Max’s South Seas Hideaway schedules opening

Max’s South Seas Hideaway tiki bar decor

A new “tropical paradise” is opening soon in downtown Grand Rapids.

Max’s South Seas Hideaway, a tiki-themed restaurant, will open on Oct. 19 in the old Waldron Building, at 58 Ionia Ave. SW.

The restaurant is a passion project for its three co-owners: Mark Sellers, owner of BarFly Ventures; Gecko, a Hawaii-based tiki and Polynesian artist; and Martin Cate, a James Beard-winning author, bar owner and mixologist.

The three-story, 18,475-square-foot building was transformed into a Polynesian pop world by a team of tradespeople and artists, along with local general contractors Wolverine Construction and Phoenix Construction.

Sellers’ personal collection of modern and mid-century tiki artifacts will be featured at Max’s.

Sellers said, “When you step inside Max’s, you’ll enter a fantasy world unlike anything previously seen in Grand Rapids.”

“Everything from the music to the service, tropical cocktails, artwork and gourmet food is being created to transport guests to a place far from their day-to-day life,” Sellers said.

“Our goal is for people to forget the outside world exists, if only for an hour or two.”

Max’s will include three bars with several semi-private tiki huts and two private dining areas.

The menu at Max’s South Seas Hideaway will feature gourmet food from chef Joseph Peebles and a cocktail selection by Cate.

Max’s will also open a ceramic studio later this year to sell custom tiki mugs and other items.

In 2020, Max’s says a boutique tiki-themed hotel is set to open on the third floor.

Max’s hours will be Sunday to Thursday from 4 p.m. to midnight and Friday and Saturday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.

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