Brad Gotfried’s desire to bring exotic South Pacific venues to Sai Kung is emerging anew at Centro. Construction and decoration of the Tikitiki Bowling Bar is complete and opening awaits licensing, according to an Urban Entertainment officer. Downstairs an art gallery called The Bazaar has been set up.
Sai Kung has seen this kind of thing before from Brad. He has very deep pockets because his mother married a billionaire jeans maker. Brad’s father was the late Mike Gotfried, a pilot who rose from single-engine prop aircraft at the Hong Kong Aviation Club to big-jet Captain at Cathay. Mike is well-remembered at the HKAC as the founder of the modern club and a function room is named after him.
Back to Brad. He arrived in Sai Kung early this century pockets bulging with cash. He told the South China Morning Post memorably that he would transform this seaside town into an exotic holiday destination. Resorts would be built on our islands. Much of what he promised did transpire: The Xtreme nightclub (now. COM) a go-kart track, gaily decorated junks for hire with costumed crews. All those retail businesses are now history.
Brad is having another go. Similar stuff with new twists. Typically from Brad he has spent millions on the Tikitiki Bowling Bar. There can’t have been any change out of $100 million. It’s awesome: 10 Brunswick bowling lanes, a video wall, island bar, rustic half-painted wood furniture, cushions and lights of the brightest warm colours. It’s possible Sai Kung is going to love it.
But why did he name the place after a strange little town on New Zealand’s East Cape Road? Tikitiki is in a wilderness area of the North Island. “Deliverance” country: tourists are warned not to get out of their cars.
The Tikitiki is above Fusion. Below it a new art gallery and knick-knack shop called The Bazaar has been set up. The featured artist is Symon of Bali. He has spent a lot of time studying Andy Warhol for inspiration.
There are bikinis on sale and t-shirts from the States plus odd tin-man figures made from oil drums lining the walls.
Will these businesses last? If Brad has learned that you can’t just throw money at retail businesses. They have to be managed.
— Trevor Bailey