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During the current economic slump, many clients haven’t considered going the luxury route on their travels. Lately, however, the island of Kauai and its hotel and wholesale partners have been putting high-end vacations within reach for more and more clients by offering lower room rates and attractive packages.
“Amazing offers are out there, allowing people who ordinarily might not be able to stay at our four- or five-star properties to do so, and making it possible for others to stay longer,” said Kauai Visitors Bureau executive director Sue Kanoho.
Trends show that Kauai travelers are loosening their grips on their wallets. During the first six months of 2011, clients spent 19 percent more while visiting the island than they did during the same period in 2010, according to data from the Hawaii Tourism Authority. In anticipation of this rise in Kauai expenditures, the island has created new, high-end products while renovating others.
One of Kauai’s most recent developments is Koloa Landing at Poipu Beach Wyndham Grand Resort. Located on the island’s south shore and managed by the Wyndham Hotel Group, the upscale, 25-acre property currently features 85 large, residential-style villas, a gourmet market place, a fitness center, landscaped grounds, family pools and waterfalls. Eventually, there will be a total of 322 villas, additional pools, a day spa and a poolside bar and grill.
Currently Koloa Landing is offering the Kids Stay and Play Free package for bookings made through Aug. 31. The package features an upgrade from a one-bedroom to a two-bedroom unit and discounts on water sports such as surf lessons, snorkeling and scuba sessions.
Also in Poipu, the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa looks great after a recent major renovation. Spread over 50 acres, the 602-room luxury property features a collection of swimming pools and slides, waterfalls and secret lagoons. Each room measures nearly 600 square feet and comes with marble bathrooms. Adding to its elegance is the hotel’s award-winning Anara Spa, measuring 20,000 square feet.
Gogo Worldwide Vacations is putting the Grand Hyatt Kauai within reach courtesy of its value-added packages. A five-night stay with a rental car, a fifth night free, a $20 resort credit, daily breakfast and discounts on golf and spa options currently costs $1,075 per person.
For a more boutique-size version of luxury, there is Koa Kea Hotel and Resort. Offering the type of seclusion that honeymooners specifically look for on Kauai, the 121-room south shore hotel is arranged around a small central pool and presents a peaceful and idyllic environment. Its prime location on Poipu Beach invites swimming, snorkeling, surfing and sunbathing, and its spa pampers guests with massages, wraps and facials. Koa Kea is home to one of Kauai’s more luxurious restaurants, Red Salt, with contemporary upscale cuisine.
Clients can afford a stay at Koa Kea courtesy of several value-added offers. For instance, the Second Nature package comes with daily breakfast, outdoor adventures and the use of a convertible rental car or Jeep.
To the north, the luxury continues at St. Regis Princeville Resort, which reopened in 2009 after a massive, multimillion dollar renovation. The hotel now features such lures as a dazzling 10,000-square-foot spa, butler service for guests of its suites, an in-house cinema, an infinity pool and an arts programs, which offers photography and painting classes. Additionally, each room features original oil paintings, an oversize bathtub and a liquid-crystal shower window that can be switched from clear to opaque. The hotel’s signature restaurant is the elegant Kauai Grill, overseen by Michelin Award-winning chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten and praised for its exciting flavors and sophisticated decor.
Pleasant Holidays’ value-added rates are allowing more clients to savor the St. Regis Princeville. Currently, the wholesaler offers a three-night stay for $1,015 per person, including roundtrip airfare from San Francisco and free meals for kids.
The beauty of Kauai’s high-end accommodations are a reflection of the island’s stunning natural environment, added Kanoho.
“Our visitors can experience nature at its best through a variety of activities, then return to their luxurious accommodations for some pampering,” she said.
Kanoho reiterated that this is an excellent time for travelers to take advantage of all the high-end amenities that await them on Kauai.
“While today’s traveler is more conscious about value and the vacation experience,” said Kanoho, “we are definitely making sure potential visitors know about the incredible added values available — and we are making sure travel professionals are aware of them, too.”
Kauai Visitors Bureau