Hawaii, an island filled with so much history and hundreds of different stories, that it would be almost impossible for one to know them all. The moment you walk into the Lodge restaurant, one of the first things that many notice is the fireplace. Centered in the dining room with a couch placed in front, you will notice our fireplace is not like most. It too has a story, and this story goes like this…
On October 1938, 400 people from around Hawaii gathered at Camp Hale ‘O Aloha in Volcano Village for the dedication of a unique fireplace. The International Fireplace of Friendship with its stones and coins from all over the world was the inspiration of Harold Lucas, the Y.M.C.A camp director who was in charge of construction at Camp Hale O Aloha. Lucas’s dream was to create a hearth of world brotherhood using stones from 32 different countries around the world.
On that 1938 October day, the Chairman of the Young Men’s Christian Association, Volcanologist T.A. Jagger and the youthful members of the Y, struck a match to the first fire in the Friendship Fireplace. For this inspiring moment, the children gathered driftwood form the beaches of the Big Island with the thought that the wood had floated form international places.
In 1964, the property became a family owned estate and provided a restaurant well remembered for its Volcano hospitality. Today, renamed Kilauea Lodge and Restaurant, hosts and current owners Lorna and Albert Jeyte once again open the doors of Hale O Aloha as a gracious haven for fireside dining and accommodations.
In celebration of its 50th anniversary, a special ceremony was held by the family in October, 1988. At that time a 1988 Olympic coin, an arrowhead penny, international coins donated by guest, and three Indian arrowheads were added to the facade of the fireplace, enriching its history and adding to the international collection. Each night a fire will burn and thoughts of world brotherhood will continue from Hale O Aloha, the home of love.
And every night the fire still stands strong within our restaurant. On cold Volcano nights, we are reminded of the friendship that encircles the fireplace as the warmth seems to make everything a little better, and everyone a little happier.