Mid-Century Marvels of Hawaii

Vintage postcard of Maui Lihi Kai Cottages in Kihei
Image: Kamaaina56 flickr.com

Mr. Roger just returned from the land of pineapples and hula skirts (sorry, no photos of Mr. Roger in a hula skirt on this trip), spending a much-needed week of relaxation and rejuvenation on Maui. Dining at fabulous restaurants (Mama’s Fish House and Lahaina Grill to name a few) and lazing away the afternoons on heavenly beaches (Ka’anapali Beach and Makena Beach among those visited), one wonders what mid-century life on the islands of Hawaii was like. With mid-century icons including Kress, Liberty House, Trader Vic’s (fun fact: first Trader Vic’s franchise opened in Seattle in 1940), and Sheraton Maui, what did living on and visiting the islands look like back in the 40s, 50s, and 60s. Was mid-century architecture present on the island or was it all tiki huts (as the infamous vintage airline posters liked to seduce us with). Mr. Roger decided to take a trip to the vast corners of the Internet to find out.

Hawaii Safeway 1963
Image: Mauibuilt2011 flickr.com

Kau Kau Corner, 1940s
Image: Kamaaina56 flickr.com

Wayne’s Associated Service Station, Oahu, built 1952
Image: army.arch flickr.com

Pauling House designed by Honolulu Airport designer, Vladimir Ossipoff, 1957
Image: Honolulu Academy of Arts

Sheraton Maui Hotel, opened 1963
Image: hmdavid flickr.com

Dreaming of the next trip…but which island should I pick?

7 thoughts on “Mid-Century Marvels of Hawaii

  1. Sorry there’s no hula skirt photo – but happy that you had a grand relaxin’ time – You deserved it!!

  2. I loved this post 🙂 My family vacationed there in 1972 (sort of late mid-century?). That was towards the end of that simpler era. I was actually allowed to walk a few blocks with my older cousin to do some shopping for souvenirs.
    I remember staying in Honolulu at a hotel called the Outrigger East. The pool was on the 3rd floor but still outside. In Maui we stayed in mid-century condos. I remember thinking of how cool they were to this young Midwestern girl. I had not seen anything like that before. In Hilo we stayed at a big hotel surrounded by a moat with huge Koi.
    Thanks for reminding me of a wonderful vacation from my childhood!

  3. Great photos! Lucky you to get away… especially a trip to Maui. I’m with “anonymous”… the hula skirt would have really been special. (wink!)
    You always find the best vintage photos… enjoyed it so much. I feel rested and I think I have a tan!

  4. I could spend hours combing the internet in search of vintage photos…in fact I found so many vintage Hawaii photos I wanted to post that I had to limit myself to architecture. If I get brave enough to break out the hula skirt photo, I can post all the groovy, retro hula photos I found.

  5. GO FOR IT! There’s nothing hotter than a guy in a hula skirt! Lets us know you know how to have a good time. (laughing!)
    We’ll enjoy the other photos too, no doubt. 🙂

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