Hula Bula Bar
This was an exciting project located in a very small space (80 people), previously a lacklustre innercity winebar.
Having previously worked on the Zombie Zoo theme park, I had a number of bamboo poles and sheeting left over, as well as some very good tikis I had carved from salvaged wood. We used several km of bamboo in the construction. The aim was to create Australia’s most authentic Tiki experience and Hula Bula Bar is still way ahead of the competition.
Initially we expanded the space by converting some staff bathrooms (no longer being used) to a back lounge space “the canoe Hut” which was to have a tropical beach feel in contrast to the front jungle room. All the doors were covered in carved surfboards, which make very good masks, and the furniture was made up from salvaged bases, recycled timber and raw planks from the local timber mill, effectively giving the Hula an authentic shipwrecked look.
To save costs the existing soft furnishings was reupholstered in a sturdy brown vinyl with tiger skin motif, and the bar was kept in its original position, with tikis literally carved into position around it.
Realistic trompe-oueil murals were blended with a big collection of artificial vegetation, and vinyl glass transfers to provide the tropical vistas and all trace of urban Perth was carefully obliterated. We even installed tropical surround sound effects throughout the venue as an added fun gimmick. One of my favourite touches is the fake Tiger Skin rug printed onto the floor.
The cocktail menu was based on authentic recipes from the best Tiki bars of the last century and all signage, drink stirrers, coasters and graphics were designed to match. The Hula Bula Bar has enjoyed a successful 5 years and still going strong.
Possibly Perth’s best kept secret, Hula Bula Bar is an underground delight tucked away in the wilderness of the Perth CBD, offering a unique experience for a laid-back night out. Away from the doof-doof music and unsavoury characters that populate Perth’s usual social hotspots, you’ll be pleasantly surprised by the relaxed yet sophisticated atmosphere of this cozy cocktail bar where well-dressed patrons range from their early-twenties to mid-thirties. Expect to pay around AU$15 for a generous cocktail served in a tiki glass, though you will be asked to leave your ID as collateral for the mug.
- Singha: Great Bars of the World
Perth's CBD is the world's most unlikely location for a tiki bar. But Hula Bula Bar's shipwrecked creators have transformed an unassuming hole-in-the wall into a heaving Caribbean morass. Hula Bula is a stroke of genius, complete with tropical island vista wallpaper, tribal masks, Hawaiian leis and sea-faring paraphernalia hanging from every nook and cranny. House specialties come in large tiki mugs and the cocktail menu promises to "excite the hidden primitive within us all.
- Sydney Morning Herald
Hula Bula Bar
12 Victoria Avenue
Perth, Western Australia 6000
The creative team, with "Skipper" Josh Collins at the helm, is the very same crew responsible for Deville's Pad and it's clear these barflies know what it takes to make a watering hole both atmospheric and unique."
Read more Reviews
Wonder Bar Design
Phone: +61 8 9285 2669
Send an email