Hawaii Theatre Center Honolulu, Hawaii

The last remaining theater of this vintage in Hawaii was a venue for vaudeville, plays, and musicals and was proclaimed the "Pride of the Pacific" when it opened in 1922. After a period of struggle, the theatre closed in 1984.

  • Location

    Honolulu, Hawaii

  • Sector


  • Service


  • Client

    Hawaii Theatre Center

  • Status


  • Size

    37,000 SF

As a result of a creative restoration, it reopened in 1996 and has once again become a major cultural destination in Honolulu. The renovated building has improvements in critical areas including accessibility, sight lines, acoustics, lighting, and technical features. A building perilously close to demolition now has a renewed purpose and the features and qualities to entertain audiences of all types for years to come.

Due to years of neglect and being ravaged by termites, key elements of the interior were lost or severely damaged. Using art conservation processes, items like the painted proscenium mural, The Glorification of Drama, were restored or reconstructed. Some features are creative translations inspired by the past.

The new monhair seat fabric incorporates the form of a Grecian woman found in the original linen seat cushions. The project illustrates that the best restorations are often intelligent adaptations that find balance, reverence, and creative revisions to meet today’s performance requirements.


National Trust for Historic Preservation: National Preservation Honor Award, 2006
League of Historic American Theatres: Award for Outstanding Historic Theater, 2005
AIA New York State: Excellence in Design Award, 1996
Better Business Bureau of Hawaii: Torch Award for Business Ethics, 2006