La Ronde (restaurant)

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La Ronde (atop the Ala Moana Office Building)
La Ronde (atop in center of image)

La Ronde was a restaurant[1] in Honolulu,[2] Hawaii. Built in 1961[3][4] and designed by John Graham,[5] it was the first revolving restaurant in the United States[6] (preceding the "Eye of the Needle" restaurant in Seattle) and the third[7][8] of its kind (after[9][10] the Florian Tower and the Cairo Tower) in the world. The restaurant is now closed.

The Building[edit]

The restaurant was situated at 1441[2] Kapi'olani Boulevard[5] in the Ala Moana district at the 23rd floor[6][1] of the Ala Moana Building[3] adjacent to the shopping mall Ala Moana Complex.

The restaurant was 72 ft (22 m) in diameter with a 16 ft (4.9 m) wide revolving carousel which rotated around a fixed core[5] and had a seating capacity of 162 guests. The office building has a total height of 25 floors and 298 ft (91 m)[2] including an observation deck at the top.[5] The rotational speed was 1 rotation per hour.[4]


The building was designed by John Graham Jr.[3] of the architectural firm John Graham & Company. The building was completed in 1960[3] and inaugurated 21 November[6][1] 1961.[4] At that time, it was the highest building[4] in Honolulu.

Graham later received a patent for the revolving design in 1964 (US patent-nr 3125189[11]).

Later, the restaurant was renamed "Windows of Hawaii"[5] but closed completely[4] in the mid-1990s.[5] The premises were converted to office space, and the floor was welded into place.[1]

There was another revolving restaurant in Hawaii, called Top of Waikiki. It was closed in 2020 due to the pandemic. [12]


  1. ^ a b c d Going ’round Waikiki, 2006 Star Bulletin (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  2. ^ a b c Ala Moana Center Emporis (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  3. ^ a b c d Towering Ties Archived 9 August 2016 at the Wayback Machine Briale Morand (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  4. ^ a b c d e Ala Moana Building Ala Moana Center (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  5. ^ a b c d e f Ala Moana Center, Architectural History Report page 37-39 Archived 10 May 2017 at the Wayback Machine Mason Architects (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  6. ^ a b c Some Construction and Housing Firsts in Hawaii, 72nd Annual Report, 1963, page 108 (11) Hawaiian Historical Society (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  7. ^ A Brief History of Buildings That Spin Anthony Paletta, Gizmodo (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  8. ^ A Moveable Feast: A Brief History of the Revolving Restaurant J S Graboyes, Duckpie (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  9. ^ Revolving Restaurants in the Americas Archived 6 August 2016 at the Wayback Machine Phil Dotree, Interesting America (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  10. ^ Pie in the skies – revolving restaurants Jan Whitaker, Restaurant-ing through History (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  11. ^ patent Graham 1964 Google patents (accessdate 31 July 2016)
  12. ^ Kato, Nicole (November 11, 2012). "Top of Waikiki". Honolulu Star-Advertiser. Retrieved November 20, 2018.

External links[edit]