Follow The Tunes

Hot spots in Waikiki make sweet music for visitors

By: Marty Wentzel

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The outdoor House Without a Key offers
oceanside musical performances.
When the sun begins to set in Waikiki, the music scene starts heating up. Clients can regroup and relax in the South Oahu mecca while enjoying live entertainment at most any major hotel or restaurant, with a variety of genres from which to choose. The following hangouts can help set the tone for a great evening in paradise.

Banyan Court:
A beachside stage beneath a legendary banyan tree provides one-of-a-kind harmonies and hula at the Sheraton Moana Surfrider. Each evening brings such stars as the ukulele, bass and steel guitar ensemble, Paahana, and steel guitar specialists, the Puuhonua Trio.

Duke’s Canoe Club:
Smack dab on the beach at the Outrigger Waikiki Hotel, this breezy gathering place lures locals and visitors alike each Fri.-Sun. from 4-6 p.m. with top island performers like Henry Kapono and the group Kapena, whose voices mingle with sounds of the surf. 808-922-2268

Elegant Dive:
At this Hyatt Regency Waikiki watering hole, clients can listen to live music while soaking in the Jacuzzi or floating in the pool. The upscale setting with its terracotta patio, rocking chairs and views of Waikiki Beach from the third floor is further enhanced by divine tropical drink.s

Hanohano Room:
This Sheraton Waikiki standout presents the perfect milieu for impressing a date or catching up with friends. Notable for its panoramas of Waikiki from 30 floors up, it has earned a following for its live Salsa band on Friday evenings and occasional Saturday night jazz jams.

House Without a Key:
Cocktails and Hawaiian music under a century-old kiawe tree have drawn dedicated audiences to the Halekulani for decades. Memorable sunsets merge with dreamy island tunes as two former Miss Hawaii winners Kanoe Miller and Debbie Nakanelua dance the hula with elegance epitomized.

Lewers Lounge:
This Halekulani haven attracts a classy clientele with its innovative cocktails, appetizers, desserts and live entertainment. It’s a sure bet for clients looking for early-evening cocktails or after-dinner drinks sweetened by contemporary light jazz and popular songs.

Mai Tai Bar:
Boasting the penultimate view of Waikiki Beach and Diamond Head from the Royal Hawaiian, this sand-hugging bar plays home to perhaps the best mai tai your clients will ever try. Various Waikiki old-timers and newcomers serenade the crowds with Hawaiian music each night.

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Legendary falsetto singer Aunty Genoa Keawe.
Moana Terrace:
Perched on the third floor of the Kealohilani Tower at the Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort and Spa, this al fresco hub lays claim to some of Waikiki’s most authentic island entertainment, including slack-key guitar and on Thursdays the legendary falsetto of Aunty Genoa Keawe.

Tiki’s Grill and Bar:
Fresh from its fifth anniversary, this 10,000-square-foot hot spot with a retro South Pacific design is located on the second level of the ResortQuest Waikiki Beach Hotel. Every night of the week, it regales clients with live entertainment by established and emerging contemporary Hawaiian performers.