Tropical Gardens Bar- New York City- 1947

Here are some shots from a 1947 publication on Bars and Restaurants I found today in my school’s library.


Forthright disclosure in this department is definitely not in keeping, even where the service is offered in connection with a self-service restaurant. Although prominent citizens may properly assert they “have nothing to hide” in occasional temperate indulgence, they still don’t really like to do it on manifest exhibition. For this reason, the exterior of Tropical Gardens, though striving for attractiveness and compulsion in line with principles for the restaurant front, has much smaller window areas, with curtains as a rule nearly drawn, to reveal very little to the street of the activities and personages inside. Still the front should express, as Tropical Gardens attempts, particularly in the doorway, the essential nature and character of the operation, projecting all possible inducements to make the customer enter.


Front door of Tropical Gardens illustrates the principle in bar design of compulsive expression on the exterior, proclaiming but not disclosing the functions within.

Note in the photo, the “deuce” principle in Continental settee.

Decorations and murals in Tropical Gardens were designed by Winold Reiss, executed by Imperial Painting Co.; Karl Egger was the General Contractor.

Plastic-top, chrome pedistal table in Hollywood booth at Tropical Gardens. Curtain is glass fabric; floor, asphalt tile; color scheme, red, white, and mahogany.

Tropical Gardens bar front, is red leatherette with mahogany top. Seigel, Architect; Rapp, designer.

plan of Tropical Gardens.


3 thoughts on “Tropical Gardens Bar- New York City- 1947

  1. As a student nurse in 1963, Tropical Gardens was our favorite haunt, the drinking age being 18 back then. I remember great pizza and beer and listening to Ray Charles.

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