A Travellerspoint blog

April 2011

Hawaii Revisited-My Last Day on Maui

A tour of the Hyatt and Ritz Carlton resorts round out my Maui Visit

My last day on Maui began early with breakfast and a tour of the Hyatt Regency Maui. Upon arrival at the resort, the Manager of the property greeted us and ushered our group to a breakfast buffet set up by the pool and the beach. The Hyatt is another beautiful resort on Maui. There are over 800 guest rooms with Private Lanai and stunning views of mountains or ocean. The beach front resort has numerous pools, a luxurious Spa, 4 restaurants and 5 lounges. Seating ourselves at beautifully decorated tables with umbrellas to protect us from the morning sun, we relaxed and enjoyed our breakfast before going on an extensive walking tour. The food was plentiful and delicious and the mimosas and smoothies put all of us in a great mood!
After breakfast, we began our tour.

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Our group heads over to the Breakfast Buffet by the pool and beach
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View of the Hyatt pool and beach from guest room
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Hyatt Guest room
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You can get a massage on the beach at the Hyatt
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After our tour of the Hyatt we headed back to the Sheraton for an educational session presented by the Kauai Convention and Visitor's Bureau. I would be headed to Kauai the next day with a few of the other planners. The rest of the morning was spent talking one on one with resort representatives before traveling over to the Ritz Carlton Resort for lunch and a tour of that property.

The Ritz Carlton is located in the Kapalua area on the western edge of Maui. This AAA Five-Diamond 463-room hotel is truly amazing with exquisite ocean views that overlook the neighboring islands of Moloka‘i and Lana‘i. We were guided around the resort by the sales staff before sitting down to lunch and a cultural presentation. I must say that the Ritz Carlton was really amazingly beautiful.

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View of Ritz Carlton grounds from a patio of the hotel
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View of hotel from the Ritz Carlton Pool
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Ritz Carlton Pool
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Ritz Carlton guest room
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With lunch and the tour of the Ritz Carlton behind us, we headed back to the Sheraton to pack up and relax before dinner. I was pretty tired by this time, but I had enjoyed the tours, the food and the day. The first hand education that I had received on Maui from our hosts would be invaluable to me as a travel consultant. I loved the idea that I could tell future clients that I had actually seen and experienced so much on the island. Dinner was a relaxed and fun affair at a restaurant in Lahaina. Our group sat at a large table watching the sunset while eating local specialties and enjoying tropical drinks. At 10:00pm we arrived back at our hotel, taking the time to trade business cards and phone numbers. Our group would now be splitting up, with some planners going to the Big Island for a few days while the rest of us traveled to the island of Kauai the next day.

I absolutely loved the island of Maui. I cannot wait to return. The island of Kauai was next on the agenda and I was more than a little excited to see what that experience would bring. Next up, I arrive on the island of Kauai and get my first taste of an Hawaiian Loco Moco!

To be continued.....

Gerrilyn Grant Gipson Esq.
Owner/ Travel Consultant
MEETINGS AND EVENTS UNLIMITED TRAVEL SERVICES
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Posted by Gerriv 13:49 Comments (0)

Hawaii Revisited-An Night in Wailea

An Night to Remember visiting the Resorts of Wailea, Maui

The drive to the Wailea area of the island of Maui did not take long. Our first stop for a site inspection and cocktails was the Wailea Beach Marriott Resort & Spa. This oceanfront luxury hotel is adjacent to Wailea and Ulua beaches, and is just steps from the Shops at Wailea. The resort manager met us as we exited our transport and gave us a personal tour of the resort. The resort's oceanfront setting with its new infinity-edge pool and overwater cabanas offered panoramic views of the ocean. The resort grounds were beautiful and the open lobby was very attractive. There were lots of shops and plenty of meeting rooms. The resort's Mandara Spa offered an extensive list of services and signature spa treatments. The hotel guest rooms had plenty of upscale amenities and the on-site dining options included a nightly luau dinner show, snack bar and the Kumu Bar & Grill with locally inspired cuisine.

Wailea Beach Marriott Maui
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Beautiful old trees and pond at the Marriott
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Open air lobby with Shops at the Marriott
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Marriott Pool Deck
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More Marriott Pools
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Marriott resort grounds
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Wailea Marriott guest room
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After a tour of the resort, the Manager of the Marriott lead us past the pool deck to a sprawling lawn next to the ocean where a sunset cocktail reception had been prepared. Our group was greeted by waiters with trays of appetizers, cocktails and wine. My fellow planners and I sat at small tables on the lawn and took in the gorgeous sunset. The breeze off the ocean cooled us all after our long walk around the resort and I thought to myself that there could not have been a more spectacular view in all the world right then.

Grand lawn at the Wailea Beach Marriott
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Progressive Reception site at the Marriott
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Fantastic sunset at the Wailea Marriott
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After a relaxed Reception at the Marriott we moved on to our next destination, the Grand Wailea Resort, a short walk down the beach. The Grand Wailea is as grand as its name. A huge stunningly beautiful property, this resort has just about everything you could think of including a lovely Wedding Chapel on site. This resort covered 40 landscaped acres, right on the beach and offers 780 elegantly appointed guest rooms and suites as well as 70 luxury villas. We got quite a workout walking around this resort, but the beautiful scenery was well worth the effort.

Grand Wailea Resort, Maui
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Stunning Grand Wailea resort grounds
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Grand Wailea on site Wedding Chapel
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Grand Wailea resort lobby
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Grand Wailea Resort Guest room
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The Grand Waliea knows how to throw a party. After our extensive tour of the resort, we were lead to the site of an outdoor dinner and show. Colorful tables and booths were set up with a wonderful selection of food of every taste and description. Although I was far from hungry by this time, I had to "sample" everything. Oh my goodness, the food was excellent! During dinner we were treated to a show featuring Hawaiian dancers and music. With so much walking and so much food and drink, we were all starting to droop in our chairs. The staff was wonderful and took care of our every need and as evening turned into night we were more than ready to head back to our hotel and to bed. But of course, we still had one more stop before we could sleep.

Booths set up for our Dinner and Show at the Grand Wailea
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Awesome Hawaiian Show at the Grand Wailea
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The final stop for our Progressive Reception and Dinner was the Fairmont Kea Lani where we were treated to drinks, coffee and dessert. The Fairmont is another beautiful property, but it was difficult to appreciate it in the dark. We were lead on a tour around the resort and then served dessert in one of the private dining rooms. I wish I had had the energy to take in the Fairmont’s amenities, but by that time, all I wanted to see was my bed. One day I hope to go back there for a more thorough tour of the property.

Fairmont Kea Lani
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Fairmont Kea Lani Lobby
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Fairmont Kea Lani grounds
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Fairmont Kea Lani one bedroom suite
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The ride back to the Sheraton was very quiet. Everyone was nodding off and talking was nonexistent. We had had such a marvelous evening. Each resort was lovely and the food and entertainment were all wonderful. I had taken lots of photos that I knew would be helpful when I got home. The island of Maui has so much to offer and this experience had taught me a lot about its resorts, people and the culture. There was still more to see and learn ahead. I could not believe that I had only been in Hawaii for 2 days! With a good night sleep I knew I would be up for seeing more of our wonderful 50th state.

Coming up, one more day on Maui and then it's on to the island of Kauai! To be continued.........

Gerrilyn Grant Gipson Esq.
President/Owner
MEETINGS AND EVENTS UNLIMITED TRAVEL SERVICES
gerrilyn@meetingsunlimitedtravel.com
www.meetingsandeventsunlimited.com

Posted by Gerriv 07:25 Comments (2)

Hawaii Revisited-Discovering Maui

A Visitors View of the Best Of Maui Resorts and Hotels

The day after my arrival on the island of Maui in the Hawaiian Islands I woke very early feeling wonderful after a good night’s sleep. The sun was just coming up so I decided to make a cup of coffee and enjoy it on my balcony before meeting my fellow planners for breakfast. It was a gorgeous day.

Early morning view of the beach from my balcony
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Early risers walking on the beach
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Resort View from balcony
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A quick look at the days scheduled events showed that it would be a long day of meetings and site visits, so I dressed in comfortable clothes and shoes and headed down to breakfast. A special dining area had been arranged for our group of planners and travel agents in the main conference area of the resort. As I approached our room I saw an omelet station set up outside where a Chef was making eggs cooked to order. Inside our meeting room there were tables set up with everything you could imagine to eat for breakfast including some of the most delicious looking and tasting fruit that I had ever seen. I filled my plate and sat down with several planners that I had not met the night before. Everyone commented on how good the food was and we all feared that we would go home a lot heavier than we arrived if we were not careful.

A short time later the Maui Convention and Visitor Bureau made a presentation describing the history and culture of Hawaii and the island of Maui.

Maui is the second-largest of the Hawaiian Islands at 727.2 square miles and is the 17th largest island in the United States. In 2010, Maui had a population of 154,834, third-most populous of the Hawaiian islands, behind that of Oahu and Hawaii. Kahului is the largest town on the island with a population of 20,146. Wailuku is the seat of Maui County. Polynesians, from Tahiti and the Marquesas, were the original peoples to populate Maui. The Tahitians introduced the kapu system, a strict social order that affected all aspects of life and became the core of Hawaiian culture. Modern Hawaiian history began in the mid-18th century when King Kamehameha I, king of Hawaii's "Big Island," invaded Maui in 1790 and fought the Battle of Kepaniwai. The King finally conquered Maui a few years later.

The first European to visit Maui was the French admiral Jean-François de La Pérouse, who landed on the shores of what is now known as La Perouse Bay on May 29, 1786. More Europeans followed, among them were traders, whalers, loggers and missionaries. The missionaries taught reading and writing, created the 12-letter Hawaiian alphabet, started a printing press in Lahaina, and began writing the islands' history, which until then was transmitted orally. The missionaries both altered and preserved the native culture. The religious work altered the culture while the literacy efforts preserved native history and language. Missionaries started the first school in Lahaina, which still exists today: Lahainaluna Mission School, which opened in 1831.

The big tourist areas in Maui are the Hāna Highway, Haleakalā National Park, and Lahaina. The Hāna Highway runs along the east coast of Maui, curving around many mountains and passing by black sand beaches and waterfalls. Haleakalā National Park is home to Haleakalā, a dormant volcano. Lahaina is one of the main attractions on the island with an entire street of shops and restaurants which lead to a wharf where many people set out for a sunset cruise or whale watching adventure. Snorkeling is very popular and can be done at almost any beach along the Maui coast.

It was a very interesting and educational breakfast. It was clear to me that the residents of Maui are extremely proud of their history and culture and they welcome all visitors to experience it when they come. From breakfast we spent some time talking to different resort representatives before taking a short walk down the beach to the Westin Maui Resort for a Lunch and Pool Party event. The walk down the beach was a nice change from being indoors all morning. We passed several restaurants and shopping areas along the way. At the pool deck of the Westin we were greeted by the Manager of the resort who took us on a tour of the hotel before we sat down poolside for a fabulous lunch. The Westin is another beautiful property.

Balcony view of the Westin Resort Maui
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Beach view from Westin hotel room
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Standard hotel room at the Westin Maui
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After lunch at the Westin we were given some free time to enjoy the beach or do some shopping. I chose to go back to the Sheraton and relax out of the sun. I took more photos of the resort pool and beach area before heading up to my room.

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With the day almost over, the evening was just beginning. At 5:00pm we were all told to meet in the hotel lobby for a trip over to 3 different resorts in the Wailea area of the island for a Progressive Reception event. We would tour the Wailea Marriott, the Grand Wailea Resort and the Fairmont Kea Lani and enjoy food and drink at each one. It sounded like a fun evening and I could not wait to get started!

Next up, a night to remember in Wailea on the island of Maui. To be continued.......

Gerrilyn Grant Gipson Esq.
Owner, Travel Consultant
Meetings & Events Unlimited Travel Services

Posted by Gerriv 10:43 Comments (2)

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