Mai Tai - Excelsior

Excelsior, Minnesota, United States

Mai Tai, Excelsior's thatch-roofed Polynesian restaurant and bar, opened in 1978 and quickly became a hot spot around Lake Minnetonka.

The Mai Tai was founded by John Logan, former head chef at the Ambassador Hotel in St. Louis Park.

Fun was the main concern at Mai Tai, and the bartenders were able to mix about 30 different Polynesian drinks. The décor was decidedly tropical and included an outrigger canoe and a 200-foot waterfall. In a May 1984 interview, some of the restaurant's founders said they had 12 varieties of seafood flown in daily along with fresh orchids from Hawaii that were placed on the tables.

Live music was part of the appeal, as was the varied menu. Dinner specials one night included a dish of beef, shrimp and scallops, veal cordon bleu and chicken kiev. Fashion shows and classic boat shows also brought in customers. With the popularity came parking problems and in 1986 a trolley service was started so customers who had to park far away could easily get to the restaurant.

Throughout most of the 1980s, Mai Tai was the go-to spot for many people, including young adults who were fond of the varied drink menu. Hangovers weren't the only headaches caused by the excessive drinking, and some city officials and residents viewed the establishment as a nuisance.

The Mai Tai closed in 1989.

As of 2021 it appears the property is in transition. It had been home to the Bayside Grill which closed in 2017 and now appears to have been leased out as office space to Asystec and possibly others.

Bar & Restaurant
Excelsior, Minnesota, United States
Permanently Closed?


No one has visited this tiki bar.

Attribution Meta

Source URL

Import Meta

Source URL
2020-04-23 08:09:01

Entry Meta

Date Created
23 Apr 2020
Date Updated
16 Jan 2023
Missing Info
Edit Entry