Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Rolling Stones Cancel Aloha Stadium Concert

This week the Rolling Stones announced they are cancelling their November 22 concert at the Aloha Stadium in Honolulu, and are collapsing their fall schedule, because lead singer Mick Jagger is having problems with his voice. The Aloha Stadium performance would have been the first Rolling Stones concert in Hawaii since 1998.

Castle Takes Over Hokele Suites Boutique Hotel

Hokele Suites Hotel On October 1, 2006, Castle Resorts and Hotels took over management of the Hokele Suites Hotel, a condominium hotel located on a side street in Waikiki, near the DFS Galleria. A $45 million renovation is turning the two-star budget hotel into a three star boutique hotel. Accommodations at Hokele Suites Waikiki include studio apartments and one and two bedroom condominium units. When you book this hotel, be sure to check their Internet specials, which are less then half of their published room rates.
  • Photo of the Hokele Suites Hotel
  • Photo of the Hotel Swimming Pool

  • Take a Ride on the New Honolulu Screamer

    Waikiki Screamer The Honolulu Screamer is a new ocean thrill ride that was launched at the Kewalo Basin in Honolulu this week. The Screamer is a 49 passenger speed boat with a 1420 horsepower turbo charged engine. Passengers take a 30 to 45 minute round-trip ride to Diamond Head Crater, weaving and spinning at speeds up to 40 miles per hour. The Honolulu Screamer was a long-time dream of Greg Longnecker, which was finally fulfilled after spending $1 million and two years to have the boat built in New Jersey. The Honolulu Screamer was transported by land to Long Beach California, and then by ship to Honolulu. Tickets for the new ride are $30 to $50, which includes transportation from Waikiki. Initially there will be two trips per day, but departures are expected to eventually increase to once per hour. For reservations and more information, call 808-597-8669.

    Monday, October 30, 2006

    2006 Hawaii Book Award Winners

    Hawaii Book Awards Every October, the Hawaii Book Publishers Association recognizes the best books published during the previous year by issuing Ka Palapala Pookela Awards in several different book categories. In 2006, 134 nominations were received and the winners were selected by the Hawaii Book Academy, a group of booksellers, educators, publishers, and media professionals.
  • 2006 Hawaii Book Award Winners
  • Hawaii Books by Topic
  • Hawaii Books A to Z

  • Polo Inn is Changing Its Name to Hotel Equus

    The 70 room Hawaii Polo Inn in Honolulu is now being managed by Aqua Hotels and Resorts. The hotel is undergoing a $2 million renovation and when the work is completed in December of 2006, it will re-open and be re-named the "Hotel Equus". The Polo Inn has always been a good option for Waikiki budget travelers, and while their rack rates will no longer be less then $100, it will be possible to book their basic room for about $105 per night, including a continental breakfast. The Polo Inn is located on the stretch of Ala Moana Boulevard between Waikiki and the Ala Moana Shopping Center.
  • Old Hotel Web site at HawaiiPolo.com
  • New Hotel Web site at AquaResorts.com

  • Friday, October 27, 2006

    "Don't Fly Go" is GONE

    A few weeks ago I mentioned a new Web site that was started by employees of Aloha Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines to protest some of the practices of the newest inter-island airline in Hawaii, Go! Airlines, which is an affiliate of the Mesa Air Group. Well... now all of the anti-Go content on the DontFlyGo.com Web site has been removed and replace with this message: "This website is in the process of being sold. Once it is sold, HERO will no longer be responsible for its content". The content is gone, but there is still a mailing address on that site and also a link people can use to make a donation to the "Don't Fly Go" group via PayPal. Veeeeeery interesting...

    Thursday, October 26, 2006

    Pastel Artists of Hawaii Exhibition

    right The 3rd annual Pastel Artists of Hawaii Exhibition will take place October 30 through November 24, 2006 in the lobby of the Pauahi Tower at 1001 Bishop Street in Downtown Honolulu. The Pastel Artists of Hawaii is a non-profit society founded in 2001 to advance the appreciation of soft pastels as a serious medium and to promote Hawaii's finest pastel artists. The pastel on the left is "The Chanter" by Kathleen Yokouchi, the Best-in-Show winner at the 2005 exhibition.

    Xterra World Championships on Maui

    The 11th annual Nissan Xterra World Championships is an extreme multi-sport competition that will take place Sunday, October 29, 2006 on the island of Maui. The event includes a 1.5 kilometer roughwater swim, a 30 kilometer mountain bike ride on the slopes of Haleakala, and an 11 kilometer off-road trail run. This is the final event in the Xterra World Tour, which includes competitions in Brazil, Saipan, Germany, New Zealand, Mexico, France, Denmark, United Kingdom, the Czech Republic, Spain, Italy, South Africa, Japan and the United States. The Maui course is considered the most difficult of all the venues. 500 competitors from more then 20 countries will compete for a $130,000 prize package. The event will be filmed for a CBS TV Sports Spectacular that will air on February 3, 2006, the Saturday before the SuperBowl.

    Downtown Decadence Tonight in Honolulu

    Downtown Decadence 2006 Downtown Decadence is a fundraiser for the Oahu YWCA, and it will take place tonight - October 26, 2006 - at the Laniakea YWCA. Tickets cost $60 which includes three drinks from the martini bar, appetizers from Indigo and the Cafe Laniakea, live music, a silent auction, and access to pampering services such as massage, mini-manicures, and make-overs. For more information see the Downtown Decadence 2006 Web site.

    Oahu North Shore Expansion Plan Includes 5 Hotels

    The owners of the Turtle Bay Resort on the north shore of Oahu plan to build five new hotels and additional condos and timeshare units that will add 3500 hotel rooms and residential units to the north shore. Some Hawaii residents and visitors are concerned about the impact that project will have on north shore traffic, which is already a big problem. Those visitors and residents would also like to retain the rural quality of the north shore, and have tourism development on Oahu limited to Waikiki and Ko Olina. The developer says the project will bring jobs to the area and they also say they will look for creative and innovative solutions to address the community's concerns. Here is more information:
  • Honolulu Advertiser Article
  • Honolulu Star Bulletin Article
  • Defend Oahu Coalition
  • Keep the North Shore Country

  • Wednesday, October 25, 2006

    Historic Tea Room in the Manoa Valley

    Waioli Tea Room The Waioli Tea Room is a charming historic restaurant in a lush tropical setting in Honolulu's Manoa Valley. It is a popular spot for breakfast and lunch, and traditional afternoon tea can be arranged with 24 hours advance notice. The menu includes items such as salads, sandwiches, egg dishes, teas, coffee drinks, fancy non-alcoholic fruit drinks, and delicious desserts. The Waioli Tea Room is on the United States National Register of Historic Places.
  • More About the Waioli Tea Room
  • Photos of the Waioli Tea Room
  • The Waioli Chapel
  • Where to Have Afternoon Tea on Oahu

  • Hawaiian Waters Salute to the Military

    Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park The 8th annual Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park "Salute to the Military" will take place the Friday before Veterans' Day, November 10, 2006, from 10:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. On that date, admission will be free for all active duty military, reservists, national guard personnel, and retirees with valid military IDs. Dependents of military personnel, and up to four of their friends, can get in for half price by showing current military dependent IDs. Hawaiian Waters Adventure Park is a 25 acre water park in Kapolei with water slides, a wave pool, a river rafting pool, and other attractions. It is located about 30 to 45 minutes west of Waikiki.

    Hawaii Film Festival is Taking Place Now

    The 26th annual Louis Vuitton Hawaii International Film Festival is taking place now on the islands of Oahu, Maui, Kauai, Molokai, Lanai, and the Big Island of Hawaii. Films will be shown through October 29. More then 250 movies are being screened this year and here are schedules with film titles, dates, and locations:
  • Oahu Film Screenings
  • Neighbor Island Film Screenings

  • News From the Kapalua Resort on Maui

    The new Honolua Village Center at northwest Maui's Kapalua Resort opened on October 18, 2006. Shops so far include Kapalua Collections, La Perle Jewelers, Kapalua Realty, and the Sansei Seafood Restaurant and Sushi Bar. And more news from the Kapalua Resort: Advanced tickets for the Mercedes-Benz Golf Championship at the Kapalua Plantation Golf Course are on sale until December 25, at which time ticket prices will increase. Advance tickets to the entire event are available for $55. After December 25, those tickets will cost $80. The Mercedes-Benz Championship will take place January 1-7, 2007.

    Sunday, October 22, 2006

    Congratulations to Ironman Top Finishers!

    Congratulations to first place finishers at the 2006 Ironman Triathlon World Championships in Kona on the Big Island of Hawaii on Saturday, October 21. The first place male finisher was Normann Stadler of Germany and the first place female finisher was Michellie Jones of the United States. Congratulations also to 76 year old Cathlic nun Madonna Buder, the final finisher in the 2006 race and the oldest woman to ever compete in the Kona Ironman Triathlon.
  • Top 10 Finishers + Photos

  • Saturday, October 21, 2006

    Aquariums on the Island of Oahu

    Oahu Aquariums There are several aquariums on the island of Oahu including the University of Hawaii's Waikiki Aquarium, the walk-through aquarium at the Duty Free Shop Galleria, the 280,000 gallon Oceanarium at the Pacific Beach Hotel, and the Hawaiian Reef Aquarium at Sea Life Park, where visitors can wear underwater breathing apparatus and walk on the bottom of the tank. For photos and more information see: Oahu Aquariums.

    Thursday, October 19, 2006

    2006 Honolulu Advertiser Restaurant Awards

    Every year the Honolulu Advertiser issues Ilima Awards for the best restaurants in Hawaii. The awards are given to all types of restaurants and cafes in many different price categories. Most of the award winning restaurants are on the island of Oahu, but the last six are located on Maui, Kauai, or the Big Island of Hawaii. Here are the Honolulu Advertiser's 2006 Ilima Restaurant Award winners: 2006 Ilima Award Winners

    Tuesday, October 17, 2006

    Did You Feel the October 15th Hawaii Earthquake?

    I was reading a book in my ocean view room at the New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel in Waikiki when the earthquake rattled me to attention at 7:07 a.m. on Sunday, October 15, 2006. What I felt were two separate and rather long lasting gentle bumping motions accompanied by what sounded like a roll of thunder. There was not much damage on the island of Oahu, but I was very sorry to learn the historic Manoa Valley Inn, where I had stayed earlier in the week, suffered some serious damage, including a collapsed chimney. Waikiki is about 150 miles from the center of the quake, which was on the west coast of the Big island. My sister, who lives in Kailua-Kona, felt a much more powerful shake then I did, followed by dozens of scary aftershocks. The earthquake was measured at 6.7 on the Richter scale, and while it caused no deaths, it did cause some damage on the Big Island. Most of the Big Island hotels were not damaged, but I have heard that are few are temporarily closed, so if you are planning a trip to the Big Island soon, contact your hotel to confirm its status. If you felt the earthquake yourself, tell us what it was like:
  • Our Forum Discussion: Did You Feel the Earthquake?
  • USGS Web Form: Send Earthquake Report to USGS

  • Monday, October 09, 2006

    Aloha Festivals Falsetto Contest

    I will be in Honolulu this week, attending the Aloha Festivals Hawaiian Falsetto Singing Contest in the Monarch Room of the Royal Hawaiian Hotel in Waikiki on the island of Oahu. The contest will take place Friday, October 13, at 7:00 p.m. Hawaii's top amateur falsetto singers will compete for a Hula Records recording contract and other prizes. In addition to the contest, Grammy nominated Raiatea Helm will perform, and Benny Kalama, John Piilani Watkins, Kahauanu Lake, and Dennis Pavao will be inducted into the Falsetto Hall of Fame. This will be a great event! Tickets are $40 for general seating and $55 for premium seating. For more information see:
  • Royal Hawaiian Contest Information
  • Aloha Festivals Contest Information

  • Sunday, October 08, 2006

    Hawaii Hispanic Heritage Festival

    The Hawaii Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and the Centro Hispano de Hawaii will present the 13th annual Hawaii Hispanic Heritage Festival on Saturday, October 14, 2006 at Kapiolani Park in Honolulu, on the island of Oahu. The event will include dancers, marimba bands, dance bands, and other live entertainment. There will also be a special performance by salsa dance team Judah and Sunshine Oscher, who will represent Hawaii at the World Salsa Championships in Las Vegas in December of 2006.

    Friday, October 06, 2006

    A to Z Guide to Kauai Island

    Kauai A to Z An alphabetical guide to all of the information on this Web site about the island of Kauai, including lodging, dining, activities, attractions, events, photos, maps, transportation, arts, culture, natural wonders and more. Kauai is the oldest, wettest, most northern, and one of the most rural of the six largest Hawaiian Islands.
  • A to Z Guide to Kauai
  • Kauai Travel Planner

  • Effort to Shut Down Go! Airlines Failed

    A United States bankruptcy court has denied Hawaiian Airlines' request for a preliminary injuction that would have shut down inter-island Go! Airlines for one year. Hawaiian Airlines says that when Go! owner Mesa Airlines considered buying Hawaiian, they obtained company proprietary data which was later used to launch rival Go! Airlines. The ruling by bankruptcy judge Robert Faris read "The evidence raises real doubts about the propriety of Mesa's conduct, but Hawaiian did not meet the stringent standard for a preliminary injunction.". In related news, Go! Airlines partnered earlier this month with Pleasant Holidays, a leading provider of Hawaii tours, in order to offer vacation packages on the Go! Airlines Web site.
  • Inter-Island Airlines in Hawaii
  • Airlines That Fly to Hawaii
  • Airports in Hawaii

  • Where to Celebrate Halloween in Hawaii

    The old whaling town of Lahaina on the island of Maui has one of the largest Halloween street celebrations in the world, with typically more then 30,000 participants. For information about that event and other Halloween celebrations on the islands of Maui, Oahu, Kauai, and the Big island of Hawaii see Halloween Events in Hawaii. That page includes information about haunted houses, street festivals, costume contests, group trick-or-treating, and other Halloween events on the islands of Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island of Hawaii.

    Oahu Shark Viewing Tours

    Two companies offer shark viewing tours out of Haliewa Harbor on the north shore of Oahu. The tour operators take clients more then three miles off shore, and a shark viewing cage is lowered into the water. Sharks as close as five to fifteen feet away can be safely viewed from inside the cage. Shark tours are very exciting, but they are also controversial. Some local residents feel the tours are causing an increase in shark activity in Hawaiian coastal waters because the tour operators feed the sharks to attract them.
  • Shark Tour Operators on Oahu
  • Hawaii Shark Tour Controversy
  • Facts About Sharks in Hawaii

  • Thursday, October 05, 2006

    Aloha Festival Moves to Maui This Week

    This week there will be Aloha Festival events on the west side of Maui, in the Lahaina and Kaanapali areas, and also on the east side of Maui, in the town of Hana. There will be Hawaiian culture festivals, street celebrations, sporting events, a talent show, live Hawaiian music, and other entertainment. For more information see the Aloha Festivals Maui Event Calendar.

    New Embassy Suites Hotel in Waikiki

    The former Ohana Waikiki Village and Ohana Waikiki Tower hotels are being renovated and turned into the new Embassy Suites Waikiki Hotel. The hotel is located on the Waikiki Beach Walk, and accommodations will include one and two bedroom suites. The units will not have kitchens, but they will have refrigerators, microwave ovens, and coffee makers, and a full breakfast will be included in the rate. Amenities on the grounds include a swimming pool and four restaurants. Room rates begin at $400 per night, and sometimes special rates will be available. The Embassy Suites Hotel is expected to open for business on January 5, 2007.

    Wednesday, October 04, 2006

    Southern California Ukulele Festival: Oct 7

    ? The 5th annual Southern California Ukulele Festival will take place on Saturday, October 7 at Cerritos Park in the city of Cerritos. There will be ukulele concerts and workshops from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. and a luau and concert from 5:00 to 10:00 p.m.

    Tuesday, October 03, 2006

    New Lagoon Beach Proposed for Waikiki

    The Hawaii State Department of Land and Natural Resources is looking into the possibility of creating a new lagoon and beach area next to the War Memorial Natatorium and in front of the Waikiki Aquarium. The lagoon would be similar to one of the Ko Olina Lagoons in West Oahu, and would be approximately 200 feet by 150 feet in size, with an offshore breakwater. Right now this is only an idea that is being explored. Another possibility being considered is creating two smaller lagoon beaches. For more information see the October 3, 2006 Honolulu Advertiser Article

    Hawaii Magazine Has Been Sold

    ?PacificBasin Communications, the owner of resident-targeted Honolulu Magazine has purchased visitor-targeted Hawaii Magazine from BowTie Incorporated in Irvine, California. John Heckathorn, who was the editor of Honolulu Magazine from 1993 to 1995, will be the new editor of Hawaii Magazine. Hawaii Magazine has a circulation of approximately 75,000 and it is published every two months. In addition to Honolulu Magazine, PacificBasin Communications also publishes Hawaii Business Magazine, and Hawaii Home and Remodeling Magazine.

    Hawaii Winter Baseball Begins

    Sunday, October 1 was opening day for the revived Hawaii Winter Baseball League. The first game of the season was between the North Shore Hono and West Oahu Canefire Teams. The Hawaii Winter Baseball League was founded in 1993, with teams from Oahu, Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island of Hawaii. The league was active until 1997, when it shut down for financial reasons, but it is back again in 2006. The league now only has teams from Oahu to cut down on team travel costs and to make things easier for baseball talent scouts visiting Hawaii. The 2006 season will include 40 games, played from October 1 through November 22. Games will be played at Hans L'Orange Field in Waipahu or at Les Murakami Stadium at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu. The 2006 teams include the Waikiki Beachboys, the West Oahu CaneFires, the North Shore Honu, and the Honolulu Sharks.

    Sunday, October 01, 2006

    Van's Triple Crown of Surfing 2006

    Van's Triple Crown of Surfing Van's Triple Crown of Surfing is a three-event surfing championship for world class professional surfers that takes place every year in Hawaii. The next Triple Crown event will take place November 12 through December 20, 2006. The women's final will take place at Honolua Bay on Maui, but all of the other competitions for men and women will take place on the north shore of Oahu, at Alii Beach, Sunset Beach, and the Banzai Pipeline.

    Exploring Oahu's North Shore

    Excerpt from an article in the Asbury Park Press: The true stars of Oahu's famed North Shore aren't the actors in ABC TV's "Lost" or top-selling musician Jack Johnson. They're the monster waves that roll in every winter. But the rest of the year, when the 30-foot surf and the crowds are long gone, the North Shore returns to its usual laid-back, country lifestyle. It's perfect for swimming, golfing, hiking, snorkeling or a lazy day at the beach with family. The remote coastline stretches for more than 20 miles and seems a world away from the high-rise jungle in Honolulu.... [Read Full Article]