Anara Spa at the Grand Hyatt Kauai
1571 Poipu Rd., Koloa
It’s soothing just to lie still in one of the outdoor treatment-room cabanas, the smell of tropical blooms permeating the air. Once the treatments get going, they’re utter bliss: brightening peels, stimulating oxygen therapy, LED lights, and an especially pampering hot stone therapy designed to invigorate skin.
The Spa at Ko’a Kea Hotel and Resort at Poipu Beach
2251 Poipu Rd., Koloa
Locally grown coffee, Kauai clay, and essences from wild tropical flowers come together in the treatments at this spa that’s right on the beach. Few things are as relaxing as listening to the rhythm of the waves as you get a circulation-boosting face massage. If you’re sun-scorched, the Sun Comfort Facial feels effing fantastic with soothing layers of aloe, a noni superfruit mask, and a coconut scalp massage.
5492 Koloa Rd., Koloa
Fancy Italian might seem out-of-place on an island as laid-back as Kauai, but when you've had enough of island food, it's a welcome break—and it's also delicious. The far-ranging menu includes everything from pear and gorgonzola flatbreads, to a decadent lasagna and eggplant parmesan. They also serve an egg-centric breakfast that's the perfect way to fuel up before a big hike or day at the beach.
Living Foods Market Café & Juice Bar
2829 Ala Kalanikaumaka, Poipu
While you'll certainly find larger grocery stores in Kauai, you won't find nearly the same sort of health-centric offering, from organic and local produce, to bio-dynamic wines. There's also a prepared food counter where you can pick up fresh juice, sandwiches, smoothies, and salads, including pretty excellent egg and cheese sandwiches and gluten-free crepes.
2829 Ala Kalanikaumaka, Poipu
Kauai is paradise, in part because it's the least touristed of Hawaii's islands, but with that comes a dearth of good place to stay. One relatively new and excellent antidote to the housing crunch—particularly for families, or anyone traveling with other couples—is the Lodge at Kukui'ula, a private club in Poipu that stretches across 1,000 acres. Comprised of multi-bedroom homes—most with adjacent guest houses—it is really well done, with plenty of high-end touches and amenities. It is so well done in fact, that you might find yourself spending too much time sprawled out on the couch, and not enough time at the beach. While all the homes are equipped with lavish kitchens, the club restaurant is excellent, and serviced by an on-site organic garden. There's a multi-level pool, complete with hot tubs, a water slide, and a beach (the real beach is just across the road), a keiki play room lined with toys, DVDs, and all the things you might not have packed, including bouncy chairs and strollers, and an on-site outfitters staffed by locals who know all the island's secrets—what's better is that they'll take you there, or…
2360 Kiahuna Plantation Dr., Koloa
So much better than your typical (open-faced) ballgame dog, Puka Dog serves their variation in their own Hawaiian sweet bread, which they toast on custom skewers. Rather than slicing the bread open, Puka serves their Polish sausages and veggie dogs—along with your choice of garlic lemon secret sauce, Hawaiian fruit relish, and mustard sauce—fully enclosed in the roll, which makes them surprisingly easier to eat. All that said, this meal is best followed by an afternoon nap at the beach, as opposed to say, a hike.
5408 Koloa Rd., Koloa
Inspired by chef Cathy Shyne’s hometown of Altomonte, Calabria in Southern Italy, Pizzetta is a go-to in Old Koloa Town. It has all the classics you’d expect, along with entrées that are Italian-meets-Hawaiian—like kalua pork (grilled in papaya BBQ sauce) and grilled ono (Hawaiian mackerel). Set in an airy, open space with indoor and outdoor seating, it’s perfect for a laid-back meal of quality comfort food.
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