Rebuilding of “Blue Hawaii” hotel begins decades after storm


HONOLULU (AP) — Work has finally begun on rebuilding the storied resort where Elvis Presley’s character got married in the 1961 film “Blue Hawaii,” decades after a major hurricane damaged its buildings.

The company redeveloping Coco Palms Resort began demolishing structures this week. It hopes to reopen the hotel in mid-2018.

Coco Palms initially opened in 1953 next to a historic coconut grove and an ancient Hawaiian fishpond. It’s been closed since a Category 4 hurricane slammed into Kauai island in 1992.

The 46-acre grounds were once home to Kauai’s last queen. It’s the site of key scenes in “Blue Hawaii,” including the last one where Presley sings the “Hawaiian Wedding Song” and holds his bride’s hand while they board a raft to cross a lagoon.

The renovated hotel will have 350 rooms.

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