua New Guinea?) and Australian Aboriginal sticks or musical instruments in a back dining room. The facing wall features a large wood panel carved with Chinese characters. The main dining area also has a few carved dark hardwood pillars - more totem pole than tiki, perhaps, but cool nonetheless. The Chinese oven/smoker, exposed behind glass, also adds character to the dining room.

The furniture in the bar area is especially well-chosen ... along with the lovely canoe on the ceiling, it allows you to imagine for a few minutes that you're hanging out somewhere like a hotel bar in 1930s Havana - if it weren't for the live band around the corner playing covers of mainstream radio rock.

Still, you get the feeling that these touches are included as nods to a receding tiki past, rather than in an attempt to create a beautifully exotic environment in the present. The overall aesthetic is urban and sophisticated, but for a much better example of how to create an "updated" tiki experience (though why anyone thinks that's necessary, I can't say), I would recommend the nearby, underrated Drift Lounge.

Would I go back? Yes. The drinks were good, the service was good, and it's a pleasant place to relax for the evening, with some cool decor, even if lacking in tikiness and atmosphere. But it could have been so much more.
Wild Man of Wongo has visited Trader Vic's.

November 4, 2010, 8:09 AM
The Scottsdale Trader Vic's is located in a remote corner of the Valley Ho hotel, a historic "1950s modern" structure with a distinct retro feel.

This restaurant is part of the new breed of Trader Vic's, a little too much corporate sleek and not quite enough tikiness. It has a light and airy feel, a far cry from the dark, mysterious, windowless environs of the company's older locations. That said, they have done a pretty good job retaining at least some tiki flavor, with large carvings (some suspended from the ceilings) and Polynesian-style decoration throughout (though not many actual tikis, which seem to be concentrated in one of the back corners).

The mai tais were up to Trader's high standards, and the drink and appetizer menus are fairly extensive. The food (we just had appetizers) was very good and the service friendly and attentive.

Overall, a nice relaxing place to spend a few hours, and while it has its drawbacks we should probably not spend too much time brooding about what Trader Vic's used to be and just be happy with what we still have.
tucsontiki has visited Trader Vic's.

May 23, 2012, 6:32 PM
My son and I visited this Trader Vic's location in the July of 2011. Unfortunately it closed up for good several weeks later. It had some wonderful carved Tikis and the usual great Trader signature drinks as described in a replica vintage drink menu. They also had some great vegetarian menu items. The place was virtually empty when we went, which we optimistically attributed to a recent dust storm. Alas, they would be selling off their tikis and other decor within a months time. It was on the grounds of the great mid century hotel, Valley Ho.
Dino Noir has visited Trader Vic's.

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