International Market Place, 2019 ULI Global Awards for Excellence Winner

Image Credit: Taubman

Location: Honolulu, Hawai’i, United States
Developer: Taubman Centers Inc.
Designers: 505 Design; JPRA Architects; WCIT Architects; HLB Lighting; Walters, Kimura, Motoda Inc.; BKBC Architects
Site Size: 5.98 acres (2.4 ha)

Jury Statement: The International Market Place redevelopment revived an iconic retail center and historic landmark while carefully preserving cultural resources and providing historical education and programming. Revenues from the project support the state’s largest private, nonprofit hospital.

International Market Place in Waikīkī has been a landmark for nearly 60 years. The reimagining of the original International Market Place has breathed new life into the beloved development. Today, it is home to shopping, dining, and entertainment, including Hawaii’s first Saks Fifth Avenue department store.


International Market Place in Honolulu, Hawai’i Image Credit: Mariko
Aerial view of the central courtyard featuring the century-old banyan tree. Image Credit: Mariko









Centered on a century-old banyan tree, the new International Market Place was designed with the site’s history and the Hawaiian culture in mind. The design team sought cultural guidance from local consultants, who suggested excavating the piles ahead of time, in order to assess or attend to any objects or remains found. Digital mapping of the tree ensured that construction would not damage its complex root system. The cultural sensitivity extended to the completed project, too, with educational and discovery panels placed around the Market Place so that visitors can learn about the history of the Market Place and of Hawai’i. Visitors can also do a self-guided tour via their smartphones using the 25 plaques placed around the site.

The banyan tree in the heart of the Market Place is more than a century old. Image Credit: 505 Design, Mariko
Visitors enjoy the central courtyard in addition to shopping and dining at the International Market Place.




Furthermore, the landowner—the Queen Emma Land Company—donates revenue from the site to the nonprofit Queen’s Medical Center. The Market Place was designed with sustainability in mind, reducing energy and water consumption and encouraging tenants to follow green building guidelines. The International Market Place has been a popular landmark for decades and will continue to be for decades to come.

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