16278 South Pacific Coast Hwy
Huntington Beach, CA
Opened in 1923
Closed in 2007
by 20 people
Sam's Seafood was a Huntington Beach institution, and contained several dining rooms. While Sam's had been in the same location since the '20s, up until its Polynesian remodel in the '60s it was just a seaside seafood joint. The brightly lit main dining room had a large wall mural on one side and a dramatic tiki & waterfall display at the back. A pair of smaller side dining rooms were also bright and more aviation themed.
Of more interest to the tikiphile was the Hidden Village banquet room area in the back available for event rentals, which was large and moodily lit, with glass floats, waterfall displays, A-frame covered seating areas, and a small bar. On Friday nights from April to November, Sam's Seafood had a Polynesian Dinner Show in the Hidden Village. Last but certainly not least was the excellent main bar at Sam's. It was dark and full of excellent carvings, pufferfish and float lamps, and thatch.
A small bar with some tiki carvings inside, Turc's, can be found just down the street.
At the end of May 2006, Sam's Seafood was sold to developers who aim to build retail spaces & condominiums on the site. Red tape appears to be holding off any development on the site for possibly years. Sam's closed for several months until June 2007, when the property owners allowed a new group to come in and keep the restaurant running in a somewhat modified form until the development could move forward.
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