Hawaiian launches new culturally sensitive amenities and soft products

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Hawaiian Airlines has teamed up with Moloka‘i-based brand Kealopiko to launch and upgrade a new line of in-flight amenities built upon the idea of sustainability. Starting just after Thanksgiving on November 26th, guests travelling between Hawai‘i and the carrier’s International and East-coast US destinations can relax with amenities and soft goods decorated with coral and fern patterns that reference Hawai‘i’s delicate natural resources.

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This exclusive collection reflects the two companies’ shared commitment to perpetuate Hawaiian culture, care for the environment and steward island visitors. Named ‘Ēkaha – the Hawaiian name of black coral representing a thriving coral reef, as well as the bird’s nest fern, an indicator of a healthy rainforest – the line alludes to the deep, symbiotic relationship between the land and sea.

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“This collaboration gave us and Hawaiian Airlines an opportunity to design a beautiful collection that also shares a significant moʻolelo (story),” said Jamie Makasobe, co-owner of Kealopiko.

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Kealopiko was founded by three women passionate about sharing the rich culture of Hawai‘i, protecting the environment and operating as an eco-conscious brand. The company’s production is done in a small shop on Moloka‘i, where organic materials are sustainably dyed, cut and sewn by hand before being sold online or in its downtown Honolulu store. Each of their designs honors indigenous wildlife, language, practices, aliʻi (royalty), kūpuna (elders and ancestors), and moʻolelo (stories and history).

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“Embarking on this redesign, we knew we wanted a partner who could help us tell the stories of our island home,” said Avi Mannis, senior vice president of marketing at Hawaiian Airlines. “Kealopiko is a natural fit. Their sustainable production and bold, contemporary design align with our values and complement the flight experience we want to offer our guests.”

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International Business Class and JFK/BOS First Class guests will be given a Hawaiian Airlines-branded canvas clutch, available in two different colorways, with the coral print and a coconut shell button. International guests seated in Extra Comfort will receive a natural felt pouch with a wood tag engraved with the ‘Ēkaha story.

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Both kits include the following amenities:

  • Bamboo comb
  • Comfortable socks with Hawaiian Airlines “slipper” design (international Business Class and JFK/BOS First Class only)
  • Dental kit including a bamboo toothbrush with charcoal bristles and toothpaste
  • Earbuds (international Extra Comfort only)
  • Earplugs
  • Hand and body balm, lip balm and hydrating mist from the airline’s private skincare line Lōli‘i
  • Premium sleep mask
  • Sample packet of Raw Elements USA reef-safe sunscreen, which Hawaiian, the sun care company’s official airline partner, introduced onboard in April 2018.
  • Packet of tissues

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Guests seated in the Main Cabin on international flights, First Class on North America red-eye flights, and First Class on Papeete and Pago Pago will receive a coral print kraft paper pouch with earplugs, earbuds and a sleep mask in one of three collectible, Hawai‘i-inspired designs.

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All amenity kits feature eco-friendly paper packaging, furthering Hawaiian’s effort to reduce single-use plastics in its fleet and throughout its operations.

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“Our partnership with Kealopiko advances our company’s progress to reduce waste, bring sustainability into our cabin, and encourage our guests to join us in taking care of our environment,” added Mannis.

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In addition to designing Hawaiian’s in-flight products, Kealopiko is releasing a limited ‘Ēkaha Collection clothing line. The apparel will be available for purchase beginning on Black Friday in-store or online at http://www.kealopiko.com. Kealopiko will donate a percentage of the sales – with Hawaiian Airlines matching up to $10,000 – to Kuaʻāina Ulu ʻAuamo, a local nonprofit that works to advance community-based natural resource management in Hawai‘i.

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“The special part of this partnership is being able to honor the elements of Hawai‘i [through the design] and also contribute to the continued work that is occurring within our communities for the well-being of our island home,” said Makasobe.

The Big (Island) Picture

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