Joe Recca keeps the history of Waikiki alive with walking tours

Bringing the spirit of Hawaii back into Waikiki

Sponsored by Arcadia Family of Companies

Having performed for decades to tens of thousands of malihini, or visitors, Joe Recca is a Waikiki icon. Today, he continues to perform and is still active in numerous cultural endeavors.

Recca comes from a musical family or writers, composers, orchestra readers, and even hula dancers.

“Entertainment was part of our lives,” Recca says. “My mom never wanted me to be an entertainer, so even though I had that, I always looked to higher education.”

Today, Recca is Royal Hawaiian Center’s Papa Mo Ľolelo, or storytelling instructor. He serves as a Waikiki historian, conducting the Waikiki Historic Walking Tour as part of the Native Hawaiian Hospitality Association (NaHHA), and much more.

“They wanted to bring the spirit of Hawaii back into Waikiki because it was being lost,” Recca explains. “Tourism was number one, and the essence of what really is Hawaiian wasn’t in the hotels anymore and they wanted to inject it back there.”

To those that are having trying to survive and live during these challenging times, Recca says it’s important to look to those who came before you that you believe in.

“They’re the ones who have been through it all,” he says. “Talk to somebody! Hang in there. It eventually gets better.”

About Arcadia Family of Companies:

Arcadia and its family of companies, 15 Craigside, Arcadia At Home, The Arcadia Foundation, Arcadia of Health, Kilohana and Central Union Church, offer a full spectrum of retirement living options. This continuum of care includes lifetime residency in retirement living communities and in your home, home health services, and adult day care services. The company’s mission is to provide senior living excellence in a gracious, compassionate and dynamic environment which meets the spiritual, physical and social needs of every resident, client, member, and participant they serve.

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