Throughout our 89 years as Hawai‘i’s airline, we have proudly woven local culture into the operational fabric of our company. Our guests have the unique opportunity to experience our signature Mea Ho‘okipa (I am host) warm hospitality and hear the Hawaiian language – once almost extinct – thrive in our boarding and flight announcements.
In celebration of ‘Ōlelo Hawai‘i (Hawaiian language) Month in February, we were honored and thrilled to unveil a Hawaiian Airlines Culture Resource Center in the heart of our Honolulu headquarters. Spearheaded by our Community Relations team, the center shares Hawai‘i’s fantastically rich history from floor to ceiling.
This spring, employees and their visitors can immerse themselves in educational resources and visual displays that highlight Hawaiian heritage, language, geography and history. They can browse through Native Hawaiian books (for adults and keiki), artwork, lauhala (woven leaf) mats and baskets, handmade instruments, and a showcase of our recent community accolades.
“The culture of these islands has lived on because of the mo‘ōlelo (storytelling) passed down by our ancestors. Our hope for this space is to create more opportunities for those stories to thrive and educate the next generation of storytellers about the incredible past time of our island home,” said Debbie Nakanelua-Richards, director of community relations at Hawaiian Airlines.