Hilton’s Waikoloa Village
keeps travelers coming back
IMAGES COURTESY OF HILTON
By T. Foster Jones
PERHAPS NOTHING says as much about a
resort as the fact that guests keep returning.
In its storied 20-year history (the resort
celebrated its 20th anniversary in December
2008), the Hilton Waikoloa Village, on the
Kohala Coast of Hawaii’s Big Island, has
attracted hundreds of thousands of visitors.
Many of them were children the first time
they visited, and are now bringing their own
families to experience what has been described
by guests and staff as “paradise.”
A slice of paradise
It’s easy to understand how the resort
came by the “paradise” moniker. Waikoloa
sits on 62 acres and comprises three separate
towers with a total of more than 1,240 guest
rooms, three fresh saltwater pools (two with
waterfalls and waterslides), a four-acre swimming and snorkeling lagoon, a dolphin
lagoon, nine restaurants and eight lounges,
the world-class Kohala Spa, plus two championship golf courses and eight tennis courts.
The grounds and buildings are spectacular, with connecting waterways and elaborate
landscaping. Guests get around the resort via
air-conditioned tram or canal boats.
The spacious accommodations, beautifully decorated with lauhala (woven leaves)
wall coverings and framed Hawaiian prints,
offer all the comforts you’d expect, including
the latest high-tech amenities. The beautiful
grounds and scenery of the resort can be
viewed from the private lanai of every room.
Perhaps the best-known activity available at the resort takes place in one of the
resort’s natural lagoons, which is home to 12
Atlantic bottlenose dolphins. Dolphin Quest
trainers offer daily Dolphin Encounters that
allow guests to learn about the dolphins and
their environment through personal interactions and a supervised swim.
Quiet places, familiar faces
The attraction of the island and the property—what keeps guests coming back year after
year—goes beyond the pools, canals, rooms,
restaurants and dolphin experience, says Debi
Bishop, the resort’s general manager.
“This resort is unlike any other,” she says.
“It’s authentic here. It’s true Hawaii. You don’t
have the traffic or the crowds.”
As big as the property is, even at full capacity, she notes, “you always feel that you have
plenty of opportunities for privacy, whether
you want to take a leisurely stroll along the
ocean walk, sit and reflect at Buddha Point,
wander the grounds and appreciate the artwork, or just lounge on the resort’s own man-made beach along its huge saltwater lagoon.”
Because employee turnover is so low—
far lower than the industry average—
returning guests can look for ward to seeing familiar
faces. And, says Bishop, those employees are
dedicated to helping guests find a way to connect with the island, the climates (there are 11
different climates on the island), the sites, the
lava, the observatories, the stars.
“It’s such a moving experience to be a part
of all this natural beauty,” she says. “To see the
whales from the property, and then paddle
out and see the thousands of fish and the coral
at the bottom of the ocean. To walk out every
day and look at that beautiful clear sky against
the beautiful bay. It’s about where we are. It’s a
FIVE-NIGHT PACKAGE INCLUDES:
• Five-day Alamo full-size rental car
(one additional driver included)
• Five nights in a Partial-Ocean-View Room
• Daily buffet breakfast for two
• Hotel and car taxes
Aloha Fun Pass (one per room, per day),
which includes the following:
• Daily fitness access for two at
Kohala Sports Club and Spa
(minimum age 16)
• Daily complimentary round
of golf for two at the Seaside
• Daily $25 credit for Lagoon
Beach equipment (per day for kayaks,
paddle boats, snorkel gear, etc.)
• One hour of court time at the
Kohala Tennis Gardens (per day)
• Choice of complimentary self-parking or discounted valet parking
Hilton Waikoloa Village®
from $649 per person*
Valid for travel 8/24/09 – 12/15/09.
The Costco Connection
Costco Travel offers packages to the Hilton
Waikoloa Village and many other resorts
on the Big Island, Kauai, Oahu and Maui.
For details and to book online, visit Costco.
com and click “Travel,” or call toll free
*Price is per person based on double occupancy and includes hotel taxes. Rental
car includes unlimited mileage, one additional driver fee, all taxes and service
fees. It does not include gasoline, underage/additional driver charges, optional
insurance charges, upgrades, overtime, drop charges or infant-child seats. Price is
valid for travel as specified and is valid for ne w bookings only. Price and inclusions
are subject to change without notice. Cancellation and change fees may apply.
Travel purchases are not included in the Executive Membership 2% Reward
program. Seasonal surcharges, availability, blackout dates and restrictions
might apply. All prices are in U.S. dollars. Costco Travel disclaims liability for any
inaccuracies or typographical errors.
Costco Travel is registered as a seller of travel in each of the states listed:
California registration number: CST 2054248-50 • Florida registration
number: ST 32555 • Hawaii registration number: TAR 5595 • Iowa
registration number: TA 620 • Nevada Seller of Travel registration number:
2007-0066 • Washington registration number: WS T 602042600. Registration
as a California Seller of Travel does not constitute approval by the state.
Book online at Costco.com
or call Costco Travel toll
free at 1-877-849-2730.