The Big Island

Travel Thursday: Hotel Spotlight: Hilton Waikoloa Village on the "Big Island" of Hawaii

The moment I touched down on the "Big Island" of Hawaii, I felt at ease. Upon my arrival, I immediately felt the warmth and friendliness of Hawaiian culture. 

The laid back vibe is a refreshing change for someone used to city life. And thanks to the slower pace, it wasn't long before my mind and my body began to let go of the worries and stress of the everyday. The beauty of my surrounding was begging me to relax, and enjoy myself.

After my quick and easy exit from Kona International Airport I retrieved my luggage, and headed out of the terminal to catch a shuttle to pick up my rental car. And after a short and peaceful drive along the beautiful Kona coast of Hawaii, I arrived at Hilton Waikoloa Village.

The Hilton Waikoloa Village is a modern day oasis, nestled within 62 sprawling oceanfront acres. Boasting over 1,113 guestrooms and suites, the property provides guests with a choice of transportation: choose a tram or a canal boat to transport you from end to end of the lush, colorful property. Of course if you'd prefer, feel free to explore the grounds on foot, which is probably the best way to take in the beauty of the resort's many beautiful gardens.

Soon after I checked into my room in the Makai Lagoon Tower, I noticed the incredible mountain and ocean views I was afforded from the comfort of my balcony. Gorgeous!

Then after I put away my luggage and slipped into my swimsuit, I made my way down to the lounge chairs surrounding the refreshing Kona pool. After a quick dip, I further explored the property.  As I wandered, I'd take note of the Kohala Spa, where during my stay I could take advantage of complimentary access to amenities like plush robes and bottles of water. 

"I could definitely get used to this," I thought to myself.

As I explored the grounds, I'd find that the Hilton Waikoloa Village boasts a 4-acre ocean fed lagoon with a white sand beach, and a total of three pools (one of which features a 175-foot waterslide!) And don't worry if there are crowds, because peace and quiet can always be found at the adults only pool. 

If you have the time, I'd suggest you check out the Legends of Hawaii Luau, the most popular Luau on the island. It's a great way to take in the beauty of Hawaiian culture thru ancestral songs (mele) and dance (hula), while enjoying delicious food.

And if you enjoy golfing, the Hilton Waikoloa has championship golf courses, designed by well-known course architects.

Or, if you prefer, have some fun at the Dolphin Quest – an experience of a lifetime, where you can interact hands-on with dolphins. 

If you are in search of some relaxation, the Kohala Spa is the place where you want to be. This 25,000 square-foot spa offers specialized massages, wraps, scrubs, facials and hydrotherapy treatments. They also offer a fitness center and provide expert salon services.  And in case you want to take some of the locally sourced spa products home, there's a sundry shop were you can stock up.

Even if you can't make it to the Luau, dining at the Hilton Waikoloa Village is a treat! With an abundance of resort restaurants and bars to choose from, there's something to satisfy everyone in your party. I liked to start my day with a hearty Big Island Breakfast – a lavish buffet where I could create my own omelet, enjoy freshly baked pastries, fresh island fruits and, other traditional American, Chinese, and local cuisine.

Ultimately, no matter how you choose to spend your time (eating, sunning by the pool, getting pampered at the spa, or enjoying water sports or golf) you're sure to have a pleasant stay at the Hilton Waikoloa. Everyday, I felt so lucky to take in breathtaking sunsets along the ocean.

It's definitely a trip I won't soon forget...