1 N. Kaniku Dr., Kohala Coast
Set on 32 acres along the Kohala Coast, the Fairmont Orchid spills onto a white-sand lagoon beach and the bright blue-green waters of Pauoa Bay. Every room here comes with its own lanai, many with lovely views of the ocean, or the island’s waterfalls and the Fairmont's tropical gardens. The most luxurious rooms and suites are on the sixth floor of the resort’s North Tower, known as “Fairmont Gold.” The spa here has several private oceanfront huts (hale) adjacent to cascading waterfalls (not a bad setting for a massage), as well as indoor treatment rooms, a sauna and a steam room. The resort also plays host to 10 quality tennis courts (with lights for night). And next to the Fairmont is the Francis H. I'i Brown Golf Course, which encompasses two different 18-hole courses.
Ka’anapali Beach Hotel
2525 Kaanapali Pkwy., Lahaina
If you are looking for the kitschy, camp Hawaiian vibe—leis draped around your neck, hula dancing, a whale-shaped pool, tiki bars, umbrellas in your drinks, snorkeling—this is the place. It’s really well-priced, especially for being on the beach in Maui, with rooms at just $169 a night. There are often more "Swimmies" in the pool than people, so this is definitely more a family place than a romantic getaway.
Waimea Plantation Cottages
9400 Kaumualii Hwy., Waimea
So there's nothing particularly splashy about Waimea Plantation, but that's precisely the point. The beach isn't particularly spectacular either, but that's no bother, either. These sprawling cottages, which occupy the grounds of a former sugar plantation, are ramshackle and adorable, and exactly what belongs at the beach. They're also perfect for a family, as they come equipped with kitchens and all that jazz—all the better for enjoying the fresh tuna sashimi from the nearby Japanese grocery store, Ishihara (seriously, it's insane). There's incredible surf to swim in to the west of the cottages in the naval base, and it's close to the bigger resorts on Poipu. The North Side and Princeville are a bit of a drive, but it's worth your while to hike along the Western side of Kauai: it's one of the more spectacular views in the world.
Four Seasons Maui at Wailea
3900 Wailea Alanui Dr., Wailea
Along with the expected Four Seasons fare (beachside cabanas, sunglasses cleaning, poolside Evian spritzing), an abundance of only-in-Hawaii extras make the Maui at Wailea outpost a playground for kids and adults alike. For one thing, Kids For All Seasons—a daily camp for littles ages 5 to 12—allows mom and dad to explore the spa, spend the day surfing (lessons and board rentals are readily available), or lay out at the adults-only serenity pool while the kiddos build sand castles, craft Leis, and take Hula lessons, all under the watchful eye of trained staff. Thoughtful touches from complimentary swim diapers by the pool to a lengthy roster of family activities (snorkeling, boogie boarding, putting greens) make vacationing en masse a total joy. At night, take your pick of three on-site restaurants, including Wolfgang Puck’s award-winning standby, Spago. Best part? Kids 5 and under eat free at Italian/Hawaiian fusion eatery, Ferraro’s and at the seafood-centric DUO. For the surfing-inclined, surfing legend Dave Kalama hosts surf camp and lessons here.
1813 Baldwin Ave., Makawao
Chill out surrounded by lush, tropical gardens at this historic Maui compound and learn to live Aloha for a while. Here you can practice mindfulness, learn to meditate, take an aromatherapy class–or learn about the land through their horticulture programs. The beauty and serenity of the island attracts yogis of all disciplines and from all over the world to practice, so check the calendar for upcoming retreats and workshops. You'll leave feeling completely refreshed.
The Modern Honolulu
1775 Ala Moana Blvd., Honolulu
So, the first thing to know is that this is not on the beach but rather along the marina. We’d suggest taking advantage of the location by renting an open-top jeep and exploring the wilds of Hawaii on the North Shore. The hotel itself is more boutique-y than resort, and feels airy, clean and crisp, with lots of white. The vibe is young, cool, modern—less expensive Hawaii—with a spring break vibe for the upwardly mobile. There are four bars, a nightclub (which gets pretty crazy at night), and an ‘adult’ pool where people can be found drinking coconut mojitos in the shallow end at pretty much all hours.
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