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There's so much to learn about this tropical paradise we call Hawai'i. Start your journey today by reading more about what makes this place so special.

Kailani Tours’ Chris Paterson Talks Lava Tubes, Steam Vents and Waterfalls

Posted in: Big Island 2021, People, Things to Do

Some businesses are started when someone sees a void in the market. Such was the case with Kailani Tours’ Chris Paterson.  “ I had worked as a Mauna Kea tour guide, and then as a concierge at a five-star resort,” says Paterson. “I had trouble recommending tour companies to our guests. Most were large bus operators who sold on price rather than service. I saw an opportunity to create a five-star resort tour experience.”  Kailani Tours was borne out of Paterson’s mission to “become the best, most personalized tour company ... Read More

Checking in With Alison “Bo” Tanaka of Tanaka of Tokyo

Posted in: Food & Drink, People

I last talked to Alison “Bo” Tanaka in early 2020 when I interviewed her for the story, “A Night Out At Tanaka of Tokyo” that was published in our This Week Oahu magazine and on this website:   https://www.thisweekhawaii.com/articles/160/night-out-tanaka-tokyo/  At the time, the corporate general manager was excited about their new Ohana Waikiki East by Outrigger restaurant, their third in Waikiki. In hindsight, a quote from that story seems like good planning now: “We’re very proud of our new Ohana East location,” she said then. “It’s the only location that has ... Read More

Big Island Real Estate Market: Byron Matthews Helps Visitors Find Paradise One Home at a Time

Posted in: Big Island 2021, People

Byron Matthews has been a Realtor on the Big Island for 13 years, and has never seen a market like this one. “Prices have risen 10-20% just in the last quarter on the East side of the island,” he says. “My listings are snapped up as soon as they go on the market.” I ask Matthews why. “I think it has a lot to do with Covid. More than half my buyers are coming from off the island right now. Many are coming from Oahu, as well as Washington, Oregon ... Read More

Day Trippin' on the North Shore

Posted in: Environment, Food & Drink, People, Shopping, Things to Do

  The Perfect Time to Visit! The world-famous North Shore of Oahu, known for its huge winter swells, iconic surfing beaches and laid-back culture, had an “admission price” for visitors in the form of overcrowding pre-Covid-19.  As you read this story now, you are in the fortunate position to be visiting our island at a time where the North Shore can be experienced in a way that turns back time by fifty years.    “While it hasn’t been good for our local economy, the slower pace on the North Shore is ... Read More

Welcome Back, We Missed You!

Posted in: People, Things to Do

Since March 26, when all the islands of Hawai’i shut down to non-essential travel, we’ve missed you, our guests. A lot has changed since we last hosted visitors to our islands.  Like the rest of the world, we’ve battled the Covid-19 pandemic with mixed results. The initial shutdown was successful in keeping the case counts low, but the economic impact was more devastating than any other state in the U.S.  Hawai’i relies heavily on tourism. Thousands of people were suddenly unemployed when hotels, tours, activities, restaurants and bars were all ... Read More

Traveling to the Big Island during Covid: Why Now Through May is the Best Time to Go!

Posted in: Environment, People, Things to Do

There are so many questions surrounding travel right now. Is it safe to travel? How hard is it to deal with all the safety and testing requirements? Will it be worth it when I get to the destination? The answers are: -We can’t provide that answer. That’s your call. However, we will tell you that when you get to Hawaii Island (Big Island) you’ll be in a place that has an extraordinarily low Covid-19 case count relative to the rest of the United States. In the two days prior to ... Read More

Traveling to Hawaii During Covid: Now Through May is the Time!

Posted in: Environment, People, Things to Do

Living in Hawaii watching the news of massive winter storms, severe cold and power outages across the country, I have a confession to make: we’ve been feeling the cold here too. That’s because the temperatures have been dropping into the 60’s at night (brrrr…) and residents are seen in the morning wearing their winter jackets, sweaters and closed toed shoes. Of course, by late morning we’re back to our usual mid to high 70’s and beach life returns to normal. If you’re reading this from a place with sub-freezing weather ... Read More

Maui Activities Update: Boss Frog’s Calypso and Malolo Offering Safe (and amazing!) Ocean Adventures

Posted in: People, Things to Do

Opening in 1989 as a small shop at Anchor Square, Lahaina, Boss Frog’s has grown into Hawaii’s leading full-service rental business, with shops on Maui, Kauai, and the Big Island.  “I came to Maui on our first catamaran, the Frogman, from Santa Barbara in 1987,” says owner Phil Kasper. “My son Chris and I lived in a garage in Lahaina. I worked on the Frogman during the day. At night, I waited tables.” From these humble beginnings came not only multiple stores on Maui, Kauai and the Big Island, but ... Read More

Battleship Missouri Memorial Safely Welcomes Back Visitors to The Mighty Mo

Posted in: Culture & History, People, Things to Do

“Of Silhouettes and Ash: The Atomic Bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki” exhibit available through February 2021 The Battleship Missouri Memorial is pleased to welcome back visitors to the Mighty Mo beginning December 16, 2020, while implementing Center for Disease Control (CDC) health guidelines for the safety of employees and guests.  Due to Hawaii state COVID restrictions, static tours will be offered at this time. The WWII Exhibit, Crew’s Room Exhibit and CEC will be closed until further notice. During this initial reopening phase, the Battleship Missouri Memorial will be open ... Read More

More Hawai‘i Themed Virtual Activities to do While Social Distancing

Posted in: Culture & History, Environment, Events, People, The Arts, Things to Do

Over the last couple of weeks, we’ve written about activities you can do while you’re stuck at home #socialdistancing, from the educational to the entertaining, and other unique virtual experiences. Now, we’ve got even more for you to check out while staying in, including aquarium visits, walking tours and music playlists! Though they're temporarily closed to the public, the Waikīkī Aquarium still has experiences to share online Waikīkī Aquarium, long known as a pillar of education, conservation and just inspiring awe and wonder, still continues its mission despite not being physically open ... Read More

Refuge at Sea Life Park­­­­­­—­­­­­­­­The Amazing Story of Niblet and Brawler

Posted in: Environment, People

By Kent Coules, Publisher Sea Life Park in Waimanalo has a long history of rehabilitating animals, but the rescue of two California sea lions, Niblet and Brawler, tested the expertise of marine mammal professionals from the West Coast to Hawai‘i. “We had to work with multiple agencies to get Niblet and Brawler here safely,” says Sea Life Park Curator Jeff Pawloski. “The regulations and logistics we had to negotiate were tough, but Niblet and Brawler arrived here safely on January 9.” Brawler and Niblet (pictured left to right) shortly after arrival ... Read More

Sky Riding—How Richard Schuman’s Magnum Helicopters Became a TV Star

Posted in: People, Things to Do

The Hawai‘i helicopter tour business has grown over the years, and there are several reputable companies to choose from on each island. But on O‘ahu, there’s only one helicopter to fly if you want to feel like a TV star. “Well, there’s actually four,” corrects Richard Schuman, owner of Magnum Helicopters and Makani Kai Airlines. “Our guests get to fly in the same helicopters they see on ‘Magnum P.I.’ and ‘Hawaii Five-O’ each week—doors on and doors off.” Does Stephen Hill, who plays Vietnam veteran and helicopter pilot Theodore “T.C.” ... Read More

It’s a Boat. It’s a Sub. It’s a ‘SemiSub’! Talking Story with CEO Curtiss Jackson

Posted in: People, Things to Do

By Kent Coules, Publisher The SemiSub One is a brand new, five-star, 149-seat semi-submersible watercraft that opened its galleys to the public on O‘ahu in November 2019. The vessel is the first of its kind in the world and has garnered major buzz both locally and worldwide for the unique experience it provides lucky guests. “The SemiSub One prototype has been in development for more than a decade,” says Founder and CEO Curtiss Jackson, “and has undergone rigorous scrutiny on its road to sailing openly in Hawaiian waters.” The SemiSub ... Read More

Sunshine Helicopters: Talking Story with Founder Ross Scott

Posted in: People, Things to Do

By Kent Coules, Publisher “We had a great life; we rented a little house on the beach and owned a sailboat charter business. We were good. And then my son got accepted into Chapman College in California.” Chapman College can take partial credit for starting one of the most successful air tour companies in Hawai‘i, Sunshine Helicopters. Except that the founder didn’t attend the school—he just paid for it. “I was in good shape financially, except for the $28,000 a year I was going to have to come up with. ... Read More

A Light in the Darkness—Local Institutions Stepping Up and Doing Good

Posted in: People

We’ve been reading a lot of bad news these days. It’s true, though, that when times are tough is when you’ll often see people at their best. The same applies to businesses who will often use their resources to help out others who need a hand. Ko‘olau Distillery CEO and partner Eric Dill, distilling alcohol for hand sanitizer [Image Ko‘olau Distillery] Normally in the business of producing fine spirits that can be found in restaurants, bars and grocery stores, Maui-based Hawaii Sea Spirits and Ko‘olau Distillery on O‘ahu's Windward side ... Read More

VIBE Bar Maui: From Vision Board to Reality

Posted in: Food & Drink, People

Brandon and Myline Dahle had it all. They married young and started a family. Their children were high school Valedictorians and graduated from Stanford and UC Berkeley respectively. They lived in a big house in Vegas, drove luxury cars and had a brand new RV resplendent with jet skis in the driveway. Myline. and Brandon Dahle “We had started writing annual goals on our vision board from the time the kids were in fourth or fifth grade,” explains Brandon. One unaccomplished goal on their board was to own and manage ... Read More

Jumping in with Dive Oahu’s Brian Benton

Posted in: People, Things to Do

By Kent Coules, Publisher “We started as a ‘dive club,’” says the Southern California native who first came to Hawai‘i as a U.S. Marine in the early 80’s. “It started as a couple of friends, then a few more type thing on the weekend. I’d tow my first boat (a 25-foot, 10-passenger Radon) from ramp to ramp, and people would meet me there.” At the time the dive club started in 1995, Benton was a full-time dive instructor at Tropical Ocean Sports in Kane‘ohe Bay. He was responsible for as ... Read More

Going Deep with Maui Divers Jewelry’s Cole Slater

Posted in: Environment, People, Shopping, Things to Do

By Kent Coules, Publisher Most successful jewelry companies don’t start out as a dive shop. But this is Hawai‘i, where unusual starts to local businesses are commonplace. With that in mind... Backstroke to 1958 when master divers Jack Ackerman and Larry Wembley took guests deep-sea diving off Lahaina, Maui. On that day, more than 200 feet below the surface, they came across something mysterious and never before seen—black coral. “Black coral is only found in waters between 150-300 feet deep off Maui,” says Cole Slater, executive vice president for Maui ... Read More

A Night Out at Tanaka of Tokyo

Posted in: Food & Drink, People

  Alison “Bo” Tanaka grew up at Tanaka of Tokyo. Literally. “One of my fondest early memories was going to the office at King’s Village with my dad,” she says. “I loved that. Today, I meet him in the office every Monday and we review the week and talk strategy.” Apparently that strategy has been extremely successful. Tanaka of Tokyo is consistently the top-rated teppanyaki restaurant in the state. “We have been in Waikīkī for 41 years,” says Bo. “Our goal was to have a restaurant within walking distance of ... Read More

The Boss Frog of Maui: The Story of Founder Phil Kasper

Posted in: People, Things to Do

A lot of people are called “boss” but only Phil Kasper has the distinction of being the “Boss Frog” of Maui. Kasper is the Founder and Owner of Boss Frog’s, with stores on Maui, Kaua‘i and the Big Island, and operator of the country’s finest snorkel boat, the Calypso. Over lunch at Mala Ocean Tavern, Kasper explains that his story isn’t one of overnight success. “Everything happened incrementally,” he tells me. “I came here on my boat in 1987,” his first catamaran, the Frog Man. “There was never a business ... Read More

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