Discover Honolulu: Aliiolani Hale Hawaii Supreme Court

This post is part of an on-going series, Discover Honolulu, where we highlight the historic and cultural attractions of Hawaii’s largest city.  A lot of Hawaii’s visitors travel to historic downtown Honolulu to visit the statue of King Kamehameha the Great, but hardly anyone learns the story of the building behind it! 

That stately building, called the Ali’iolani Hale (“house of a chief known unto the heavens”), was built under the direction of King Kamehameha V! So right behind the Kamehameha I statue is another historic landmark honoring his grandson! Kamehameha V intended for the Aliiolani Hale to be a royal palace, but as completion neared, the king realized a greater need for a new government building. Thus, the hale became the new home for the nation’s government. Shortly after the building was finished, Kamehameha V passed away. The building was named after the king’s secret Hawaiian name, “Ali’iolani”. Today, the building houses the Hawaii State Supreme Court and the Law Library. The building is open to the public, so when you’re at the Kamehameha the Great statue stop by the Ali’iolani Hale!

Read more from the Discover Honolulu series

Kamehameha V US Post Office Honolulu Street Names  Chinatown Photo Tour Forgotten Honolulu: Hawaii’s Maritime Museum

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