Hawaiian Arts & Culture: The Expression of Aloha
The diverse culture of Hawaii is expressed in (among other things) language, music, art, theater, dance, film, cuisine and a multitude of festivals. At the core of each is the spirit of aloha, in the fluid arc of a hula dancer’s hands or in the soft rhythm of a slack-key guitar. The "Aloha Spirit" is the coordination of mind and heart within each person. It brings each person to the self. Each person must think and emote good feelings to others. In the contemplation and presence of life force.
For attendees from around the world, Hawaii’s history offers a wealth of inspiration:
Learning that Hawaii’s discovery by Polynesians occurred following a 2,000-mile oceanic canoe journey makes what may have seemed impossible suddenly achievable
Discovering that literal meaning of aloha is “the presence of breath” brings attendees into the moment like never before
And the powerful stories of how, in 1810, King Kamehameha I brought the islands together under one unified kingdom inspire ambition, achievement and new heights in leadership.
Visitors to the islands find Hawaiian culture and history fascinating, stimulating and simply moving — one more reason Hawaii is not your typical seaside meetings destination.
Few destinations have the kind of cultural authenticity that defines Hawaii, and planners can easily incorporate hallmarks of traditional Hawaiian life into their programs.
It begins with the offering of the lei as a symbol of welcome and continues with ceremonial luau gatherings, meals prepared in a traditional imu (underground oven) and lessons in the art of storytelling through hula dance.
Every island holds opportunities for historic exploration. To name just a few:
On the island of Hawaii, Hawaii’s Volcanoes National Park is home to more than 23,000 petroglyph images carved into the lava rock
Visiting a thousand-year-old fish pond on Kauai regales with legends of how the Menehune, a mythical population of tiny people, built it in a single night
On Maui, the city of Lahaina’s whaling past is on spectacular display at a circa-1901 inn, the U.S. Seaman’s Hospital and a bygone prison — some of the 62 historic sites on self-guided walking trail.
Additionally, many of Hawaii’s museums and historic institutions host unforgettable offsite events. Attendees can dine at Iolani Palace, the only official state royal residence in the United States, mix and mingle amid Hawaiian artifacts at the Bishop Museum and experience Pearl Harbor with a private event at the Battleship Missouri Memorial, Pacific Aviation Museum, or USS Bowfin submarine, all of which are located on the island of Oahu.
Learn more about the many additional ways Hawaii can help lift attendance and build positive experiences.