Selena Pak always knew she wanted to own her own business. She dabbled in many creative pursuits throughout high school but always found herself coming back to baking. Selena learned to bake at 16 by following videos, but the results weren’t so great. Her mom recognized this passion and encouraged Selena to perfect her craft.
Selena then attended a months-long baking program in South Korea to develop her skills. This education, along with her experience working in the restaurant industry, shaped Selena into the masterful pastry artist she is today.
To see the success for yourself, just peruse the Honolulu Rose Cake Shop menu. Selena operates the bakery full-time, creating custom cakes for occasions as well as a regular menu of full-size cakes, cupcakes, cheesecakes, banana pudding, and more.
When crafting the menu, Selena followed her own tastebuds and love of light, fluffy desserts that are on the less sweet side. Japanese and Korean pastry styles are the main influences for her baking, but she also caters to local tastes, drawing inspiration from Hawaiian favorites like chantilly cake and rainbow cake. No matter what she bakes, each pastry is a work of art, crafted with aesthetics in mind.
Launching the Bakery Online
Selena started out selling her cakes via Facebook, but quickly realized her customer reach was limited due to the dwindling popularity of the social media site.
She then switched to Instagram, where she was able to connect with more customers. From there, an Airmart team member reached out to her about a free online shop. Selena was happy to have a central landing page for her bakery where customers could order. Around that time last year, she also started bringing Honolulu Rose to events around the island.
“Airmart really helped out. I like that people are able to order online and see prices ahead of time before events.”
Selena uses Squarespace for her main website and links the “Shop” tab directly to her Airmart store. This allows her to have an e-commerce function on her website without paying Squarespace e-commerce prices. With Airmart, Selena offers pickup and local delivery in Honolulu.
The bakery’s best sellers include strawberry shortcake, which “flies off the shelves,” and the mini cheesecake set that comes in original lilikoi, matcha, guava, and strawberry flavors.
Honolulu Rose Cake Shop is a dream come true for Selena. She enjoys the freedom of running her own business and builds community by working with other vendors at events. “I find so much joy in seeing customers’ reactions to my desserts.”
Did you know?
Honolulu Rose Cake Shop is the first Airmart shop based in Hawaii! We love the Island spirit of supporting local businesses and communities and invite food vendors to open free online shops with us.