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Trader Vic's Rebirth: Looking Downtown

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Trader Vic's at Planet Hollywood in Vegas

Trader Vic's, reopening? More than just the Trader Vic's Light that the original became at the Beverly Hilton? The press release says 'tis true:

The Valencia Group, a Los Angeles-based restaurant management group, announced plans for the 2009 opening of legendary Trader Vic’s in Downtown Los Angeles. The group is currently evaluating several locations for the restaurant near the Nokia Theatre and the Staples Center.

“We're trying to find just the right location so we can bring the full Trader Vic’s experience back to Los Angeles,” said John Valencia, a native Angeleno and Senior Partner of The Valencia Group...Trader Vic’s LA will feature the classic tiki decor and atmosphere that helped establish the Trader Vic's brand in Beverly Hills.

So where will it be and what will it be? Let's dig a bit deeper.

The flacks say "several locations" are under consideration, but Blogdowntown noticed the rendering of 717 W. 9th on the restaurant website: "That project would make for a logical fit, given that the Valencia Group has an existing relationship with developer Meruelo-Maddux through the Union Lofts project." Plus the 2009 completion date for both is compatible. As for that "classic tiki decor," the newer Trader Vic's, i.e. the one in Vegas (pictured above), has nothing "classic" about it at all. Since this downtown location is a brand new project most likely in a brand new building, there's a good chance it will be that Trader Vic's: Some tiki remnants, Polynesian dancers and Scorpion bowls, but kind of bland and homogenized for the new millennium. Unless they decided to painstakingly replicate the original in new digs...now that would be cool.
· Update: Trader Vic's Officially CLOSED [~ELA~]
· Tasting Trader Vic's Lounge [~ELA~]
· Trader Vic's Headed to Downtown [blogdowntown]
· Trader Vic's Legacy Continues to Slip [~ELA~]

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