President and CEO
Hawai‘i Lodging and Tourism Association
Aloha kakou, It’s wonderful to see Waikiki full of happy visitors from all corners of the globe. For more than a century, travelers have been enthralled by our native Hawaiian culture and hospitality, basked in Waikiki’s sapphire waters, and walked barefoot in the sand while trade winds stir the coconut fronds. This is the essence of Waikiki, and it hasn’t changed over time.
Today, on these beloved shores, the past and future are uniting in fresh and surprising ways as Waikiki has blossomed into a vibrant and cosmopolitan 21st century playground.
World-class accommodations can be found at hotels of all sizes and prices, timeshares and condominiums. Nightlife is flourishing and culinary options abound from Hawai’i Regional Cuisine to delicacies inspired by cultures from around the world.
Swaths of Waikiki beach have been widened. Kalakaua Avenue with its multitude of designer stores is mentioned in the same breath as Rodeo Drive and Fifth Avenue. The Honolulu Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium are perfect for family outings. And there are exciting jet ski, parasailing and submarine explorations, as well as whale watching and romantic sunset cruises to be enjoyed.
You’re in luck if you are in Waikiki Sept. 1 – 8, because your stay coincides with the Hawai’i Food & Wine Festival. Featuring a roster of internationally renowned master chefs, culinary personalities and wine and spirit producers, this popular event showcases the state’s bounty of local produce, seafood, beef and poultry. For more information, visit www.hawaiifoodandwinefestival.com.
Aloha Festivals is a long-standing island tradition celebrating Hawai’i’s music, dance and history, featuring pageantry, street parties, concerts and family activities. Among the highlights are the Waikiki Ho’olaule’a block party, Sept. 21, and the Floral Parade, Sept. 28, both on Kalakaua Avenue. Learn more at www.alohafestivals.com.
The famous Moloka’i Hoe outrigger canoe race for men takes place Oct. 13, a grueling test of stamina and paddling skill across 41 miles of open ocean from Moloka’i Island to Waikiki Beach. It’s a thrill to watch crews tough it out towards the finish line at Duke Kahanamoku Beach. For more information, visit www.molokaihoe.com.
My suggestion for a good time in Waikiki? Slow down. Soak up some sun, splash around in the surf. Take an adventure or two, or shop and dine at your own speed. Meet local folks, enjoy our festivals. Feel our warmth and spread aloha.
Have a great stay!