One area of the big island that was held in high regard by royalty is the Kohala coast. And after being here, it’s easy to see why! Today, this beautiful area along the western coast of the island has become the location of some of the most incredible resorts in the world.
This is where I found a hotel fit for a king! The Fairmont Orchid Resort is an amazing hotel located on the beautiful Mauna Lani resort, a place with its own fair share of history. In ancient Hawaiian times this place was called “Kalahuipua’a,” which is a place where the Hawaiian chiefs came to meet and have festivities afterwards. Loaded in history, it’s located at the base of all the volcanoes and mountains here on the Big Island. This resort is truly paradise!
From the moment you arrive you’re greeted with genuine Hawaiian hospitality. The open-air lobby has a view of the ocean, exactly what you’d expect here in Hawaii, and the perfect beginning to a relaxing stay.
General Manager Ian Pullen informed me, “We have 540 rooms and suites located in two towers on either side of the property. The property is a total of 32 acres, and they’ve all been decorated in furnishings that are very authentically local, very representative of living in Hawaii. So everybody that comes to visit gets a true sense of what it’s like to come and live here.”
Just imagine waking to the sounds of the waves washing up on the beach! Luxurious bedrooms and suites are decorated in soft colors, with designer linens, Hawaiian furnishings and twice daily maid service. Marble baths feature power showers and complimentary toiletries. And with views like I had from my balcony, you’re sure to feel the spirit of the islands!
The Fairmont Orchid is truly an oasis here on the big island, with magnificent tropical gardens and a free form pool as the centerpiece of the beachfront gardens. Look closely and you’ll discover a hidden Jacuzzi tucked into the palms and flowers a few steps away. But this is no mirage… It’s simply breathtaking!
And as if lying around the pool weren’t relaxing enough, treat yourself to an outdoor massage next to a waterfall. Ian Pullen described the experience: “The massage therapist will bring you from the spa to the thatched hut and give you a spa treatment with the ponds running beneath you. It really gives you a true sense of Hawaii in a lush tropical garden atmosphere.”
With all this relaxing and lounging by the pool, don’t forget that they’re also famous for their private lagoon and white sand beach, and in case you’re wondering how to keep your kids busy, never fear! The Fairmont Orchid Resort has you covered with “all you can eat” activity packages that give you unlimited access to the resort’s best ocean and fitness activities including sports rental gear, like surfboards & snorkels.
The kid’s cultural programs are also popular, and will actually teach the kids a thing or two about the islands and Hawaiian culture. And while the kids are busy, why not take some time for yourself and check out the resort’s other sports activities, like tennis or golf. Or you could spend a little time in the state of the art health club! One thing is definite: after the pool, the spa, the beach and snorkeling, you’ll be ready to eat! Luckily the Fairmont Orchid Resort has a great variety of restaurants to choose from.
You can have a drink on the beach at the Ocean Bar, or for something quick, there’s Brown’s Deli for great sandwiches and Panini.
But for a fantastic meal with a great view, you’ve got to try the award winning Brown’s Beach House. Here you can enjoy an amazing breakfast buffet in the morning, and trust me when I say they have everything! Dine indoors or out, and make sure to come back at the end of the day. Here you can sample a few of Hawaii’s famous dishes or seafood specialties as you take in the gentle ocean breeze and enjoy one of the most beautiful sunsets you’ll ever see.
When staying at a resort that has everything, it’s easy to want to spend your entire vacation there. But there’s a lot more to this island that you don’t want to miss. From a walk on the volcano, deep sea fishing for marlin, or a horseback ride at the Dahana Ranch where you can experience the life of a paniolo….the Hawaiian cowboy!
And when it’s time to shop for those Hawaiian souvenirs, the town of Kailua-Kona is about a twenty minute drive down the road Definitely rent a car to get the most out of your trip, and ask your travel agent about a fly & drive package to make your car rental extremely affordable.
There are so many different sides to the big island of Hawaii. And with a little adventurous spirit, you can see them all!