Less colonial, more sustainable experiences for tourists in Hawaii are set for the future thanks to the islands’ tourism authority, now—for the first time—run by a majority of Hawaiian natives. With a local perspective and interest at the center, the new tourism plan promises to focus more on “sustainable destination management rather than marketing,” through community involvement and visitor education. “In the past, visitors were spoon-fed what outsiders thought they wanted,” Kainoa Horcajo—founder of Maui-based Mo’olelo Group, a consultancy that teams up with hotels to rework hosted experiences—tells Bloomberg. “Now, it’s time to take a risk, challenge the visitor, and give them something real.” The changes include everything from teaching tourists “the concept of malama, or caring for the land” to incorporating more traditionally Hawaiian food and culture programs at hotels, to leis made from “locally grown flowers instead of orchids” and incentives for guests to spend a day cleaning up beaches or reforesting land. Find out more at Bloomberg.
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