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Aloha. The Moodie Report’s Waikiki bureau is up and running. I’m here to cover the 50th anniversary of DFS Hawaii, which promises to be an extraordinary occasion (more of that later in the week).
Underneath me from my 8th floor room at the lovely Halekulani hotel the Pacific waves are crashing in on the golden sands below while scores of surfers ride the modest but perfectly formed waves. Halekulani means ‘House befitting heaven’ and I think that’s precisely where I am.
It’s a long journey here from London – 17 hours flying time plus a three-hour transit at Los Angeles International Airport. I couldn’t believe that after leaving London at 10a.m on Friday morning, it was only early evening Friday when I stepped off the plane.
In LAX I snapped a picture of the DFS store at Terminal 4, a small but tidy outlet (above) that benefits from very significant spending by Shanghai-bound passengers. As I took my picture I heard the cry: “Mr Martin Moodie!” It was Becky Djapri, Vice President Operations at DFS’s DBE partner Concourse Concessions Incorporated (pictured right with members of her team). She knew me from being an avid reader of The Moodie Report and it was nice to catch up with her and to hear that business was good.
DFS’s contract at LAX, of course, is the the subject of a fiercely contested open tender, with the result expected later this month.
At Honolulu International Airport I got another nice surprise, being met (with the traditional ‘lei’ flower necklace) by Sharon Weiner who has done such an incredible job here for many years and still consults for the company in her semi-retirement. Sharon’s an amazing woman and it was wonderful to be able to take a quiet dinner with her before she gets caught up in the frenzy of a momentous week.
It’s going to be a great few days. Aloha from heaven.
I enjoyed reading your blog as you enjoyed Hawaii. I knew Sharon when I was working back in Hawaii as a business reporter in the early 1980s, so long ago.
Yes, work requires you to adapt to all a kinds of working conditions, luckily Hawaii was a great one.
Hope you have recovered from the hectic trip there. I will be going to Hawaii from July 13. No, not work related! A true vacation!