Hawaii Restaurants Closing

Hawaii Restaurants Are Struggling; 4 More Shutter Entirely

Four more popular Honolulu restaurants closed suddenly amid upheaval in the Hawaii restaurant industry. This is unprecedented.

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70 thoughts on “Hawaii Restaurants Are Struggling; 4 More Shutter Entirely”

  1. BOH, thanks for the info. Sad state of affairs, so expensive to live in Hawaii. Do you know if housing costs have declined at all with the new transient vacation rental rules on Oahu? I haven’t seen anything mentioned about it in the news.



  2. I think in general, 20% should be the norm and if service is exceptional then 25% or more. But restaurant folks should realize that a lot of tourists have had to pay very inflated air fare and housing costs during their Hawaii stay, as well as food costs at local stores. Possibly, restaurant owners and the state of Hawaii should give wage and tax incentives to restaurant workers to make these jobs more appealing and acceptable.

  3. We need to stop this insane attack on the short-term rental, cottage industry that employs people within their communities and does not take away affordable homes. Short-term rentals in Honolulu County have been regulated to B&Bs, but DPP has not and does not appear that it will permit B&Bs. DPP needs to follow the law. It appears ethically, lawfully, and politically challenged and heavily influenced by the hotel industry and developers.

    With just a little more money, people may be able to take a better job in town and be able to afford a solution to the last few miles not covered by public transportation. With just a few more tourists venturing out of resort areas with rental cars, more restaurants may be able to survive.

    1. While I understand your logic, Hawaii was thriving before the air b n b and short term residential rentals came to the island. Because of this, it prices locals out of homes so they have to leave the island or forced to work several jobs. It creates a housing shortage for locals…who are the ones who serve tourists.

      1. SD, the entire country, Post Covid, is dealing with the same issues. The difference may be in how much things cost but remember that different portions of the country are not making the same amount of money. Rents have risen considerably everywhere far outpacing wages, that doesn’t include the Crazy Inflation. The pain is being felt everywhere is what I am saying.

  4. Tips dont go to the business owners, they go to the wait staff. The business owner decides if the resteraunt will close or not, based on their profit and loss statements. So tipping more wont help save your restaurants. Sad to say but the entire industry was hurt by the extreme covid restrictions placed upon them no fault of their own. Government doesn’t care much for the small business as they do for the large corporations who will fill their back pockets. You want small business to survive, then vote accordingly. The greedy politicians are ruining it.

  5. I think fast casual restaurants will be take out only, maybe walk up. The economics don’t support the dining room, cleaning, etc. Everywhere not just Hawaii.

    If I were Governor of Hawaii, I would make a big push for growing your own food. Commercial fish farms, vegetables, everything you can. It’s ridiculous for Hawaii to import as much food as they do.

    I know someone who works for a large employer with employees in Hawaii and a major metropolitan city. They were offering $10k plus a year in bonuses to move to Hawaii for even 2 years and there were no takers.

    Hawaii only seeks the rich and those people do not eat at fast casual restaurants.

  6. Well, you can thank both the previous administration and the now new governor for the fiscal state of countless small businesses and restaurants throughout the Islands for the chaos they caused! No real rhyme or reason, just an overriding amount of control of the Hawaiian Islands but then once again within Hawaii like everywhere else, you get what you vote for, over and over again!

  7. Wow! Piggy Small’s and Little Village closing! Two awesome restaurants will greatly be missed. Restaurants on the mainland have and are still suffering also. My ohana’s restaurant, a landmark for over 50 years in NC closed in June 2021 for many of the same reasons, despite being high paying, with benefits, insurance and profit sharing. Sending aloha to all impacted.

  8. I find it odd there are so many stories about too many visitors and ways to deter them and now not only should visitors pay extra fees/taxes but should tip more? Careful what is asked for you can only squeeze so much.

  9. Little Village was a favorite, and for more than the noodles. Sorry it’s gone, along with some others including Jimbo’’s udon. Thanks for keeping us up to date on this and other news, good and not so good, such as this.

    1. Hi Michael.

      Thanks. Yes, Jimbo’s on King Street closed quite some time ago. That was definitely a favorite. Somehow it’s still hard to believe it isn’t there.


  10. When the government gives long handouts or unemployment is extended people make more money than working milking the system. Also they pay no taxes.

    1. Extended unemployment benefits are long expired post-covid. Low-wage workers aren’t flocking back to the service sector for various reasons but not because they are collecting unemployment. They’re also not living off the $ they “milked out of the system”, that’s also been spent long ago, on, you know, the high cost of living. It’s really sad to see Little Village go, it was a gem.

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