"It is late, but now it's here and we're celebrating that today," said Tom Chancellor, The University of Hawaii at Manoa Chancellor.
With the ceremonial lei and blessing over, the long awaited Warrior Recreation Center opened to the public, namely to students and faculty, some waiting nearly a decade for it to be completed.
"It's a gorgeous building, and to know it was student-led and designed, and actually started by students who knew they would never actually see the opening is great," said Apple.
The multi-use facility is 67,000 square feet, two floors, with basketball courts, a couple of fitness centers for cardio-vascular and weight training, locker rooms, and even an indoor track.
University officials said the project stayed close to budget, costing about $34 million, in part, paid for through years of increases in student fees for a facility many of them would never get to use.
"I think it's worth it for the future students, but for me I'm not going to get much use out of it so it is a little disappointing," John Whitkowski, a UH Senior.
"Look at all the delays since 2005 and 2006. This is 2014 already. You cannot keep on denying what the students want and need," said Honolulu City Prosecutor Keith Kaneshiro.
He's been a supporter of the project since its inception, and told KITV4, the student-funded, student-driven project should have been completed years ago.
Chancellor Tom Apple said unstable ground under the project and a construction company that went bankrupt made matters worse.
"When I first came here it was right when they started construction on it. The whole time I've been here it's been under construction. So, it's nice to see it finally open," said Whitkowski.
Despite the problems, the day was about the progress and a proud moment for believers who held on to their dream.
"You can't put a price on health especially when you have facilities like this. It urges students to have healthy lifestyles," said senior Krystal Castaneda.
As for why it was named the "Warrior Recreation Center" and not the "Rainbow Warrior Recreation Center" Apple told KITV4, the project was pitched, and the name stuck before construction began and before the university changed to its name to "Rainbow Warriors."