Orlando

Aloha! Doesn’t that word just give you the warm fuzzies? It does me – mainly because I know when I hear it I’m in a place that will welcome calm, serenity, and an all-round inviting feeling. At least that’s been my previous experience. And certainly no place represents that more than the atmosphere of the South Pacific, Hawaiian islands, or Polynesian flare. And the epitome of island life, in my opinion, is hula. What do you think?

Dancing To Your Own Beat 

Who doesn’t love to throw down a little boogie from time to time? (Raises hand but refuses to share the video evidence that does exist.) But did you know that dance dates way, way back as an art form that was not only enjoyed for social enjoyment (like I’m sure the video I mentioned earlier would be) but that also protected and carried on myths and epic stories? I wouldn’t steer you wrong….

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How It’s Done: The Art of the Hula

Hula is a trained craft. The essence of hula is to go inward, to touch one’s center. Dancers are especially aware of their feet touching the earth, and of the earth itself, which is felt to be the source of the power of the dance.

Hula certainly cannot exist without music. So during a hula dance onlookers will usually find the pahu hula, a drum made from the trunk of niu (Cocos nucifera, coconut palm) or ‘ulu (Artocarpus altilis, breadfruit), with a drumhead made from sharkskin.

Drumming sticks to keep beat are called lā‘au ho‘okani pahu. Also used are pū‘ili (split bamboo rattles) and the ‘ulī‘ulī, a gourd rattle that contains seeds and is adorned at the top with colorful feathers.

Where You’ll Find It: Sprinkled Throughout the Island Experience 

The spirit of the hula is really alive all throughout the Loews Royal Pacific Resort tropical island atmosphere. If you catch the ritualistic torch lighting ceremony by the lagoon pool you’ll catch a glimpse. And certainly the Wantilan Luau, which is drenched in the island traditions of hula girls. I actually took some family to the luau when they were visiting from out of town once, and believe me when I say I’m not making this up: It was one of their favorite things they’ve ever experienced.

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So now that you know a little more about the meaning and tradition of the hula, are you ready to give it a try?

Catch you around our Universe,

Ashley