What you really need to know!
Not only has Hawaii always been one of our most popular vacation destinations, it has also been one of our family’s personal favorites. The consultants in our office are Hawaii specialists; which basically means that we know how to tailor the Hawaii vacation that most meets your needs. We are realistic about it. One person might be looking for golf, one for romance, and another for the biggest pools for their kids to play in. You cannot assume that, just because a hotel is highly rated, it is the best hotel for you.
When I was thirteen years old, I went on a golfing trip with my father. We stayed at the Mauna Kea resort on the Big Island of Hawaii. It was (and remains) absolutely beautiful, with a scenic crescent white sand beach. It had a classy clubby feel. Most of all, there was romance in the air. Unfortunately, it was this thirteen year old kid and his father. My father’s frustration meant we argued on the golf course. We golfed, we ate, we argued and we came home…not speaking to each other! This was not the right spot for us. Now that I am in the travel business, we send many romantic couples, and even some families, to the Mauna Kea, but we are careful not to recommend this romantic paradise to singles and divorced parents. For them we recommend a larger resort with more things for the kids, or a livelier place where new friends can be made easily. We might suggest the Hyatt Regency or Grand Wailea on Maui.
Our Hawaii experts know the properties, and that can be important. Right next door to each other in Wailea on Maui are two five-star resorts, the Four Seasons and the Grand Wailea. Both are terrific, but they are very different. The Four Seasons is smaller than the Grand Wailea, has a Spago restaurant, a very nice pool, and even a wading pool for infants and very young children. Families appreciate the child-proofing that takes place in their rooms even before their arrival. Young kids love getting their vacation started with the complimentary milk and cookies. It is an absolutely terrific property for romantic couples and parents with very young children. The Grand Wailea, on the other hand, has a water-park pool area with many short and long waterslides. They even have the world’s only water elevator. Older kids absolutely love it, and so do many active adults. We were having lunch at the Four Seasons last year when we heard a family talking at the next table. The kids, ages 9 and 12, were complaining that “it just wasn’t fair” that they had to “rough it” at the Four Seasons while everyone was going down the slides at the hotel next door. Of course, they were “roughing it” in a hotel room that was costing their parents in excess of $500 per night! We try to help our clients make informed decisions by helping design vacations that are not generic, but apply specifically to them.
It is good to know the water-slide rules in advance, especially the height requirements. Our six-year-old terrific swimmer was most upset when a resort we were staying at would not let him go down the slide. Not one to give up, I tried to reason with the people in charge. Then I tried begging. Finally, I signed all kinds of liability releases and my son had to pass a swimming test most Olympic champions would have trouble with. My son was granted his wish and received a wristband entitling him to go down the slide. I was proud and exhausted. We all watched from down below as my son climbed the stairs and made his way to the top of the slide. Once there, he stood there proudly. Unfortunately, he didn’t move. Then he started crying. He became scared. He made his way down the stairs, and didn’t try again the whole trip. On the way to the airport, after we had left the hotel, he announced that he was now ready. He had to wait another year before he got another opportunity. Who said parenting was easy?
We recommend some of the fabulous Hawaii golf resorts including the Mauna Kea mentioned above and the highly acclaimed Grand Hyatt and Princeville Resorts on Kauai. We can also recommend some incredible restaurants that will enhance your vacation. We even know the really good hamburger joints.
By the way, MEMBER TRAVEL has special relationships with the top hotels on the Hawaiian Islands. When the hotel shows up as “sold-out” even on their own websites, we can often get our clients in. Also, our clients frequently get the best rooms in the category booked, and even upgrades when available. This has to do partly with the volume of business we send these properties, and partly due to personal relationships we have developed through the years.
Did you know that Hawaii is one of the most popular meeting destinations? We handle everything from giant corporate meetings on Oahu to wedding receptions on a beach on Kauai.
Getting to Hawaii is easier than most “exotic” destinations. There are numerous flights to the Islands. Sometimes the fares look expensive, but MEMBER TRAVEL is generally able to reduce the cost by purchasing seats directly from Hawaii wholesalers. These wholesalers get the same scheduled air on the same airlines for less money. What makes this possible? Well, they commit to a certain number of seats and promise not to sell them to the general public unless they are sold in conjunction with a car rental or hotel. Most people rent a car, so even if MEMBER TRAVEL books the hotels separately, our clients are still able to take advantage of the lower fares. Regardless of whether you choose very deluxe hotels or more budget-oriented properties, our airline contacts can save you money before you even get to the Islands!
After you decide on your air, hotels or condos and rental cars, you can still do some additional fine-tuning of your vacation by taking advantage of MEMBER TRAVEL’s Hawaii concierge services. We can book many of Hawaii’s best attractions for you in advance. For example, we can set you up at Maui’s best luau, arrange a sunrise bicycle trip down a volcano, book a water tubing adventure down an irrigation ditch on Kauai, and various other custom tours. Many people like to plan these things in advance; others like to wait until they are on the islands. It is totally up to you.
Whether you are a first time Hawaii visitor or are planning your return to paradise, we help you put all the pieces together so that your trip to Hawaii exceeds all your expectations.