Science and Research Meets Mele and Celebration

From citywide conventions to school graduations to rooftop gatherings, the Hawaii Convention Center welcomed many important meetings and fun events in May. The month started off with the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology’s ARVO 2018 Annual Meeting. ARVO is the largest and most respected eye and vision research organization in the world. Their Hawaii meeting saw a total of 11,466 attendees which had exceeded their initial forecast. Organizers report that is the second-best attended meeting since they moved from Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

Mele Mei, a celebration of Hawai’i’s music, hula and culture is also in full swing this month. Music and hula events are held at various venues statewide and the Hawaii Convention Center is proud to be a part of this wonderful celebration. A popular event held during Mele Mei is the annual Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards. Presented by the Hawai‘i Academy of Recording Arts (HARA), the Nā Hōkū’s honors the achievements of excellence of Hawaii’s recording artists. It is one of the biggest annual entertainment events in Hawai‘i.

Closing the month of May was another citywide convention, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry’s 2018 AAPD Annual Session. AAPD is the recognized authority on children’s oral health. While initially forecasting 3,000, they welcomed close to 6,000 attendees for their 71st Annual Session.

For more updates, check out some of our photos from this month’s events!

Pacific Edge Magazine’s recently launched their Summer 2018 issue where they honored Hawaii’s Women in Business. Our very own General Manager, Teri Orton, is featured in the cover along with Wendy Shewalter and Loretta Yajima.

Celebrating the launch of Pacific Edge Magazine’s Summer 2018 issue at our Rooftop Garden.Executive Chef Kevin Nakata’s homemade pork and lotus root sliders.Got a sweet tooth? Our dessert table always has something for everyone.After the Nā Hōkū Hanohano Awards on May 19th, guests came down to room 317 to unwind and enjoy the afterparty. Music filled the night as the drinks flowed.For the past three years, the Grammy Museum in Los Angeles has installed a Hawaiian music themed exhibit at the Center in conjunction with the Na Hōkū Hanohano Awards. This year’s exhibit is “Music of Waikīkī – The Legendary Homes of Hawaiian Music”. Located on the third level, the exhibit showcases items from entertainers that headlined some of Waikīkī’s famous showrooms and venues.ARVO 2018 Expo in our Kamehameha Exhibit Halls.Aloha American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry (AAPD)!The Hawai‘i Convention Center is a proud recepient of the Hawai‘i Green Business Program for venues. The state’s Hawaii Green Business Program (HGBP) assists and recognizes businesses that strive to operate in an environmentally, culturally and socially responsible manner.

A Vision of Great Events in April

The month of April saw a combination of popular events and a few citywide conventions. Notable mentions include the First Hawaiian International Auto Show which always draws a large crowd every year. More than 40,000 guests stopped by this 3-day show to view over 350 of the hottest new cars and trucks all in one place.

We also welcomed the 2018 AACSB International Conference & Annual Meeting (ICAM) last April 22-24. Organized by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB), ICAM 2018 is their largest event and brought together 1500 of the world’s top business academics and collaborators for 3 days of world-class networking opportunities and learning new best practices to acquiring a global perspective of the current state of business education.

Wrapping up our month is the ARVO 2018 Annual Meeting. The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology (ARVO) is the largest and most respected eye and vision research organization in the world. From April 29 to May 3rd, approximately 10,500 international basic and clinical researchers will share the latest breakthroughs in vision research. They will engage with their colleagues right here at HCC as they work to advance their science and expand its support within our communities and governments.

Lastly, we also held our very own Signature Event, the Sunset Mele and Night Market last April 20th. This free community event featured a great entertainment lineup and awesome food options from our very own Executive Chef Kevin Nakata and other local food vendors. We also showcased the Academy Award winning film Coco in our Liliu Theater 310 and welcomed over 50 local vendors in our night market.

Check out some of our photos from this month’s events!


Step into the Exhibit Hall! Cool slipper decals during the 2018 ICAM Conference.

We are ready to welcome the ARVO 2018 Meeting here at the Hawaii Convention Center!

The First Hawaiian International Auto Show in our Kamehameha Exhibit Halls showcased over 350 of the hottest new cars and trucks all in one place!

Executive Chef Kevin Nakata appeared on KHON 2’s Wake Up 2Day morning show to share what he’s cooking up for our Sunset Mele and Night Market

Chef Kevin’s street tacos showcased during Sunset Mele and Night Market. Chorizo Tacos and Moroccan Grilled Vegetable Tacos!

Streetlight Cadence serenade the crowd at Sunset Mele and Night Market (4-20-18)

Feature Film showing in Theater 310


Sunset Mele’s Night Market area along the hallway outside of rooms 302 to 309 at our 3rd Level.

HCC participated in Earth Day activities during Sunset Mele and Night Market (4-20-18)

“March Madness”: Sports, Arts, Culture, Banquets and a Comic Con

The Hawaii Convention Center welcomed close to 20 events and saw over 40,000 attendees come through our facility this month of March. Popular annual events such as anime comic convention, Kawaii Kon, and the 24th Annual Honolulu Festival were back in our Exhibit Halls and 3rd level meeting rooms in early March.

We also hosted a few first-time events including the inaugural Yokohama B-Corsairs Friendship Basketball Tournament 2018 and the Beijing Calligraphy and Danqing Cultural Exchange 2018, an art exhibition featuring a numerous selection of Chinese paintings and calligraphy.

Lastly, we are also excited to welcome our new Hawaii Convention Center Customer Advisory Board (CAB). Comprised of senior association executives and meeting professionals our CAB is designed as a strategic think tank and client forum where they can share their experiences and perspectives to help HCC better serve the needs of key citywide meeting and convention planners, attendees and stakeholders. Our CAB members will be back for a 2nd meeting this October.

Check out some of our photos from this month’s events!

It was another successful year for the Honolulu Festival! Hawaii’s premier cultural event, this year’s theme was “Harmony over the Ocean, Journey to Peace”

During it’s 3-day event, the 24th Annual Honolulu Festival featured exhibitors and performers from various countries and regions get together and give dance performances and traditional art demonstrations.

Welcome to Hawaii Yokohama B-Corsairs! This is a first-time basketball friendship tournament between the Yokohama B-Corsairs teams from Japan and local basketball teams.

Shaka! All smiles from the organizing committee and representatives from Yokohama B Corsairs, Hawaii Convention Center and Hawaii Tourism Japan.

Kawaii Kon, Hawaii’s largest Anime convention brought in more than 12,000 attendees to the Hawaii Convention Center last March 2-4, 2018.

Chinese paintings and calligraphy were on display in Room 315 last March 23 – 25th for the Beijing Calligraphy and Danqing Cultural Exchange 2018.

A peek inside our Customer Advisory Board meeting last March 8th

Strawberry Lilikoi, Li Hing Mui Pineapple, Blueberry Kalamansi, Coconut Hibiscus, Lehua Honey Bacon donuts were on our menu this month!

Sweet treats from our Kitchen! Some of the wonderful desserts that were served during a welcome reception.

Over 4,000 attendees enjoyed a lovely banquet in our Exhibit Hall. This was one of the largest dinner functions we’ve served, featuring a combination of buffet and plated meals. Shout out to our great team for making it happen!

Join us for Sunset Mele and Night Market on April 20th! This is a free community event showcasing live entertainment, family-friendly movie, pop-up marketplace, artisan workshops, local eats and drinks. Click on the image for more info.

Serving Up Great Events This February

With 2018 in full swing, the month of February proved to be a productive month for the Hawaii Convention Center team. We welcomed a number of repeat local conventions including the Pacific Water Conference and Athletic Championships Honolulu, an annual dance and cheer event.

Another sporting event back with us is the AAU Volleyball Hawaii Grand Prix 2018. They are among the various sporting events that will return to HCC this year. HCC secured agreements with three national sports organizations to host futsal (indoor soccer), basketball and volleyball tournaments played on the Center’s new sports courts, starting this year.

Lastly, we are excited to welcome distinguished guests from Rotary International and the American Dental Association (ADA) for site inspections and an opportunity to showcase our Food and Beverage and our famous Aloha Spirit. We look forward to welcoming ADA back later this year for their 2018 Annual Meeting.

Below are some highlights this month.

Another great volleyball event in the books with AU Volleyball Hawaii Grand Prix 2018.

HCC General Manager, Teri Orton, was named 2018 Woman of the Year, a top honor conferred by the Women in Lodging & Tourism – Hawaii Chapter, an affiliate of the Hawaii Lodging & Tourism Association (HLTA). Teri was recognized for her leadership within the hospitality industry, community and the HLTA’s Women in Lodging & Tourism committee. Congratulations Teri!

HCC was also honored to welcome back the Japan Education Fair 2018. Hawaii students spend a day meeting representatives from Japanese schools and learn about opportunities for studying in Japan

Executive Chef Kevin Nakata puts the finishing touches on his signature dishes during the welcome reception for Rotary International.

A Great Start to the New Year

We at the Hawaii Convention Center are excited for all the exciting events and projects to come in 2018. This year, we hit a milestone as we celebrate our 20th year anniversary and we look forward to another great year of partnership with the Global Marketing Team!

We kicked off January with the Sony Open Gala Dinner last January 11, 2018. Held in our Exhibit Halls 1 and 2, the Gala dinner featured creations from renowned chefs Alan Wong and Roy Yamaguchi and an up-close-and-personal mini concert by a Diana Ross. Each January the Sony Open in Hawaii attracts 144 of the world’s greatest golf professionals to the Waialae Country Club on the island of Oahu. The 2018 tournament marked the 20th anniversary of Sony’s title sponsorship and the 11th time the Gala Dinner was held at HCC since 2000.

We also welcomed back the Hawaii Dental Association Convention. Recognized as the best dental convention in the Pacific, this convention’s 3000 attendees come each year to view the latest dental products, and get updates related to services and technology of the industry while earning annual credits.

Lastly, we are gearing up for our first sporting event this year with the AAU Champions League Hawai‘i Qualifier on January 27, 2018. We look forward to welcoming their volleyball teams, coaches and families as they enjoy a great sporting event at the Hawaii Convention Center!

Below are some highlights this month.

This year’s Sony Open Gala Dinner welcomed 1,000 attendees who enjoyed a night of great food and first-class entertainment!

The Hawaii Dental Association Convention was back again this month! Utilizing our 3rd floor meeting rooms, the attendees got the opportunity to view the latest dental products, and get updates on services and technology from their industry.

We are excited on the launch of our new Interactive 3D Floor Plan and Map! Visitors can browse through each level and click on each meeting room to view photos and room specs! Click on the image to visit the map.

Mele Kalikimaka from the Hawaii Convention Center!

It’s a festive holiday season here at the Hawaii Convention Center and we wanted to take this opportunity to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

This December, we welcomed attendees from AMWAY Malaysia, who were here for their 2017 AMWAY Leadership Seminar. 328 AMWAY Malaysia delegates also participated in the Honolulu Marathon’s “Start to Park 10K” run on December 10, 2017, which started at the same time and location as the full Honolulu Marathon and finishes 10 km into the marathon course at Kapiolani Park. They concluded their celebration with a Gala dinner at the Hawai‘i Convention Center the following night. This event is a special recognition for AMWAY Malaysia members and their guests after qualifying for this incentive to Hawaii. We are thrilled to have been part of their celebration.

We also held our first ever NCAA basketball event here at HCC last December 16 – 19, 2017! The 2017 Hoops in Hawai’i Holiday Classic welcomed 6 NCAA DII Men’s teams including Hawai’i Pacific University and University of Hawai’i at Hilo and 4 NCAA D3 Men’s teams along with over 1,500 athletes, coaches and supporters came out to support their teams. It was an honor to welcome Hoops in Hawaii and we look forward to more sporting events next year!

From our Ohana to yours, wishing you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

435 guests from Amway Malaysia enjoyed a wonderful dinner prepared by Executive Chef Kevin Nakata

Amway Malaysia runners ready for the Honolulu Marathon! (photo credit Amway Malaysia)

Executive Chef Kevin Nakata preparing Amway Malaysia’s dinner menu

Our General Manager, Teri Orton, welcomed delegates from IEEE Power Electronics and Drive Systems (PEDS) 2017 during their opening session last December 13, 2017

The 2017 Hoops in Hawaii Classic is the first-ever NCAA basketball classic held at our Kamehameha Exhibit Hall 3 from December 16 – 19, 2017

The 2017 Hoops in Hawaii Classic is the first-ever NCAA basketball classic held at our Kamehameha Exhibit Hall 3 from December 16 – 19, 2017

Plenty to be Thankful for this November

The Holidays have arrived and we have so much to be grateful for!

We are particularly grateful for the multiple awards that we have received this month including the 2018 Readers’ Choice Award from SportsEvents Magazine. It is an honor to be recognized for our efforts to bring youth and amateur sports tournaments to Hawaii and the Hawaii Convention Center. The Hawaii Convention Center was also named winner of the Best Convention Center – Far West category for its architecture and technology by the Northstar Meetings Group’s 2017 Stella Awards. HCC was one seven Hawaii tourism venues to be recognized by Northstar Meetings Group.

A few highlights for November include the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival’s Hawaiian Airlines Presents “Uncorked”. 20 of the world’s top culinary masters and 20 world-class wineries showcased their flagship wines. Our very own Chef Kevin Nakata also feature a signature dessert that everyone enjoyed. We also welcomed back the American Medical Association for their Interim Meeting of the House of Delegates and will wrap up November with a private corporate convention of one of the leading materials engineering company in the United States.

We look forward to ending the year strong with a few more exciting events next month, including a Sports FAM where we welcome multiple sports planners and directors to Hawaii so we can showcase the destination and the Hawaii Convention Center as a possible venue for their sporting event.

Below are some highlights this month.

It is an honor to be recognized as the Best Convention Center – Far West category by the 2017 Stella Awards!

We are proud to represent Hawaii in SportsEvents Magazine’s 2018 Reader’s Choice awards!

Over 1,000 attendees graced our Rooftop Garden to enjoy great food and amazing wine selections at the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival

Executive Chef Kevin Nakata was among the 20 chefs featured in Hawaii Food and Wine Festival’s “Uncorked” event at our Rooftop

Chef Kevin Nakata’s signature dessert at the Hawaii Food and Wine Festival was a taro and sweet potato pie with candied furikake and ginger tapioca. Yummy!

Our versatile meeting rooms can accommodate any type of meeting or gathering. Our Oahu Room (Room 313ABC) was recently transformed into a cocktail reception for a client function.

New Beginnings in 2017

We wish you a Happy 2017 and may the year of the Rooster bring you good fortune and prosperity! We are excited for the possibilities this year will bring and look forward to creating new partnerships this 2017.

We began January by welcoming back repeat groups to the Hawai‘i Convention Center. The IAFOR International Conference on Education 2017 (IICE Hawaii 2017) was our first event of the New Year. They had two simultaneous conferences, “East Meets West: Innovation and Discovery” held on January 5 – 7, 2017 and “Educating for Change” was held from January 8 – 10, 2017.

Another notable event was the Society for Critical Care Medicine (SCCM)’s 46th Critical Care Congress. Approximately 5,000 attendees in the critical/acute care field of the medical profession participated in the congress and we are honored to have SCCM back in Hawaii.

Lastly, we are excited to share with you a sneak preview of our state-of-the-art athletic courts. With our new volleyball, basketball, badminton and futsal courts make the Hawai‘i Convention Center is the perfect venue for sports tournaments of any size. Take a look at the photos below as our facilities team prepare to set up the courts!

More information is available on our website: 

New Basketball Equipment at the Hawaii Convention Center

New Basketball Equipment at the Hawaii Convention Center

New Basketball Court at the Hawaii Convention Center (real-wood flooring)

New Basketball Court at the Hawaii Convention Center (real-wood flooring)

New Basketball Equipment at the Hawaii Convention Center (high-grade plastic flooring)

New Basketball Equipment at the Hawaii Convention Center (high-grade plastic flooring)

New Volleyball Court at the Hawaii Convention Center

New Volleyball Court at the Hawaii Convention Center