Iolani Palace has been a symbol of Hawaiian history and identity since the nineteenth century, and is a lasting and central landmark in the political and cultural landscape of Hawaii.
The first Iolani Palace, located in Honolulu, was originally built in 1844, on the site of an ancient heiau, or temple. It was home to five kings until it was demolished in 1874. In 1879, King Kalakaua rebuilt it with grandeur that rivaled the palaces of his European contemporaries. It remained a royal residence until Queen Liliuokalani, his sister and successor, was deposed and the Hawaiian Kingdom overthrown in January 1893.
Today, Iolani Palace is a registered National Historic Landmark and comprises an exceptional collection of over 5,000 historical treasures. As visitors tour the Palace, they will encounter a unique fusion of na mea makamae Hawaii (Hawaiian treasures), stately regalia, and Victorian-era furnishings. They will also hear stories of the alii (royals) who hosted and met with international guests and residents.
The Friends of Iolani Palace embraces this opportunity to share the rich history of the Palace and the Hawaiian Kingdom with viewers from all over the world. E komo mai! Welina! (Welcome!)