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The Islands of Hawaii

Stryker Weiner & Yokota Public Relations, Inc.
Sonja Swenson
Senior Vice President
(808) 523-8802

For Immediate Release

October 30, 2012


OAHU – The island of Oahu, known as the Heart of Hawaii, sets the rhythm of the islands with exciting new improvements, changes and additions on an ongoing basis. Below is a glimpse of the new and dynamic updates with Oahu’s Hotels & Resorts, Activities & Entertainments, Restaurants, Cuisine & Chefs, Shopping, Festivals & Events and Miscellaneous information, which includes airline and transportation updates.

Hotels & Resorts
The island of Oahu has fabulous hotels and resorts for people of all ages and budgets. Oahu’s hotels are constantly updating and adding an array of activities and packages that are sure to make any trip to Oahu unforgettable.
•    The Hilton Hawaiian Village is pleased to announce that the Waikiki Ocean Club, Waikiki’s ultimate ocean playground, is now the third ocean activity at the resort. The Waikiki Ocean Club is moored about 300 yards off shore and offers visitors a multitude of marine experiences. Activities include paddleboarding, kayaking, helmet dives, snorkeling, jet skiing, and more.
•    Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach is nearing completion of an $18 million renovation. The hotel will boast a new pool and pool-deck area, new elevators and interior upgrades to guest rooms, including new glass railings to ocean front rooms ensuring unobstructed ocean views.
•    Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa introduces the “Lomi Wawae” treatment at the Na Hoola Spa. This unique treatment unites the healing qualities of traditional Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage and the concentrated healing movements of “Lomi Wawae” for the feet.
•    Learn about Hawaii’s rich history in Waikiki through weekly hour-long historical tours on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 11 a.m. at the Moana Surfrider, A Westin Resort & Spa. Stories of the “First Lady of Waikiki” include surf legends, Hawaii Calls Radio show, first registered guests, passengers arriving by ship, Hawaii’s royal family, and much more.
•    View a collection of rarely seen archived photos of visitors traveling to Oahu on Matson ship liners at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort’s “Boat Days” exhibit at the Coronet Lounge. In partnership with Matson Navigation Company, the collection features photos from late 1920s to late 1940s of the S.S. Lurline, Hula Boat Day greeting of passengers arriving at Aloha Tower, The Royal Hawaiian Band playing music at Aloha Tower, original Royal Hawaiian luggage tags, a variety of Matson travel posters, and more. The exhibit will be on display until Jan. 31, 2013.
•    Hilton Waikiki Beach Hotel has named Chef James Aptakin the Head Chef for the hotel food service kitchen and their premier on-property food eatery MAC 24/7.  Chef James will bring his unique and special blend of Southern-Tropical-Pac-Rim cooking.

Activities & Entertainment
The island of Oahu is brimming with fun-filled activities that everyone can enjoy. Visitors to Oahu can explore Hawaii’s special culture and iconic history, or choose from a wide variety of outdoor and indoor activities that are sure to energize the spirit.
•    The Polynesian Cultural Center is erupting in a fervor of activity as it transforms its Hukilau Theater into Hawaii’s newest experience in the form of a volcano. Opening in Dec. 2012, the theater is being completely overhauled with substantial improvements to both the exterior and interior resulting in a new, immersive presentation that will engage viewers’ senses. The biggest upgrade comes on screen as “Kamaaina: Child of the Land,” a stunning large-format film filmed almost entirely on location in Hawaii, explores the Hawaiian people’s aloha and reverence for the islands. This multi-generational storyline springs from a moolelo, a Hawaiian tale of ancestors, the creation of the aina, these islands, and its special meaning in their hearts and identity.
•    The Pearl Harbor Historic Sites and the National Park Service announced three new Pearl Harbor Half Day Tours. These three new tours compliment the full day Passport to
Pearl Harbor Tours. The Half Day Tours include a USS Arizona Memorial audio tour as well as a choice of either the USS Bowfin Submarine tour or a Pacific Aviation Museum tour.
•    After more than six months of anticipation, the menehune have completed their rebuild of the Polynesian Cultural Center’s “Hawaii Village”. The village redesign is reflective of an ahupuaa – a land division used by ancient Hawaiians, usually extending from the uplands to the sea – and includes new activities, architecture and exhibits.
•    After several years of conservation work, Shangri La recently opened the historic “Damascus Room” to the public for the first time. The Damascus Room features luxury trade items from the late Ottoman period acquired by Doris Duke in the early 1950s.
•    Atlantis Navatek Cruises begins its daily “Whale Watch Lunch Cruise” on Dec. 21,    12-2:30 p.m., departing from Aloha Tower Marketplace. With its state-of-the-art double-hulled design, the Navatek I offers Hawaii’s smoothest cruise experience to see humpback whales enjoying the warmth of Oahu’s waters.
•    Wild Side Specialty Tours now offers a “Deluxe Family Cruise”. This eco-tour offers shipboard and swim activities, and inspires a love for the natural world through hands-on, and hands-wet immersion in the oceans wild realm. Join in on an ocean critter snorkel hunt, make friends with wild dolphins, and enter secret worlds on a sea turtle trek.
•    Roberts Hawaii has expanded its shore excursion options for cruise passengers visiting Oahu, and now offers a wide selection of tours at significant savings, including visits to Pearl Harbor’s USS Arizona and Battleship Missouri, Oahu’s scenic North Shore and Honolulu City.
•    Geared toward the active traveler, Bike Hawaii’s “Bike and Volcanic Rainforest Hike” begins with a 2.5 mile one-way hike along the slopes of an ancient volcanic cinder cone known as Puu Ohia. After hiking through the rainforest, hikers can enjoy the 5-mile downhill coast on comfortable cruiser bikes with a stop at the scenic Manoa overlook.
Restaurants, Cuisine & Chefs
Oahu is known for its diverse culture, which is exhibited by the island’s assortment of foods. With wonderful choices and a vibrant array of cuisine options, there’s sure to be a restaurant for everyone.
•    Oahu’s newest craft brewery, Aloha Beer, has officially opened next to Sam Choy’s Breakfast, Lunch and Crab. The new factory is available for brewery tours and also houses the Aloha Beer brewpub. The brewpub is a place where visitors can eat, drink, socialize and listen to live music. Visit the brewpub and try fresh-from-the-tap brews such as:  Aloha Lager, Aloha Red, Aloha Dark, Aloha IPA, Aloha Blonde, Steam Ship Lager and Kiawe Honey Porter.
•    Chinatown’s newest addition to the districts growing culinary scene is Adega Portuguesa, an authentic Portuguese restaurant and bar. Adega Portuguesa is serving up true Portuguese dishes using only the freshest ingredients to ensure that every dish is exceptional. The unique atmosphere and live music at Adega Portuguesa keep this fun and vibrant restaurant full. Adega also hosts various open-mic nights where patrons are invited to delight diners with their musical talent.
•    The Lucky Belly is Chinatown’s newest and trendiest noodle bar created by former Alan Wong’s team members. The menu is an explosion of flavor sure to invigorate your taste buds. Their signature dish and must-try is the Belly Bowl: a bowl of sesame based stock with ramen noodles, pork, bok choy, a boiled egg and even sausage.
•    53 by The Sea is Waikiki’s newest fine dining experience designed around the breathtaking view of Diamond Head. Delight your senses with the flavors of Italian cuisine combined with local ingredients, fresh fish and meats from the hands of Chef Hiroshi Hayakawa. T’s at 53 lounge has a specialty supply of wines and spirits from around the world to create delicious and exquisite drinks.
•    Honolulu’s newest gastropub Pint and Jigger is serving up intriguing high end pub fare and beers from around the world. Pub goers can enjoy great eats such as bacon wrapped strawberries, scotch eggs, and stout cake. With twenty one beers on tap and around forty different bottled beers behind the bar, there’s definitely something for every beer lover.
•    The Royal Hawaiian Center welcomes its newest grab-and-go eatery; the Bikini Beach Café. This new café is dishing out tasty meals that are perfect for beachgoers looking for something on the go. The café is also serving up rainbow shave ice—Hawaii’s classic cool down treat.
•    Hawaii Food Tours is now offering a “North Shore Food Tour” that will delve into the history, lore, and culture of the North Shore while exploring “country” eats and breathtaking sites. The tour will also showcase various farms and plantations and visitors will be able to meet locals that live a farm-to-table lifestyle every day.
•    One of Hawaii’s most celebrated chefs, Roger Dikon, has introduced a new island-focused dinner buffet aboard the Ali`i Kai Catamaran and at the award-winning Magic of Polynesia dinner show in Waikiki.  Dikon, who recently joined Roberts Hawaii as its Executive Chef, was one of the 12 young chefs who founded and developed Hawaiian Regional Cuisine.

Oahu is home to hundreds of fashionable designer stores as well as markets that carry locally made crafts. Visitors are sure to love the shopping experience no matter where they go.
•    Ala Moana Center, the world’s largest outdoor shopping center, welcomed two new merchants – Balenciaga and Teavana. Italian fashion house Balenciaga offers shoppers high-end Italian goods and ready-to-wear fashion inspired by looks from the runway. For shoppers looking for a unique experience Teavana serves as a tea bar and retail shop featuring a variety of fine loose leaf tea and tea-related merchandise.
•    Loro Piana is the latest high fashion shop to call the Royal Hawaiian Center home. Loro Piana is internationally known for their luxurious cashmere, exclusive Italian-made garments and elegant lines for both men and women. Shoppers looking for something new can find chic accessories, fine home furnishings and unique gifts at this high fashion shop.
•    AirBuggy, a Japanese baby boutique, is now open at Waikiki Beach Walk. The Waikiki store is the first location in the U.S. and is fully stocked with cute and hard-to-find baby clothes and products. The store’s main attraction is definitely AirBuggy’s signature line of lightweight, three-wheeled strollers in an array of colors and designs, including the Waikiki exclusive orange or blue Aloha print versions.
•    Tranquility and fashion align at moani yoga in Waikiki. This stylish shop offers lightweight, organic yoga wear perfect for yogis and non-yogis alike. Browse the driftwood inspired store for moani yoga’s locally designed line of organic cotton bras, pants, camisoles and smocked halter maxis. The shop also features designs by Michelle, Blaque Market and Freeloader.
•    Searching for shoes, strapless minis or sunglasses? Then check out Homecoming Boutique on Bethel Street. Filled from wall-to-wall with fashion that could be described as “Hawaiian rock ‘n’ roll” featuring floral print tops and spiked ballerina flats.
•    Colorful, fun and flirty frocks can be found at Florencia Arias. Just a few steps away from Barrio Vintage on Nuuanu Ave, this boutique carries the perfect outfits for lounging, shopping and dining in style.

Festivals & Events
Oahu is home to the largest number of festivals and events in Hawaii. Each year, visitors have the opportunity to connect with the local community and experience renowned events that showcase the island’s rich arts and culture scene, the world’s top amateur and professional sporting competitions and championships, and the many ethnic celebrations that are exclusive to Hawaii.
•    Polynesian Cultural Center’s “Haunted Lagoon: Dreams and Nightmares” returns on Oct. 5. This full-scale production features fearsome characters, brand-new costumes,     state-of-the-art special effects, animatronics and more. Guests cast off on double-hulled canoes and journey through the dark waters of the PCC’s twisting lagoon and navigate the conflicted labyrinth of the Laie Lady’s mind.
•    From Oct. 5-6 and 12-13, the Hawaiian Mission Houses invites the public to “Cemetery Pupu Theatre.” Attracting larger crowds with each production, Hawaiian Mission Houses discovers stories from the lives of prominent Hawaii residents and brings those stories back to life through a dramatic experience with skilled actors.
•    The annual Hawaii Fishing and Seafood Festival, presented by the Pacific Islands Fisheries Group, celebrates Hawaii’s fishing and seafood industry with workshops, demonstrations, games and activities, fresh seafood dishes, and more. The event will take place at the Honolulu Fishing Village at Pier 38 on Oct. 7.
•    The Molokai Hoe has become one of the longest running annual team sporting events in Hawaii, second only to football. The race will take place on Oct.7, and starts at Hale o Lono beach on Molokai and goes through the Kaiwi Channel, ending at Duke Kahanamoku Beach in Waikiki.
•    Learn about the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani’s namesake at a week-long birthday celebration and festival for her royal highness from Oct. 14-20 that includes crafts, lei making, cultural demonstrations, Royal Court Procession, and more. The celebration culminates with the 18th Annual Princess Kaiulani Keiki Hula Festival featuring hula students ages 5-12.
•    Grab your gear and get ready for Ko Olina’s Seventh Annual International Festival of Sports! The event features a triathlon for everyone including a Sprint Triathlon, Three-Person Mini Triathlon Relay, Junior Triathlon, Youth Triathlon, Kids Triathlon, Lagoon Swim Challenge, Two Scoops & Swimsuits 5K and Aquathon. Plus, a health and fitness expo offering participants access to clinics, seminars, exhibits and much more. The event will take place from Oct. 27-28.
•    Family and friends are invited to come down to Discover Kakaako at Ward Centers every second Saturday of the month from 12 -7 p.m. Starting on Nov. 10., this event promises an exploration into the vast offerings of Kakaako’s family activities and nightlife scene. Attendees will be treated to contests where prizes will be up for grabs and various food vendors and trucks will be on hand for everyone to enjoy.
•    The Vans Triple Crown of Surfing returns to the North Shore of Oahu for the men’s series and women’s Roxy Pro at Sunset Beach, Nov. 12 – Dec. 20. Kicking off with the Reef Hawaiian Pro at Haleiwa, the series continues with the Vans World Cup of Surfing and women’s Roxy Pro at Sunset Beach, and lastly the Billabong Pipeline Masters at the famous Banzai Pipeline.
•    Each winter, the world’s best big wave surfers are invited to Waimea Bay on Oahu’s North Shore to compete in the Quiksilver Big Wave Invitational In Memory of Eddie Aikau.
The Eddie can only be held when surf measures at least 20 feet (Hawaiian scale) for a full day. The holding period for the event is between Dec. 1 and the last day in February. When the surf is big enough, thousands flock to watch the likes of Kelly Slater and Bruce Irons compete in this prestigious surfing competition.
•    The XTERRA Trail Run World Championship is an off-road half-marathon that winds through Kualoa Ranch on Oahu’s northeastern shore. Trail runs, kids race, and other family events will also be offered. The event will take place on Dec. 2.
•    The USS Bowfin Submarine Museum and Park will commemorate its 70th anniversary on Dec. 7 with special events, tours and promotions.  Nicknamed the “Pearl Harbor Avenger,” the USS Bowfin was launched into battle on Dec. 7, 1942, one year after the bombing of Pearl Harbor, sinking 44 enemy ships during the course of her nine war patrols.
•    The National Park Service and the U.S. Navy will host a joint memorial ceremony at the Pearl Harbor Visitors Center commemorating the 71st anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor. The ceremony on Dec. 7, from 7:45-9:30 a.m., will include a key note address, missing man flyover, rifle salute, wreath presentations, echo taps, tributes to Pearl Harbor survivors, and boat tours to the USS Arizona Memorial.
•    Thousands of runners from around the world travel to Oahu each year to participate in the Honolulu Marathon. The 26.2-mile scenic course includes spectacular views alongside
world famous Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head. This year the marathon will take place on Dec. 9.
•    The Hawaiian Airlines Diamond Head Classic is an eight-team, 12-game bracket tournament that features some of the nation’s best collegiate men’s basketball teams. The tournament is held at the University of Hawaii’s Stan Sherriff Center Dec. 22, 23 & 25, 2012.
•    Following the University of Hawaii’s move to the Mountain West Conference (MWC), in 2012, the Sheraton Hawaii Bowl will pit a team from the MWC against a team from Conference USA in the annual college football bowl game played at Honolulu’s Aloha Stadium on Christmas Eve.
Holiday Festivals & Events
•    Visit the 14-foot tall and 24-foot wide Santa’s German Gingerbread Village at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani from Nov. 23 – Jan. 2. Executive Chef Ralf Bauer and his team of culinary architects will spend more than 750 hours designing the sweet masterpiece using 225 gallons of icing, 140 pounds of dark chocolate, 50 pounds of white chocolate, and 70 sheets of gingerbread.
•    The Hyatt Regency Waikiki Beach Resort and Spa will host a Lighting Ceremony on Nov. 28 to celebrate the beginning of the holiday season and to present a charitable donation to the Make-A-Wish foundation. This ceremony, which will be open to the public, will commemorate the 30th anniversary of Make-A-Wish in Hawaii. Highlights include a magical moment when the Great Hall will fill up with bubbles – reminiscent of snow – and a special performance from local musicians, who will perform a selection of holiday favorites.
•    The City and County of Honolulu presents the Honolulu City Lights Opening Night. The month-long celebration kicks off on Dec. 1 with the lighting of a 50-foot Christmas tree on the Honolulu Hale lawn, live entertainment and an electric light parade.
•    Fall marks the return of Polynesian Cultural Center’s “Christmas in Polynesia,” a       25-minute canoe ride that winds through a live production of “The Littlest Star”. Elaborate Christmas lights, decorations and musical performances— with actors, animals and props — accentuate the production. Rides will be offered starting at 6:30 p.m. every Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from Dec. 7-15.
•    Santa arrives by outrigger canoe on the beach in front of the Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach on Dec. 8. The 9 a.m. arrival will be followed by complimentary photo taking with Santa in the hotel lobby. Santa returns on Dec. 18 and 19 for a special breakfast. Enjoy a delicious buffet breakfast, picture taking, balloon art, and face painting.

•    Hawaiian Airlines will be adding two new cities to its growing network of destinations. Sapporo will be the fourth Japan destination Hawaiian Airlines has added service to, following Tokyo, Osaka and Fukuoka. Service between Honolulu International Airport and New Chitose Airport on the island of Hokkaido begins on Oct. 30, three times per week. The airlines will be the only carrier providing nonstop service on this route. Flights between Brisbane, Australia, and Honolulu, will start Nov. 27 and will run three times a week. Hawaiian Airlines will be the only U.S. carrier flying to Brisbane increasing the airlines schedule to ten weekly flights between Honolulu and Australia, with daily service already operating from Australia’s largest city, Sydney.
•    On Feb. 7, 2013 Allegiant Airlines will begin service between Honolulu and Mesa, Arizona. The new route will operate three times a week and opens up access to and from Arizona’s third-largest city. Mesa will be the second city in Arizona with direct service to Hawaii.

All information is subject to change without notice.  For more information, please go to, follow OVB’s tweets at, or become a fan of Oahu on Facebook at

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