Hotels

‘Hawaii’s most Hawaiian hotel’ to undergo major upgrades

Kaanapali Beach Hotel has announced the launch of the ‘Kealaula’ project to further enhance the establishment of Hawaiian culture throughout the property.

Launching in spring 2020, the beginning of the property renaissance is projected at $65 million ($96.9 million) and will involve a number of transformative enhancements.

These include a significant redesign to Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s 180-room Kauai Wing, a refresh of the property’s courtyard, the launch of a new oceanfront restaurant and an additional floor of parking.

Alika Guerrero, Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s director of Pookela, is overseeing all cultural aspects of the renovation process, which is being guided with Hawaiian culture at its core.

“The focus of our upcoming $65 million project is to enhance our opportunities to provide the exceptional and culturally enriching guest experiences for which Kaanapali Beach Hotel has become known,” said general manager Mike White.

“The direction from our owners is that the project must reflect and respect the Hawaiian culture and support our Pookela programs that have been ongoing for over 30 years.

“In fact, our ohana of nearly 300 will remain fully employed at KBH, ensuring continuity for our guests throughout this process.”

Functioning more as a renewal rather than renovation, kealaula means the light of early dawn and the glow of sunset. At both times, the sky is bathed in rosy hues which accompany the end of one day and beginning of the next.

This cyclical event relates to the beauty and essence initially established during the hotel’s previous chapter which will be renewed and celebrated again as the property transforms.

Though the array of colours and elements will be different, the beauty of the kealaula will bring forth the same emotions and memories from the past.

Each room within Kaanapali Beach Hotel’s Kauai wing will be upgraded and infused with new and modern design elements and features, while still retaining a strong sense of Hawaiian culture.

Exuding an earthy feel with muted palettes, each enhanced guest room will feature employee made Makamae shadow boxes including makau (fishhooks), luhee (octopus lure), lei kupee (nerite lei), lei pipipi (nerite lei) and mea kaua (weapons).

Huihui, the hotel’s new signature restaurant, is themed around the incredible accomplishment of Hawaiian wayfinding and will feature a space to house the hotel’s Hawaiian paddling and sailing canoes.

Functioning as a gathering place, the 5,000-square-foot venue will serve as a relaxing dining experience with unobstructed ocean views and as an extension of the property’s canoeing programs with the eventual addition of a sailing academy.

Originally built in 1964, Kaanapali Beach Hotel is set on a three-mile stretch of sandy beach along the western shores of Maui and offers 432 guest rooms and a four-acre courtyard filled with lush tropical gardens.

Cultural classes range from kukui nut bracelet making and complimentary ukulele lessons to olelo Hawaiian language classes and weaving. Hale Huakai, the hotel’s ocean activities centre, offers canoe paddling, stand-up paddle-boarding, snorkelling, and conch shell blowing.

The three elements of the Kealaula project are slated for completion in the last quarter 2020. The Lanai, Maui and Molokai wings will remain available for guests during construction as well as dining outlets Tiki Terrace, Tiki Bar & Grill and the Grab N Go.

For more information about Kaanapali Beach Hotel, click here.

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