Hanama`ulu Town Celebration

The Hanama`ulu Experience: The Town

Centennial (1906-2006)
2006 Celebration
All-Day Celebration
Talk Story 2006
2005 Celebration
Celebrating the Present: The Parade
Grand Marshals
Celebration Programs
Celebration Gifts
The Land
The Town
Remembering the Past
Kalepa Cemetery
The Chronology
Lihu`e Plantation
Bango At Hanama`ulu
The Camps at Hanama`ulu
Hanama`ulu's Hajime Morita
Hanama`ulu's Peter Rayno Sr.
Embracing the Future
Poetry and Song
Planning Committees

Hanama`ulu Town

Hanama`ulu Beauification Project, April 2001
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

HANAMA`ULU, about two miles east of Lihue, the county seat of Kaua`i, is one of the seven ancient land divisions (ahupua`a) on the Garden Island. Today, it is the home of King Kaumuali`i Elementary School and Kalepa Village. It has been the home of Hanama`ulu Cafe for 82 years, and the town's most prominent real estate property is the 3.5-acre Peter Rayno Sr. Park.

LIHUE PLANTATION had Lihue Mill since 1851, and in 1877, Hanama`ulu Mill, the plantation's second mill, was built. But Lihue Plantation's new mill and the houses that surrounded it took on the name "Hanama`ulu Plantation," which researchers today can easily assume as a separate entity from Lihue Plantation. Like Lihue Mill, Hanama`ulu Mill was a grinding facility of what became known as "the best financed, most modern, and most costly" plantation in Hawai`i. Calling the mill town "Hanama`ulu Plantation" put Hanama`ulu on the map.

HANAMA`ULU'S MOST PROMINENT landmark is Kalepa whose ridge peaks to 710 feet. Kalauokamanu, a large heiau where human beings were sacrificed, once marked Kalepa's base, but it was destroyed in 1855.

IN THE 1950s AND EARLY 1960s, Lihue Plantation phased out the old camps at Lihue and Hanama`ulu, and opened housing subdivisions at Hanama`ulu, enabling plantation workers and their families to own their homes. And when the plantation phased out Ahukini Camp in the late 1950s and early 1960s, many families relocated to Hanama`ulu. Lihue Plantation in turn phased out Kealia Camp, and the majority of the camp residents bought properties at Wiliko I and Wiliko II subdivisions in the 1970s and 1980s.

TODAY, HANAMA`ULU is a community of more than 1,000 homes for more than 3,000 residents representing the ethnic groups that make up Hawai`i's population. One can easily find three and four generations, even five generations, of Lihue Plantation families in the town's population, but new residents -- both homeowners and renters -- call Hanama`ulu "home" as well.

Hanama`ulu Town Beautification Project, April 2001
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

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Aerial view of the center of Hanama`ulu Town
Photo : William Neil Rapozo | April 24, 2005

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HANAMA`ULU SCHOOL closed in June 1963, and when its replacement opened in September 1990 with 280 K-2 children from Hanama`ulu, Wailua, and Lihue, the students entered the portals of King Kaumuali`i School.

Nostalgic Hanamau`ulu residents wanted the name of the old school retained, but Kauai's beloved king won the debate. It was time to call attention to King Kaumuali`i` (1779-1824), Wailua's favorite and legendary son. He was one of the first Hawaiian rulers to embrace and to promote Christianity, and one of the first of the nobility to learn to read and write English.

The campus of "King K," a K-5 elementary school, is on three acres of property that AMFAC donated to the State of Hawaii for educational purposes.

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Hanama`ulu Cafe
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

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HANAMA`ULU PLAZA is home to Ara's Sakaya-na -- Fish House, Import/Export, Wholesale & Retail Seafood -- Thy Word Ministries Christian Fellowship, Edward Jones Investments, Niu Construction Inc., and Plaza Laundry.

Hanama`ulu Post Office
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

View of Hanama`ulu from Kalepa Heights
Photo : Karl Lo | August 4, 2004

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King Kaumuali`i School opened in Sept. 1990
Photo : Karl Lo | July 6, 2004

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HANAMA`ULU CAFE is the town's endearing landmark. Opened in August 1923 by the original owner, Kan Sing Chang, Sakari Miyake (1888-1974) subseqently became the owner of the restaurant when Mr. Chang left Kaua`i in the mid-1920s. However, he returned to the island and opend the Nawiliwili Chop Suey House in June 1929.

Three generations of Miyakes have owned and operated Hanama`ulu Cafe. Today, it is listed as Hanama`ulu Restaurant Tea House & Ara's Sushi Bar, specializing in Chinese and Japanese cuisine. The Roy Miyake Family owns and operates the restaurant.

January 31, 2014, was a sad Friday for the Town of Hanama'ulu and the Island of Kaua'i!  Hanama'ulu Cafe, the town's and the island's favorite venue for casual dining as well as for dress-up occasions like baptismal, wedding, and graduation parties, was closed!   After the restaurant served the last diners on Thursday night, the cafe closed its doors.  

After Roy and Janet Miyake passed away, Wayne, the eldest of the third generation of the family, was at the helm of the business. Two sisters, Arlene and Debra Aramaki, assisted in running the restaurant.  When Wayne decided it was time to retire,  and with no one from the fourth generation to take over, the obvious option was to close the 90-year-old enterprise. 

At this writing, the property is up for lease.

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Hanama`ulu Plaza & Kalepa Ridge
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

HANAMA`ULU POST OFFICE opened in September 1912. From the beginning, it has been at the front left-hand corner of the Hanama`ulu Store building, which has been in use since 1896. Initially, access to the postal boxes was from the inside of the store. Today, the boxes are accessed from the exterior of the building.

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HANAMA`ULU SERVICE, Sheilah Rego's Shell outlet, is one of the busiest gas stations on Kaua`i. Its location and its Super Tuesday offer, when its prices for regular, super, and premiun gas are lowered by a few cents, makes it popular with locals and visitors alike.

At the same address --3-4280 Kuhio Highway -- is Danillo and Glen Catiggay's DANDI'S SERVICE & AUTO REPAIR.

View of Hanama`ulu from Kalepa Heights
Photo : Karl Lo | August 4, 2004

Hanama`ulu Shell Service Station
Photo : Karl Lo | June 2004

7-ELEVEN, which opens 24/7, is also at this busy corner of Kuhio and Hanama`ulu Road. Opened on April 7, 1986, Fely Lagundino of Manulele Street is in charge of the 15 employees who keep this favorite stopping place open around the clock. Bento and manapua are two local favorites.

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Aerial view of the center of Hanama`ulu Town
Photo : William Neil Rapozo | April 24, 2005

Copyright 2004/2005 Catherine Pascual Lo


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