Friday, December 16, 2016

This may be the best time of year to travel to Hawaii!

WARNING: Don't read this if you're cold and wishing you were in Hawaii or somewhere hot!

I don't get it. While much of Canada and the US is freezing and blanketed with snow, there are thousands of empty hotel rooms and apartments across Kauai. Every golf course I have played has been relatively empty, so much so that I have struggled to find someone to play with. With a few exceptions, most of the restaurants are quiet.

Sally and I discovered the same thing two years ago when we visited Maui at the end of November before the holiday season began in earnest in Vancouver.

I am told that one reason for the high vacancy rate is the time of year. While everywhere is booked over Christmas and New Years, Americans tend not to travel between US Thanksgiving and Christmas. As a result, you can stay in many resorts and condominium developments for less than half of what you'll pay a week or two later.

I also suspect that another problem is the price of things. While there are no doubt inexpensive places to eat and drink, especially at Happy Hour, other than the cost of accommodation, prices seem high around Kauai, especially for Canadians who must pay a 31% premium given our relatively weak dollar.

So next year, may I suggest that if you want to escape the cold and wet, consider coming to Hawaii in late November or early to mid-December. As you will see from the following photos, it's a very beautiful place, and a lovely respite from the cold.
I must publicly thank an operator at As a rule this is a good way to find a discounted tee-time. However, when I called, he told me to book directly since I'd likely get a better rate. I did, since the club was celebrating its 25th anniversary with a further $25 off till Christmas!
The Poipu Bay golf course is a storied place. When I played, most of the tee-times were empty. Fortunately I was able to get paired up with Tim who had got married over the weekend, and thought his new wife would appreciate some time on her own. (This marriage is not likely going to last long!)
When I first went golfing in Hawaii I was warned not to wander onto the lava rocks to find a lost ball. It upset the gods.
Not all the golf courses are expensive. Since Claire had never golfed before in her life, we played her first round at Kukuiolono Park Golf Course where the nine hole fee was $10. Yes, $10. It was another $10 for the cart and a similar amount for club rentals. With the palm trees and ocean views, it was a real treat!
The drive through the Waimea Canyon was quite dramatic. We didn't go all the way to the top; deciding to save that for next time.
Happy Hour MaiTais are usually one hell of a deal. This one cost $5.
However, I was concerned when I read about the two drink minimum accompanying the 25 cent wings and $1 tempura shrimp. I told my server I was driving and had a friend who once got into an awful situation after drinking and driving on Maui. She said not to worry. Our table had already reached its drink minimum.
Even if you don't drink or golf, it's worth coming to Hawaii for the magnificent tropical vegetation.
The shops at Kukui'ula are what you would expect to find at an upscale Poipu Beach resort. The scale is delightful.
While marketing people will tell you it's important to create a story about a product, somehow telling me that Nathan Berg caught my ono didn't really justify the $41 price upstairs at Merimens. We ate at their downstairs restaurant which was also very good.
While I'm not impressed with many of the older condo projects, I do love the plantation cottages found around the island.

Who knew they farm shells? Now I know where all the shells found in Vancouver model suites come from.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

rich people's problems