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. What happened to the beautiful Pineapple and Sugarcane Fields? Shipped out to another country while Hawaiians struggle for work and for food sources. Now you import everything that once was easily acquired right on your home soil. Still baffles me when I visit Hawaii and those historic, legendary industries no longer exist. Open and baren fields are a sad reminder of what Hawaii gave away. Vote smarter Hawaii.

    1. Your suggestion of raising tips to 25 % should consider some people don’t tip
      at all! I suggest an automatic 18 % on bill. More at your discretion. As we do when really pleased!
      Remember your article about nickel and diming….20 to 25 % kinda smacks of that.
      Your cheap fares are not attracting the big spenders…part of the problem.
      I make an analogy to underpaid service workers to what Hawaii has done for decades before…underpaid teachers!

  2. Well our state and local governments could make certain take out boxes illegal, ban plastic straws, increase welfare and unemployment benefits, shuttered the source of 16% of Oahu electricity production, and ban future gas stoves! Oh wait a minute; Government has already done taken these steps or are in the process of doing so. Most Hawaii restaurants were thriving pre pandemic, and then the state and federal governments shut down or hamstrung most small businesses and paid people to refrain from working. I wonder who’s to blame here?

  3. i think if people who eat out tourists or locals spend money ina restaurant they still deserve the same level of food and table service. Cost of living doesn’t raise tips. If the server is attentive and respensive 20% is expected. Most peoples cost of living has gone up ,cost of good, gas,rent. And our incomes dont go up so we can make rent and support ourselves and pay our bills at customary levels post covid, at best if we re lucky it’s up by 1.5 to 3 % or at rate of inflation.Rent goes up 3.5% that takes that increase away. Anyway many professional jobs like nursing caring for the aged in their homes one has to do 3 jobs to keep a roof over their head. There is no tips to increase just burnout and bad health from stress. It affects many

  4. As a former resort bartender (Lake Tahoe… 17 yrs pouring drinks), I really hate to say that tipping 25% on what is now typically an overpriced meal or bar tab isn’t the answer, or at least not sustainable as restaurant/bar prices in Hawaii continue to increase significantly. I’m normally a generous tipper, however, aside from the staffing shortages, it seems to me the restaurant owners are the clear winners if they won’t pay their staff. Recently I was with three friends at a nice beachfront restaurant on Maui last week for “happy hour” and I picked up the tab for two rounds. The bill was about $140 with tax! Throw in a 20% tip and I left spending $170 on eight drinks. I know… I saw the menu, but it’s getting kinda ridiculous now.

  5. How can we possibly pay 25 percent tip on top of paying 25 percent more for a meal? Who will be able to continue to enjoy eating out?

  6. Okay, so a staff shortage is the crux of the problem for restaurants staying open??? What are these former employees doing now to earn a living, pay for rent and food, etc.??? And we keep hearing of the Overflow of tourists coming to HI, they have to eat somewhere! So, we have restaurants trying to get staff, tourists trolling for a place to eat, and we can’t put these two together???

    So, restaurants, pay staff better if you want to stay alive and feed the hoards of tourists inundating HI. Problem solved! (I hope!)

    1. They left the island during the pandemic to go to states that were open or areas where they could work and afford to live. California restaurants are suffering as well. Hawaii and California had the longest restrictions and longest closures, yet have the highest cost of living areas. It’s really sad actually because these states got hella money from the federal government for “state of emergency” yet gave the people crumbs while their sponsors got rich.

      1. I live in Texas now, and I have news for you–businesses around here can’t get employees either. And this state pretty much stayed open. People are moving into other industries–industries that pay a living wage.

  7. Quality of service at restaurants seems to be declining, probably due to staff shortages, yet we are now expected to increase a tip for inferior service????

    1. Is it just me or has the quality of food gone down too? We ate at a fine dining restaurant last year and it was about $130 a head including drinks. I was not impressed with the food but because it was fine dining, the service was good. Tip was already included in the bill.

  8. Because of your handy information on Hawaii we learned we needed to get reservations early for restaurants because they have fewer wait staff and often fewer tables. That is so true. Thanks for letting us know

  9. In the Sultan Restaurant in Wisconsin, employees will make $20 an hour plus a 5% profit share. No tipping is allowed. Maybe if that became the norm people would be happy with the prices.
    We pay for many things that don’t require tips, like car sales or rentals, without tipping. Let’s look at doing the same in the service industry.

  10. Yes something needs to be done but I admit I don’t know the solution. We just got back from Hawaii a few days ago and the prices at beloved restaurants have doubled or more at several of our favorite restaurants. We began discussing that we may not be able to afford to return. Ex. We love the KPC in Hawaii Island. It cost 2.5 times what we used to pay. Same with the Canoehouse. And the food wasn’t as good although the views were still spectacular.


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