In April 2023 we took 4 days to visit the beautiful island of Maui and help one of our clients install and plan for an upcoming renovation. Being able to absorb as much of the culture and essence of a space (as well as the practicalities of door widths etc.) creates an exceptional service level. During this whirlwind visit we also stopped in at Ka'anapali Beach Hotel to check on some of our tables and received a wonderfully warm welcome and such rich cultural lesson from the worlds most Hawaiian hotel.
The rooms are themed by ocean (Moana) or land (Aina) depending on which direction the room faces, like the Leho he’e: Hawaiian squid lure, with bone point (pictured left below). Each shadow box in the room contains an authentic Hawaiian pieces of art and tools, created by hand by employees during furloughed times. Building these cocktail tables also helped us keep our doors open during COVID.
The GM of this hotel kept staff employed by having them learn new skills and create art for the hotel (pictured above).
If you are interested in some light reading on the Islands of Hawai'i please click any of the links below -
Kukui Nut Lei is Ka'anapali Beach Hotels gift to guests, each year you come back you receive a white kukui nut giving you a sense of ohana, this is part of their logo and embedded in their ethos throughout. The carving in each headboard represents the kukui nut lei below.
We use the walnut with its sapwood to try to emulate the Koa wood for Polynesian culture that is now endangered. Koa wood is a very special tropical hardwood, it's cultural significance, it represents strength and the warrior spirit. When a piece of a tree was used to an offering (usually fish) was planted in the soil of it's roots as a offering and gratitude for the trees gift.
During the time of King Kamehameha The Great, in the late 1700s, the Koa tree was abundant. And warriors of that time were named Koa; meaning warrior and synonymous with the tree.
Check out this great article about Koa wood at the Koa Wood Ranch.