Tag Archives: Honolulu

Hawaiian Dredging Building, Honolulu

hawaiian dredging building honolulu

hawaiian dredging building honolulu windowThis week’s Sunday Stills challenge theme is ‘Window.’ (See more responses here.) I thought I’d post some photos from my trip to Honolulu last year since the city is full of interesting buildings and is window rich.

This one is the Hawaiian Dredging Building. It was built in 1929 for the Pacific Commercial Advertiser, which later became The Honolulu Advertiser. That newspaper ceased publication on June 6, 2010 when it was merged with The Honolulu Star-Bulletin and became The Honolulu Star-Advertiser. For most of its history the building was known as the News Building or the Advertiser Building.

The Hawaiian Dredging Construction Co. purchased the building in 2016 and, following an extensive renovation, made it the company’s headquarters and renamed it the Hawaiian Dredging Building. The distinctive mosaic window above the entrance is a notable feature of the building.

hawaiian dredging building honolulu front

Island hopping

Mokulele plane landing at Kona

Honolulu AirportIn Hawaii, it’s not unusual for people to commute between islands. Many medical professionals are based in Honolulu, but have offices on the Big Island which they visit on a weekly basis. The same can be said for other professionals: lawyers, scientists, engineers and the like. Politicians and government officials go back and forth on a regular basis.

But it’s not just professionals. Skilled tradespeople might work on any of the islands, commuting on a daily or weekly basis. Highway construction crews likewise move from island to island depending on where and what projects are being worked on. Musicians and other artists are regular island hoppers. The list goes on.

There’s one mode of transport for all these people and that’s air travel. There are no inter-island ferries. The Hawaii Superferry operated from 2007 to 2009 but was suspended when the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled that a second environmental impact statement was required. One concern with a ferry is the increased risk of spreading invasive species and diseases of plants and animals.

Hawaiian Airlines is the biggest operator in the islands, with the lion’s share of the inter-island business. It operates from its hub in Honolulu, but also offers direct flights between the other islands. The second photo shows the distinctive tails of a couple of its planes at Honolulu Airport.

Smaller airlines have also offered inter-island routes. These include Aloha Airlines, Go! Airlines and Island Air. These three ceased business in 2008, 2014, and 2017 respectively. Currently, the only other island airline is Mokulele Airlines, though it doesn’t fly to Kauai. They service some smaller airports and operate smaller planes such as the one above, coming in to land at Kona Airport.

Posted in response to this week’s Sunday Stills challenge is on the theme of ‘Transportation or Commute.’ (More responses here.)

King Kamehameha statues

King Kamehameha statue KapaauKing Kamehameha statue Honolulu

These two photos are of statues of King Kamehameha I, the king who first united the Hawaiian Islands under one leader. On top, draped in leis from last Monday’s Kamehameha Day celebrations, is the statue at Kapaau, here on the Big Island. Below is the statue in Honolulu. It sits in front of the Aliʻiōlani Hale, which housed the government of the Kingdom of Hawaiʻi and the Republic of Hawaiʻi, and is currently home to the Hawaiʻi State Supreme Court.

Back in 1878, a statue of the King was commissioned for display in Honolulu. The commission was given to American artist Thomas Ridgeway Gould, and in 1880 his plaster model was sent to Paris to be cast, before being shipped to Hawaii. Alas, it never made it. The ship transporting the statue caught fire and sank off of the Falkland Islands.

Fortunately, the statue was insured, so a replacement was ordered. While this process was underway, the original statue turned up! Salvaged by fishermen, it was sold to a British ship captain who recognized it. He, in turn, sold it to the Hawaiian government, which now found itself in possession of identical twin statues. But the statues weren’t identical. The replacement statue was pristine and resplendent with gold detailing. The original was missing a hand and had a broken spear, and had suffered a good deal of fire damage.

The government decided to erect the replacement statue in Honolulu and the original was restored and sent to Kapaau, near Kamehameha’s birthplace. However, the original was corroded from its time in the sea so, in the early 1900s, local residents began to paint the statue, both to prevent further corrosion and to make it more lifelike.

By the end of the century, the statue was in bad shape and in 1996 conservator Glenn Wharton was hired to assess its condition. In his book, The Painted King: Art, Activism, and Authenticity in Hawaii, he recalls being startled by what he found, ‘A larger-than-life brass figure painted over in brown, black, and yellow with “white toenails and fingernails and penetrating black eyes with small white brush strokes for highlights. . . . It looked more like a piece of folk art than a nineteenth-century heroic monument.”’

For the next few years Wharton led a community discussion about how to save the statue, including the tricky question of whether it should be restored to its original bronze and gold finish or continue the painted alternative the community had grown up with. In the end the community voted to keep the painted finish and in 2001 the statue was restored in this way and rededicated.

A third statue of King Kamehameha I was commissioned after statehood in 1959, for installation in the U.S. Statuary Hall in Washington DC. However, this statue wasn’t cast from the original molds, but from molds taken of the Honolulu statue.

Posted in response to this week’s Sunday Stills challenge on the theme of ‘Twin.’ See more responses here.

Window cleaners descending

Window cleaners Honolulu

Window cleaning Honolulu

More lines from downtown Honolulu buildings, this time complimented by the lines of the window washers as they work their way down the building. When I look at the top photo, I think of a filing cabinet. Something to do with the solid face on the left with just the little ‘handles.’

Posted in response to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge ‘Lines.’


Abstracts: Three buildings

Abstracts-Three Buildings Honolulu

These three buildings in downtown Honolulu look, to me, like an architect’s drawing, all mirrored glass and carefully rendered lines. “Picture yourself living in the heart of downtown Honolulu, in a luxury apartment with its own private balcony.” Aaaargh.

Posted in response to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge ‘Lines.’


White king pigeons in Honolulu

Pigeons drinking in Honolulu

Pigeons in HonoluluWhen I was out walking in downtown Honolulu, I came across this scene. Someone had had turned on a hose up the street and the ensuing temporary river caused an instant influx of this hoard of white king pigeons.

I particularly like the presence of the Oahu Nature Tours bus in the background with its 924-BIRD phone number. Pretty easy work. Just pull the bus over, turn on a tap, and ‘Voilà.’

Posted in response to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge ‘Prolific.’

Post Office Building, Honolulu

Post Office Building Honolulu

Couple at Post Office Building HonoluluAn off-island photo from my recent jaunt to Honolulu. This is the old U.S. Post Office, Custom House, and Court House, which is still in use as a post office today. The building is one of many historical buildings in the downtown area.

This building dates from 1922 and, according to the handy guide from historichawaii.org, ‘This classic Mediterranean-style structure features large roof overhangs, shaded arcades, open interior courtyards, spacious porticos, and two towers.’

Not a bad spot to sit and have lunch.