Best of Honolulu 2021: The Best Services on O'ahu – HONOLULU Magazine

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Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino
A lot of people find life in the solitary pleasure of a book—and some find social life in an online book club. Civil Beat’s club began with a mixer at Da Shop bookstore’s warehouse in November 2019; during the lockdown it threw a literary lifeline to readers. The news site provided moderators and Da Shop: Books + Curiosities sourced books; this year an all-local author lineup included Jim Dooley’s Sunny Skies, Shady Characters: Cops, Killers and Corruption in the Aloha State. For that one, newspaper crime reporter Dooley conversed with CB’s Nick Grube to the delight of the 183 attendees. Find the 2021 books at Da Shop in Kaimukī and join the club at its Facebook page. —DW
Da Shop: Books + Curiosities, 3565 Harding Ave.,, @dashophnl 
SEE ALSO: Hawai‘i Book Recommendations: I Can’t Believe It’s Literature (And Local!) 
Photo: Courtesy of Hawai‘i Cat Café
About 80 cats are adopted from Hawai‘i Cat Café every month, bringing the total to more than 1,400 adoptions since it opened in 2018. But there’s no pressure if you just want to cuddle and play. On the café side, grab a popular Calico Latte (coconut and macadamia nut) or Tropical Tortie Iced Tea (hibiscus ginger tea with coconut, orange and strawberry), as well as some baked goods—all of which are made fresh daily by Honolulu Coffee Co.—and either take a seat by the large picture window facing the cat lounge or head inside with a timed buzzer. It’s $12.50 for 30 minutes or $17.50 an hour ($3 less for those under 12), and up to 10 people can hang in the 750-square-foot cat lounge along with a supervisor. All cats (usually 25–35 at a time) are rescues from the Hawaiian Humane Society and arrive spayed/neutered, vaccinated, microchipped and treated for parasites. —KV
415 Kapahulu Ave., (808) 744-3192,, @hawaiicatcafe 

A post shared by Lei by Dillyn (@leibydillyn)

Glam up any special occasion, celebration or Insta-shoot whenever and wherever you want with a lei po‘o, crafted by the oh-so-talented you, thanks to Lei by Dillyn—a florist based in Mānoa who creates vibrant, tropical and anything-but-simple lei po‘o, lei ā‘ī and maile-style lei lā‘ī, eye-catching bouquets and special occasion arrangements. The newish monthly lei workshops at boho-chic Island Bungalow in Kaka‘ako offer hands-on lessons on constructing your own wili style weave in both open group formats as well as private classes with at least four eager lei-learners. We think it’s the perfect time to mix with new humans outside of your pod and to learn some new skills. —KK
670 Auahi St., (808) 888-2282,, @leibydillyn
Photo: Aaron K. Yoshino
Just as we do during hurricane alerts, we rushed to City Mill when the pandemic closures struck in March 2020. This time we came for fresh pots of herbs for our terrace gardens, hand sanitizer, fairy lights, home repair supplies—and those ubiquitous yellow buckets, which we’ve used for everything from storing baby toys to beach-trash pickups. The yellow bucket is the perfect emblem of how embedded the 122-year-old company is in our lives and how central the eight stores became as management adeptly walked the line on safety while keeping open our lifeline to gardening supplies and plants, propane, lumber, fixtures and Gorilla Glue. —DW
Multiple locations,, @citymill
Now that you’ve had a year to dream about that next vacation, Panda Travel Agency has some advice. Travel to Asia was closed in May, manager Daisy Tsui Komeiji says, “but we are busy with packages for Las Vegas. People have cabin fever from quarantine, and they’re ready to go out.” Since the agency opened in 1981, it has led tours through Asia, the U.S. and Canada. This summer, Panda’s Disneyland packages are popular; other travelers, though, might need guidance navigating the now tricky airline schedules. Says Komeiji: “Many other travel agencies have had to halt operations …  [but] we’ve been able to help out folks still booking travel, from vacations to business meetings.” —Kainoa Deguilmo
1017 Kapahulu Ave., (808) 734-1961,, @pandatravelhi
Global Health Chiropractic has topped the list for our readers since 2015 and the list of services it offers goes beyond spinal adjustments. Clients can also receive total life conditioning, which includes coaching on nutrition and weight loss, corrective posture exercises that can be practiced at home or in the office, as well as spinal and posture screenings. Led by Sarah Padrutt, the team has a flexible schedule and flexible payment plans. —KD
677 Ala Moana Blvd., #914, (808) 521-9686,
Say it with us: We have all earned a bit (correction: a lot) of self-care and pampering. Elizaveta Neginskaya Signature Brows & Beauty Studio is ready for our outdoor closeups with its mix of beauty services including waxing, facials, permanent makeup, hair removal and brow-mapping (a strong brow game has continued in 2021). Owner Neginskaya, known as Liza, studied skin care and beauty techniques in the U.S., Russia and Ukraine before setting up shop in Kaka‘ako. We’re starting our recovery with the one-hour signature organic seaweed facial peel. —KK
627 South St., #3, (808) 797-5757,, @signaturebrowshawaii 
Photo: Courtesy of Lex Brodie’s
Founded in 1961 by its lanky longboarding namesake, Lex Brodie’s Tire, Brake & Service Co. is the locals’ go-to for automotive care, no matter how fancy or gently used your personal form of transportation. On our beater car’s recent visit for a stuck window, staff also cleared a sticky one for no charge. Aloha is real at this employee-owned chain; at another repair shop where we took Old Nessie for a recall, the fix came with an “estimate” for $3,700 in urgent repairs. Whereas at Lex Brodie’s, there’s no upsell and a caveman on Queen Street—what more do you want? —DW
Multiple locations,, @lexbrodiesoahu 
Winner: Central Union Church Adult Day Care & Day Health Center
1660 S. Beretania St., (808) 983-5910,
Finalist: live well at Iwilei by Kāhala nui
888 Iwilei Road, #105, (808) 218-7777,, @livewellhi
SEE ALSO: How the Arcadia Family of Companies Copes with COVID-19
Winner: Street Shine
Multiple locations,, @streetshinehawaii
Finalist: McKinley Car Wash
1139 Kapi‘olani Blvd., (808) 596-2609,
Winner: Geico
711 Kapi‘olani Blvd., Suite 300, (808) 593-1010,, @geico
Finalist: State Farm
Multiple locations,, @statefarm
Finalist: Kaimukī Auto Repair
3375 Wai‘alae Ave., (808) 737-1711, @kaimukiautorepair
Winner: First Hawaiian Bank
Multiple locations,, @fhbhawaii
Finalist: Bank of Hawai‘i
Multiple locations,, @bankofhawaii
Winner: Vintage Barbershop Hawai‘i
1157 Bethel St., (808) 888-2086,, @vintagebarbershophi
Finalist: Mojo Barbershop & Social Club
Multiple locations,, @mojobarbershop
Winner: Enterprise
Multiple locations,, @enterprise
Finalist: Hertz
Multiple locations,, @hertz
Winner: Tanioka’s Seafoods and Catering
94-903 Farrington Highway, Waipahu, (808) 671-3779,, @taniokas
Finalist: Marian’s Catering
79 Mango Place, Wahiawā, (808) 621-6758,, @marians_catering
SEE ALSO: Secrets of the Chefs Who Cater in Hawai‘i 
Winner: Verizon
Multiple locations,, @verizon
Finalist: T-Mobile
Multiple locations,, @tmobile
Finalist: Hawai‘i Elite Chiropractic
99-128 ‘Aiea Heights Drive, #404, ‘Aiea, (808) 445-3527,, @hawaiielitechiropractic
Winner: The Maids
Multiple locations,, @themaidscorp
Finalist: Maid in O‘ahu
307A Kamani St., #12, (808) 664-0036,, @maidinoahu
Winner: Alternate Energy
92-1276 Waihona St., Suite #114, Pearl City, (808) 842-5853,, @aeihawaii
Finalist: RevoluSun
660 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 220A, (808) 748-8888,, @revolusun_smarthome
Winner: Asia Pacific Plastic Surgery Inc.
1401 S. Beretania St., #888, (808) 207-7345,, @shimchingmd
Finalist: Ferguson Clinic
677 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 1011, (808) 521-1999,, @thefergusonclinic
Winner: Hawai‘i State FCU
Multiple locations, (808) 587-2700,, @hawaiistatefcu
Finalist: Hawai‘iUSA Federal Credit Union
Multiple locations, (808) 534-4300,, @hawaiiusafcu
Finalist: Spa Uilani
520 Keawe St., (808) 312-4485,, @spauilani
Winner: Longs/CVS
Multiple locations,, @cvshealth
Finalist: Walgreens
Multiple locations,, @walgreens
Winner: Hakuyosha Clean Living
Multiple locations,, @hakuyosha_hawaii
Finalist: Al Phillips The Cleaner
Multiple locations,
Winner: ALTRES 
Multiple locations,, @altres_inc
Finalist: Staffing Solutions of Hawai‘i
1375 Kapi‘olani Blvd., #915, (808) 949-3669,, @staffinghawaii
Winner: The Beauty Room HI
Multiple locations,, @the_beauty_room_808 and @the_beauty_room_808_mililani
Finalist: Lavish Spa & Nail Lounge
Multiple locations,, @lavishkapolei
Winner: Edward Jones
Multiple locations,
Finalist: Ameriprise Financial
745 Fort St., Suite 1400, (808) 784-3289,, @ameriprise
Winner: Watanabe Floral
1618 N. Nimitz Highway, (808) 832-9360,, @watanabefloral
Finalist: Paiko
675 Auahi St., Suite 127, (808) 988-2165,, @paikohawaii
SEE ALSO: Learn How to Make Your Own Lei Po‘o for Lei Day
Winner: 7-Eleven Hawai‘i
Multiple locations,, @7elevenhi
Finalist: Hele
Multiple locations,, @helegas
Winner: Atlas Construction
2222 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 951-9500,, @atlasconstructionhawaii
Finalist: Ko‘olau Builders
2604 Doris Place,, @koolaubuilders
Winner: Honolulu MedSpa
1650 Liliha St., Suite 102, (808) 528-0888,, @honolulumedspa
Finalist: European Wax Center
Multiple locations,
Winner: Dada Salon
410 Atkinson Drive, (808) 888-3232,, @dadahawaii
Finalist: Satori Salon & Spa
9 A Maluniu Ave., Kailua, (808) 261-5000,, @satorisalonspahi
Winner: Kama‘āina Handyman
(808) 393-1163,
Finalist: Handy Andy
80 Sand Island Access Road, Unit #227, (808) 285-3443,, @handyandyhawaii
Finalist: Home Depot
Multiple locations,, @homedepot
Winner: State Farm
Multiple locations,, @statefarm
Finalist: Allstate
Multiple locations,, @allstate
Winner: Kapili Roofing and Painting
94-221 Leonui St., Waipahu, (808) 621-7663,, @kapiliroofingpainting
Finalist: Bernardo’s Painting
Lanikūhana Ave., Mililani, (808) 384-0864,, @bernardospainting
Winner: Alert Alarm Hawai‘i
3210 Ualena St., (808) 521-5000,
Finalist: MDH Automation
335 Merchant St., #1799, (808) 389-8451,
Winner: Spectrum
Multiple locations,, @getspectrum
Finalist: Hawaiian Telcom
Multiple locations, (808) 643-3456,, @hawaiiantelcom
Winner: Ko‘olau Landscaping
252 Ilihau St., Kailua, (808) 590-3837,, @koolaulandscaping
Finalist: Hapa Landscaping
3514 Wai‘alae Ave., (808) 732-4272,, @hapalandscaping
Winner: Salz Lock and Key
3012 Wai‘alae Ave., Suite 100, (808) 734-6557,, @salzcorp
Finalist: Pop-a-Lock
Multiple locations, (808) 923-5623,
Winner: Servco Lexus Honolulu
650 Kapi‘olani Blvd., (877) 278-4715,, @servcolexus
Finalist: BMW of Honolulu
777 Kapi‘olani Blvd., (808) 201-6026,, @bmwofhonolulu
Winner: Lavish Spa & Nail Lounge
Multiple locations,, @lavishkapolei
Finalist: Salon Glitter
Unit C-101, 903 Ke‘eaumoku St., (808) 949-2218,, @salonglitterhawaii
Winner: Island Movers
4397 Lawehana St., (808) 832-4000,, @islandmovers
Finalist: Johnny the Mover
661 Ke‘eaumoku St., (808) 957-0040,, @johnnythemover
Winner: Kīlauea Pest Control
Multiple locations,, @kilaueapestcontrol
Finalist: Terminix
Multiple locations,, @trustterminix
Winner: Heaven on Earth Salon & Day Spa
1050 Alakea St., (808) 599-5501,, @heavenonearthhi
Finalist: Massage Envy
Multiple locations,, @massageenvyhi
Winner: 535 Plumbing
810 Bannister St., (808) 300-0535,
Finalist: T&C Plumbing
2472 Komo Mai Drive, Pearl City, (808) 456-2429,
Winner: Coldwell Banker Pacific Properties
1314 S. King St., Second Floor, (808) 596-0456,, @cbpacific
Finalist: Better Homes & Gardens Real Estate Advantage Realty
4211 Wai‘alae Ave., #96, (808) 738-3600,, @betterhawaii
Winner: The Plaza Assisted Living
Multiple locations, (808) 745-1941,, @theplazahawaii
Finalist: Kāhala Nui
4389 Malia St., (808) 218-7001,, @kahalanui
Winner: Akamai Roofing
2222 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 486-5555,, @akamairoofing
Finalist: Kapili Roofing and Painting
94-221 Leonui St., Waipahu, (808) 621-7663,, @kapiliroofingpainting
Winner: RevoluSun
660 Ala Moana Blvd., Suite 220A, (808) 748-8888,, @revolusun_smarthome
Finalist: KumuKit
99-1350 Koaha Place, ‘Aiea, (808) 524-7336,
We aren’t picky, we’re just…discerning.
Hawai‘i is full of amazing places. Most of them you’re free to visit, but there are a few where you’re just not allowed. Here’s a peek into Hawai‘i’s coolest off-limits corners.
We take a look inside your high school yearbooks to find what’s changed about the local high school experience over the years, and what’s stayed exactly the same.
Hole-in-the-wall general stores dishing up their own eats—even if it’s just one ‘ono item—are a beloved part of Island life. Here are a few of Hawai‘i’s best.
Need something to read—or hand to someone who does? Here’s HONOLULU’s first-ever list of the most iconic, trenchant and irresistible Island books, as voted by a panel of literary community luminaries.
© 2021 Honolulu Magazine.


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