News - Big Island of Hawaii

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News for the Big Island of Hawaii Island 
Courtesy Big Island Visitors Bureau  (edited for content)

Island of Hawaii (November 1, 2016) - Love is in the air, in the natural wonder, on the scenic roadways, and on the trade wind-cooled beaches of the island of Hawaii. It's here all year and for all experiences, whether you arrive with a romantic occasion to celebrate at a Kohala Coast resort getaway or hidden volcano area bed-and-breakfast, or to enjoy the simple pleasure of each other's company on a hike through a verdant rainforest or vast lava field. Discover your definition of romantic adventure on the island of Hawaii with the listing of accommodations and dining experiences below, along with a handful of other hotel, activities and tour news.
ROMANTIC ACCOMMODATIONS
It's the moon and the stars. It's the sound of ocean waves. It's personalized service and a champagne toast. And it's all available at Mauna Kea Resort's Mauna Kea Beach Hotel and Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel. Romantic dinners for two at the resort's collection of dining venues could include a personalized four-course menu, stargazing with an astronomer and telescope, a fire knife dancer or conch shell blower. Private events can also be arranged, including cooking and mixology classes, private chef's tables and more. Whatever the occasion or gathering, the Mauna Kea Resort team is ready to make it special. Visit www.maunakearesorts.com/romance for more information.
Engagement season is upon us, and the Courtyard King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel is excited to share its new, customizable wedding packages, which include a personalized Hawaiian wedding ceremony, Whether planning a large or small ceremony, learn about the hotel's oceanfront venues, delicious catering options, and affordable wedding packages that will help you plan your dream wedding. The beachfront hotel also offers a full-service day spa, 452 guest rooms for your guests traveling to the island of Hawaii, two restaurants, an infinity pool, and an on-site luau. All of it just steps from the heart of historic downtown Kona. Visit the hotel's website for more information, or call its wedding team at (808) 331-6332.
Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows offers a tropical backdrop for romance with its Kohala Coast sunsets and hammocks for swaying with the coast's sun-kissed breezes. Couples booking the hotel's "Romance Package" will experience ocean view accommodations, a welcome bottle of champagne, chocolate strawberries, a rose petal turndown, a couple's treatment at the Mauna Lani Spa, and a private dinner on the lanai of their room. All others are welcome to experience the romance of Mauna Lani Bay by reserving a romantic sunset dinner on the beach with a private table for two under the stars. Visit www.maunalani.com or call (800) 367-2323 for more information.
TOURS
Humdinger Sportfishing - Kona Fishing Charters is offering a fall/winter  $399 flash sale "Half-Day Kona Fishing Charter Special." A single price books Humdinger's boat for up to six passengers. The offer is valid for a 4-hour, half-day fishing charter, available every day through Nov. 15, 2016, and on a space-available basis through March 15, 2017.  Departure times are 6:30 a.m., 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m. daily. Fish for blue marlin, mahimahi, striped marlin and tuna.  Humdinger Sportfishing has 50 years of experience fishing in Kona waters. To check availability and book online, or for more information, visit www.humdingersportfishing.com.
Dolphin Journeys is offering a November-December special of 20 percent off all tours through December 20, if you mention you saw the special in this newsletter. For more information, visit www.dolphinjourneys.com, or call (808) 329-3030.
TASTY TIDBITS
Enjoy the "Sunset Romantic Dinner" packages at Hilton Waikoloa Village's Buddha Point, inspired by the native Hawaii naupaka flower. Because individual naupaka are only half flowers, romantic legend claims that if a couple joins two halves together (one from the ocean and one from the mountain) to make a complete flower, good fortune will be brought upon their love. With two five-course dinners to choose from, couples are invited to "join halves" and experience their new good fortune with the resort's Kealoha or Akaula dinner menus. For more information or to make reservations call (808) 886-1234, ext. 2541.
With the weather always balmy in Hawaii, Four Seasons Resort Hualalai offers guests yet another opportunity to keep things warm with its "Romantic Dinner Under the Stars." Designed for a celebratory romantic evening, the experience offers a toes-in-the sand dinner with a personalized menu selected by you, a dedicated server and a private waterside location. Guests can add everything from hula dancers and musicians to a photographer to accompany the truly al fresco evening. For more information, visit www.fourseasons.com/hualalai or call (888) 340-5662.
RENOVATIONS
The former Hilo Naniloa Hotel will officially reopen as the Grand Naniloa Hotel - A DoubleTree by Hilton with a traditional Hawaiian blessing on November 10. Following more than $30 million in renovations, the completely transformed hotel features artwork by hula photographer Kim Taylor Reece and a museum-style presentation of local culture in its new bay view lobby. Minutes from Hilo International Airport and within easy driving distance to waterfalls, tropical gardens, beaches and Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, the hotel is an ideal base for guests to discover the island of Hawaii's diverse natural landscape. For more information, visit www.grandnaniloahilo.com or call (808) 969-3333.
KapohoKine Adventures has opened its new Hilo flagship store in the main lobby of the newly refurbished Grand Naniloa Hotel, a DoubleTree by Hilton. The store makes use of reclaimed wood for its custom wall finishes and floor stands, LED lighting for its interior, and compostable, eco-friendly paper and cleaning products. Visitors to the store will find gallery items from Hawaii photographer Kim Taylor Reece and National Geographic Young Explorers grantee and Hilo resident Eric Leifer as well as a wide-range of sporting rentals, GoPro equipment, and fresh to-go foods. KapohoKine Adventures aims to sell its own eco-focused adventure tours at its new location in addition to activities offered by outside vendors in partnership with Hawaii Performance Partners. For more information, visit www.kapohokine.com or call (808) 964-1000.


SIZZLIN' OCTOBER NEWS FROM HAWAII, THE BIG ISLAND

Hawaii Island (October 1, 2015) - Lace up your hiking boots, slather on some sunscreen, fill your canteens with lots of water and your backpack with trail mix, then head out into Hawaii Island's great outdoors and onto its many hiking trails. We've got a handful of hiking adventures lined up below, and some upcoming accommodation specials and events.

NOTABLE HIKES
Get out on the trail with travel blogger Vanessa Chiasson on a hike to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park's Puu Loa Petroglyph Field, an archeological site home to more than 23,000 lava bedrock carvings made by early Hawaiians between A.D. 1200 and 1450. Check her post out here on the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau's "So Much More Hawaii" blog.

KapohoKine Adventures offers adventure-seeking travelers hikes around and within Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. The "Kilauea Hike n Glow" trek takes guests beyond the park's visitor centers with a walk through the Thurston Lava Tube, then four miles across the floor or Kilauea Iki crater with steam and smoke rising all around. As evening nears, enjoy dinner at the world-renowned Volcano House hotel, perched on the rim of the Kilauea volcano caldera. Before the sun sets, we head to the Thomas A. Jaggar Museum Observation Deck to see the glow of red lava reflected in steam at the bottom of Halemaumau crater. For more information, to to KapohoKine Adventures brochures and click on their website link.

Guests at Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows can enjoy a "View into the Past" as they tour ancient fishponds and historic petroglyphs at Kalahuipuaa. The hotel's director of cultural affairs, Danny Akaka, who leads the weekly tour and is one of Hawaii's living legends, has dedicated his life to the preservation of Hawaiian culture and its values. Akaka offers other historic tours of Mauna Lani's grounds, as well, and introduces guests to the significance of the fishponds. He offers demonstrations of traditional Hawaiian throw-net fishing, giving a historical view of the era of Hawaiian royalty.

Home of the popular cultural tour of the early Hawaiian fishing heiau (temple), Kaukulaelae, Sheraton Kona Resort & Spa at Keauhou Bay is partnering with Keauhou Bay Adventures to offer a historical walking tour along the Kona Coast. The three-mile, two-hour journey begins at Keauhou Bay and escorts guests to the sacred grounds of Lekeleke, site of the Battle of Kuamoo, which overturned Hawaiian religious beliefs and brought the Christianity of Europeans to the Islands in 1819. The tour is $49 per person and is reservation-only.
  
The Kings' Trail borders the Kings' Shops at Waikoloa Beach Resort. Join Kings' Shops' expert guide, Kaleiula Kaneau, for an hour-long tour of these culturally significant petroglyphs. Complimentary guided tours are offered on Thursdays and Fridays, from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m., and meet at the Kings' Shops' lakeside lanai, under the tower next to Island Fish & Chips. As the lava trails are uneven and rough, good walking shoes and sunscreen, plus hats and water, are recommended.

Here's a travel tip. Stay at a vacation rental in the town of Volcano on Hawaii Island and explore the many hiking trails of Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Staying at a vacation rental is a great way to get a real island-life experience. You can also view a variety of free Hawaii travel brochures to help plan your activities and adventures on your next dream vacation to Hawaii Island. Bookmark our site as a favorite, follow us on Twitter, and watch for new Hawaii vacation rentals and brochures. Visit www.Islandsource.com.


If you visit the petroglyphs within Waikoloa Resort on your own, please respect this culturally sensitive area. Stay on the trail and do not approach the petroglyphs for photos or rubbings without the permission of Waikoloa Resort Security. The fragile carvings, which may be thousands of years old, are easily subject to damage and erosion. The best time to capture a photo of a petroglyph is in the late afternoon when sunlight shadows are long.

UPCOMING EVENT
Golf enthusiasts are invited to enjoy six days and five nights of championship golf, paired with luxury accommodations, prizes and more during the 42nd Annual Mauna Kea Pro-Am, happening Dec. 2 to 7, 2015. Entry fees begin at $3,620, which includes taxes, accommodations for five nights, daily breakfast, practice and tournament rounds, special dinner events, and more. In honor of Mauna Kea Beach Hotel's 50th anniversary, Pro-Am participants can take advantage of the following trio of offers, each priced for just $50: parking and internet for the duration of a player's stay, golf guest fee for spouses, and late checkout until 8 p.m. on departure day.


TASTY TIDBITS
Chef Allen Hess introduces his new Mai Grille restaurant at Kings' Golf Course, opening Oct. 5, 2015. Hess brings skills and passion to what he calls his "chef-driven, housemade farm-to-table comfort food." Mai Grille's "House of Bacon" also features the Hess family's artisan-style, thick-cut bacon. The restaurant will be open daily for breakfast from 7:30 to 11 a.m.; for lunch, cocktails, and afternoon dining from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.; and for Sunday brunch from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. For more information, call (808) 886-7600.

Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows' executive sous chef, Allan Nagun, is taking the helm of chef de cuisine at the resort's oceanfront CanoeHouse. Nagun has been a key member of Mauna Lani's culinary team for 11 years. He is a firm believer that when one has superior quality ingredients, flavors need to be revealed rather than hidden. Nagun leads the CanoeHouse team and is the host chef for the Captain's Table, an intimate blind-tasting menu created with seasonal ingredients. His menu incorporates an artisanal flair into Hawaii Regional cuisine. Visit www.maunalani.com.

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For Immediate Release - June 22, 2015
 
HAWAII HONORED WITH TRAVELAGE WEST WAVE AWARDS
Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction and Tourism Board Providing the Best Travel Agent Support

HONOLULU – The Hawaiian Islands received top honors at the TravelAge West WAVE (Western Agents’ Votes of Excellence) Awards for "Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction, USA" and "Tourism Board Providing the Best Travel Agent Support." The Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau (HVCB) accepted the awards on June 11 in Marina Del Rey, Calif.

Hawaii beat stiff competition from California, Florida, Las Vegas and New York City in the Highest Client Satisfaction category, and Travel Alberta, Tourism Ireland, Jamaica Tourist Board, and Mexico Tourism Board in the Best Travel Agent Support category.

"This recognition by the editors and readers of TravelAge West is a testament to the high quality of service that the HVCB and travel industry partners provide on a daily basis throughout the year," said George Szigeti, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority. "The Hawaiian Islands continue to deliver on its promise as a destination of remarkable experiences and beauty, and I’d like to thank our visitor industry for all of their hard work year after year."

"The work our travel trade team has accomplished in the last 12 months continues to exceed expectations and reset the bar on delivering unparalleled service to our valued travel agent partners," said John Monahan, HVCB president and CEO. "We’ve completely revamped our travel agent online resource center and Hawaii destination training program to ensure agents are equipped with the most compelling information about the islands to help their clients plan the most memorable vacations. We accept these accolades on behalf of our marketing partners and the entire hospitality industry in Hawaii whose support make it possible."

Travel agent professionals throughout the 14 Western states and readers of TravelAge West were invited to vote on the best-of-the-best from a list of Editor’s Pick award recipients that were chosen after careful review by Editor-in-Chief Ken Shapiro and the editorial team of TravelAge West. Review methods included product analysis, on-site visits, a survey of a select group of travel agents and online research. Hawaii received three 2015 Editor’s Pick Awards in the categories of "Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction, USA," "Tourism Board Providing the Best Travel Agent Support," and "Best Beach Destination for Romance Vacation."