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Tim Glasson

Image by Declan Roache.

He’s one half of the team behind your favourite Broadbeach tiki bar, Aloha Bar and Dining, and Tim Glasson is on the verge of opening a second.

Taboo Tiki is set to swing open its’ doors in Surfers Paradise in mid-October, bringing a tropical flair to Orchid Ave.

We sat down for a chat with Tim about all things tiki and his plans to expand even further in 2019. 

How long have you been a Gold Coast local?
It’s been nine years now, almost to the day.

What do you love most about our city?
As a hospitality person, I love the community. Everyone knows each other and everyone gets along, we’ve got a great growing bar and dining scene. The lifestyle and the weather are great aswell but for me it’s the hospitality community.

How did you come to be co-owner of Aloha?
I was at Palazzo Versace for four years. I went on a holiday overseas and realised that what I really wanted was to own a small business and get back into small bars. While I was there I was offered a job in a restaurant in Mermaid Beach and while working there, I think it was probably on a drunken night, I had a conversation with the owners and we decided we should all open a bar together. That was Aloha. It was only going to be a pop-up because there was only a short lease available on the space so we were just going to see how it went. We were able to keep negotiating a longer lease and now we’re coming on three years.

Where did the idea for such a unique space come from?
Funnily enough, London is actually a real hub for tiki bars. I guess because of the dreary weather, people really want that escape into something tropical and different. I fell in love with them living there. I thought the Gold Coast would appreciate a tiki bar because they have a pretty laidback vibe and the drinks are really approachable. I’d come from the more fancy, waist coast and suspenders sort of bar tending and it wasn’t what I wanted to be doing and I don’t actually think it’s that much fun for the consumer either. Whereas with tiki, you can be really serious about your cocktails, but you serve them in a holed out pineapple and put a parasol on them so it’s fun and it’s approachable, the best of both worlds. Serious cocktail enthusiasts can appreciate the drink but so can people who may have never had a cocktail in their life.

Tell us about your new venue, Taboo Tiki…
Taboo is going to be another tropical sort of hideaway. It’s located in the heart of Surfers but it’s down a bit of an alleyway and it’s quite a bit bigger than Aloha, maybe twice the size and it will have a late night bar license. We don’t want to be a club, we want to offer something different; that laidback, approachable style with quality drinks, seated table service and fun music but in the middle of Surfers Paradise. I think they’re ready for it in there, it’s always so busy, there’s a lot of stuff happening in there. I think Surfers is on its way back.

What will we see on the menu?
It will be a similar style to Aloha. We’ve got Smashed Burgers in Broadbeach and we’re doing another one in Surfers around the same time too. It’s got quite a big kitchen so we’ll use that to service Taboo, which means we can change the offering a bit. There’ll still be lots of share plates, platters for functions and things like that but we’ve got that option of doing pan-fried things and a few different styles. We’ll keep it light and relatively healthy. Drinks-wise, again, similar to Aloha. The focus will be on the cocktails and that tropical, fruit-driven, light-flavoured vibe.

When do you think Taboo Tiki might be open?
We’d really like to be open for GC600, which is the 19th of October. I think it’s doable; most of the heavy lifting of the build is done so we’re pretty much down to decorating. I’m hoping for mid-October.

Any other exciting plans in the works for 2018?
Nothing set in stone. There’s a couple of other opportunities around we’ve been speaking about but I don’t think it’s likely anything will happen this year. Next year we’ll definitely have something happening.

Tell us your favourites on the Coast…
Beach:
Tallebudgera
Café:
Elk Espresso and ESPL
Restaurant:
The North Room and Lupo
How does your weekend usually look:
I’ve got two dogs so I spend time walking them and with my son. I try to check out new restaurants and bars but I don’t really have much of a weekend to speak of

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