Live Well for Less

Want to beat the high cost of living in the Islands? Move to Minneapolis. Barring that, you can read this story, which has ideas on how to stretch your dollar.


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First Date

The Listening Party at the Hanohano Room, $10
Show your date you know what’s hip in Honolulu and save yourself a few bucks, too, thanks to the no-cover policy (and free valet parking) at this weekly Wednesday event. The two of you can sip $5 martinis and discover together what an “urban jazz-electronica dance band” sounds like when DeShannon Higa and his band take the stage. Sheraton Waikiki, 2255 Kalakaua Ave.

photo by Olivier Koning

Hanohano Room

Dinner at Mac 24-7, $40

With the large portions at this Hilton Waikiki Prince Kuhio restaurant, the two of you can split a salad, an entree and a dessert—and still leave with a doggie bag. Try the tomato-Maui onion salad with creamy Maytag blue cheese ($9), the lobster pot pie ($25) and classic carrot cake with cream cheese buttercream ($6). The venue itself—with its space-age interior (and what about those waiters, are they supposed to be scientists or Shaolin monks?)—will give you plenty to talk about. Free valet parking with validation. 2500 Kuhio Ave., 921-5506.

Explore the Waikiki Beach Walk, $0
The postprandial promenade gives you the perfect opportunity to walk off a few calories and wind down what’s hopefully the first, of many, wallet-friendly dates together.



Girls’ Day Out

Mani-Pedi at the Honolulu Nail Bar, $50
There’s always a good excuse to play hooky with your best gal pals—a bad breakup, a visit from an out-of-town friend or, our favorite, “It’s Thursday!” Stop in at the Honolulu Nail Bar, a clean, comfortable salon that caters to small groups. In addition to a professional manicure ($20) and pedicure ($30), the shop will also provide a complimentary glass of wine. Aloha Tower, 523-3456.

Lunch at Chai’s Island Bistro, $30
It’s a weekday, and that means this Hale Aina Award-winning restaurant is open for lunch, when entrees—such as fresh mahimahi with red curry sauce and grilled beef tenderloin—are priced about $10 less than the dinner menu. Save room for the decadent chocolate pyramid dessert ($8), rich enough for three or four people to enjoy. Aloha Tower, 585-0011.

photo by Olivier Koning

Movie at Restaurant Row, 50¢
Finally see that sappy Kate Hudson flick your husband refused to watch at the Restaurant Row Theatres, which charges moviegoers only $1 (50 cents for matinees) to watch second-run films. Restaurant Row, 545-8365.

Wine at the Honolulu Design Center, $25
From 4:30 to 7:30 p.m. every Thursday, it’s Ladies’ Night at The Honolulu Design Center’s Amuse wine bar. Purchase a $25 Amuse debit card for the automated, self-service wine bar, and get an extra $25 credit. 1250 Kapiolani Blvd., 956-1250.

Guys’ Day Out

Breakfast at Boots & Kimo’s Homestyle Kitchen, $11.50
Call up the boys early, and make sure they’re on time for breakfast at Boots & Kimo’s Homestyle Kitchen, a Kailua institution where customers don’t mind waiting a half-hour for tables. The omelets are good, but you know what you’re really there for—an order of fluffy pancakes submersed in its famous macadamia-nut sauce ($6.75 for two). Order a side of Portuguese sausage ($4.75). You’ll need the protein. 131 Hekili St., 263-7929.

photo by Alex Viarnes

Work (and Chill) Out at Kailua Beach, $0
What fancy equipment? All you and the guys need are a volleyball or Frisbee to get some serious cardio at Kailua Beach. Cool off with a quick afternoon swim.

Lunch at Zia’s Caffe, $10
Head over to Zia’s, with its enticing menu of sandwiches and pastas. Have some delicious bruschetta ($5.95) and the hearty penne pasta pesto bake ($9.95), with layers of penne pasta, four kinds of pesto and a creamy Alfredo sauce—you know, the kind of thing the wife would never let you eat. 201 Hamakua Drive, 262-7168.

A Beer at Tiare’s Sports Bar & Grill, $6.50
You’re just in time for happy hour at Tiare’s, which runs from 2 to 7 p.m. daily. Settle in for a leisurely game of darts or catch the tail-end of the game, while nursing a couple of ice-cold Heinekens ($3.25 each). Stick around long enough, and you may see live music from Kapena or another one of the bar’s regular acts. 120 Hekili St., 230-8911.

Cheap Booze

Free Wine Tastings
You’re bound to find something you love, so wine tastings are rarely truly “free.” Still, it won’t cost you a penny to sample some offerings and pick up a few ideas.

- HASR Wine Co. (31 N. Pauahi St., 535-9463): 5 to 7 p.m., Tuesday and Friday.
- The People’s Wine Shop (1136 S. King St., 593-7887): 5 to 8 p.m., Thursday and Friday.
- Simply Grape (Davies Pacific Center, 841 Bishop St., 447-9000): 4 to 7 p.m., Wednesday and First Friday.
- SWAM (Shiroma’s Wine and More) (Waimalu Plaza, 98-1277 Kaahumanu, 487-7926) 5 to 8 p.m., Thursday.
- Wine Stop (1809 South King St., Honolulu, 946-3707): 1 p.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday.

Happy Hours
A listing of some of Honolulu’s best pau hana spots.

- Bar 35 (35 N. Hotel St., 537-3535): 4 to 8 p.m., Monday through Friday, all 12-ounce bottles of beer are $3.50.
- Indigo Eurasian Cuisine and Restaurant (1121 Nuuanu Ave., 521-2900): 4 to 7 p.m., Tuesday through Friday, $3.50 martinis.
- Kincaid’s (Ward Warehouse, 591-2005): 4 to 7 p.m. daily, half-price pupu and $2.99 beer, wine and mojitos.
- Ocean Club (Restaurant Row, 531-8444): 4:30 to 8 p.m., daily except Saturday, half-priced pupu. Drinks specials vary.
- Panya Bistro: 4 to 6 p.m., daily fresh-juice martini and cocktail specials and discounted pupu.

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