Waikiki Beach Services was originally founded in the year 1955. The company was created with a single core mission – they wanted to deliver an exciting and culturally-rich experience to all visitors of Waikiki Beach by providing them a means of interacting with the Waikiki Beachboys.
The company was officially formed in 1955 as a proprietorship. Ted Bush was one of the original employees, but eventually took over several of the contracts for the hotels on the beach and renamed his company Waikiki Beach Services, Inc. in 1977. In 1989, Ted sold the company, but returned to the beach in 2002. Then, in 2003 he organized again under the company name of Waikiki Beach Services, LLC.
Ted Bush was born in Kapahulu and raised in Waikiki from the age of 5. He attended several schools in Waikiki until 7th grade where he was accepted into Kamehameha.Ted’s grandfather, Kim Wai, was one of the original Hui Nalu “Surf Club” members along with many famous others including the Kahanamoku’s.
Since the only surfing contest available when Ted was growing up was the Makaha International Surfing Contest, he never entered surfing competitions. However, Ted is no average surfer. He has an unparalleled knowledge of the water and its surf breaks, and not only has he surfed every spot on the South Shore (mostly off of Waikiki Beach), he also spent much time surfing the famous Haleiwa break on the North Shore as well as Makaha. At the time of his 18th birthday, he was officially employed and started working for Waikiki Beach Services.
Ted’s passion and love is outrigger canoe surfing. At the young age of 21, the youngest age permitted, Ted achieved the title of First Captain – the highest level attainable. He has served on many ad-hoc and advisory committees overseeing canoe surfing and surfing in general related to Waikiki Beach.
Ted was also the first officially appointed adviser to the state to test for new and renew licenses for surfing instructors and canoe operators. Recently, Ted has been re-appointed along with 6 other members. This board is the sole committee responsible for issuing and revoking surfing licenses.
Ted was also one of the original founders of the Waikiki Beachboys Canoe Club aka W.B.B.C. The original mission of the W.B.B.C was to create a formal and competitive outrigger canoe racing team made up of and funded only by the Waikiki Beachboys that would compete in long distance outrigger canoe races. After many successful long distance campaigns, the team expanded into a full canoe club so that they could include women and children and take part in the annual regattas.
Ted, along with fellow Beachboys Bob Nagatani and Moku Kamaka, created the Beachboy Classic canoe long distance race which features “iron man” paddling – long distance racing without any crew changes.
The idea behind the Beachboy Classic was to have a long distance race that was spectator friendly. The course was right in front of Waikiki laid out in a triangle format. This allowed anyone to watch the race without inconvenience, and also enabled limitless crews from any association the experience of competing. Also, the calm waters that are off Waikiki made the race safe for all ages and allowed for a great competition with the exclusion of rough water rigging.
Today, Waikiki Beach Services continues to stay true to it’s original mission and allows everyone that comes to Waikiki to interact and experience some of the best activities in Waikiki such as surf lessons, outrigger canoe rides, and stand up paddling with the Waikiki Beachboys.
Today, we are still committed to staying true to the original mission that our company was founded upon. Each and every day, our staff is focused and committed to providing exceptional customer service to all of our visitors as well as providing a first-class water activity experience.
We offer a variety of some of the best activities in Waikiki that you can experience first hand. No matter what your skill level, we encourage all visitors to take part in the water activities that have helped shape some of the current culture and popular trends of the water sports in Hawaii.
The current activities and services we provide (click on any of the activity links below to read more about them):
Last, but not least, we put our customer’s safety above everything else. All of our current surfing instructors are licensed by the state of Hawaii and fully trained in CPR and other life-saving techniques.
Throughout the years since our founding, Waikiki Beach and the surrounding landscape have continued to transform and change to meet the needs of the world. However, we are proud to say that although things around us have changed and continue to do so, our philosophy and mission here at Waikiki Beach Services has remained – and will continue to remain – the same since our beginning in 1955:
“To foster a love for the water and to deliver a world-class experience for all visitors to this special place.”