hawaiian party

How to throw a Hawaiian Luau Party

We love this Hawaii theme as it is colorful, fun and lends itself to all kinds of parties. If you are wondering how to throw a Hawaiian luau party, we have put together our top tips.

Whether you are throwing a Birthday Party, a Kids Party, a Beach Party or just a good get together with friends, this is one of the most fun parties to host.

Planning a Hawaiian Party doesn’t have to be hard work  By choosing a few key elements and keeping it simple, you can easily put together a gorgeous Hawaii themed party. Think bright colors, sunshine and lei flowers.

How to throw a Hawaiian Luau Party.

how to throw a hawaiian luau party

Location is key

When you are thinking how to throw a Hawaiian party, location is key! Although you can throw a Hawaiian party indoors, this theme really comes to life outdoors. If you have the space in your garden, then that is perfect. If you are lucky enough to have a pool, then awesome!! You instantly have the tropical backdrop!

Another great alternative location is the beach. There’s not much nicer than the sound of the waves in the background! Just make sure you let guests know to bring hats and sunscreen!

how to throw a hawaiian luau party

Hawaiian Party Dress Code

This is such an easy party to dress for! The default might be flower leis and grass skirts, but I think most women are more comfortable in a tropical style dress.

Think bright florals, tropical palm leaves and summery patterns.

hawaiian dress


For the boys, a classic Hawaiian shirt is a simple outfit, teamed with some plain shorts or chinos! You want your Guests to feel comfortable and these options are a great way to get into the Hawaiian theme.

hawaiian shirt

Flower Headbands

A flower headbands can add that extra touch of the tropics to your outfit. Even a simple dress can be dressed up with some flowers in your hair.

A DIY flower crown is super easy to make and only requires a few materials. Grab the floral tape, scissors, craft wire, wire or pliable twine, and flowers and greenery.

flower crown

Tip: Check out our DIY flower headband guide here.  

Set the Scene for your Hawaiian Luau Party

A Hawaiian Party should feel lively and vibrant.

To create this feel, use flower garlands and brightly colored fabrics which will add layers to your styling.

Other great styling props include beach umbrellas, grass skirts, lei garlands hung from trees.

Tip: Try to create height to your styling by incorporating some hanging decor.

Fairy lights strung between trees or in a jar as a centrepiece create lovely atmosphere.

fairy lights bridal shower


Hawaiian Party Food and Drink

In Hawaiian “Luau” means feast so the food is really important in this party!

Here’s some ideas that fit really well with the theme:

Main Courses

  • Pig Roast:  A pig roast over a fire pit would be AMAZING at this party. If that is too much work, then pulled pork or barbeque pork work really well.
  • Fish: Salmon is an excellent main course and if you already have the BBQ on, then pop that on there too!
  • Pizza: Hawaiian pizza with ham and pineapple is an all round favorite. Pizza is a great choice for kid parties.
  • Kebabs: Combine vegetables with chicken for a delicious option.
hawaiian kebabs

Side Dishes

  • Fruit: Fruit, fruit and more fruit!
  • Vegetables: Sweet potatoes and yams are traditional Hawaiian luau foods. Put these on the BBQ in foil.
  • Bread: Heat Hawaiian sweet rolls to serve with the meal.

hawaiian fruit platter

Hawaiian Party Drinks

drinks for boho party


Most summer drinks recipes work well for this theme, especially with a fruit vibe.

I love this recipe for Sparkling Fruit Punch (although I have been known to switch out the Sparkling water for Prosecco!).

Other ideas that work really well include:

  • Cocktails: Serve tropical cocktails like Mai Tais and piña coladas. They can be made as “mocktails” if you prefer.
  • Smoothies: Blend up fruit for smoothies.
  • Hawaiian Coffee: Serve Hawaiian coffee after dessert.
  • Rim the Glasses: Use shredded coconut to rim the glasses. First, glaze the edge with sugar water then dip into crushed coconut shavings.
  • Volcano Drink: Make smoking volcano drinks by adding dry ice. Drop a few pieces into the punch bowl or use dry ice swizzle sticks to put it directly into guests’ glasses.


If you are planning a themed party then checkout our Parties Page for heaps of inspiration on all kinds of themes. Also be sure to checkout our FREE Party Planning Checklist to help your party really get off with a swing!

About Author

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Jane Sheriff is the founder, creative director, party planner and mom of three. She started Darling Celebrations back in 2012 to share easy and beautiful ideas for celebrating the special events in life.

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