Mauna Loa reopens Visitor Center

  • The Mauna Loa Visitor Center reopened on Thursday after being closed for more than two years. (

  • The Mana Up area of the Mauna Loa Visitor Center includes a section featuring 14 up-and-coming Big Island retail brands. (courtesy photos/special to West Hawaii Today)

The Mauna Loa macadamia nut brand has reopened its Visitor Center in Keaau.

Located in the middle of a 2,500-acre macadamia orchard near Hilo, the center — which was closed at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic — is one of Hawaii Island’s most popular tourist destinations.


The on-site store has been refreshed and now includes sister brand Hawaiian Host, as well as Mana Up — featuring 14 rising Hawaii Island-based brands.

The Visitor Center is adjacent to the Mauna Loa macadamia nut processing facility where it produces its “Macadamia Powered Paradise” products.

“My hope for guests coming to the Visitor Center is a sense of coming home to a place that is nostalgic, but refreshed and new,” Danielle Laubenstein, senior director of global marketing for Mauna Loa, said in a press release. “Not only have we updated our store, we have also updated our brand, packaging and all our formulations to be cleaner and more sustainable. This is just the first phase of the opening as we plan for more exciting opportunities in the future.”

The Visitor Center’s store features a variety of Mauna Loa’s macadamia products, branded merchandise and a selection of chocolate-covered macadamia treats from Hawaiian Host.

The center also features a collaboration with Mana Up, which is a local accelerator that provides resources and tools to help Hawaii entrepreneurs, artists and makers scale globally.

“This partnership is a great example of what can happen when we collaborate. We live on an isolated chain of islands in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, so we all benefit when we work together to grow our opportunities and success as a community,” Meli James, co-founder of Mana Up, said in a press release.

The brands that are featured include Wai Meli, Big Island Coffee Roasters, Ao Organics Hawaii, Little Hands Hawaii, Sea Salts of Hawaii, Liko Lehua, Kaimana Jerky, Hawaiian Vanilla Co., Western Aloha, Malama Mushrooms, Ua Body, Kapa Nui Nails, Po Naturals and Pawniolo Pets.

The reopening of the center happened just a few months after Mauna Loa launched its 1.2-megawatt solar farm and 500-kilowatt battery storage system. The installation is located right next to the center and directly powers 85% of Mauna Loa’s processing plant with solar energy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the Star-Advertiser's TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, email