Thursday, January 4, 2024



Club Bamboo (also called the Bamboo Inn) was a restaurant bar on Marine (Corps) Drive in Hagåtña after the war up to the 1950s. It was owned by former statesider Adrian LaDeau, who went by the nickname Trader Ade. LaDeau came to Guam as a Seabee in 1944, fell in love with Adela San Nicolas, left the military, married her and stayed. 

LaDeau's wife's sister was married to local businessman Ambrosio Torres Shimizu of Ambros Enterprises. So Shimizu was also invested in the business. 

The Club was a popular place to eat, drink and dance, with live music. Besides being a meeting place for various civic groups, Club Bamboo was the scene of some colorful episodes in its short history.

Chamorro waitress JOSEFA M. was fined $100 in 1950 for serving a Marine an alcoholic beverage. The drink itself only cost 50 cents. The Club was designated a "civilian" club, so I am assuming military personnel were not allowed in.

Three Marines in 1950 got too tipsy at Club Bamboo and started causing a ruckus. Chamorro police man Ben Charfauros went to arrest the Marines, who gave him such a hard time that Charfauros lost his badge in the scuffle. "We got the Marines," he said, "but I lost my badge."

Merchant Marines, too, could get in trouble. In 1950, several Merchant Marines were arrested on various charges at Club Bamboo.

Even employees at Club Bamboo could get the business in trouble. One worker sold cases of beer to various merchants, not knowing that Club Bamboo had no license to sell wholesale. The government punished the club by closing its bar for one week, but the restaurant side of the business couldn't make money without the bar so even the restaurant closed for one week.

In 1953, somebody perhaps got lucky at Club Bamboo. A statesider returned home after a night at the Club and noticed he didn't have his wallet on him anymore. The wallet contained $1200, which in today's value is worth $13,800. Why was the man carrying the equivalent of half a year's salary around?

By 1955, there was hardly any news concerning Club Bamboo and by 1956 there was no sign of it in the news at all. LaDeau remained on Guam and went on to other things, including establishing a place called Pirate's Cove, which is still in existence but for the longest time now owned by Jeff Pleadwell.

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