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The Language of Aloha at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa: Kīhāpai Means Garden

Manako Tanaka

by , Disney Ambassador at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

At Aulani Resort, we love to ask you to look at everything twice, and think three times. We do this because we have woven story upon story into everything you see. We love to share with guests and Disney Vacation Club Members stories of Aulani Resort’s artwork, activities, and even our amazing cast, but Iʻll bet you havenʻt considered the cultural importance behind some of our plants.

Waikolohe Valley at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

During your visits to Aulani Resort, perhaps you have noticed a small shrub with blueberries in Waikolohe Valley; we call this shrub, ʻukiʻuki. The berries of this small plant can be used to dye kapa, the barkcloth the people of old Hawaiʻi used for clothing and bedding. In fact, you can even take a class at Pau Hana community hall with Dalani Tanahy, a kapa practitioner from the Waiʻanae coast.

Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

Or maybe youʻve noticed a towering tree with roots jutting out into the air; that's hala, or pandanus. The long leaves are picked when dry and used for weaving into mats, jewelry, and hats. It is also said that these leaves were used to make sails for great voyaging canoes. The next time you visit Pau Hana community hall, you may meet Aunty Lorna Pacheco, a hala practitioner, who will share with you her unique craft.

Iʻll bet you didnʻt know that our kīhāpai had so much waiting for you to discover! On your next visit to Aulani Resort, be sure to ask our cast members about everything you see.

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