Hailed as the 50th state in the United States of America, Hawaii is located east of the mainland – 3,200 kilometres into the Pacific Ocean.
Hawaii is made up of 137 volcanic islands – the main eight being Hawaii (also known as Big Island), Lana’I, Moloka’i, Kaua’I, Ni’ihau, Maui, O’ahu and Kaho’olawe. The capital city Honolulu is located on Big Island. Due to its all-year temperate weather and that it is a shortish flight from the west coast of mainland USA, Hawaii is a hugely popular travel destination. With superb beaches, dreamy surf, amazing golf courses, great shopping and simply fabulous hotels & resorts, Hawaii is a must on any traveller’s bucket list.
The BusinessClass.com guide to the best hotels in Hawaii:
Four Seasons Resort Hualalai - 10/10
Surrounded by white sand beaches, black lava landscapes, and the dazzling blue ocean of Big Island’s North Kona Coast, The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai is a lavish haven retreat. The hotel provides 192 Guestrooms and 51 Suites in low-rise bungalows in a mid-20th-century Hawaiian style designed to maximise the spectacular Pacific Ocean views. Rooms start at a spacious 59 square metres and come dressed with slate floors, natural hardwood trim and beautiful local artwork. But the talking point has to be the impressive and tactile granite-walled walk-in shower rooms. The most prestigious accommodation at the resort is the majestic two-story, four-bedroom Hawaii Loa Presidential Villa. Including a granite bathroom in each bedroom, an expansive living and dining room plus pantry, a private spa on the large ground floor lanai and direct walk-out beach access, this huge oceanfront bungalow has the wow-factor in spades.
Diners choose from four main restaurants; the Beach Tree serves Californian cuisine with an Italian twist. ‘ULU Ocean Grill delivers Hawaiian-Pan-Asian fusion overlooking the 18th green of the resort’s Jack Nicklaus-designed PGA golf course, and Hualalai Grille produces lip-smacking American steakhouse dishes. ‘ULU Sushi Lounge presents diners with the finest, freshest sushi ingredients. The luxurious Spa combines indoor and outdoor spaces creating a serene island-style sanctuary with island-inspired therapies and treatments. With seven pools including adult-only and family-friendly options, as well as a 1.8-million-gallon lava rock aquarium - home to 4,000 tropical fish, and three open-air gyms, eight tennis courts, an outdoor basketball court, a variety of children’s supervised programmes, and of course, the championship golf course, this hotel is a quintessential indulgence.
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Mauna Lani Bay Hotel – Big Island - 10/10
Surrounded by historic fishponds and ancient petroglyphs on the dramatic Kohala Coast of Big Island, the sun-drenched oceanfront sanctuary of Manua Lani Bay Hotel points seaward from a white-sand outcrop within view of three volcanoes. Purchased in 2018 as part of the Auberge Resorts Collection, Manua Lani is set on 32 acres of astonishing oceanfront beauty, offering 334 rooms, 36 luxury suites and 5 residences. Standard Guestrooms are spacious and come with a lanai enjoying lush tropical garden views or sweeping mountain and Pacific Ocean vistas. Luxury Suites come in various styles and sizes, with the unique top-floor Oceanfront Signature One Bedroom Suite providing the most spectacular and unmatched views over the Pacific Ocean. The 400 square-metre private Ocean Residences or Oceanfront Residences come complete with a full kitchen and private pool for even more space and exclusivity. These spectacular accommodations sleep up to 6 people and come with a dedicated chef and service staff.
The iconic Canoe House Restaurant celebrates Hawaii’s connection between land and sea. Indulge in the nightly 5-course tasting menu within a contemporary indoor-outdoor space. Mornings start at HaLani open-air eatery with super-fresh items from local farmers and fishers. Enjoy alfresco dining at Ha Bar and Grill, offering fresh, organic cuisine beside the pool or at the bar. Coffee lovers need stray no further than The Market – a speciality coffee shop, café and deli. Treat yourself at the Auberge Spa with five treatment rooms featuring the revitalizing benefits of local oils, herbs, honey and flowers from a sustainable farm-to-spa experience. An open-air Fitness Centre, two breath-taking lava bed 18-hole golf courses and six championship tennis courts are available, along with three resort swimming pools and a fabulous safe beach where guests can enjoy snorkelling, diving and a variety of paddlesports. Kona International Airport is just 30 minutes from the hotel.
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Wailea Beach Resort – Marriott, Maui - 9/10
The remote and swanky 22-acre Wailea Beach Resort – Marriott, Maui nestles between two isolated white sand beaches on the southern coastline, surrounded by the striking Pacific Ocean. This contemporary, family-friendly hotel is close to a shopping centre and a golf course and only 24 kilometres from Kahului International Airport. Enjoy breath-taking Hawaiian sunsets from 491 rooms and 56 suites. Contemporary and stylish Garden or Ocean View rooms come with thoughtfully subtle décor and a spacious lanai. Bathrooms feature thick granite slabs and large walk-in showers. One-Bedroom Suites come with a shower/tub combination.
With a whopping 210 square feet of luxury living space, the exclusive two-bedroom Presidential Suite is lavish. Diners enjoy spectacular panoramic beach views for breakfast and dinner at Hawaiian-inspired signature restaurant Humble Market Kitchin. Kapa Bar & Grill offers casual outdoor dining and classic cuisine with a modern twist. With two other relaxed dining options, two scenic bars and a uniquely unforgettable experience at Te Au Moana Luau, there’s plenty of choice for all tastes. The expansive Nalu Adventure Pool is a family favourite, complete with four water slides (one being the longest in Maui), splash zones for younger kids, spacious family cabanas, and a bar and food truck. Mandara Spa overlooks the Molokini crater and the island of Kaho’olawe and comes with twelve indulgent treatment rooms, four couple-rooms, a spa salon and a well-equipped fitness centre. Alternatively, escape to the adult-only Maluhia Serenity Pool for spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean, or lounge beside the two popular ‘Ohi Pools.
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Four Seasons Resort Lanai - 9/10
The Four Seasons Resort Lanai is a secluded, oceanfront paradise retreat on Hawaii’s last unspoiled island of Lanai. With 168 Guest Rooms and 45 Suites inspired by Hawaii’s diverse and celebrated Polynesian influences, entry-level rooms have sleek and spacious interiors that naturally flow outdoors to a private lanai enjoying garden or coastline views. All rooms are packed with the latest technology and come with a massive 75-inch LED televisions, in-room service tablets, a Nespresso station and exclusive Aina bath amenities. The luxurious two-bedroom, three-bathroom Alii Royal Suite is nothing short of an oceanfront paradise sanctuary. Bespoke furnishing and elegant artwork adorn this lavish residence large enough for parties of up to five people.
Dining comes from five fabulous restaurants supporting more than 100 local farmers and fishers with fresh, authentic ingredients. Try Nobu Lanai for innovative Japanese cuisine to a sweeping backdrop of the Pacific Ocean. Malibu Farm offers delicious organic dishes. Views Restaurant provides 180-degrees of spectacular ocean views. One Forty delivers a menu filled with prime cuts and local seasonal fish, and The Break is an open-air bar for light breakfasts and sharing plates as the day winds down. Drinks can be had at the intimate Lobby Bar or meet for pre-dinner drinks at Nobu Bar. If a casual sundowner is more your style, lap up a tropical cocktail at Malibu Farm Bar. Two outdoor pools are available, one adult-only. The Spa and Wellness centre has eight treatment rooms plus four couple-suites and comes with a range of luxurious treatments. Jack Nicklaus designed the spectacular 18-hole championship golf course with tee shots over natural gorges and ravines. With a pro shop and golf instruction this is one of the most magnificent locations to work on your swing.
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Halekulani – Waikiki Honolulu, Oahu - 9/10
Halekulani is a Hawaiian sanctuary beside the shores of Waikiki Beach and just 35 minutes from Honolulu Airport. With unobstructed views of Diamond Head, Halekulani has been welcoming guests since 1917. Now a blissful haven for discerning guests, the hustle and bustle of Waikiki seems a world away. Most of the 453 rooms and suites rooms offer stunning ocean views, providing understated elegance in an oasis of tranquillity. One- and two-bedroom Suites give more space. Select Suites offer extra-large balconies or a third bedroom option. Four Premier Suites come with spectacular views of Diamond Head and provide a sophisticated design with meticulous attention to detail. Royal Suite guests enjoy utmost comfort from hand-selected rare furnishings and accessories. At 230 square metres this lavish suite has two luxury en-suite bedrooms, a spacious living area with grand piano, a large dining room, and a fully equipped in-suite kitchen. With exclusive access to private culinary and spa services and a dedicated personal butler, and complimentary airport transfers, guests will feel like royalty.
Cuisine comes from three exceptional restaurants - the flagship being La Mer, where superlative fine dining inspired by French cuisine and the flavours of Hawaii come together beside spectacular ocean views. Take breakfast, lunch and dinner at Orchids’ casually elegant oceanfront restaurant celebrating the sophisticated tastes of Italian coastal regions. Or dine in one of the most iconic restaurants in Waikiki at House Without A Key, where informal alfresco dining pairs perfectly with nightly Hawaiian music and hula dancing. Spa Halekulani provides guests with authentically crafted Polynesian therapeutic rituals with today’s purest products and techniques. The hotel’s 25-metre long oval pool displays a spectacular mosaic of glass tiles. Take a stretching morning class on the hotel’s intimate beach or use the latest equipment in the fully-equipped fitness studio.
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Ritz-Carlton Kapalua, Maui - 9/10
The Ritz Carlton, Kapalua is a luxury upscale hotel situated in northern West Maui. Nestled onto 54 stunning acres, the Ritz-Carlton maintains the Honokua Preservation Site, a “wahi pana” or sacred site adjacent to the resort where native Hawaiians gather to conduct ceremonies and protocol. There are 466 rooms and suites and Club Level accommodation featuring dark wood floors, full marble bathrooms, modern island décor and chic designs. Recently redesigned rooms range in size from 84 square-metres to 238 square metres and come with a stunning oceanfront, golf course, mountain and resort views. All rooms enjoy new, plush Ritz-Carlton signature mattresses and have one or two spacious furnished lanais. The lavish Royal Pacific Suite comes complete with two king bedrooms, a lanai spanning the entire length of the suite, two full marbled bathrooms with oversized soaking tub and separate shower in each, and a fully-equipped kitchen and separate dining/living areas.
Dining comes from six distinctive restaurants, including Alaloa Lounge providing light dining and dinner in one of the best lobby lounges on the island. The signature restaurant Banyan Tree delivers a delicious bounty of the sea and roots of the land with delightful indoor and outdoor seating. With four other relaxed alfresco restaurants and bars, guests have an abundance of choices. Golfers can enjoy the challenge of two spectacular 18-hole championship courses, beachgoers can indulge in a variety of activities, including surfing, jet-skiing and seasonal whale-watching, and The Ritz-Carlton Spa offers a wide range of treatments in a beautifully tranquil setting. Alternatively, chill out in the resort’s signature three-tiered pool surrounded by luxury cabanas, as children play in their own keiki pool.
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Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui - 9/10
Located on Wailea, Maui’s southernmost coast, Fairmont Kean Lani is Hawaii’s only luxury all-suite and villa resort. Welcoming guests since 1991, guests travel the globe to enjoy the luxury hotel amenities and stunning oceanfront location of Polo Beach. This exclusive retreat comprises 22 acres of lush tropical gardens and open space. Accommodation consists of 413 suites and 37 two- or three-bedroom villas. Standard Suites have ocean or inland views and start at a whopping 80 square-metres of space and come with one-bedroom, spacious living room, large furnished private lanai, and oversized marble bathroom containing a deep soaking tub and walk-in stone shower. Live a life of luxury in the beautifully appointed Villa Collection. These two-story residences span around 200 square metres and come with two or three bedrooms with en-suite Italian marbled bathrooms, a fully equipped kitchen, lounge and dining areas, and secluded, furnished courtyards with plunge pools and barbeque grill.
Cuisine comes from 5 stylish restaurants and 4 bars. The signature Ko restaurant serves a top-quality cultural infusion of Hawaii’s culinary history from 90% local purveyors. Treat yourself to Hawaii’s best seafood at Nick’s Fishmarket Maui, or try a bottle of wine from the 2,000-bottle cellar. Start the day at Kea Lani restaurant for delicious poolside breakfasts (complimentary to Villa guests) or Hawaiian lunch at AMA Bar & Grill. End the day at Luana Lounge with an island-inspired cocktail with the freshest seafood. Three crystal-clear pools provide tranquillity and fun for all the family with a serene adult-only pool and cabanas, a family-friendly lower lagoon pool and an upper pool complete with a 140-foot waterslide that plunges revellers into the lagoon pool. Golfers choose from three championship courses, and tennis is available at 11 nearby courts. A state-of-the-art gym contains Technogym equipment and Peloton bikes, or for a more sedate treat, Willow Stream Spa boasts 13 luxurious treatment rooms to balance the mind, body, and soul in sumptuous surroundings. Wailea Scuba, Surf and Paddle are also on hand to rent gear, give lessons or become a scuba-certified diver.
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The Ritz-Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach, Oahu - 9/10
Located in the high-end neighbourhood of Waikiki Beach, The Ritz-Carlton Residences infuses the amenities of sophisticated luxury with local characteristics. Just a short stroll from beautiful iconic beaches, the Ritz-Carlton is ideally situated to experience Oahu and all she has to offer. Boasting the largest number of luxury suites on the island - with 246 - The Ritz-Carlton features a total of 552 sumptuous ocean-facing rooms and suites. Drink in the staggering Pacific Ocean views thanks to floor-to-ceiling windows and spacious, furnished lanai. Expansive and stylish interiors are finished with hardwoods, marble and hand-crafted Italian Frette bed linen. Opulent Suites soar high above the resort and come in two, three or four-bedroom options. The latter is a mammoth 278 square metres, two-story duplex with four bedrooms and five bathrooms.
With generous dining and living areas, as well as a sizeable Miele-fitted kitchen, this residence is a must-see. Cuisine comes from 4 world-class restaurants. NYC’s iconic Dean & DeLuca brings a marketplace-inspired approach with a selection of gourmet foods. Sushi Master Keiji Nakazawa prepares exceptional omakase-style meals in the intimate and astonishing hand-crafted Hawaiian koa wood restaurant of Sushi Sho. La Vie offers refined open-air French cuisine using fresh local ingredients and the finest wines from new and old-world vineyards. Quiora restaurant draws upon seasonal ingredients to create modern Italian dishes to the accompaniment of daily live music. Boasting the two highest infinity pools in Waikiki, on the eighth floor and overlooking the lush treetops of Fort Derussy and the Pacific Ocean, guests can choose between an adult-only or family-friendly pool. The Ritz-Carlton Spa features four luxury treatment rooms and uses native elements, such as volcanic stones, rainforest leaves, and lehua blossoms to heal and revive. The Fitness Centre, designed by celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak offers the latest exercise equipment and a studio for private classes.
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The Kahala Hotel & Resort – Honolulu, Oahu - 9/10
With five decades of welcoming illustrious guests from royalty to heads of state and Hollywood stars, The Kahala Hotel & Resort sits on a pristine white sand beach in Honolulu’s exclusive residential area of Kahala. Overlooking both Diamond Head and Koko Head craters, the hotel acts as a discreet luxury hideaway far from the hustle and bustle of Waikiki. The 306 rooms and 32 suites come furnished in chic tropical décor, enjoy luxurious oversized bathrooms, spacious lanai and scenic, dolphin lagoon, and full ocean views. Suites offer true indulgence in three ocean view categories and come with expansive one and two-bedroom options. Each of the four Signature Suites is unique, all providing breath-taking ocean views. Draped in Ralph Lauren furnishings, these one and two-bedroom suites provide guests with a sublime standard of accommodation, not least from the premier Presidential Suite.
Dining comes from four world-class restaurants. Hoku’s – a blend of French-influenced cuisine with fresh local flavours for dinner and Sunday brunch. Plumeria Beach House – casual all-day oceanfront dining. Arancino at The Kahala – regarded as the best Italian Restaurant in Hawaii, Arancino showcases a modern take on classic Italian dishes using only the finest ingredients. Seaside Grill – seafood, sandwiches, salads, tropical drinks and cocktails with breath-taking views from beachside tables. Try The Veranda for daily afternoon high tea, light meals, cocktails and nightly live entertainment. Soak up the sun or float the day away in the beachfront pool. Spa & Wellness at the Kahala comes curtesy of nine spacious and tranquil treatment rooms providing treatments inspired by the ancients. Keep yourself tuned-up using the CHI Fitness Centre’s high-tech equipment or indulge in the outdoor hot tub, dry sauna, steam sauna and a wide range of fitness classes.
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Montage Kapalua, Maui - 9/10
Set beside the picturesque waters of Namalu Bay in one of the most exclusive oceanfront areas on the northwest side of Maui, Montage Kapalua Bay nestles amongst 24 acres of stunning tropical landscape. The resort boasts 50 Residences and 6 Grand Residences ranging from 120 to 400 square metres in size. Residences come in one, two or three-bedroom options. Light and luxurious décor complement the hardwood flooring and high ceilings, giving each room an airy feel. Gourmet kitchens come fully equipped. Marble bathrooms provide a sense of luxury, while spacious lanais enjoy relaxing views towards the lush tropical gardens or the spectacular Pacific Ocean. Grand Residences come with upgraded interiors and amenities in larger three and four-bedroom options. The Premier Ocean View Penthouse is the resort’s superior accommodation sleeping up to 10 guests in three king bedrooms and two full-sized beds in the fourth bedroom. There are three private lanais, a gourmet kitchen with laundry service, and five lavish marble bathrooms complete with a soaking tub and separate shower cabin.
Dine at three distinguished restaurants - Cane & Canoe for modern Hawaiian cuisine with the freshest catches and top-quality meats. For causal island-inspired cuisine and cocktails, go to The Hideaway or head to the poolside Hana Hou & Beach Club for light island fare or a creative cocktail. Two championship golf courses flank the hotel, while white sand bays protected by an offshore coral reef are a perfect place to swim and snorkel. Spa Montage invites guests to retreat, refresh and enjoy healing spa sensations in the most tranquil indoor and outdoor treatment rooms. All treatments are authentically inspired and highly personalized using the finest local ingredients. A great fitness centre and yoga studio offer extensive wellness and personal training classes, and a luxurious beauty salon provides for all pampering needs. The spectacular hotel pool features secluded waterfalls, whirlpools and hot tubs and cascades down several levels.
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