CHS is still catching up after a summer without news and we still have a few new places to visit that opened up when we were gone. Including E Olive Way’s only tiki bar, the Lower Queen Anne transplanted Hula Hula.
“Oh, the karaoke is great. It’s like a live concert in here,” manager Heather Sharpsteen tells CHS.
With high(er than average” production values — and a boost from softcore porn in the background to keep things interesting during instrumentals and guitar solos — Hula Hula has imported its kitschy karaoke vibe up the Hill.
The tiki joint also brought its bar — yes, *literally* — and bar staff when it opened for business on Capitol Hill back in April. “We didn’t lose anybody in the move. Everyone followed and we’ve added a couple new faces,” Sharpsteen said.
Pushed out by development in Lower Queen Anne, owner Keith Robbins brought the long-lived tiki dive up the Hill to his E Olive Way to replace Irish dive Clever Dunne’s after 14 years on the street. We got a very fair deal, this isn’t like we were pushed out,” Dunne’s Jamie Saling told CHS at the time.
After six months, Hula Hula has settled in enough for cobwebs to have formed on the big black-light black velvet “tiki gods” mural and there appears to be plenty of karaoke business to go around to keep it and nearby Capitol Hill classic The Crescent going for a few more decades.
Inside the Hula Hula, a simple, classic mai tai could help CHS take a smaller, shorter break the next time we’re considering a news hiatus.
With the “whole bar sing-alongs” and “the porn and the karaoke,”Sharpsteen says, “it’s vacation.”
Hula Hula is located at 1501 E Olive Way. You can learn more at hulahula.org.