On the buffet you'll find a cross between innovative classics and hearty staples, i.e.: pancakes with fresh berries and whipped cream, kale salad, fresh exotic fruits, greek yogurt, scrambled eggs, portuguese sausage, crispy bacon, an assortment of muffins and baked goods paired with an array of craft butters, also colorful juices and brewed coffees are also available.
This sunrise breakfast buffet is available 7 days a week, 7am-11am $23. On Saturdays and Sundays you can also order bottomless mimosas for an additional $20 a person (entire table must order, to prevent sharing and diners who abuse the bottomless mimosa add-on).
Yoga will also be offered for $40 8am-9am and includes breakfast, mat, yoga lesson and will be held everyday beginning in August.
Buho Breakfast Club
2250 Kalakaua Ave
Breakfast Buffet $23
Bottomless Mimosas on Sat & Sun additional $20
Yoga & Breakfast $40 (in August).
(L-R) Billie Takaki Leuder 2000, Crystal Lee Montrone 2013, Rep. Lauren Cheape Matsumoto 2011, Raeceen Woolford Satele 2009, Ashley Layfield 2007, myself, Allison Chu 2016, Jennifer Hera Pimental 1998, Kanoe Aberegg Naone 1993, Carolyn Sapp Daniels 1991, Malika Dudley Judd 2005, Dr. Ligaya Stice 1989, Debbie Nakanelua Richards 1984, Lani Stone Kaaa 1991, Cathy Foy 1975.
It may come as no surprise that 13 years ago I held the title of Miss Hawaii 2004. As the years go by, the memories become more distant and the highlights are like a dream. As I reflect I am still in awe that that was my life for one year, and that I held the honor, prestige and privilege of wearing the crown. But as you can imagine I find myself explaining what Miss Hawaii is and who I was, because there are so many other pageants, scholarship programs and beauty contests out there. For some reason the general and overall public perception is that they are all the same.
With so many other pageants including Miss Teen Hawaii, Miss Hawaii USA, Ms. Hawaii, Mrs. Hawaii, Miss Hawaii International, Miss Hawaii World, Miss Hawaii Filipina, Miss Chinatown Hawaii and etc, here are some notable details about the Miss Hawaii Scholarship Program. Held on June 10, 2017 at the historic Hawaii Theatre-- the Miss Hawaii Scholarship Program produced its 70th pageant this year. A preliminary to Miss America, this provider of scholarships for women 17-24 years-old began in 1921 as a bathing suit review in Atlantic City. Now, Miss America is the leading advocate for women to receive scholarships for education, with a focus on community service and an opportunity to showcase their talent. Phases of competition include panel interview (focused on one's platform, current events, community and self), swim suit, talent, evening gown and on-stage question. Once you compete at Miss America the competition ends there. Other pageants may go on to Miss USA, Miss World, Miss Globe or Miss International, but these are different systems and some may call them beauty pageants. The other competitions out there are no better, or no less, they are just different and coordinated, produced and directed by different people often not affiliated with Miss America, but everyone knows everyone in the pageant world. To me its kind of like differing football leagues. Most play the same sport, but in a different setting and for different people (NFL, AFL, Arena and etc).
The Miss Hawaii organization is staffed by volunteers, in fact after Miss Hawaii is crowned many of her appearances and bookings are also volunteer-based and most are not paid. The Miss America Organization is a non-profit organization that serves to disperse hundreds of thousands of dollars in scholarships to young women in America each year. Many might recall me waiting tables at Alan Wong's while I was the reigning Miss Hawaii, yes you need to work and make ends meet while wearing the crown too. (I worked at Alan Wong's Restaurant on King Street from 1999-2009).
Truth is it has been a long time since I was involved in the pageant system. Much has changed, yet so much has stayed the same. When I competed the pageant was televised live, I won a Mercedes Benz for one year and my travel was sponsored by Hawaiian Airlines. Some other perks included wardrobe provided by Mamo, Princess Kaiulani, free hosted parking for one year and other benefits. As this might sound amazing and one of the highlights of my life, the years afterward really tested my will, passion and future endeavors. For some reason being a "pageant girl" has a negative connotation at times. I felt people didn't take me seriously or understand that I was college educated, hardworking and community-minded. Instead they were under the impression that I was a prima donna, lazy and high maintenance. This made me work harder and strive to prove them wrong.
I graduated from Hawaii Pacific University in 2007 with a BA in Speech Communication, thanks to the pageant I accomplished this feat with zero student loans. Competing at Miss Hawaii and Miss America provided (a Kapaa High School graduate from a single-parent home) the opportunity to achieve a private university education without any debt. One month after graduating with my degree I was offered a general assignment reporter position at a local news station. Some joked that I should "do the weather" or made comments like "what do you wanna be? You wanna anchor?" -- I wanted to be respected, a journalist, a business woman. The rest is now history as many of you reading this know my accomplishments and my achievements in journalism, education and now entrepreneurship. While competing in pageants does open some doors it can also slightly close them as well. But it truly depends on the individual to strive for success and work hard for what you want in life. Many of the former Miss Hawaii's and Miss America's are doctors, lawyers, educators, lawmakers, and so on.
For the first time since giving up my crown (in 2005), I returned to the pageant as a spectator. I prefer to be backstage with the crew, contestants, production staff, directors and hair & makeup team, so I can assist and spend time with the people I know and love. But this year was a little different as I also ventured out into the audience and watched from a seat in the theatre. It was interesting to say the least, as a group of us former Miss Hawaiis were called on stage and recognized then we all sat down and watched. We are a group of very outgoing, diverse and accomplished women. Even though you may not know who Miss Hawaii is right now (or who she was last year or the year before), perhaps you will have an open mind to learning more about the system, what we stand for and how hard we worked to get to where we are today.
Here are some photos from backstage (with the behind the scenes crew) and onstage with the Miss Hawaiis: Miss Hawaii - A Legacy!
Venture to the west side and you will find an abundance of new stores, eateries and shopping centers. Residents from the area continue to rejoice as mainstays like Target, Ross and 24 Hour Fitness have opened their doors. With that it is surprisingly comforting to see local businesses flourishing and Hawaii entrepreneurs finding success as they expand. One of those businesses is Moena Cafe. A loved cafe from East Honolulu and in Japan, this delicious eatery is famous for its sweet and savory brunch items like Strawberry Milk Pancakes and Short Rib Loco Moco.
Moena Cafe Kapolei has a spacious, contemporary yet coastal decor that features a bar, open kitchen and an abundance of seating inside. The menu I am going to highlight is their new dinner menu. Known for their classic locally-inspired comfort foods, Moena Cafe serves hearty dinner appetizers, entrees and desserts. They also feature a specialty happy hour and keiki menu.
Standout dishes include:
Furikake Garlic Fries - perfectly cooked fries nice crisp, golden brown and sprinkled with furikake then garlic flakes. The ratio of garlic to furikake is spot-on and the fries are ideal for dipping in ketchup or eating without any additives/sauces.
Crab Artichoke Dip - Blue Crab with artichoke and blue corn tortillas, the amount of fresh crab is very generous and a good pairing of crab with artichoke served with a touch of cheese.
Korean Chicken Wings- perfectly cooked and crisp chicken wings lightly glazed with a Korean-style sauce (honestly the sweet soy flavor wasn't as potent as I would've liked but the wings were so crisp and well cooked they were a standout).
Hawaiian Salt Crusted Prime Rib- extremely massive, very generous serving size with accompanying mashed potatoes and a side of veggies this is a meat-lovers dream, dad would be pleased.
Harissa Marinated Lamb - Also served with seasonal veggies, the lamb chops are well seasoned, perfectly cooked and finger-licking good.
Pork Cutlet Katsu with Mushroom Sauce - wow massive portion again, the katsu was fried golden then served with a mushroom demi glaze which was generous portion and highlighted by the mushroom selection.
Mud Pie- Kona Coffee Ice Cream, Oreo cookie crust, another very very large portion and great for sharing! Best seller!
Chocolate Brownie Sundae - loved this dense sweet yet dark chocolate brownie and side of fresh strawberry and banana sundae with whipped cream, chocolate sauce and caramel. Beautiful dish but also delicious to eat too!
Overall, this cafe is delightfully casual, features a friendly happy hour and gigantic dinner entree portions. This is a great stop for family dinners, especially for those who like to share or love to take home leftovers. I already gush over the brunch menu and the classic items they're known for, now I can look forward to a fun evening with large portions to enjoy for dinner too. Dinner entree prices range from $17-$38.95
Moena Cafe Kapolei
Ka Makana Alii
91-5431 Kapolei Parkway
Flow & Prosper -- that's the theme Monday - Friday 3:00pm-6:00pm at the brand new Yauatcha Waikiki, located at International Market Place. The acclaimed fine dim sum and elegant yet posh eatery just launched their "Lucky Hour" at the bar (weekdays).
FLOW: With a list of 6 craft cocktails $8 each, the sips include: Island Heat (Kai lemongrass vodka, thai basil, coconut, ginger lime & bitters); Kura Mi Ami martini (Belvedere vodka, gin, junmai sake & plum sake); Scandinavian Scarlet (Krogstad aquavit, thai basil, ginger, beet juice, white balsamic vinegar, lemon & egg white); Flower & Stone - my personal favorite (Bombay Sapphire East gin, strawberry, fennel, apricot, yuzu, mint & rhubarb); Ginger Smash -- highly recommend (Virginia Black whiskey, ginger, cardamom, vanilla, lemongrass, lemon & ginger beer); Lychee Martini -- another good one (Pau vodka, lychee, lime & orange bitters).
PROSPER: Very Yin and Yang 8 dim sum $6 each, are available to please your appetite: Chinese five flower dumpling; Shanghai siew long bun; Phoenix tail shrimp shui mai; Pork and prawn shui mai; Roasted duck pumpkin puff (crowd favorite); Crispy prawn dumpling (my personal favorite); water prawn and zucchini dumpling; Three style mushroom cheung fun.
The drinks are generous and crafted with care. The flavors all compliment each other and subtle additions like apricot and beet offer enhancements to cocktail profiles and appearance you wouldn't expect. This is a great place to unwind from the work day and relax in the open air or in the air conditioning of the wrap around bar.
The dim sum is a great way to sample the menu. The authentic bites are delicate, flavorful, innovative yet progressive. Alongside your iconic dim sum flavors you are also served pickled cucumber and two varying types of chili sauces. Such a great idea if you are wanting to experience the contemporary dim sum that is Yauatcha.
Flow & Prosper - Lucky Hour at Yauatcha Waikiki
Monday - Friday 3-6pm
2330 Kalakaua Avenue, Waikiki
Images: Courtesy of Sean Morris
Tsukada Nojo 1731 Kalakaua Avenue
Mon - Thurs 5-11pm
Fri - Sat 5pm-12am
While attending an event at The Royal Hawaiian hotel I was reminded that there was some buzz about a brand new grab and go bakery somewhere on site. I asked around and found it! Hidden Diamond Head of the main lobby and facing the Coconut Grove is a collection of fresh baked goodies and expertly roasted coffee. Known for their famous banana bread, you can purchase loafs of bread and/or muffins here. In addition, some of the other baked goods caught my eye like sticky buns, various croissants and the other famous dessert, the Pink Palace Snow Ball. At $6.50 a piece it sounds a bit pricey for what appears to be cake covered in pink coconut, but the size is pretty generous and the cake is soft, moist and delightful. I couldn't eat it all and shared with another person and we still had leftovers.
The staff are very accommodating and so friendly. This was an enjoyable afternoon spent relaxing with friends at the Pink Palace of the Pacific. Such a beautiful and historic location. I recommend coming here to sample some of the treats or just take a moment to sip and sit.
Some FREE TIPS
When taking a look at why business has slowed, also make sure to review what you are doing, what's working and what isn't.
1) Verify your pages - if you are on social media take a moment to verify and claim your pages. This includes Google, Yelp, Facebook and etc. The verification process is simple you click claim, they call or email you, you enter a pin number and now you can manage/oversee that site.
2) Review Reviews - it may hurt a little, but read your reviews from guests. They are voicing their opinion and sometimes they might hit on something you didn't know about and can be improved upon. Often guests are too shy to tell you if something is wrong in person, so they use social media to vent and share/overshare. Once you have claimed your sites you can also respond to negative reviews. Apologize, invite them back, let them know you are acting on their feedback.
3) Invite Influencers - Choose a select number of people whom you respect and are active on social media, in the community and can help spread the word about your business. Have them come visit you, share some food and drink with them. Keep it casual, social and fun. This is one way to expand your reach and at fairly little cost.
4) Brand Awareness - You know what your brand is, but do others know what it is? If you showed a random person on the street your logo and asked them if they had seen it before and knew what it was; what would they say? If the majority have no clue and don't know what you are/do then you might want to consider a branding seminar, rebrand or publicity campaign. Major and iconic brands like McDonalds and BMW bring forth a clear and understandable brand. What's yours and what do you want people to know about you/your business?
In the end, we all want to make more money. One thing to understand is to make money you also need to spend money. Invest in yourself, your business and your goals. My point being if you are seeing hard times and business isn't where you want it to be take a moment to focus on your business, improve and hit your goals harder. YOU CAN DO IT!
Traditional Hawaiian healing methods and rare tropical ingredients are paired with luxurious views of Hawaii's world-famous Waikiki, at the brand-new Ritz Carlton Waikiki Spa. Boasting panoramic views, a tranquil oasis and a location just on the outskirts of Kalaukaua and Kuhio Avenues west-end, the new luxury destination has officially opened its doors and also offers a tantalizing kama'aina discount.
From facials, to foot & leg masks along with body massages and sea salt scrubs, the spa aims to please any guest with its alluring natural treatments and enhancements. Some of the ingredients include 'olena, awa, rose quartz, ki plant, diamonds and gold. A highlight for some might include the 24 karat gold and diamond treatment by Knesko collagen facial masks. They also feature ESPA and other Hawaiian Rainforest Naturals signature treatments and products.
The spa itself if very spacious, showcases a modern design and minimalist interior. The associates and staff are all very polite and highly accommodating. They also feature Hawaii's first VitaJuwel Water Bar which aims to change the structure of water's healing properties by immersing specially gems into filtered drinking water, thereby regenerating the natural elements within the water.
Most treatments are 50 minutes or 80 minutes, specials also include multiple treatments and longer treatment times. Cost before any discounts range from $155- $265. I didn't technically receive any treatments, just a tour of the property but it is stunning and I enjoyed the relaxing atmosphere and delightful engagements with staff.
For more information visit: www.ritzcarlton.com/en/hotels/hawaii/waikiki/spa
My favorite items from the hosted lunch included the: Zing Zing Shrimp $14 a nice crunch to the Chinese-style fried shrimps served with a chili aioli. Great texture and nice creaminess from the sauce then a little kick of spice on the end.
Chicken & Waffles $18 served with white Wisconsin Cheddar and agave syrup. The waffle was savory and very hearty. The chicken was fried perfectly and oh so tender and juicy.
The signature dessert is a cross between a waffle and a donut - therefore it is called Wonuts - dipped in chocolate and topped with powdered sugar. The dessert has the texture of a crisp waffle, deep fried like a donut. It also reminded me of andagi for some reason. A full order will cost $10 and includes five wonuts.
TR Fire Grill in Waikiki is located at 2330 Kuhio Avenue 808-921-2330
Open: 6am-10pm - parking at the hotel is $6 valet.