5 Reasons You Should Go to the 2018 Hale ‘Aina Awards

Tickets are still available to this year’s gala on Sept. 17—but hurry!
This year’s Hale ‘Aina Awards gala will feature dishes from Hawai‘i’s hottest chefs all in one place. That’s just one reason you need to buy your tickets now!
Photo: Tien Enga


If you’re still on the fence about buying tickets to the 2018 Hale ‘Aina Awards gala this Sunday at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, here are five reasons why you should. Now.


1. Try Food From Hawai‘i’s Hottest Restaurants

Budnamujip is serving its popular wooeung gui, left; Agu Ramen Bistro will have its tomato ramen.
Photos: Courtesy of Budnamujip and Craig Bixel


Consider your ticket a passport to cuisines of the world. (This year’s event is themed Destination Delicious, after all.) Feast on small plates from 13 of the island’s award-winning restaurants. On the menu will be ‘ahi tartare with house-made harissa (Tiki’s Grill & Bar), chilled cappellini pasta with Moloka‘i ama ebi and caviar (Arancino at the Kāhala), wooeung gui and pumpkin salad (Budnamujip), dry vegan pho (The Pig & The Lady), charcoal-grilled duck and shishito peppers (Búho Cocina y Cantina) and tacos with smoked tako and mac-nut Romesco (Beachhouse at the Moana). (See the entire menu here.) You might even get served by the chefs themselves.


2. It’s a Great Reason to Dress Up

Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino


It’s a gala! That means you can’t really be overdressed. This is the time to bust out those statement necklaces, bold kaftans and stylish wedges. (Ditch the stilettos—the gala is held on grass!) Need some inspiration? Our fashion team put together three looks appropriate for this fancy fête here.


3. Live Entertainment Under the Stars

There’s nothing better than listening to live music on the lawn of the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, just as the last rays of light color the skies over Waikīkī in sunset hues. The evening lineup features Bobby Moderow, one of the original members of the Nā Hōkū Hanohano Award-winning group Maunalua; ‘ukulele player and vocalist Micah Ganiron; and the jazzy Hot Club of Hulaville.


4. Relax at the Royal

Photo: Courtesy of The Royal Hawaiian Hotel


Open in 1927, the historic Pink Palace of the Pacific is the second-oldest hotel in Waikīkī behind the Moana Surfrider. It sits on 14 acres of prime, oceanfront land with panoramic views of Diamond Head and the Pacific Ocean. The awards gala will be held on the lawn of this Spanish-Moorish-style hotel, with dozens of spots for selfies that don’t require any filters. Wander the romantic hotel, which recently underwent a $70 million refresh, and maybe plan your next staycation while you’re there.


5. It’s Your Excuse to Visit Waikīkī

Photo: Courtesy of the Hawai‘i Visitors and Convention Bureau


Let’s face it: Many of us don’t get out to Waikīkī much. But there’s so much to do in this revitalized part of town. There are world-class surf breaks, great restaurants and fun boutiques to browse in the neighborhood. Get to the event early and walk around, play tourist with a mai tai or stroll along Waikīkī Beach.


Convinced? Buy your tickets here!




Join us for an evening of fantastic food, creative cocktails and exhilarating entertainment as we celebrate Hawai‘i’s very best restaurants at the 2018 Hale ‘Aina Awards: Destination Delicious on Sept. 17 at the Royal Hawaiian Hotel. Take a culinary trip around the world in one evening while you dine on artfully crafted dishes from Hawai‘i’s best chefs. For more information and to purchase tickets, click here.