Memories of the Kon Tiki

Posted: 22nd August 2010 by Rex Brown in architecture, cars, travel

Jackie discovered this vintage postcard from the Kon Tiki Hotel in Phoenix, Arizona. On the back it explains the Kon Tiki offered a “fabulous Polynesean (sic) atmosphere in the midst of Phoenix.”

Kon Tiki Hotel in Phoenix

Back in 1989 we made the trek to Phoenix, Arizona for the U.S. Grand Prix. Now as Formula One Grand Prixs go it was a mediocre affair- the course was set out on the streets of downtown Phoenix and, needless to say, it was hotter than hell. And yes, it was a dry heat.

One of the non-automotive highlights of that trip for me was our accommodations. A friend from Spartan had told me about a unique hotel at the corner of 26th and Van Buren. “You’d love the place,” were his words, “And it’s across the street from the State mental institution.”

Hmmm, lovely. Not knowing much more than that I dug around and found out a hotel called the Kon Tiki was located at 26th and Van Buren. Turned out it was a mecca of island kitsch, soaring Fifties rooflines and orange Trimline phones. It was also smack in the middle of the red light district- but that’s a story for another day.

“Come to KON TIKI and take away a life long memory.”



  1. Anonymous says:

    Oh come on! It's another day now; let's hear the story!