“Nāmāhoe” is the Hawaiian word meaning “the twins,” signifying the twin hulls of the waʻa. Nāmāhoe in the night sky is comparable to the Greek twin constellation, Gemini.
The hulls for the then un-named canoe had just gotten completed when Dr. Pat Aiu recalled to his fellow nā kālai waʻa that the name for their waʻa had come to him in his dream. Dennis recalls:
He related to us that in his dream he was on an ancient voyaging canoe at night in mid-channel. He wasn’t quite sure what channel he was in or even if he was in Hawaiian waters. But, he did know he was onboard with Hawaiians, for they were all speaking in Hawaiian. Pat said he could understand what they were talking about as he had spent many years as the doctor for the island of Niʻihau. As he listened it became clear to him that they were in the Kaʻieʻiewaho Channel heading to Kauaʻi from Oʻahu. As they were sailing along instructions were given to the steersman to steer toward the setting constellation today we call Gemini, but which Hawaiians called “Namahoe.”