At first glance you might want to keep on driving. I know I did the first time I saw the Haleiwa farmer’s market from the car off the side of the highway. Sorry but I’m not a fan of traipsing through the mud after a light rain shower. Boy am I glad The Husband didn’t listen to me – this time – and parked the car. Because the farmers market in Haleiwa is a great place to spend the afternoon. There’s a nice variety of vendors for this small farmers market. I’m not sure which I loved the most, the fried avocado egg rolls (oh my God, more please!), the beautiful handcrafted jewelry designed by Marlene Snow, AKA the Knotty Lady, (I’m wearing one of her pieces now) or musician Paul Izac, the Reggae version of Jack Johnson. Better believe we’re listening to his CD in the rental car. Oh and the pineapple there is THE BEST I’ve ever tasted! Good thing we bought three. If you’re on the north shore of Oahu on a Sunday, make sure to check it out. You won’t be disappointed. It’s located off of Highway 83 and Joseph Leong highway and is open from 9 AM to 1 PM. AFTERWARDS visit Matsumoto shave ice!
Written by guest blogger Hotel Slippers
Opening its doors on March 11, 1901, The Moana, (meaning “broad expanse of ocean”), was the vision of Walter Chamberlain Peacock. Born in England, Peacock and his brother, Corbet, settled on the island of Oahu and in 1896 formed The Moana Hotel Company. Upon opening, there were only 75 rooms, with a different fine wood (oak, mahogany and maple) for each floor. In 1918 with the addition of two more floors, koa and cherry became the fourth and fifth fine woods added. After the hotels grand opening on Waikiki Beach (Waikiki meaning “sprouting waters”) and a few years of success, Peacock sold it to wealthy businessman Alexander Young in 1905.
After the death of Young, his estate managed the business until the Matson Navigation Company purchased it in 1932, making the hotel one of two (The Royal Hawaiian Hotel) owned by the Matson company. Arthur Benaglia, general manager of the Royal Hawaiian for many years, also managed The Moana from 1941-1945. In 1959 the hotel was sold to the Sheraton chain, the same year Hawaii became our 50th State. This was also the year jet airline service appeared on the island.
The hotel once again changed hands in 1974. It was sold to Japanese Industrialist, Kenji Osano (Kyo-Ya Company, Ltd.). With the building of the Surfrider and other additions, the hotel ultimately became one complete complex and was named the Moana Surfrider. It is now a Westin property and after many renovations, is restored to its present day light and airy design. A March 1989 renovation resulted in a return to its 1918 off-white and grey grandeur. Thanks to the Kyo-Ya Company, Ltd, its owners and their desire to preserve the beauty of the building, it took a well deserved place in the National Register of Historic Places.
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Written by guest blogger Ms Hotel Slippers
Perched on an edge of land jutting out toward the ocean, Turtle Bay Resort, built in 1973, brings to mind the distinct difference between the hustle and bustle of cosmopolitan Honolulu and the unrestrained pristine beaches of the rocky North Shore. Encompassing 880 undisturbed acres, the resort is a forty-five minute to one hour drive from Honolulu through the Dole Pineapple fields.
There are three accommodation options available at Turtle Bay. The resort hotel, cottages and ocean view villas all offer a variety of appealing choices for varied tastes in accommodations. Looking for the least expensive option, I selected the resort hotel, which sits high above the sea with scenic ocean-view rooms. The cottages, placed along a strip of rocky coastline and villas (studio, three and four bedrooms), facing the sea and just steps away from a white sandy beach, were all perfect accommodations to enjoy gorgeous views, scenic Kawela Bay and the well cared for resort property.
Behind the gated Turtle Bay entry, a circular drive led to the front of the hotel and open-air foyer. The foyer led to an even larger lobby where the check-in desk faced a floor to ceiling glass wall running the length of the lobby. Sweeping picture-postcard views of the stunning beach and coastline set the stage for what I knew would be a wonderful three-day stay.
Written by guest blogger Hotel Slippers
Resembling a lustrous pale pink pearl, encircled in a creamy-white shell, The Royal Hawaiian Hotel sits regally on the golden sands of Waikiki Beach. The land, once the playground of Hawaiian Royalty, was the summer palace of Queen Kaahumanu. The 15-acre coconut grove parcel of land was purchased as a site for the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, where in 1925 Matson Navigation Company spent four million dollars to build the original main building, much to the disappointment of local native Hawaiians. The New York architectural firm of Warren and Wetmore, hired to design the building, played a major role in the construction of the hotel. The use of 9,000 gallons of paint, stain and lacquer were required in the largest building project of its time in the Pacific.
Known as “The Pink Palace”, the hotel opened its doors February 1, 1927, with 1,200 people attending a black-tie dinner. Arthur Benaglia, the first manager, spent eighteen years at its helm establishing a reputation for excellent service. Thus, with the hotel sitting on Royal land among coconut trees ( a symbol of wealth and power in old Hawaii), it continues to host Heads of State, Hollywood stars and visitors from all over the world to enjoy its legacy of outstanding service.
My entrance into the Spanish-Moorish designed palace began with a beautiful orchid lei greeting (Kukui nut leis for men), bags whisked away and an escort to guide me up the wide stairway into the main lobby. As I approached the check-in desk a staff member quickly, yet gently, pulled my chair out as I took a seat and began the most pleasant check-in I have ever experienced…
LAX-HNL first class
What not to wear. On the streets. Outside.
Ko Olina Beach Resort
Another beautiful sunset
We were in Hawaii at the Ko Olina Beach Club in Oahu when the woman standing in front of the black board asked, “Do you honestly think you travel differently than everyone else? That what you’re looking for in a vacation is not what everyone else here wants.”
As I glanced at the others staying at the resort, most of whom were either families vacationing with children under the age of five, like myself, or senior citizens enjoying the fruits of their labor, I nodded my head. I do truly believe I travel differently than most people. I’m a flight attendant! And that’s what I told her.
Like most flight attendants, when I go on vacation I don’t want to stay anywhere that even remotely feels like a layover, which means I’m not a big fan of resort like properties with hundreds of rooms and thousands of guests milling about the pool. Regardless of how pretty that pool may be.
For the record, the pool at the the Ko Olina Beach Club is wonderful. My three year-old couldn’t stay out of it. The beach, a man made lagoon, is beautiful, so very relaxing at night under the stars. And the rooms, particularly the villas, are more than comfortable with their sunken tubs, full size kitchens, and a washer and dryer to boot. But that’s another story. This story is about how I’m a flight attendant and how flight attendants, not unlike most frequent fliers, do not want to spend their vacations in the same hotel-type room year after year. Even though this was our third year in a row at the resort. It was also the first time we’d agreed to partake in one those vacation club package deals.
Continue reading GALLEY GOSSIP: OAHU, HAWAII – KO OLINA BEACH CLUB VACATION DEAL