The Fashion Guide to Hawaii - Expedia Australia Travel Blog

The Fashion Guide to Hawaii

The Fashion Guide to Hawaii

When it comes to fashion, Honolulu has really lifted its game. Yes, you can still buy a Hawaiian shirt and tikki necklaces on every street corner, but the kitsch is slowly being run out of town by the chic.

From Gucci, Chanel, Hermes and Saint Laurent flagships to vast designer outlets and malls, Oahu has become one of the world’s premiere shopping destinations. One where you can swim and get a tan.

But beyond the big brands, here are a few not to be missed fashion boutiques that offer a different shopping experience with a cool Pacific edge.

The Growing Keiki

Right at the entrance of Halewai town on Oahu’s North Shore is an old 1930’s weatherboard cottage, which is home to my favourite kids stores in Hawaii. The Growing Keiki  (keiki is Hawaiian for children) features an eclectic range of surf-inspired fashion for boys and girls aged 0-10 years. Alongside cult brands like Roxy and Billabong are some beautiful locally designed pieces. I bought organic cotton Onsies with hand painted pineapples for my pregnant friends and a bunch of gorgeous hand-stitched quilts. The prices are truly reasonable and it makes a welcome departure from the plastic grass skirts and bad floral print t-shirts that line the malls in Waikiki. This is the place to buy gifts for the littlest people in your life. The Growing Keiki, 66-051   Kamehameha Hwy. Haleiwa, Oahu 

MuuMuu Heaven

Half an hour from Honolulu, in the small township of Kailua, you’ll find MuuMuu Heaven, Hawaii’s hottest boutique. The brainchild of Australian Deb Mascia, the store specialises in recycled, reimagined and refurbished fashion and homewares. Famous for one-of-a-kind dresses made from vintage and discarded muu-muu’s, her customers include Cameron Diaz, Beyonce and the entire Obama clan.

Every product in the store is recycled or sustainable and Deb has curated an eclectic bunch of like-minded brands under one very cool roof. She also contributes a percentage of every sale to help preserve Hawaii’s coral reefs. Keep an eye out for Deb’s new store – Hana Hou Vintage is just around the corner from MuuMuu Heaven and as the name suggests, will be full of vintage finds. MuuMuu Heaven, 767 Kailua Road #100, Kailua, Oahu 

The Olive Boutique

This gorgeous store stocks a quirky mix of local and designer fashion for the cool kids of Oahu. Located on the hip Windward Coast, the super-cute shop front provides a fitting introduction to this Aladdin’s cave of clothes and accessories. From bamboo sunglasses and recycled t-shirts to custom kaftans and denim, Olive is one of those stores where you’ll find the perfect necklace or the scarf you never knew you needed. There’s a great selection from cult brands Ella Moss, Splendid, Saint Grace, Young Fabulous and Broke and Roberta Roller. The owner Alice is as lovely as her equally handsome husband, Parker, who runs a men’s store next door. It’s called Oliver’s. Naturally. The Olive Boutique, 43 Kihapai St, Kailua, Honolulu

A Word on Ala Moana…

No trip to Hawaii is complete without a visit to Honolulu’s shopping mecca, Ala Moana. One of the largest open-air malls in the world, it’s home to the biggest fashion, food and homeware brands on the planet. Shopping centres of this size can be overwhelming, so grab a map before you start and take a moment to work out your game plan.

For me, the must-do’s are: Foot Locker (sneakers of every brand are half the price); J.Crew (it’s my favourite of the American high-street labels and caters for the whole family), Claire’s (if you’ve got daughters this accessories mega-mart is amazing), Neiman Marcus (check out the young designer floor and the shoes), Miu Miu (because it is just so pretty) and Godiva Chocolatier (you’ve haven’t lived until you’ve had their soft serve in a chocolate dipped waffle cone). Ala Moana Shopping Centre, 1450 Ala Moana Boulevard, Honolulu

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Paula Joye

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