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by Marquise Brack, staff writer

It would be cliché to advise all of those “to never look back,” who are facing seasonal anxiety over the recession of summer, and fall forward of another approaching school year. But as a new semester nears, and students try to fence their priorities into the conventional models of responsible, young adults, it would be equally notable to keep in mind, you’re in college after all, right?

Whether new to HPU, the Honolulu area, or are enrolling kama‘aina, there is a vibrant and eclectic energy that emanates within the aloha spirit and culture of downtown Honolulu.

It’s hard to avoid recycling lifestyle trends and activities while residing in the middle of the Pacific, but like the Pacific tides, the venues located within the downtown area, incessantly wash up new talents, ideas, fashions and food, to sustain and nurture the arts and entertainment on the island.

So, with the proceeding fall semester ahead, here is an inexpensive, but not cheap, trendy, yet unique, index that reflects the artistic events and tastes embodied within the culture of Honolulu.


, a Eurasian Cuisine restaurant, hosts “Martini Madness” Tue. thru Fri. from 4 p.m.-7 p.m. where martinis are affordably priced at $3.50 and accompanied by a complimentary buffet.
The Asian decor with carved wood paneling, paper lanterns and bamboo, flow throughout the themed rooms in the restaurant such as the Green Room and Opium Den that make it a modern art exhibit itself.

Location: 1121 Nuuanu Ave., 808-521-2900.

Next Door, formerly a warehouse, is a stylish metropolitian club that features live music and DJ’s that spin a mix of techno, house and hip-hop.

A trendy dance club that hosts a series of local events that promote Honolulu artists and musicians.

Location: 43 N. Hotel St., 808-548-6398.

The Living Room, docked at Fisherman’s Wharf, is inside what looks like an old ship and transforms from a family style restaurant in the daytime, to a premier reggae night club and dance hall music venue.

Location: Fisherman’s Wharf, 808-395-2100.

Creative outlets

On the first Thursday of every month, the Hawaiian Hut at Ala Moana, hosts a poetry slam that has a featured poet, live DJ, and open mic for up-and-coming artists.

First Thursdays located within the large, and spacious, bungaloo venue, provides an overall quaint setting that promotes the local arts.

Following first Thursdays is First Fridays, where the vendors of downtown Chinatown open their doors to the community the first Friday of each month. It is an evening that exhibits the work of local artist and is accompanied by wine tasting and sampling.
Nuuanu Gallery Walks: 5 to 9 p.m.


Both The Living Room and the Mai Tai Bar, located in the Ala Moana Center, have live reggae bands perform throughout the weekdays.

Jazz Minds Art & Cafe, a savvy, brick- walled lounge, has live music Mon. thru Sat. and dedicates itself to the promotion of young, improv musicians.

Location: 1161 Kapi‘olani Blvd., 808-945-0800.



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