Thursday, November 11, 2010

"Best Of" Week: Aulani, Disney Vacation Club Villas, Ko Olina, Hawai`

Aulani is Open for Business – at least you can now spend your money there. As of July 1, 2010 Disney began selling memberships at Aulani. The newest Disney Vacation Club resort is located in the Ko Olina resort on the Hawaiian island of O’ahu near Honolulu. The Ko Olina Resort and Marina has 4 manmade lagoons named Kohola (Whale), Honu (Turtle), Nai’a (Dolphin) and Ulna (Fish). Aulani shares the Kohola lagoon with the Marriott Ihilani Resort and Spa and the Ko Olina Wedding Chapel. The Hawaiian Railroad Society runs weekly 90 minute sightseeing trips on the narrow-gage railway that runs through Ko Olina. Transportation on O’hau’s bus system, called The Bus, is available in the area with the closest stop about a mile from the resort. Trolley routes are not as extensive as The Bus but run through the tourist area of Waikiki. Paradise Cove Luau and Cultural Center is located on 12 acres of the Ko Olina Resort and is “one of the largest and most respected luau shows in Hawai’i."

Aulani DVC consists of 481 two bedroom equivalent villas including 21 Grand Villas. The Deluxe Studio will sleep up to 4 and is 356 sq ft. It has a queen bed and a sleeper sofa. The One-Bedroom Villa is 756 sq ft and will sleep up to 5 with a king bed, sleeper sofa and a pull down bunk-sized bed in the living room. The Two-Bedroom Dedicated Villa adds a second bedroom with 2 queen beds and a sleeper chair in the living room. It is 1125 sq ft and will sleep up to 9. The one story Grand Villa is 2174 sq ft and adds a third bedroom with 2 more queen beds and sleeps up to 12.

The resort will have several dining options. It will have an open–air buffet restaurant called Makahiki Buffet Restaurant that will have a Character breakfast as well as dinner. The ‘Olelo Room next door to Makahiki will have a continental breakfast and traditional afternoon tea and cocktails. Overlooking the beach will be ‘AMA’AMA Beachside Restaurant serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Next to ‘AMA’AMA will be a counter service restaurant and a beachside bar. Near the Rainbow Reef snorkel lagoon will be The Lava Shack. The resort will also have a Hawaiian Shaved Ice cart and a Yogurt Bar.

Activities will include the Rainbow Reef snorkel lagoon, Waikolohe – a lazy-river ride, a water play area for kids, an adult pool, whirlpools, a leisure pool and of course the beach on the lagoon. Disney describes it as “A strand of sandy beach rims a large, turquoise-colored saltwater lagoon and the crystal blue Pacific beyond, perfect for sunbathing, frolicking and snorkeling.”

Rooms are offered in four different categories: Standard View, Island Gardens View, Poolside Gardens View and Ocean View. Points range from 18 points per night for a Standard View Deluxe Studio in Adventure Season to 184 points per night for an Ocean View Grand Villa in Premier Season. All days throughout the week have the same point value. The State of Hawai’i imposes a daily transient accommodations tax that must be paid by checkout so unlike other DVCs you will have to pay some cash at checkout.

With so much offered at the resort you might be tempted to spend your entire trip there. Nearby is Pearl Harbor with the USS Arizona Memorial as well as island historical tours. The Ko Olina resort offers Ko Olina Sports Club with gym and tennis courts, Ko Olina Golf Club, Ko Olina Marina with deep-sea fishing to sailing and sunset dinner cruises, Oceanside Ko Olina Wedding Chapel, Lagoons and Beaches with over a mile of seashore pathways, and Ko Olina Center and Ko Olina Station shopping centers.


  1. Loos like it will be very nice!

  2. Hawaii has already been added to the Disney Weddings site as an available wedding location. I guess they are working with that wedding chapel at Ko Olina.


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