Hawaii Recap Part 1

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

For those who don't know, we spent last week in beautiful Wailea, Maui, Hawaii!

We left Charlotte at 7:30 Saturday morning and arrived in Maui at 2:30 Saturday afternoon.  Hawaii is 6 hours behind us here on the east coast so when we got there, we were pretty much ready to crash.

However, when we saw the view from our room, sleep was the last thing on our minds.

We cashed in about 300,000 Marriott Rewards points (earned over 4+ years by Steven's countless trips to Ohio and through our Marriott Rewards credit card, which we use for everything and pay off at the end of each month) and stayed at the Wailea Beach Marriott.  We did have to pay a $30 per day resort fee, which included parking and a discount card that, among other things, gave us 10% off at their Mandara Spa and 20% off cabana rentals.  So if you take those things into account, it more than paid for itself.

Due to our superior Marriott status (as cardholders and frequent travelers), we were able to upgrade to a deluxe ocean front room at no extra charge (hence the amazeballs view).  We had probably the second best view in the whole hotel!  The majority of the rooms were set far back from the ocean and only had little slivers of a view.  When we were in Maui for our honeymoon, we stayed at the Westin Maui in Ka'anapali and most of our view there consisted of a shopping mall with a tiny view of ocean in the background.  So we were pleasantly surprised when we stepped into our room and saw the fabulous view above!

Here, Steven will show you where our room was...

Just out of this shot to the right is the ocean.

After we got settled into our room, we changed clothes, took a quick tour of the spa and made an appointment for a couple's massage the following day, and headed next door to the Shops at Wailea for dinner.  On the way, we came across this beautiful flowering tree, so I had to stop for a photo op.

After dinner at Cheeseburgers Island Style, we went back to our room and crashed.  I was asleep by 9 p.m., I think.

The next morning, before our massage, we rented a little blue cabana (only $20 after the 20% discount... so worth it in my opinion) and lounged by the adults-only infinity pool.  We've pretty much decided that we MUST have an infinity pool before we die.  I mean, talk about heavenly!

The hotel had 2 other pools which we walked by several times and were always deserted, whereas the infinity pool was always packed!  Another good reason to reserve a cabana... no need to worry about someone stealing your lounge chair!  We actually didn't get in any other pools until our last day, which we kind of regret now.  The pool next to the fun water slides (which we frequented!) was so warm and much more laid back.  You didn't feel like you could goof around in the "adult" pool, but we had races and tried to float on our backs (I used to be able to do that so easily, but I just sink to the bottom now - so frustrating!) in the kid-friendly pool.

When we came inside after our massage and some more lounging, we got to witness a wedding taking place right outside our room.  It was so beautiful!  Can you imagine the photos that photographer took?  It kind of makes me wish we'd had our wedding in Hawaii!

That night we had dinner in the hotel restaurant, Mala Wailea.  I had a flatbread pizza and it was okay... nothing to write home about.

The next morning, we got dressed and headed back to the Shops at Wailea for breakfast at Longhi's.  I had french toast, which I never order because it can be a tricky thing to get right and I don't like to risk it, but I was on a mission to try things this trip that I don't usually try, so I went for it.  I was glad I did!  After I finished (I could only eat 2 of my 4 pieces), the waiter said that next time I should just get a half-order - now, why didn't he tell me that before?!  

After breakfast, we did a little shopping and then headed back to our hotel, where we got a drunk guy to take a photo of us (yes, it was like 11 a.m.).  This was right by the walkway leading to the infinity pool.

Later that day, we took showers, then took the top off of our rented Jeep Wrangler and went for a drive.  The clouds started to look ominous after a little while so we had to pull over on the side of the road and figure out how to get it back on.  Talk about a pain in the rear!  I think we pulled over 3 times to adjust the thing for fear of it flying right off.  We were glad we did, though, because a little while later, it started raining.

That night we ate at Mama's Fish House, which was uber expensive.  We ordered the macadamia nut crusted crab cakes which were DIVINE, then shared the prawns for our meal.  They were marinated in a vanilla-based sauce, which was sort of weird, but the salad and rice they came with were really good!

The next day we traveled up the coast to the most touristy town in all of Maui:  Lahaina.

We had to keep tradition alive and take a photo of Steven in front of Bubba Gump.

We had lunch at Cheeseburgers in Paradise (okay, I can't type cheeseburgers to save my LIFE - every time it comes out chessebrugers), which is the same as Cheeseburgers Island Style, where we had eaten on our first night, but apparently it's NOT the same because Steven just HAD to eat there.  Whatevs, I didn't mind because look at the view from our table:

After lunch, we walked down to check out the big tree and get a nice older couple to take this picture where Steven looks like he's balding, but his hair is just really shiny!

When we were in Hawaii for our honeymoon, we didn't even think to get any Shave Ice, but to be fair, Ululani's wasn't around then!  Their shave ice is not like the Snow Cones you get around here.  It's so fine it doesn't even look like ice and their flavors are SO GOOD.  Steven got the root beer float combo (vanilla - the blue color, root beer, ice cream on the bottom and cream drizzled over the top).  It sounded disgusting to me but he loved it.

I got blue raspberry, lemon and cherry.  The cherry wasn't that great, but the blue raspberry was very good and the lemon was my favorite.  I'm not huge on things like this, always preferring salty over sweet snacks, hence why lemon was probably my favorite - it was less sweet than the others.

I want to apologize in advance if this next photo makes your little green-eyed monster come out!

That was taken at the Old Lahaina Luau, which was so incredible.  The food was delicious, the entertainment was excellent and our table-mates were so fun to talk to.  There was a newlywed couple from Virginia whose wedding was outside, and of course it rained so their 20-minute ceremony was cut down to 5 minutes.  I felt so bad for them!  She was taking photos of everything trying to make up for the photos they didn't get on their wedding day.  There was also a couple from Germany who were just there on vacation - and I thought we came a long way!  And lastly, the older couple from Texas who had actually been to our town in NC before - whodathunk?

Next up:  Haleakala National Park and a sunset dinner cruise!

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