describes the hand painted mural as a historic visual of Hawaiian
tradition passed down from the revered storytellers of the island. “The
‘öahi was a celebration of very special occasions, such as a visit of the
Ali’i or high chief. Skilled fire throwers would climb the steep cliffs
to the top of Makana laden with dry logs of päpala or hau,” explains
Perez, who helped opened the bar in 2009. “When night fell they
would set the logs on fire and hurl them out over the ocean, creating a
dramatic fireworks show. Some brave men would paddle out into the
surf to catch the firebrands as they fell.”
While the painting at the Princeville overlooks the glorious Hanalei
Bay, the Old King Cole mural has stood at The St. Regis New York
for many years, serving as the backdrop over many historical events.
Back in 1934, two years following the Old King Cole’s installation, the
most noted event in St. Regis history unfolded. Fernand Petiot began
working as a bartender in the King Cole Bar, making his way from
France to New York City. With him, he brought along a cocktail made
of tomato juice and vodka—a drink that he would frequently make in
Paris. Petiot perfected his formula by adding salt, pepper, Tabasco
and Worcestershire sauce and introduced the Bloody Mary.
The original drink was rechristened as the “Red Snapper,” as
“Bloody Mary” was considered too vulgar for The St. Regis’ elegant
clientele. Though the new moniker failed the test of time, the recipe
for the King Cole’s signature cocktail prevailed, becoming a world-renowned beverage and the customary drink of The St. Regis Hotels
In spirit of the Red Snapper, all St. Regis bars now offer a Bloody
Mary World Collection Menu. Each drink salutes the individual
hotel’s tradition with fresh, homemade regional ingredients combined
with Petiot’s original recipe.
The St. Regis Bora Bora Resort’s aptly named Bora Mary features
SKYY vodka and watermelon juice. The Mary Terranean of The St.
Regis Grand in Rome offers SKYY vodka with basil, oregano and olive
oil. Here on Kaua‘i, The St. Regis Princeville’s signature Aloha Mary
highlight’s Kaua‘i’s tropical offerings.
“The Aloha Mary is Organic Ocean Vodka, Clamato juice (a tomato
juice cocktail blending onions, celery, spices and a dash of clam), and
Kaua‘i's smoked guava wood sea salt,” Perez says, explaining that the
Aloha Mary is one of the bar’s most popular drinks.
In addition to the Aloha Mary, The St. Regis Bar offers nightly
events like the Sunset Ritual of storytelling, live music and hula in
honor of Hawai‘i’s vivid culture. Perez also hosts a Friday celebration
that includes the art of Champagne sabering and conch shell blowing
If you are still thinking about the secret behind the Old King Cole
mural, the answer is one that every bartender at any St. Regis can tell.
The Red Snapper Original Recipe
1 oz vodka
2 oz tomato juice
1 dash lemon juice
2 dashes salt
2 dashes black pepper
2 dashes cayenne pepper
3 dashes Worcestershire sauce
The St. Regis Bar is open daily from 3: 30 p.m. to 10: 30 p.m.