Dear Caelan, How do I rediscover my home?

Photo Credit: Lazypacific.tumblr.com

Dear Pussycats,

I have so much to talk about love and romance, but what about the cities that I love so much! Thank you, you lovely anonymous baby for asking this question

Hey Caelan!! I was wondering if you had any recommendations for must-do food/activity/etc things in Hawai'i? I was born and raised there but I feel like I didn't get out much and I wanna make up for that when I visit home this summer, thank you!! <3

I adore this question so much for many reasons. People always bombard me with questions about where to go, what Hotels to stay at and what they have to, have to see when they go to the lovely 50th state. I have to remind everyone that as a local, when I'm home, I'm not hitting up the Luau's with the fire dancers every weeknight! It's the same in New York, I'm not constantly eating pizza and going to Broadway shows (okay the Pizza part isn't a lie).

HOWEVER, with my 21 years spent in Hawai'i, I think I can name you a few of my favorite secret spots that you must revisit and enjoy all over again.

1) Kaimuki - Growing up in Kaimuki/Kahala area, I gotta say Kaimuki is my favorite part of the island/ probably one of my favorite places on earth. The Goodwill has incredible vintage finds, Town had the best organic fancy-pants food I've ever had, and this area used to be the place where I would loiter for hours upon hours when I was younger!

Kaimuki is the hippest part of town without being "too cool." And while the burrito place I would've recommended is no longer there, and the place to buy large-breasted anime figurines is also no longer there, I'll recommend getting an iced latte with almond milk, and the banana bread at Coffee Talk, picking up a magazine, such as Disfunkshion magazine where I happened to have wrote three articles in the latest issue (shameless self plug), and spending a nice quiet moment on the top of christmas tree park.

2) West Side - When I was 18, I had the pleasure of dating a boy who lived all the way out in Kapolei, aka the West side of the island, aka no-mans-land when you live in town. However it was an amazing opportunity for me to actually explore a part of the island that I truly hadn't been before. Also when I was most recently back I went to a beach in Makaha and it was GORGEOUS! So, make sure you fill up your gas tank and head out there, not only is there a Wendy's, but there are some amazing weird little shops all over! I'd recommend getting some fresh poke at Times,  a giant Arizona green tea and hitting those waves!

3) Manoa - I will always have the softest spot in my heart for Manoa. It was where I went to college, therefore the place I spent a good majority of my time for the last three years I lived on Oahu. It's so green and beautiful, it always smells sort of like rain, and it brings back such great memories for me. I'd recommend hanging out in the Japanese garden in the back of the Manoa campus after you pick up a tuna melt from Andy's with a redbull blast smoothie and look at all the koi fishes in the pond! Just make sure you don't do it too late, cause apparently thats where a ton of UH students hook up after the Ka Leo  named it one of the "Best Places to Have Sex on Campus" gross.
PC: Jhune Li

Also, if you're craving pho, PLEASE go to Pho Viet Thien Hong in Manoa Marketplace. Not only is the restaurant pink on the inside (my aesthetic goals) but the Pho is the *Drake voice* best I ever had AND the people who work there are very kind. Go support them!

4) North Shore - I know, I know, It's touristy as hell. But name one person who can think of a better day full of Matsumoto's shave ice, a coconut shrimp plate from Giovannis and a hundred new freckles on your face. Just do it, you know it's the best.

5) Chinatown - One of my favorite places in the world. Go visit the darlings at Barrio Vintage and pick up a new tunic or something lovely, I actually can't go into that place without buying something! They are kind, they have great taste and there finds are to die for! I also love just wandering around Chinatown because all of the old fashion architecture is gorgeous and has such history to it! My grandpa used to work downtown during WW2 as a reporter for the Star Bulletin!

Also, I gotta give a huge shout out to the bar Proof if you want ono pizza and a delectable drink made by my own amazing brother Rob, YOU GOTTA GO! It's in a great spot, go there, dance your butt off and have a great time!


I thought this question was so cute, I thought I'd ask my friend Sonia who is a native New Yorker the same thing.

Dear Sonia, what are your favorite spots in New York City?

Left to Right: Emily, SONIA, Me! on our last day at BUST Magazine!
"Okay so this is definitely a biased list. I was born and raised in Chelsea, Manhattan, so most of my favorites are in that area or within walking distance. But on the other hand, it might just be that most of New York's coolest things are in my neighborhood!

1. Evening Gallery Hopping in Chelsea - Every evening in my neighborhood, something magical happens. From exactly 6PM to 8PM, a bunch of galleries host opening receptions for some really cool artists. Free art, free wine, intelligent conversations and a great excuse to dress up - it's almost too good to be true!

2. Cafe Grumpy's iced coffee and Stone Street's drip coffee and espresso - To be honest, I could blather for hours and hours about coffee, exhaustively comparing and contrasting NY's embarrassingly wide array of coffee shops. And really, it all comes down to personal preference, but I would be remiss if I didn't plug my two all-time favorites. Cafe Grumpy and Stone Street both originated from Brooklyn but have locations in Manhattan (yippee!). Grumpy's iced coffee is by far my favorite - it has a complex flavor and is just really really strong, which is totally my thing. And I'm obsessed with stone Street's Knee-Buckling Espresso and French Roast Coffee, because of their distinctive, almost chocolatey notes. I really haven't tasted anything like them before.

3. The Highline - Built on what used to be old, elevated railroad tracks, the Highline is hands-down my favorite park in the city. But it really is a gem - the views of the West Village are spectacular, the food is amazing, the old train tracks are overgrown with plant life as abundant as it is peculiar. 

4. Yoga to the People and Y& Yoga - If you're a yogi, then you're in luck. If you aren't a yogi, you'll be one soon, I promise. If you have a few extra bucks to spend, Y7 is a treat. It's fast-paced, dark and candle-lit, sweaty and put to awesome music - it's kind of like the SoulCycle of yoga. Classes are around $22, but if you don't have that kind of dough, never fear! Yoga to the People has an adorable, exposed-brick studio in St. Marks Place that's pay-what-you-want! They also have a studio on 3rd avenue - classes there are $5, and it's right about a bagel place so it always smells amazing!"


Well I don't know about you, but I'm super excited to discover my new home and rediscover my old one next time I'm home. 

Let me know what you think about this series and what else you'd like to see from me!

Keep it sassy,

No comments:

Post a Comment