Maui News

Grand Wailea Launches Aloha Pledge for Responsible Tourism

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PC: Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria resort, announced the launch of a resort-wide education initiative asking guests to take an Aloha Pledge.  The oath seeks a commitment of respect for Hawaiʻi’s natural resources, culture and people.

Inspired by similar initiatives on Kauaʻi and Hawaiʻi Island, Grand Wailea intends to leverage its reach as Maui’s largest private employer, and bring attention to important issues faced by residents and state agencies.

“With the launch of the Aloha Pledge, Grand Wailea is renewing our commitment to being responsible stewards of the land and respectful neighbors, and reinforcing with our guests what it means to be pono and live with aloha,” said J.P. Oliver, managing director of Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria resort. “This is an important step toward realizing a more responsible tourism future for all of Maui.”

PC: Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort


Grand Wailea’s Aloha Pledge, which guests receive upon arrival to the resort, includes a code of respectful conduct, information about safety and protected species, education about cultural values and resources about etiquette in areas of special interest. The Pledge is also stationed throughout the resort’s high-traffic areas and in back-of-house message boards to remind team members of the resort’s commitment.

“Guests reading this pledge affirm their commitment to behaving respectfully and responsibly,” said Oliver. “By doing so, we’re promoting a future where visitors enjoy the treasures of Maui while protecting its spirit, preserving its beauty and minimizing our impact on precious natural resources and local families. It’s a commitment to do our part for our islands and for our keiki.”

Resort executives say the Aloha Pledge builds upon the resort’s sustainability commitments, which have “generated more than 6,000 gallons of biodiesel, eliminated 823,000 lbs of carbon dioxide emissions and prevented 130,000 lbs of plastic from entering Maui’s environment.”


Executives say that as the resort continues to build on its sustainability commitments, its energy-efficient systems have inspired a vision to become a net-zero water usage facility in 2020. In addition, the resort has reduced consumption of single-use plastic water bottles by 90% over the last three years and is pursuing a goal of zero single-use plastic bottles by 2021.

Below is the full text of the Grand Wailea’s Aloha Pledge:



It is our privilege to live on these sacred islands and our responsibility to protect them. We hope you read this pledge in the spirit of aloha and we sincerely hope you choose to join us in our efforts to uphold a future where visitors and residents alike enjoy the treasures of Maui while protecting it for future generations.

  • I will embrace with reverence opportunities to learn about the Hawaiian culture and will respect its sacred traditions and values.
  • I will recognize that I am welcomed here as a guest by the people who call the islands home, treating them, their environment and their time with respect.
  • I will recognize the power of kai (ocean) and I will never turn my back on the ocean, underestimate the strength of the currents or waves, or overestimate my ability and swim, float or paddle. I will keep myself and my loved ones safe by watching with vigilance the patterns of the waves, winds and the timing of the tides.
  • I will stay out of rivers and streams during and immediately following mauka (mountain, inland) rains, recognizing the danger of rapid flash floods without warning.
  • I will behave responsibly on the ‘aina (land), treading lightly and only in welcomed areas to ensure my own safety and the health of the island’s precious natural resources.
  • I will keep the tradition of special places private and never share publicly through geotagging or directions something shown to me or discovered.
  • I will leave nothing behind, keeping the ‘aina and kai natural clean, making an effort to leave it better than I found it for the enjoyment of others in the future.
  • I will remember that, while flowers and fruits are abundant in the islands, where they grow is where they belong, and I will not take either without expressed permission.
  • I will remember that, while lava rock and sand are abundant in the islands, they are a sacred part of the ecosystem, and I will not take my souvenirs from the ‘aina.
  • I will respect Hawai’i’s birds, animals and marine life, maintaining required distances for their safety and mine and never touching or feeding wild species.
  • I will protect the fragility of living coral reef, knowing that by touching or stepping on it I might destroy it and cause its disappearance in the future.
  • I will only use sunscreen labeled “reef-safe,” preventing oxybenzone and parabens from harming marine animals and the living coral reef.
  • I will understand what it means to be pono and practice it in everything I do on the islands.
  • I will read The Aloha Spirit, receive it with gratitude and share it authentically and unconditionally with each person I encounter. Written by Hawai‘i’s treasured kupuna, Auntie Pilahi Paki and placed in Hawai‘i state law in perpetuit. (HRS §5-7.5*)

The “Aloha Spirit” is the coordination of mind and heart within each person. It brings each person to the self. Each person must think and emote good feelings to others. In the contemplation and presence of the life force, “Aloha,” the following unuhi laula loa (free translation) may be used;

  • Akahai meaning kindness, (grace) to be expressed with tenderness;
  • Lokahi meaning unity, (unbroken) to be expressed with harmony;
  • ‘Olu‘olu meaning agreeable, (gentle)to be expressed with pleasantness;
  • Ha‘aha‘a meaning humility, (empathy)to be expressed with modesty;
  • Ahonui meaning patience, (waiting for the moment)to be expressed with perseverance.

These are the traits that express the charm, warmth, and sincerity of Hawai‘i’s people. It was the working philosophy of Native Hawaiians and was presented as a gift to the people of Hawai‘i.

  • Aloha is more than a word of greeting or farewell or a salutation.
  • Aloha means mutual regard and affection and extends warmth and caring with no obligation in return.
  • Aloha is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence.
  • Aloha means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen, and to know the unknowable.

*In exercising their power on behalf of the people and in fulfillment of their responsibilities, obligations and service to the people, the legislature, governor, lieutenant governor, executive officers of each department, the chief justice, associate justices, and judges of the appellate, circuit, and district courts may contemplate and reside with the life force and give consideration to the “Aloha Spirit”. [L 1986, c 202, § 1]

  • Pono a commitment of integrity; righteous, honest, moral; an energy of necessity; a pervasive persuasion toward calm, peace, and serenity.

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