Four Seasons Hualalai, Hawaii - My Family Travels

The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai expands across the exclusive Kona-Kohala Coast in Ka`upulehu-Kona, on the Big Island of Hawaii. After repairs to landscaping damaged by the tsunami that followed the March 11, 2011 Japan earthquake, the resort is looking more beautiful than ever.

The tropical oasis has long provided a luxurious and relaxing environment for families, and an ideal destination for a first-class family beach vacation getaway. It remains a favorite of Hollywood celebrities and their children.

A Hawaiian Cultural Immersion

Hawaiian culture is celebrated in every corner of this understated deluxe resort. Its unusual Ka'upulehu Cultural Center contains an archival collection of Hawaiian maps, ancient tools, textiles, paintings, and recorded music along with an assortment of classes in subjects such as Hawaiian Language, the Hula, and Sea Voyaging by the Hawaiian Stars.

Kids learn about Hawaiian culture through the complimentary Kids for All Seasons Program (ages 5-12) housed in its own spacious, sunny, and colorful facility. Teens are kept active with programs of their own.

The oceanfront Pahuia Restaurant allows families to admire the source of the hotel's noted regional cuisine, which features lesser-known local fish such as moi and opah, along with more familiar onaga (red snapper) and ahi (tuna).

Hualalei is a Hawaiian Paradise of Posh

But, most people who go to the Four Seasons are pleasure seekers, not knowledge hunters, and they go for the sun, sand, and surf…  and catch the culture as an added bonus.

An attractive selection of swimming pools and a spectacular swimming and snorkeling lagoon blasted out of black volcanic lava rival the beach for guests' R n'R time, and the beachfront restaurant and bar are favorite hang-outs. There are great facilities for golf, tennis and watersports. The spa, already a draw, was part of the resort's huge 2009 makeover and is now 28,000-square-feet of pure bliss.

The lagoon has its own marine biologist who oversees thousands of fish comprising 50 different species. Scuba diving classes are held here, and young snorkelers are richly rewarded for very little effort.

The intimate property has only 243 guest rooms, and among them 20 suites really stand out. Most rooms are in beachfront bungalows arranged in four discreet crescents connected by paths fringed with poinciana trees, ginger, and orchids. Each crescent has its own pool or pond, including a toddlers' wading pool with a sandy beach and giant turtle sculpture. The one-bedroom and two-bedroom suites ranging in size from 1,150- to 1,950 square-feet have been upgraded with new lawns and private lanais (patios). These units can be child-proofed on request by the housekeeping staff.

Families are made to feel welcome in many other ways: children find plush animals on their pillows with a personal invitation to the kids' program as soon as they arrive, and there are children's menus in every restaurant, and complimentary washers and dryers in each crescent, plus complimentary cribs, car seats, high chairs, strollers, and poolside play pens. On site retail shops also carry family essentials, ensuring guests spend as much time as possible on vacation.

Resort Report Card

Name: Four Seasons Resort
Address: 72-100 Ka`upulehu Drive
Phone: 800/845-3692
Seasonal Rates: $$$$ – $$$$$
Hotel Setting: A
Hotel Staff: A
Choice of Activities: A
Quality of Amenities: A
Bonus: Sea, sand, and superlative service.
Note: Four Season's Resorts are reliably "old money" — elegant, genteel, and discreet — yet they enthusiastically welcome the youngest (and least discreet!) of guests.

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