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King Kamehameha Club

King Kamehameha Club Icon

KKC Logo
KKC Logo
The fictional King Kamehameha Club (est. 1905) was seen in many episodes throughout the show's run. A private, "members only" establishment with a semi-formal dress code, the club is located at an undisclosed location somewhere on the "South Shore" and features an indoor bar, a dining room, a patio deck, party rooms, an outdoor "beach bar", tennis courts, and a beach volleyball court. The club also has two sportfishing boats, the King Kamehameha I & II. The picturesque "beach bar" setting was by far the most frequently seen part of the club, followed distantly by Rick's office, the Anuenue Room (a party room) and, in the early seasons, the indoor bar and dining room. Rick is the club's on-site manager and Higgins is Robin Masters' proxy on the Board of Directors.

The King Kamehameha Club setting was filmed at six* different locations during the show's eight season run: the Elks Honolulu Lodge, the Outrigger Canoe Club, the Clarence H. Cooke House, Waialae Beach Park, the Kuilima Hyatt Resort Hotel (for one episode only), and the Kahala Hilton. The location of the club in the show was never really specified, but in the early seasons it was implied (through a few aerial and wide shots) that the club was located in the Waikiki area.

Outside of the first season, most of the indoor King Kamehameha Club scenes (Rick's office, the "party room", etc.) were filmed on soundstage sets at the Hawaii Film Studio (then known as "Diamond Head Studio") located at 510 18th Avenue. The studio is adjacent to Kapiolani Community College. The soundstage, known as "Five-O Stage" (or "Stage One"), was also used for all the indoor sets of Robin's Nest (Magnum's quarters, Higgins' study, etc.).

* Seven if you count the original establishing shot (Halekulani Hotel) that was used in a handful of episodes during the first two seasons. No scenes were actually shot at this location, however.

Elks Honolulu Lodge (1980-1983)

Elks Honolulu Lodge Indoor Bar
Indoor Bar
Elks Honolulu Lodge Deck
Dining Deck
During the first season, many scenes involving the King Kamehameha Club were filmed on location at the exclusive, members-only Elks Honolulu Lodge (No. 616), otherwise known as The Honolulu Lodge of the Benevolent and Protective Order of the Elks. The Elks Lodge (or "Elks Club" as many people refer to it) is located at 2933 Kalakaua Avenue on the South Shore of Oahu, just south of Kapiolani Park, at the foot of Diamond Head Crater. The lodge was founded in 1911. It is very private and very expensive. It is directly adjacent to the famous Outrigger Canoe Club [see below].

The Elks Honolulu Lodge was used for both indoor and outdoor filming, including scenes involving Rick's office. The parking lot, main entrance, large indoor bar, dining area, and outside deck patio were the most conspicuous features of this setting. The site proved to be too crowded and noisy for constant shooting, however, and was dropped as the main King Kamehameha Club setting after the first season. The Magnum P.I. crew did shoot a couple more scenes at the Elks Club in the second and third seasons, however, most notably in Season Three's "I Do?" (3.17) for an extended dining room scene.

Outrigger Canoe Club (1980-1983)

The Outrigger Canoe Club Beach Volleyball
Beach Volleyball
The Outrigger Canoe Club Beach
The Outrigger Canoe Club (2909 Kalakaua Avenue), a very exclusive private club on the South Shore, was used for several outdoor scenes in the early seasons of the show. The beach volleyball court scenes in "Adelaide" (1.14) and "Legacy From a Friend" (3.19), and the beachfront scenes in "The Curse of the King Kamehameha Club" (1.11) were all filmed at this beautiful location. Unfortunately, there were no indoor scenes filmed at the club. The Outrigger Canoe Club was founded in 1908 and shares property with the aforementioned Elks Honolulu Lodge.

In an interesting bit of trivia, the club and its members were early pioneers of the sport of beach volleyball. In the late 1920s, the club set up one of the very first beach volleyball courts in Waikiki Beach.

Clarence H. Cooke House (1981-1988)

King Kamehameha Club Establishing Shot
Establishing Shot
Clarence H. Cooke House Front Lawn
Front Lawn
Starting with Season Two's "Billy Joe Bob" (2.1), exterior shots of the main building of the King Kamehameha Club were filmed at the Clarence H. Cooke House in the Nuuanu Valley at 3860 Old Pali Road. This location was used for the often seen "establishing shot" of the club and for close-up shots of the back entrance. A few mid-range shots and scenes were taken here as well, mostly around the driveway and front lawn.

The historic Clarence H. Cooke House, later known as the Marks Estate, was built for Clarence Hyde Cooke, the second son of Charles Montague Cooke and Anna Rice Cooke, heirs of the Castle & Cooke fortune. The estate was designed by architect Hardie Phillip and was built between 1929-32. It is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The estate was owned by Elizabeth Marks, the wealthy daughter of Lincoln L. McCandless, from 1946 to 1976. During the 1980s the estate was used as the headquarters for HIMAG (Hawaii Institute for Management and Analysis of Government), a local government "think tank". Recently, the estate was painted an off-white color.

Clarence H. Cooke House Driveway
Clarence H. Cooke House Street Entrance
Street Entrance
In a half-dozen episodes - "Billy Joe Bob" (2.1), "Computer Date" (2.14), "Letter to a Duchess" (4.6), "Murder 101" (5.8), "Blood and Honor" (6.10), and "Summer School" (6.13) - some extended outdoor scenes were filmed at this location that featured shots of main house, front lawn, back patio, driveway, and the entrance off of the main road. These are the only episodes to feature the grounds of the Marks Estate.

The Clarence H. Cooke House was also used in the "Pilot Movie" for several indoor scenes of the Main House at Robin's Nest. After the "Pilot Movie" all indoor scenes of Robin's Nest were filmed on a soundstage at the Hawaii Film Studio. Prior to Magnum P.I., the estate was used for several scenes in the 1979 TV movie The Chinese Typewriter, starring Tom Selleck and James Whitmore Jr..

Waialae Beach Park (1981-1988)

Waialae Beach Park
Waialae Beach Park
KKC Beach Bar
Beach Bar
The King Kamehameha Club "Beach Bar" setting made its first appearance in the late Season One episode "The Black Orchid" (1.16) where it effectively replaced the Elks Lodge as the main King Kamehameha Club setting. The "Beach Bar" scenes were filmed at Waialae Beach Park, a small South Shore public park on Maunalua Bay, two miles east of Diamond Head, next to the Kahala Hotel & Resort and Waialae Country Club.

The outdoor bar set was actually constructed underneath the park's, stone-columned, flora-covered, public pavilion. The design and layout of the set made it appear that the whole thing was a working private beach club, instead of an open-aired pavilion in a public park! In order to keep the public pavilion open during non-filming times, the set had to be dismantled, and reconstructed, several times a year.

The "Beach Bar" was by far the most commonly used setting for the King Kamehameha Club and would remain with the show for rest of its run. Occasionally, the size and layout of the beach bar would change slightly, and the decor went through several subtle changes, but for the most part everything remained the same for seven glorious years.

Kuilima Hyatt Resort Hotel (1982)

Kuilima Hyatt Resort Hotel
Kuilima Hyatt
Tennis Courts
Tennis Courts
For one episode only, Season Three's "Mixed Doubles" (3.10), the North Shore's Kuilima Hyatt Resort Hotel was used as a King Kamehameha Club filming location. The resort's tennis courts, hotel rooms, locker rooms, and outdoor patio areas were all heavily featured in this tennis-themed episode. After this episode, the King Kamehameha Club tennis courts and hotel rooms would never be seen again.

Several scenes were shot at the Kuilima Hyatt for Season Two's "From Moscow to Maui" (2.4), although these scenes were not intended to be the King Kamehameha Club.

Hilton Hotels & Resorts took over the property in August of 1983 and renamed it Turtle Bay Resort.

Kahala Hilton (1984-1985)

Kahala Hotel & Resort
Kahala Hilton
The Kahala Hilton
Patio Bar
The legendary Kahala Hilton was used as the setting for the King Kamehameha Club for a brief time in Season Five, in "Echoes of the Mind" (5.1 & 5.2), "Mac's Back" (5.3), "Tran Quoc Jones" (5.9), "Luther Gillis: File #001" (5.10), and "Little Games" (5.12). Most of the scenes at this location were shot on the outdoor patio and deck area. The resort is located at 5000 Kahala Avenue on Oahu's South Shore, next to Waialae Country Club. The hotel was previously known as the Kahala Mandarin Oriental Hotel. It changed ownership in 1993 and is now known as the Kahala Hotel & Resort.

In addition to the outdoor patio and deck shots, several "beach" scenes were shot at the Kahala Hilton location (and immediate vacinity). Picturesque Maunalua Bay provides a beautiful backdrop and setting for these scenes. If you look closely, you can often see a couple of man-made islets, close to the shore, and the rocky dome of Koko Crater in the background.

According to Larry Manetti, the Kahala Hilton location, much like the Elks Lodge location, had to be scrapped because of noise and scheduling issues.
Magnum fans will be interested to know that a plaque can be found at this location (on the ocean-facing side of a nearby banquet hall) that has the following inscription: "MAGNUM BAR (Built 1983) Site of the King Kamehameha Club as seen on the hit TV show 'Magnum P.I.' starring Tom Selleck". You can see a picture of the plaque here. Oddly, there is no plaque at the nearby Waialae Beach Park location, which was used MUCH more than the Kahala Hotel setting.

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