After a previous trip to Hilo, one of my Japan friends, Amy Hanashiro, suggested I stay at her family’s inn next time I visit. I had to go to Hilo for work last weekend — just overnight — so I was stoked to have the opportunity to see the historic Honomu Inn.
The town of Honomu was originally a hub of activity for sugar plantation workers, developed back in 1876. Today, the sleepy town has a population of about 500 people and there are a few historic buildings left, including Honomu Inn. The hotel was built in 1931 and was renovated (of course!) to offer a more modern interior that still reflects the small-town charm.
Most people who stay at Honomu Inn are probably on their way to the famous Akaka Falls. While the inn isn’t super far from downtown Hilo (20 minutes away), it’s super close to the falls, which is great if you’re waking up early for a hike.
There are just five rooms, all with private bathrooms. There’s a communal self-service kitchen in the lobby with food, snacks, coffee and cold water provided for the guests, as well as a refrigerator and freezer. There’s also free wifi, and parking is free on the street in front.
I loved the old-school charm of the place! It reminded me of the coffee town my grandmother grew up in on the Kona side. Note, this may also be a convenient place to stay if you’re headed to a Na’au pop up (more on that later). Note, their website is mostly in Japanese, but they do have many Western visitors and of course, the staff is American.
26-1692 Old Mamalahoa Hwy.
Honomu, HI 96728