Guitar Center opened its first location outside the continental United States, a 19,000-square-foot facility in Pearl City, Hawaii. This marks the third of six planned openings for Guitar Center in 2019.
The grand-opening celebration took place on Friday, May 10, kicking off with a special gala celebration that lasted all weekend, including special in-store offerings. Prominent Guitar Center executives were in attendance, including CEO Ron Japinga and executive vice president of store operations Wayne Cowell. Weekend festivities included live music by award-winning local talent, exclusive giveaways, specials on lessons and rentals, and much more.
“The opening of our first store outside of the continental U.S. is a landmark moment for Guitar Center and reaffirms our company’s ongoing strategy for long-term growth and expansion,” stated Japinga. “Today’s musicians are looking for accessibility to a large number of brands and services, and the new store reflects the future of retail experiences by offering a completely immersive experience for the music community in Pearl City and beyond.”
The opening celebration began with Hawaii council member Brandon Elefante, Stage Rep. Gregg Takayama and Sen. Brenne Harimoto, presenting Japinga, Cowell and Guitar Center Pearl City Store Manager Tim Ball with honorary certificates, followed by a presentation by the husband-wife team behind Kanile’a Ukuleles. Acclaimed musician and ordained minister Kahu Kawika Kahiapo then conducted an official “blessing” ceremony. The evening then featured live entertainment from award-winning local musicians such as Anuhea and Kawika Kahiapo, as well as GRAMMY-nominated Polynesian musician Josh Tatofi. Additionally, the Pearl City High School Band Ensemble performed and was presented with a grant of wind instruments including flutes, trumpets, trombones and saxophones, donated by the Guitar Center Music Foundation.
Guitar Center Pearl City features showrooms filled with guitars, drums, keys, live sound, DJ and recording.