Disney Has a New Address in Hawaii

written by | Posted on November 9th, 2011

Just in time for those holiday vacations, Disney is inviting guests to its brand-new property in Hawaii—Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa. In late September, the brand celebrated the hotel’s official grand opening in true Disney fashion, with a Hawaiian celebration complete with music, lights and appearances from Mickey, Minnie and other beloved Disney characters.

“Aluani is a stunning resort that offers something unique in the vacation industry,” says Tom Stags, chairman of Walt Disney Parks & Resorts. “It’s an incredible family paradise that combines the beauty and culture of Hawaii with a touch of Disney magic.”

Situated in Ko Olina on the island of Oahu, Aluani occupies 21 beachfront acres, adjacent to a 9-acre lagoon and white sand beach. The property features 359 traditional guestrooms and 481 Disney Vacation Club Villas, complete with two bedrooms and stunning ocean and mountain views.

Fun for Little Ones It wouldn’t be a true Disney property without having plenty of options for young guests. At Aunty’s Beach House kids’ club, for instance, little ones can explore Hawaiian culture through supervised games, arts and crafts, movies and nature programs. Teens, meanwhile, can enjoy the Painted Sky Teen Lounge and Spa, complete with teen-specific massages and facials, a D.I.Y mixology bar for perfumes and body polishes, a yogurt bar and teen activities ranging from hula lessons to pool parties.

Kids also won’t want to miss the Paul Hana Room Community Hall, which is where they’ll find Nintendo Wii and Sony Playstation video games, a foosball table and more.

Outdoors, there is plenty of fun to be had at Waikolohe Valley—a 7-acre water play area featuring a tube floating watercourse, the Tuerstone Curl tube slide and the 3,800-sq.-ft. Rainbow Reef snorkel lagoon, which is home to a variety of native Hawaiian fish.

Just for Grown-Ups At the 18,000-sq.-ft. Laniwai Spa, parents can indulge in a menu of yummy spa treatments, many of which draw upon Hawaiian traditions. For instance, the Lomilomi massage—available in 50 or 80 minutes—promotes healing using gentle, rhythmic pressure to release tension. The 80-minute Kapa ‘I massage, meanwhile, uses warmed poultices of muslin-wrapped herbs to knead onto the body, relieves muscle tension and condition the skin.

Laniwai Spa is also where guests will find the 2,000-sq.-ft. health club, equipped with an array of cardio and strength training equipment, free weights and stretching areas. Here, grown-ups can also take advantage of personal and group fitness training, and fitness classes such as yoga, aquatic workouts and more.

Culinary Delights Aulani features two signature restaurants: the full-service ‘AMA ‘AMA and the buffet-style Makahiki, both offering foods unique to Hawaii.

At the chic, beachside ‘AMA ‘AMA, chefs use fresh local ingredients and island flavors to create distinctive dishes at breakfast, lunch and dinner. The menu includes vegetarian options and classic cocktails with new twists, plus desserts house-made daily.

The buffet-style Makahiki offers guests breakfast with Disney characters or dinner in artful surroundings, including a stunning ceiling light sculpture and wall murals hand-painted by local artists.

Inspired by Nature Over at the resort’s Makai Preserve conservation pool, both parents and kids can take part in an interactive experience, allowing them to get up close to stingrays. A portion of each reservation goes to the wildlife research and conversation efforts in Hawaii through the Disney Worldwide Conservation Fund.

Guests can also discover the local landscapes and culture by booking one of the many offisite Discovery excursions available for booking at the resort. From hiking local mountains or exploring topical rainforests, to taking a ghost tour or cooking with a local chef, these excursions are designed specifically for Aluani guests by Adventures by Disney and are led by expert tour guides.

“Aulani truly has something for everyone,” says Staggs. “With specific spaces and experiences created for kids, teens and adults, as well as places where families can relax and make memories together, Aulani is just the answer for families who want to experience the incredible storytelling and great guest service of Disney while enjoying all that Hawaii has to offer.”

For more information, visit http://resorts.disney.go.com.