We are just back an amazing trip to O’ahu (one of the most beautiful corners of the earth) where we shot an amazing fashion story for our upcoming Spring & Summer 2012 issue. To say we are missing the sun, sand and surf is putting it mildly. Hawaii is one of those super-dreamy destinations that delivers exactly the travel experience you envision—especially for your honeymoon. In our opinion a great thing just got even better with the opening of Aulani, a Disney Resort in Spa. More than four years in the making, Aulani opened its doors on August 29. Built on the leeward side of O’ahu (the western shore) this 21-acre beach resort is just 27 kilometers from Honolulu airport and takes you just far enough away from the city hustle allowing you to fully immerse yourself in the beauty of Hawaii. Here’s five reasons we love Aulani for honeymoons (and weddings).
1. It’s GORGEOUS. One step inside Aulani’s dreamy open-air lobby and you’ll feel as though you’ve been wrapped in a warm Hawaiian embrace. The resort is architecturally stunning and reflects the culture and history of the island and the Hawaiian people. At press time, phase one of three of the hotel is open and when all rooms are done Aulani will have 359 guest rooms (plus 460 time share villas for Disney Vacation Club members).
2. Mickey’s in the house. True to Disney style, Aulani is home to a cast of Disney characters: Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, Donald, Chip, Dale and Stitch, all outfitted in their Hawaiian best. You can grab a photo-op with them during character dining or a designated appearance time. Always keep a look out though…you never know when someone might appear at Aulani’s Shave Ice stand beside you.
3. It’s a tropical dream. At Aulani, you can hit the beach at the resorts private lagoon, lounge poolside or take a meandering float down lazy river part of the Waikolohe Valley Pools. There’s also waterslides, a Rainbow Reef for private snorkeling adventures and an interactive stingray pool. To really Zen it out, book into the heavenly Laniwai spa, Disney’s first exclusive spa. Our recco: a traditional Hawaiian Lomilomi massage. Heaven.
4. If you want a wedding with pixie dust, this is the place. If you’ve been thinking about a destination wedding, Aulani is the perfect place. Disney’s Fairy Tale Weddings staff can create the magical day of your dreams—you just tell them what you want and they’ll make your wedding wishes come true.
5. You’ll experience the ultimate romantic dinner. Ever seen a Hawaiian sunset? They are pure magic and at Aulani, if you dine at the open-air, beachfront resto Ama.Ama, you can enjoy it every night. In total there are four restaurants on property and two lounges so there is no shortage of dining variety.