Kona Boys is a staple in the Big Island Community and when we think of needing anything for a fun day out on the water – we think of the friendly faces at Kona Boys. Locally owned and operated with a highly experienced team of watermen and waterwomen, Kona Boys operates out of two locations – their shop in Kealakekua and their beach shack at Kamakahonu Beach in Kona Town. The founders and team have kept their dedication and passion for the Big Island culture, community and beauty at the forefront of their business for over 20 years.
We caught up with Frank, one of the two founders at Kona Boys, who gave us a little history into how Kona Boys became a staple in the Big Island community…
Kona Boys was founded in 1996 and was originally located right across from Napoopoo Pier. Initially Kona Boys was the first kayak company providing rentals and tours for Kealakekua Bay. As kayaking became more popular in Kealakekua, the state created regulations prohibiting commercial activity at Napoopoo Pier and Kona Boys moved up to the Highway where they pioneered car topping kayaks and continue to rent and provide tours in Kealakekua Bay while expanding the business to include other rentals as well as retail. Eventually Kona Boys were selected to take over the “Beach Shack” at Kamakahonu Cove behind the Kona Beach Hotel in the heart of Kailua Kona. Kona Boys is now celebrating 25 years in business. We are now proud to be celebrating our 25th year in business and feel fortunate to be a part of the Big Island community.
When asked what the most rewarding part of Kona Boys has been Frank said that he thinks back to the connections. “The connections with our guests, the connections with our community and our connection to the environment. As they say, we are lucky to live Hawaii and we hope to continue sharing Aloha with our Big Island community and guests for another 25 years.”
They believe that as a local business they have a role in contributing to the preservation of the environmental and cultural integrity of the Big Island – and we think they do a wonderful job. There are three foundational pillars in operating the Kona Boys business. They focus on providing the best customer experience, honoring and perpetuating the Hawaiian culture, and supporting and contributing to the Big Island community through sponsorships of events, ocean athletes, and local causes. Kona Boys partners with several organizations to create positive change in the community and protect the ocean. They support organizations like Hawai’I Wildlife Fund, Surfrider Foundation, Coral Reef Alliance, Seathos and Defenders of Wildlife. They also participate in quarterly cleanups in Kealakekua Bay and rake and clean the beach at Kamakahonu on a daily basis. Frank commented that they “operate in the spirit of the Hawaiian Beach Boys, sharing and caring for our ocean resource, teaching guests about the host culture, and making sure that our guests are safe while they explore the amazing waters off the Kona Coast.”
Kona Boys offers gear rentals from beach chairs and umbrellas to surfboards, snorkel gear, paddle boards and kayaks. Or you can choose to learn about the culture, history and natural beauty of the Kona Coast on one of their kayak, canoe, or snorkel tours. Explore all their activities and find the one for you at their website.