Aquarium exhibit spotlights northwestern islands' marine life

Oahu visitors intrigued by Hawaii's coral reef ecosystems shouldn't miss the new Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibition at the Waikiki Aquarium, an unprecedented look at some of the Aloha State's rarest natural treasures that opened Aug. 18.

"The new Northwestern Hawaiian Islands exhibit not only continues our mission to inspire and promote understanding, appreciation and conservation of Pacific marine life, but it also allows visitors to experience some of the rarity that the Marine National Monument boasts," said the aquarium's director, Andrew Rossiter. "Many of the species on display are abundant around the northwestern Hawaiian Islands but are extremely rare or absent around the main Hawaiian Islands."

Beginning 150 miles northwest of Kauai, the Papahanaumokuakea Marine National Monument stretches across 1,500 miles of the Pacific and is home to more than 7,000 marine species, a quarter of which are found nowhere else on the planet. See  

First China-Hawaii nonstop

China Eastern debuted its twice-weekly Shanghai-Honolulu service Aug. 9, inaugurating the first regularly scheduled, nonstop flight between China and Hawaii.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority is expecting more than 91,000 Chinese visitors in 2011, a year-over-year increase of 37%, due in large part to the new China Eastern service. According to HTA research, Chinese visitors spend about $398 a day during vacations in the Islands, and state tourism officials estimate the new nonstop Shanghai-Honolulu route will add $60 million annually to the state's economy.

Outrigger chair steps aside

Richard Kelley stepped down as chairman of Honolulu-based Outrigger Enterprises on Aug. 12, making room for his son Charles "Chuck" Kelley to succeed him.

"After 25 years as chairman, I felt it was time to follow the example of my father [company founder Roy Kelley] and continue the evolution of our company's leadership by passing the reins to the next generation," Kelley, 77, said in a statement.

"However, no one should imagine I'm retiring," he added. "I plan to keep doing most of what I've been doing since stepping down as CEO in 1993, but I'm asking Chuck to take over the considerable governance work involved in chairing the board."

David Carey will continue as president and CEO. Outrigger currently operates, or has under construction, 44 properties in Hawaii, Asia and the Pacific.


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