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Rainbow Tower

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1968, F. Patrick Burns and Frances Thomas
  • (Photograph by Kaoru Lovett)
  • (Photograph by Kaoru Lovett)
  • (Photograph by Kaoru Lovett)
  • (Photograph by Kaoru Lovett)

Millard Sheets's 286 × 26–foot tile murals of rainbows, the tallest in the world in 1968, elevate this rectangular, thirty-story high-rise above the realm of the ordinary. Scored-concrete panels and large, cantilevered, curved lanai with anodized-aluminum railings provide textural variety. Breezes flow through the relatively open ground floor, and this casual indoor-outdoor relationship is amplified in the second-floor, beachfront Bali-by-the-Sea Restaurant, and the lower-level Rainbow Lanai coffee shop with its individual dining pods overlooking a carp pool. The public spaces and porte-cochere reflect the revitalization in 1988 under the direction of Wimberly Allison Tong and Goo.

Writing Credits

Don J. Hibbard


What's Nearby


Don J. Hibbard, "Rainbow Tower", [Honolulu, Hawaii], SAH Archipedia, eds. Gabrielle Esperdy and Karen Kingsley, Charlottesville: UVaP, 2012—,

Print Source

Cover: Buildings of Hawaii

Buildings of Hawaii, Don J. Hibbard. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2011, 158-158.

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