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.
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.
If you are in Waikiki over the weekend of March 7-9, you’re in for a treat! The 20th annual Honolulu Festival shares a rich and vibrant blend of Asian and Pacific Island cultures with the rest of the world through educational programs, activities, craft fairs and demonstrations at venues in and around Waikiki. The Festival culminates with a three-hour Grand Parade through Waikiki on Sunday afternoon, followed by a spectacular fireworks display off Waikiki Beach. For more information, visit www.HonoluluFestival.com.
From March 28 to April 6, you can enjoy the Hawaii Quilt Guild Annual Quilt Show titled “E Hoonanea I Ka Mili Kapa,” meaning “Come and be soothed by the quilting.” The show features quilts from the Hawaii Quilts Guild’s members including Hawaiian quilts, traditional, contemporary and children’s quilts. The show is free and easily accessible at the Linekona Honolulu Academy of Art, Art School 1111 Victoria Street, not far from Waikiki. For more information, check out http://hawaiiquiltguild.org. Additional happenings in Waikiki and the rest of the Island of O’ahu can be found at www.gohawaii.com/oahu/plan-a-trip/events.
My suggestion for a good time in Waikiki? Slow down. Soak up some sun, splash around in the surf. Take an adventure or two. Enjoy the culture and shop and dine at your own speed. Meet local folks, feel our warmth and spread aloha.