Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge

Alameda, CA
Articles in Critiki News
I want to go!
Plan your visit:
Get there
I have been!
Report back to Critiki:
Add Pics
1304 Lincoln Ave.
Alameda, CA
Opened in 2006
Mon-Thu 5pm-midnight
Fri-Sat 5pm-2am
Sun 3pm-10pm
(510) 749-0332

Critiki ratings

Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge



by 336 people



Everyone You
Decor 9.2
Drink Quality 9.1
Drink Selection 9.4
Mood 9.2
Music 9
Service 8.7
Tikiness 9.3
Tilt 8.9
Vibe 8.9

Upcoming Visits

Regulars & Visitors

View all 593 Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge regulars & visitors

Humuhumu’s description

Forbidden Island is a tiki bar on the island of Alameda just east of San Francisco. It opened in 2006, but it has the look and feel of a classic old tiki bar. The bar was the creation of Martin "Martiki" Cate, a longtime tiki devotee, rum expert, and former Trader Vic's bartender, and brothers "Conga Mike" and Manny Thanos, who are part-owners of the nearby Conga Lounge
The Conga Lounge
Oakland, CA
Bar & Restaurant
. In early 2009, Cate left the Forbidden Island partnership, and opened his own Smuggler's Cove
Smuggler's Cove
San Francisco, CA
in San Francisco.
Forbidden Island has a commitment to quality, with only fresh-squeezed juices and premium spirits used. The drink menu features dozens of tropical cocktailsóa mix of classics such as the Sidewinder's Fang and the Zombie, and new creations like the China Clipper and the Fugu for Two. There is also an extensive list of premium rums.
The decor is filled with many layered details, and was crafted primarily by Bamboo Ben and Martin Cate. There is an abundance of bamboo and thatch, and the walls are lined with wood, giving the appearance of the inside of a ship. There are several artifacts from tiki lounges of the past, including a war club from the Kahiki in Columbus, floats from Eli Hedley's Island Trade ship, which were used at the Pago-Pago in Tucson, Koa wood tabletops and large pieces of bamboo from the Lanai in San Mateo, and several carved pieces including two large carved poles by Ken Pleasant that were used at the Kahiki Moon in Burlington, Vermont. The logo tiki was carved by Tiki Diablo, and presides over a water feature in a cozy corner. There are three hut-like booths, and a long bar with comfortable seating. A rear patio is open until 9p.m. (after 9 it closes to minimize noise for the surrounding residential neighborhood).
Music on the jukebox is predominantly pre-1964, and was specially selected to fit in the vintage lounge environment, with no shortage of Exotica available. A small selection of snack food is available.
Some parking is available in back, and there is plenty of free parking on the street. Alameda has a speed limit of 25 MPH throughout the whole island, and it's strictly enforced.


tikiduty has visited Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge.
May 8, 2022, 8:17 AM
Great atmosphere and really accommodating staff. Fun cocktails and extensive Rum list 😍
tikiduty has visited Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge.
May 8, 2022, 8:15 AM
Asked for vaccine card.
PineappleWhip has visited Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge.
May 13, 2021, 2:47 PM
Forbidden Island is very dear to my heart and soul. I have been several times, and every time feels like coming home.

The service is outstanding, fun, great conversation, welcoming, friendly, and attentive. Walking in here you immediately feel like you are on vacation, and being taken care of.

The drinks are all amazing. This was the first time for Mele Ipo, and she instantly fell in love with the atmosphere. Indoor seating is available again....which was wonderful, we lucked out and got our own hut (booth) !!! SO COMFORTABLE and spacious !!!!

We met Michael, and he showed us the expanded outdoor patio. WOW!!! We will be back soon for sure!!! What an awesome space....everything has been designed perfectly to allow for distancing, yet still makes you feel part of the Ohana, and welcoming.

The drinks were spectacular, as always!! Mele started with the Forbidden Island. It is an instant favorite for Mele. ...refreshing, full of citrus and spice flavor and enticing aromas....and we could even get it set on fire!!!! :) I started with a Chamborlada. (coconut creamy pineapple chambord taste extravagaza!!) We then had a Merchant Grog and a 1934 Zombie, and finished it all off with a Rum Barrel. The Rum Barrel was so perfectly balanced and packed with flavor, it is a MUST have if you are there!! They really know how to entertain!!

Food was great !! They are all smaller bites, which we loved, because we could try several different things

Mugs are a great price, they have great T-shirts. The music is a great combination of exotica, surf, lounge. We were like kids in a candy store. We both wanted to stay longer, and of course look forward to our next visit. We definitely can't wait to visit in the outdoor patio.

As we are both big fans of Tiki Central...Forbidden Island is a central location to honor and cherish.

Thank you Forbidden Island for another beautiful and delicious memory, that will be appreciated. ALOHA!! until our next visit.
View all 33 comments

Articles in Critiki News

All 21 Critiki News articles
Upcoming Visits
Regulars & Visitors
  • The Jab
  • chiwito
  • PeleNani
  • Chad & Jenny
  • Tiki Kim
  • TKaimuki
  • ecubersax
  • Zombie Mike
  • skillbilly
  • TikiDoll
  • not_carlos
  • kurtiki
  • thejab
  • Apocryphanow
  • BrianRex
  • Katstiki
View all 593 Forbidden Island Tiki Lounge regulars & visitors