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Publisher’s Page: Milestones

A big anniversary calls for a look back and a steady eye forward.


Alyson Helwagen
photo: karen db photography

This year, HONOLULU Magazine is heading into its 131st year. To be the oldest city magazine in the country (if not the world) is a monumental accomplishment in a time when media companies are shrinking, consolidating and oftentimes disappearing altogether. When King David Kalākaua called for the founding of the magazine that was our predecessor, called Paradise of the Pacific, in 1888, the aim of the magazine was to showcase what Hawai‘i had to offer tourists, and attract them to vacation in his growing Island nation.


In 1966, the magazine was renamed HONOLULU, and changed its focus to showcase how local residents live and help them navigate life in their hometown.


In our very first edition, in January 1888, the mission of the publication was clearly articulated (it’s unclear by whom; there was no byline on any of the stories): “The aim in this is to present to the inquiring and traveling public an accurate account of how people live in Hawai‘i nei; what they do—in a business, social and philanthropic way; what are the attractions: times and methods of sightseeing, how to get to various parts of the island …”


We also want to spark your curiosity about new things and make you feel proud to live here.


We still aim to present an accurate account of how people live in Hawai‘i nei—that hasn’t changed. These days, we also want to spark your curiosity about new things and make you feel proud to live here, inspire you to do something to better our community and introduce you to fellow residents who are doing amazing things.


And to start off right in 2018, we are going to build on all of the above by introducing new sections—a home section called Spaces debuts this month, and our calendar section Picks continues to expand online with more guides to events around town—and new online content, plus several new events we will be telling you about in the months to come.


Paradise of the Pacific

The cover of our very first issue in January 1888.
Photo: David Croxford


We love chronicling this city, and what it’s like to live here, and look forward to many more years to come. Help us do that by sharing the reasons you feel #luckywelivehonolulu with us on social media!



Alyson Helwagen



Thoughts about the magazine? Please email me at alysonh@honolulumagazine.com.


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Honolulu Magazine May 2020
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