Thursday, April 02, 2009


As President Obama himself has said, "What's best in me, and what's best in my message, is consistent with the tradition of Hawaii." And although I have toured the birthplace and homes of several presidents, I can't think of any place nicer to visit while studying the life of a president.

"The people of Hawaii are very proud of Barack Obama's island heritage and so are we," said Elizabeth Churchill, Aqua Hotel's VP Sales & Marketing. "Growing up and attending school on Oahu helped shape Obama into the fine leader he is today and we've developed a special package that shares insights on what being raised in a multi-cultural society is really all about."

I understand exactly what she means. Last year, I was lucky enough to stay at the Aqua Palms and Spa. It seemed so Hawaiian. It had its own "local flavour." That may sound like a silly thing to say -- but when you spend as many nights in large international chain hotel rooms, a hotel like Aqua Palms seems like a home cooked meal. Comfort food. Comfort Hotel.

My lingering memory of being treated like family is when I wanted to go to Pearl Harbor. I only had a few hours. There was a packaged tour but the concierge told me you could just take a city bus and pointed to where it was. And when I got back he asked me how I had enjoyed the day and if I had any problems with the bus. Taking a city bus always makes me feel like I am a native (or at least a native wanna-be).

Visitors encouraged to explore the island where Barack Obama grew up
Aqua Hotels & Resorts is celebrating President Barack

The "Obama-rama" package is available at all 12 Aqua Hotels in Waikiki.

Aqua's "Obama-rama" special includes:

Rates starting from $159 per night for Aqua Boutique hotels and $139 per night for Aqua Lite properties
One book per room booked: "The Dream Begins -- How Hawaii Shaped Barack Obama" by veteran Hawaii authors Stu Glauberman and Jerry Burris
Automatic compact rental car for each day booked (driver must be 25 years or older)
"Recently, the Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau unveiled a micro-site that shares where Obama likes to go and what he likes to see and do on Oahu," added Churchill. "It's a list that visitors can easily duplicate if they are interested to see what our next President enjoys about Hawaii and the rental car allows them to explore the island at their leisure." Visit the site at:

The "Obama-rama" special is available through June 30, 2009, based on availability. Rates quoted are for single or double occupancy, plus taxes. The special cannot be combined with any other offer.

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