Love Lanai Cultural Practitioner
Four Seasons Tenure
- Since 2018
- First Four Seasons Assignment: Current
- Culture & Historic Preservation Division of Pulama Lanai, various positions in education and preservation across the Hawaiian Islands
- BA and MA in Hawaiian Studies at the University of Hawaii at Manoa; post-graduate fellowship through Kamehameha Schools and Stanford University
- Honolulu, Hawaii, USA; raised from birth on Lanai
- English, Hawaiian
Anela Evans grew up on Lanai during the island’s transition from the world’s largest pineapple plantation to a luxury resort destination. As a child, Anela remembers the opening of the original Manele Bay Resort (now Four Seasons Resort Lanai). From the time that she was four years old, Anela performed hula shows at the Resort twice weekly with the hālau (hula school) that she danced with. Anela also reminisces about going “Holoholo” with her parents and friends and family that visited the island. Her mom and dad always made time to show people around the island. They always were sure to include all of the special places on Lanai and the stories that related to these places. She credits her parents with fostering a strong sense of place and culture.
"The place dictates the practice," she says. "Lanai, just like every other Hawaiian island special place in the world, has its own spirit and variation of culture that is unique to this place. It is these extraordinary facets of Lanai that we strive to perpetuate, cultivate and share. I truly do love Lanai and my mission is to exude that love I have for the island, its culture, its history, and its people, in all that I do.
Her mother, an educator, facilitated summer programs that focused on teaching Hawaiian culture and history. Her father, a hobbyist and skilled craftsman, enjoyed mastering Hawaiian crafts and woodworking. Her father was also an avid outdoorsmen and fostered Anela’s love for horses and hunting.
While going to college at UH Mānoa, Anela had the opportunity to volunteer on Lanai’s neighbouring island of Kahoolawe. Sequestered by the US Navy after the attack on Pearl Harbor in World War II, protests against the bombing Kahoolawe played an integral role in the revitalisation of the Hawaiian culture and language in the mid-1970s. In recent times, the island serves as an opportunity for immersion in the natural environment and Hawaiian culture.
Anela moved home to Lanai in 2015 to continue work in conservation, preservation, natural resource management, and culture. In her free time, Anela loves to hunt, craft and dance hula.
Native Hawaiians believe that the environment and Hawaiian culture are inseparable. Through her role at Four Seasons Resort Lanai, Anela strives to share cultural experiences that visitors will remember forever.