Friday, January 30, 2009

Friday Hawaii Trivia - The Big Island

It's Aloha Friday - again. Every week when I write a post on a Friday I really can't get over how quickly the week has passed me by. I think it's true that as you get older the days end faster. I better be careful - I may blink and be 50 if I am not careful - ugh!

Friday is now my regular day to post some interesting Hawaii trivia - and today its all about the Big Island, otherwise known as the island of Hawaii. Check your knowledge with this quick Q&A:

1. How old is the Big Island estimated to be?
2. How many days per year does it rain in Hilo?
3. How many coffee farms are in Kailua-Kona?
4. What is considered the world's most active volcano?
5. What is Hawaii's highest free-fall waterfall?

1. It is the youngest in the Hawaiian Island chain at only about one million years old.
2. Approximately 278 days per year.
3. About 650.
4. Kiluea.
5. Waipio's Hiilawe Falls, with a drop of more than 1,000 feet.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

The Countdown to Jimmy's Wedding!

With our vacation fast approaching I am getting super excited! And with the vacation comes Jimmy's wedding, scheduled for February 14, 2009. Ah, Valentine's Day, how romantic. Jimmy and Sammy have decided to get married at Pyramid Rock Beach, which is a pretty cove of sand with a wonderful ocean view, located on the northern end of Kaneohe Marine Corp Base Hawaii. Originally Jimmy had wanted to get married on Lanikai Beach, but it seems that a lot of other people had the same idea. The wedding will be small and intimate, but I still haven't decided on an outfit. Maybe I will get my friend Jordana to give me a few ideas!
Here are some awesome pics of the beach, as well as the happy couple as they prepare for the big day on February 14. We can't wait to see you guys! Aloha!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Days of the Week and Numbers

Most language phrasebooks contain fairly standard words and phrases for use during your vacation, and Hawaiian phrasebooks are no different. I am inclined to wonder whether you would start reciting the numbers 1-10 or the days of the week on your vacation, but you never know when you might need that kind of information. Here are the days and numbers you may want or need to use while in Hawaii while on your well-deserved vacation!

Days of the Week
Monday: akahi
Tuesday: alua
Wednesday: akolu
Thursday: ’ahā
Friday: alima
Saturday: aono
Sunday: lāpule

One: 'Ekahi
Two: 'Elua
Three: 'Ekolu
Four: 'Ehā
Five: 'Elima
Six: 'Eono
Seven: 'Ehiku
Eight: 'Ewalu
Nine: 'Eiwa
Ten: 'Umi

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Disappointing Seattle Travel Show

I had mentioned late last week that I was heading to the Seattle Travel Show over the weekend. Well I did go, but kinda wish I hadn't wasted my Saturday morning. I have been to many travel shows in my time and this one was very ordinary. Let me tell you why:

1. Exhibitors were very limited, covering Hawaii, Washington State, The Caribbean, and a few others. Not a great selection.
2. When I arrived to pick up my FOC ticket, no-one had any idea what I was talking about and it took me nearly 15 minutes to get into the actual show
3. Most of the exhibitors I spoke with were not interested in hearing anything that I had to say. When I mentioned to one exhibitor that I had a blog about Hawaii, he said, "So does that mean you are a travel agent?" No, sir, that means I have a BLOG.
4. Unfortunately, I didn't get the chance to do any networking. All the Hawaiian exhibitors were just handing out packages of paper, and no-one was friendly. I do have some good resources that I can use, but I was hoping to make a few connections.
5. If I had paid $8 to go into that show, I would have asked for my money back.

Overall, a disappointing event, and its back to the drawing board for me for Hawaii networking opportunities - the Seattle Travel Show just didn't cut it.

Friday, January 23, 2009

Friday Hawaii Trivia - Hawaiian Culture

Can you believe it's Friday again? This week has gone so fast thanks to the multiple projects at work that have kept me strapped to my computer for the majority of this week. And it was a four-day week. Only 2 weeks till the Hawaii trip, I am stoked! You know I love Hawaiian culture, so how about a quiz? Good luck!


1. When is the pidgin phrase da kine used?
2. In addition to the British Union Jack, what do the eight red, white and blue stripes represent on the Hawaiian State flag?
3. What does haole mean?
4. What is Honolulu's record low temperature?
5. When were women allowed to join the HPD (Honolulu Police Department)?

1. Whenever you can't think of a word, but the listener knows what you mean.
2. The eight major islands of Hawaii
3. Caucasian.
4. Fifty-three degrees Fahrenheit.
5. 1975.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Hawaiian Presence at the Seattle Travel Show

I have only written one post on my blog about a hotel in Hawaii, but I am heading to the Seattle Travel Show this weekend, and to my great delight there are a number of exhibitors from Hawaii who will be representing tourism in the Islands. When you have lived somewhere, or been a regular visitor you tend to see things through your own lens, and often forget that there is so much more out there! At the Seattle Travel Show, some of the exhibit highlights for me will be:

Hawaiian Airlines - My airline of choice when visiting the Islands, and when travelling from Seattle to Sydney.

Big Island Visitor's Bureau - Although I lived on Oahu and spent most of my time there, my trip to the Big Island was one of the most amazing travel experiences I have had - I have never seen anything like the active volcanoes in my life.

Maui Visitor's Bureau - I have been to Maui a couple of times and enjoyed it very much. However I know there is a lot more to explore (besides Lahaina and the shopping) and I am looking forward to getting more info so I can write more about Maui on my blog.

Oahu Visitor's Bureau - Undoubtedly my favorite Hawaiian Island. I think I know a lot about Oahu and what it has to offer, but I hope I will be pleasantly surprised with what I have been missing....

There are some other great exhibitors who will be at the event, including Norwegian Cruise Line, Paradise Cove Luau, Kona Beach House and Hilton Waikoloa Village. If you live in Seattle and are looking for a weekend activity, head to the Seattle Travel Show - its cold outside but once you visit all the Hawaiian exhibitors, you will feel like you are in paradise. Its on from 10am-5pm, Saturday and Sunday, and tickets for adults are $8.

Doing what I do best - Hanging out at the Ritz Carlton in Maui

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What Hawaiian Food is That?

One of my favorite things in the whole world is food. After working at Sydney Fish Market for a number of years I developed my palate and my cooking cooking skills. Now, I am passionate about healthy, locally grown produce (although I do enjoy the bad things from time to time!). In Hawaii, a lot of produce is grown locally, and being surrounded by water is the perfect setting for fresh seafood. Many ingredients have to be shipped to the Islands as they do not grow there and Hawaii does not have land avilable to grow more crops. However sugar cane, pineapples, papaya and seafood are plentiful. Hawaii also has an amazing selection of 'local' foods, which I wanted to share so that if you are going to Hawaii, and you see these items on the menu you won't be shy to ask for them! All these foods are common in plate lunches and at luaus.

Bento: Japanese Lunch Box
Haupia: Creamy coconut pudding, usually served in squares (a popular luau dessert)
Kalua Pork: Pork slow-cooked in an underground oven. Often served as a pulled kalua pork sandwich
Lilikoi - Passionfruit
Lumpia: The Portuguese version of a spring roll, but spicier, doughier and deep fried
Poi: The root of the taro pounded into a starchy paste; this is a staple of the Hawaiian diet, however I have not tried it as I heard it is rather unpleasant
Poke: Cubed raw fish, seasoned with onions, soy and seaweed (I have a great poke recipe from Sam Choy on my blog)
Ponzu: A soy and citrus flavored dipping sauce popular with regional cuisine chefs
Shave Ice: The Hawaiian version of a Snow Cone

A Picture of Poi - it doesn't look overly inviting

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Hawaiian Street Names Preserve the Hawaiian Language

One of the ways that Hawaii attempts to preserve the Hawaiian language and culture is through naming of streets. Since 1954, city law has established four criteria for naming streets:

1. The Hawaiian names, words or phrases must be 'appropriate' to cultural, scenic, and topographic features
2. There must be no duplication in spelling, or similarity in sound from existing street names
3. Street names can not exceed 18 characters (in order to fit on the street sign)
4. Street names must be spelled with diacritical markings

In light of the information above, apparently Oahu now has 138 streets with the same Hawaiian name in two or more communities! There are also 33 duplicate Hawaiian street names honoring people or topographic sites.

Another interesting fact is that many streets carry the same name in different languages, for example, in Mānoa, there is Rainbow Drive and Anuene Street - each is a translation of the other!

If you want to ever live in Hawaii, I would suggest studying up on the street names; after living there myself I still have to spell the signs out when I see them to make sure I am reading them correctly, but also to confirm that I am on the correct street. It gets confusing!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Entertainment Facts About Hawaii

I feel terribly slack for not doing a blog post in nearly a week. If I told you about the week I have had you wouldn't believe me! However I am involved with a fun project at work for Kiddie Hawk Air Academy, and they are hosting their 6th Annual Living Legends of Aviation Ceremony at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Los Angeles on Thursday night. There will be some cool celebrities there such as Sir Richard Branson, Harrison Ford and Morgan Freeman, just to name a few. Without going into too much detail, perhaps you can imagine the week I have had given the info above, and that this project is in addition to the full time job I already have....say no more....

Given that I have been working in the celebrity circles last week and this week, I thought it might be nice to write about some entertainment trivia related to Hawaii. If you are like me and read People, US Weekly, Life & Style etc on a regular basis you would know that Hawaii is the playground for many celebrities and many have homes in the Islands as well. Test out your knowledge on these fun bits of trivia!

1. What were the first two Hollywood movies filmed on location in Hawaii in 1913?
2. What Hollywood star, while vacationing at the Moana Hotel in 1917, frequently entertained children along Waikiki Beach?
3. How many Academy Award nominations did the film Hawaii receive?
4. What were the ticket prices when Elvis Presley played the Honolulu Stadium in 1957?
5. Kauai doubled as a remote island inhabited by shipwrecked schoolboys in what 1989 remake of William Golding's novel?

1. Hawaiian Love and The Shark God
2. Charlie Chaplin
3. Seven
4. $1.50 and $3.50
5. Lord of the Flies

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Hawaiian Word For Love?

I am NOT feeling the love today - from anyone! With the economy in disarray, and everyone always panicked and on their toes its no wonder that all the love is disappearing. What always brings me back to love is Hawaii. I met my husband there and was married there, I love the Hawaiian people, I love the Hawaiian lifestyle, the list of Hawaiian love goes on. So as I continue on my culture path on this blog, I thought I would share the Hawaiian word for love, and some other romantic words and phrases. This will give you enough time to practice for Valentine's Day so you can surprise your special someone!

Aloha - Love
Nani - Beautiful/Beauty
Lani - Heaven
Honi - Kiss
Hauʻoli — Happiness
Ipo — Sweetheart or Lover

Aloha Au Ia 'Oe - I Love You
E Hoomau Maua Kealoha - May Our Love Last Forever
E Ku'u Aloha - My Love
Aloha Nui Loa - Very Much Love

Monday, January 12, 2009

Some Quick Hawaiian Touristy Words You Need!

Ok, so you are heading to Hawaii for vacation and you want to immerse yourself and do as the locals do right? Well, you can't do that unless you get a few phrases under your belt. Whenever I travel to foreign countries I always buy a small phrasebook/guidebook and try to learn at least a few words and phrases so that I could get by in an emergency. Now don't worry, nearly everyone in Hawaii speaks English, but its nice to have a few words and phrases in the back of your mind in case you do meet a cool Hawaiian person who wants to 'talk story' and communicate with you! Here are some of the basics - more to follow tomorrow, plus some tips on pronunciation, as depending on how you say the Hawaiian word - you could really be saying something completely different!

Hello/Goodbye: aloha

Good Morning: aloha kakahiaka

Good Evening/Night: aloha ahiahi

Thank You: mahalo

Thank You Very Much: mahalo a nui loa

Please: ke 'olu 'olu

How Are You?: pehea 'oe

Come In: e komo mai

See You Later: a hui hou

Friday, January 9, 2009

Fun Friday Hawaii Trivia

By the end of the week, or by Aloha Friday, I am ready to take a break and relax. With the work I do I find that my mind is sometimes all but gone, so I try to chill out by doing things that are not too taxing on the brain. However I always like a challenge - so how about some fun Friday Hawaii trivia? Check out these questions about Oahu - and see if you know as much about the Island as you think! Answers at the bottom of the post.
1. What is Oahu's nickname?
2. What is the official color of Oahu?
3. What does Honolulu mean?
4. The reef runway at Honolulu International Airport was designed for what emergency?
5. How many soldiers are buried in Punchbowl?
6. What made the Aloha Tower so unique when it opened in 1921?
7. How did Beretania Street get its name?
8. What is Magic Island?
9. How many full time students enrolled in the University of Hawaii when it first opened in 1908?
10. How many miles of beach are located in Waikiki?

Answers - good luck!
1. The gathering place
2. Golden orange
3. Sheltered bay
4. An alternate landing for space shuttles
5. More than 25,000
6. It was the tallest building in Hawaii, standing 10 stories high
7. It was adapted from native Hawaiians attempting to pronounce 'Brittania'
8. A 43-acre man-made peninsula jutting out from Ala Moana Beach Park
9. 5, with 12 teachers
10. 1.4 miles

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Hawaiian Words, Phrases, Language - more!

I have been watching what stories have been popular on my blog, and what seems to be getting the most traction is the posts about Hawaiian words, slang, street names, and other culturally related posts. So in an effort to expand on this I am planning to do a number of posts in the next few months that focus specifically on these things, as I want to please my readers and I want them to come back and keep reading! If you have been to my blog before and are looking for more information about these subjects, I would love to hear from you. Please email me if there is a word in Hawaiian you are looking for, or a street name, or anything really, and I will post it on my blog. I also started listening to a Hawaiian language immersion CD today, so my Hawaiian language skills and knowledge are on the rise. Aloha `oe , a hui hou kakou (that means goodbye, until we meet again)....

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Watermark Publishing - Hawaii

I recently discovered this cool site - Le Chic - Daily finds for life and style in Hawaii. This website reminds me of the Daily Candy emails I get delivered to my inbox every day - but the site is all things Hawaiian! Perfect! Today, Le Chic did a feature on a new Hawaiian cookbook release, through Watermark Publishing, which is a homegrown Hawai´i publisher specializing in books about the 50th State. I went to the Watermark Publishing site and was thrilled to find endless books, all about Hawaii. Right now I spend a lot of time at the local library near my house reading books on Hawaii and trying to get the latest and greatest info, especially from the travel guides as they are updated every year. I have wanted to buy some Hawaii books but wasn't sure what the best ones were to purchase. Now I know where to go to get the best selection of local Hawaiian books, at a good price. Check out their website for the complete selection.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Alfred Shaheen, maker of aloha shirts, dies at 86

I just read a sad article about the death of Alfred Shaheen, who passed away in Los Angeles on December 22, 2008. Alfred Shaheen was the most creative and prolific Hawaiian manufacturer in the heyday of post-WWII fashion. He’s credited with advances in manufacturing aloha shirts and raising the garments to the level of high fashion with artistic prints, high-grade materials and quality construction. He also designed the shirt Elvis wore on the cover of the “Blue Hawaii” soundtrack. Shaheen was 86 when be passed. You can read more about this remarkable man and his contribution to Hawaii here. He will be missed. Aloha.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Sea Life Park

Sea Life Park, Makapuu Beach

One of my top five favorite movies would have to be 50 First Dates, with Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore. I saw this movie not long before I fell in love with Hawaii and the beautiful landscape. In the move, Sandler works at Sea Life Park as an animal trainer. In all my visits and even when I lived in Hawaii, I never went to Sea Life Park. What was I thinking? Not only are the animals super cute, but the view from the site is simply stunning.

Sea Life Park, located at Makapuu Beach is home to a variety of marine mammals such as fish, sharks, dolphins and penguins, and many of these animals have been injured in the wild and have been rescued and rehabilitated. They have many activities for both kids and adults, including the chance to swim with dolphins.

The park is open daily from 10.30am-5pm and costs US$29 for adults and US$19 for kids. You can rent a car of catch The Bus from Waikiki, its about 20 minutes away. I have Sea Life Park on my itinerary for February - can't wait!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Ko'Olina Lagoons

If you are looking for an alternative to Waikiki Beach, look no further than Ko'Olina Lagoons. Located in the Ko'Olina Resort Area, these four man-made lagoons are perfect for swimming at any time of the year. Each lagoon has a different name: Kolola, Hanu, Nai'a, and Ulua. You will need to rent a car or catch The Bus to get there, but the 20 mile drive west of Waikiki is worth the trip. Every time I have been there, the lagoons have been almost isolated; very different to the crazy hustle and bustle always present at Waikiki Beach. The lagoons make a great place for a picnic, perfect for families, with grass areas surrounding the lagoons and plenty of shade to relax. Two things to be careful of: slippery rocks that separate the four lagoons, and the current - it can be strong enough to suck you out to sea depending on the weather conditions.

If you prefer to avoid Waikiki completely, and you have a Timeshare, you can stay at the Mariott Ko'Olina Beach Club, which is in walking distance of the lagoons.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Mai Tai Anyone?

I am detoxing from alcohol for the month of January, and 3 days in its proving to be difficult! I have been having a few drinks over the Christmas period while on vacation, and it has caught up with me on the scales. So one month alcohol free should be plenty before I head to Hawaii and enjoy myself, more often than not at the Barefoot Bar at the Hale Koa Hotel. One of my favorite drinks while in Hawaii is the Mai Tai. "Maita'i" is the Tahitian word for good - and good is the operative word for this delicious beverage.

Here is a Mai Tai recipe you can try at home, courtesy of Les Hong, Chuck's Original Steak House.

1.5 ounces sweet and sour mix
1.5 ounces light rum
.75 ounce orange curacao
.5 ounce falernum or orjeat syrup
1 ounce dark rum or Demerara dark rum
Garnishes: half of a fresh lime, pineapple

Pour first 4 ingredients over crushed ice; stir.
Top with the dark rum, garnish and serve.
Makes 1 serving.

If anyone has a recipe for a Mai Tai that they would like to share, please send to me at

Friday, January 2, 2009

Maui Babe Tanning Supplies

This morning I woke up to snow again in Seattle. With winter only just beginning it made me realize that I need to get my tan ready for my trip to Hawaii, and its not going to happen by going out in the backyard with my bikini on! I need to speed up the process, with help from my friends at the tanning salon, and Maui Babe Browning Lotion.

This amazing product is not a self tanner, but it accelerates the sun triggered tanning processes in your skin, allowing you to tan faster and keep it. The lotion is suitable for all skin types and can even be used with sunscreen, although this is not recommended in the tanning salons. The Browning Lotion is made from an old secret family formula, mixed from natural Hawaiian ingredients, including aloe, which is used by Hawaiians to heal burns of all types.

Maui Babe has a number of different products you can try, including hand and body lotion, and their newest product is their Tanning Salon Formula - perfect for those of us who see the tanning salon more than the beach. I will be sure to pick some of this product up in February. You can buy all their products on their website, or at ABC Stores throughout Hawaii. Happy tanning!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Pro Bowl Leaving Hawaii After 2009

I had written a post not so long ago about the 2009 Pro Bowl, and had mentioned that it was undecided where the 2010 Pro Bowl would be held. Well, it's now confirmed that Hawaii will no longer be the host; in fact in 2010 the Pro Bowl game will be played the week before the Super Bowl in Miami, Florida. This is a big disappointment to those who attend the Pro Bowl in Hawaii every year, not to mention the players who get to take a break in the Islands. Another cause for concern is the local economy; In 2007 the Pro Bowl attracted 25,000 visitors, who spent approximately $28 million during their stay, according to the Hawaiian Tourism Authority. In an unstable economy that's a lot of money to be sent somewhere else. However, the move to Miami for the Pro Bowl is not permanent, and let's hope that it makes its way back to Hawaii for 2011.

If you are heading to Hawaii for the Pro Bowl this February but still haven't purchased your tickets, click here.