What's New in Oahu, Hawaii - Page 2

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Waikiki, Oahu
Be a part of the nightlife in Waikiki  (Gus Vanderelst/Photographer's Choice/Getty)

Definitely hit Bar 35 (35 N. Hotel Street, Tel: 808-537-3535). It opened last year and is a stylishly sexy bar and lounge. Recline on its large black leather couches, enjoy one of its 100 beers from around the world, and take in the fun and relaxed lounge atmosphere. The prices are right and the clientele cute.

For sheer luxury and splash, Pearl Ultralounge (Ala Moana Center, Tel: 808-944-8000) is an upscale restaurant and nightclub waiting to wow you. The décor is designed with dark mahogany floors, natural stone, and elegant fabrics covering two levels and three different environments. One area containing booths and tables is equipped for bottle service, involving a guest purchasing an entire bottle of liquor for $200/$300 and then having it served to them by their own private waitress/host/bartender. Pearl has a small dance floor and is less about making a scene than it is about being seen. With $12 martinis, you're coming here to spend the green, but you won't care. There is mother-of-pearl in the ceilings, backlit red glowing walls, all the glassware is crystal, and some of the specialty drinks are sprinkled with edible pearl dust.

The tried and true gay bars of Oahu: Hula's Bar & Lei Stand (134 Kapahulu Ave, Tel: 808-923-0669), Angels Waikiki (2256 Kuhio Ave, Tel: 808-926-9766), and Fusion (2260 Kuhio Avenue, Tel: 808-944-4700) are still fashionable and mixing it up with nightly events and parties. There's also a hidden hot spot off the beaten path that is getting great word-of-mouth: Chikos Tavern (930 McCully Street, Tel: 808-949-5440), located in Waikiki, is a good-size karaoke lounge/bar that feels like you're drinking at a friend's house. A mixed crowd of gay, straight, island entertainers, locals, and tourists all converge on this little bar to sing. They serve a local comfort food of Spam Musubi (a Japanese rice patty with sliced spam) and a Mochiko chicken battered in rice flour and teriyaki sauce. With their new sake and wine tasting nights, it's a great place to kick back and belt out your best.

Waikiki is known for being a great place to learn to surf. Cherry Fu, 26, a Harvard grad in economics, recently moved from Boston to Hawaii and started Girls who Surf (Honolulu. Tel: 808-371-8917), a new company that gives surfing lessons and holds competitions for female amateur surfers and body boarders. Gentlemen are welcome as well. Lessons start at $75/person and are available at various locations including Waikiki, Diamond Head, and the world famous big surf at Haleiwa on the North Shore.

Once you get a taste of Hawaii you tend to want more, so if you're venturing out to the other islands, take advantage of the Super Ferry. In July of this year, the Hawaii Super Ferry will begin daily ferry service from Oahu to Kaua'i and Maui. This is going to be quite a change from the flight-heavy island hopping you had to do before. These ocean-going catamarans will give you a cruise view of Hawaii; and if you've rented a car, bring it along—it's only about $55 one way for you and the car.

For the latest of what's happening in Oahu, visit www.gayhawaii.com for general information and specific gay & lesbian goings on. Also make sure to visit Arts With Aloha for an up-to-date listing of what the arts and culture of Hawaii have in store for you.

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