Tourism in Maui

The visitor industry has grown to become the economic mainstay of Hawaii. On Maui, shortly after World War II, Paul I. Fagan, an entrepreneur from San Francisco, bought the Hana Sugar Co., and tourism on Maui had its beginnings. Fagan thought tourism might have a future in Hana, so he built a small six-room inn, called Kauiki Inn, which is now the Travaasa Hotel Hana. The Kauiki Inn was opened for guests in 1946. Fagan’s guests consisted of his friends as well as sportswriters, one of which gave Hana the current name of “Heavenly Hana.”   In 1960, Amfac, owner of Pioneer Sugar Co., decided to build a manicured, planned luxury resort area in Ka`anapali.  The Royal Lahaina Resort, the first resort in Kaanapali, opened in 1962. A decade later, Alexander & Baldwin, now the largest sugar company, built up the resort destination of Wailea. Since then, millions of people from all over the world visit our beautiful island and many more resorts, timeshares, and condominiums have been built in the Ka`anapali and Wailea resort areas. In 2012, over nine million tourists visited Maui and more visitors will continue to come to our island home. Over 40% of Maui’s workforce is employed in the visitor industry. waterfall In 2013, Maui, the Magic Isle, was voted the top island in the United States and the world by readers of Conde Nast Traveler.  Maui has come out on top for 20 consecutive years!  This distinction makes Maui the perfect destination to study hospitality and tourism.

Maui’s strength as a top tourism destination depends upon our ability to provide a qualified workforce.  The Hospitality Academy of Maui, UH Maui College’s teaching hotel, will provide our future leaders with a world-class teaching facility.  Outfitted with cutting-edge technology and infrastructure, the HA of Maui will prepare students for a seamless transition from an educational environment into an industry full of exciting opportunities.  Maui … the perfect destination to study hospitality and tourism.


"As Hawaii’s lead tourism agency, the HTA is dedicated to developing career opportunities within the state’s number one industry. Through our partnership with the University of Hawaii Maui College, Hospitality Academy of Maui (HA of Maui), we are able to offer hands-on experience to students and training in hotel operations and management. Investing resources into training and educating our destination’s most valuable asset, our people, we are able to ensure long-term sustainability of our tourism workforce.”  – Hawaii Tourism Authority