Aloha From Hawaii

 

Ho'olei at Grand Wailea's pool
Ho'olei at Grand Wailea's pool has a lagoon effect and is just across the way from Grand Wailea.


Maui insiders have taken to referring to
Ho’olei at Grand Wailea as the island’s best-kept secret. These 120 private luxury town homes across the street from Grand Wailea debuted late last year. Clientele for the gated community—which offers plenty of protection from Maui’s preponderance of paparazzi—grew out of an increasing number of Grand Wailea regulars in need of three-bedroom connecting suites.

The villas feature interior design by the owners (with tips from Wailea’s experts). This combines with the museum-quality art to present a subtle blend of Asian and contemporary motifs.

Three-bedroom town homes can accommodate six adults and two children. We were knocked out by the expansive lanais. Deluxe Ocean Villas sport the best views while Partial Ocean Views are the most popular. A detail that set us on our heels was the infinity bath tubs, which are filled by turning on an overhead fixture that lets loose a column of water. The spacious modern chef’s kitchen has granite countertops, Italian cabinetry, built-in stainless steel appliances, a Sub-Zero refrigerator and a kitchen island with seating for up to six. Each two-story town home also has a private interior elevator and an attached garage.

Note: Housekeeping is provided every fourth morning, although guests can arrange for more frequent service if they so desire.

Ho’olei has its own large pool with swim-in grotto, 19-foot waterfall, children’s pool with a sandy beach entry and poolside spa services from Grand Wailea’s Spa Grande. Guests also have privileged access to the Wailea Golf Club.

Tip: Luxury travel advisors can arrange in-villa dinners for their clients at Ho’olei at Grand Wailea by contacting Kevin Peterson (kevin.peterson@grandwailea.com; 808-875-1234, ext. 2348), director of food & beverage. The luxury advisor contact for Ho’olei at Grand Wailea is Lynndee Gomes (lyndee.gomes@grandwailea.com; 808-856-2023).

Grand Wailea Resort Hotel & Spa, a member of The Waldorf Astoria Collection, recently spent more than $50 million in renovations. The resort overlooks the southern shores of Maui with a plum beachfront location on Wailea Beach. Like Ho’olei at Grand Wailea, the resort is popular with families, thanks to its Camp Grande children’s club and the Wailea Canyon Activity Pool, which features nine separate pools, including a “baby beach.”

Tip: Parents, whose children spend most of their time in the pools, may prefer a ground-floor room in the resort’s Lagoon wing, steps away from the pool area.

The resort has 120 connecting and adjoining rooms, and all suites connect to a standard room. Aside from the Grand Suites, the Deluxe Ocean View Rooms have the best views of the Pacific and neighboring islands of Molokini, Kahoolawe and Lanai. All rooms have lanais and three-quarters of the resort’s standard rooms have partial ocean views.

The property’s renovated Napua Tower is a private club area. Its Hawaiian-themed guest rooms have been redesigned to incorporate European accents throughout and the two Grand Suites provide over-the-top accommodations. Touches that really elevate the guest experience are the wrought iron and crystal chandeliers, a grand piano and a four-poster bed carved of Hawaiian koa wood. The suites also come with their own sauna and a unique feature—a deep koa wood bathtub. There’s also ample room on the lanai to host a reception, cocktails for 20 or dining for six.

The resort’s main restaurant is the tongue-twisting humuhumunukunukuapua’a. Diners at the thatched-roof venue can handpick their Kipahula lobster from the restaurant’s saltwater lagoon. You’ll be a hero to your clients if you can book Table #70 for them. The table is approached via a wooden walkway over the lagoon, giving it a discreet location, perfect for a romantic evening. Table #90 runs a close second, while the restaurant’s 20 front-rail tables also provide excellent views of the sunset.

Tip: Grand Wailea has introduced a cabana dining experience, which goes by the name of  Na Hoku Private Dining (na hoku means “under the stars”). The resort’s lawn cabanas come into play after the sun goes down as locations for a romantic dinner or an off-the-charts, small-group experience for up to eight people.

Cabana dining and special restaurant requests can be made to Kevin Peterson (kevin.peterson@grandwailea.com; 808-875-1234, ext. 2348).

Nice to know: The resort has always had a certified sake sommelier, but now Scott Dalto, certified sake sommelier, is stepping out front and center to suggest sake pairings with meals.

The resort’s Spa Grande has brought an unusual degree of flexibility to the spa experience. Typically, one or more guests have the spa to themselves from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., with options for spa dinners on Spa Grande’s ocean view lanai, customized treatments and plenty of time to enjoy the spa’s Termé Wailea Hydrotherapy, which provides an astonishing array of water-based therapies. At 50,000 square feet and 40 treatment rooms, the property’s Spa Grande is the largest spa in Hawaii. Cecilia Hercik (cecilia.hercik@grandwailea.com; 808-875-1234, ext. 2497) is the director of spa sales and operations.

Luxury travel advisors should contact Director of Sales and Marketing Brian Lynx (brian.lynx@grandwailea.com; 808-875-1234, ext. 2343), while VIP inquiries go straight to Matt Bailey (matt.bailey@grandwailea.com; 808-874-2372), the resort’s managing director. Concierge requests are directed to Stacey Pierce (stacey.pierce@grandwailea.com; 808-875-1234, ext. 4445). 

 

An Ocean Luxury Villa
An Ocean Luxury Villa at Ho’olei at Grand Wailea.