Lush landscapes and alluring vistas make Hawai‘i a compelling draw for meeting and convention attendees from all over the world. This inspiring destination has everything organizers need to make gatherings of all sizes special, from the state’s natural wonders, warm weather, world-class resorts and hotels, to a variety of unique experiences for attendees. Here are five lesser-known reasons organizations choose Hawai‘i to host their events.
Hawai‘i Wants Your Business
In Hawai‘i, aloha means more than a greeting. The spirit of aloha is also more than warm feelings of kindness, affection, peace, and compassion. It’s a way of life. And that’s what convention delegates will experience from the moment they land on the Hawaiian Islands. The state’s native Hawaiian indigenous culture, as well as its multilingual, multicultural population, make visitors from all around the world feel welcome.
In fact, during the first quarter of 2023, the Visitor Satisfaction and Activity Survey conducted by the State of Hawai‘i’s Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism found that nine out of 10 respondents said the state met or exceeded their expectations for their visit.
“The people of Hawai‘i, from our tourism professionals to the kama‘āina [Hawai‘i residents] who engage with visitors on a daily basis, are the reasons why Hawai‘i continues to be such a favorite destination for travelers from around the world,” Hawai‘i Tourism Authority President and CEO John De Fries said.
Getting to Hawai‘i is easier than planners might think, especially when arriving from North America or Asia. Hawai‘i is connected to many of the world’s largest air gateways and is no more than a one-stop flight away. As an added bonus for planners, Meet Hawai‘i provides customized air service strategy and airlift research as a basic resource, ensuring that delegates arrive in Hawai‘i in the most cost-effective and time sensitive manner. And with hundreds of interisland flights available, pre and/or post meeting island hopping is also a breeze.
Hawai‘i Has the Space
Located in the heart of Honolulu, the Hawai‘i Convention Center (HCC) is Hawai‘i’s largest, premier meetings facility, spanning 1.1 million square feet (102,193 square meters). It includes 47 meeting rooms, a 200,000-square-foot exhibit hall, two theaters, and a ballroom and registration lobby that are each 35,000 square feet. Divided for ease of use, the well-organized layout and function of space is a planner’s dream, getting groups from 1,000 to 20,000 around efficiently.
The center is just eight miles from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL) and a short stroll from the Waikīkī resort area, the premier destination for shopping, dining, and entertainment on the island of O‘ahu. Nearly 27,000 hotel rooms are within a 1.5-mile radius of the center, and there are more than 43,000 combined overnight hotel rooms throughout the state’s six major islands.
Culture Around Every Corner
In Hawai‘i, organizations can expect more than a meeting — they get an experience. From the cultural exhibits at the Hawai‘i Convention Center to hula performances to the numerous heritage sites such as the ‘Iolani Palace State Monument (the home to Hawai‘i’s last reigning monarchs), the islands’ distinctive native culture is ever present. And the state’s multicultural population offers a diverse mix of dining, music, craft, and outdoor activity options.
In the Hawaiian language, mālama means to care for—the earth, our communities, and ourselves. With Hawai‘i’s corporate social responsibility and sustainability programs, meeting attendees can help take care of the ‘āina (land), kai (ocean), and ea (air) through volunteer projects that give back while providing an experience that deepens their connection to what makes Hawai‘i, its people, and its culture so special.
The Hawaiian Legacy Reforestation Initiative, the Surfrider Foundation Kaua‘i, and the Hawai‘i Convention Center Carbon Offset Program are just three of numerous mālama opportunities ideal for groups of all sizes.