The Asian Flu Clobbers Hawaii's Paradise

On most evenings at Ala Moana Shopping Center near Waikiki Beach, Japanese tourists clutching Gucci and Louis Vuitton shopping bags cruise the aisles of Liberty House. With just under $400 million in annual sales, it's Hawaii's largest department-store chain and a major employer. It is a favorite destination of Asian shoppers who come to Hawaii to splurge as much as surf. And it's popular among my friends who grew up here. They affectionately view the 150-year-old-company as an icon of Hawaii culture.

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