Last week, I had the opportunity to get a “first-look” at the brand-new Disney resort in Hawaii, the Aulani Resort and Spa in Ko’Olina, Oahu, Hawaii. The resort, which starts accepting reservations August 2, 2010, is set to open on August 29, 2011.
A group of travel bloggers and journalists, including me, donned hardhats, long pants, and closed-toed shoes for this exclusive, in-depth tour with Disney Imagineer (and genius behind Animal Kingdom Park), Joe Rodhe.
The resort will feature loads of family-friendly amenities, including Auntie’s Beach House (a kids’ club that will be open in the day and the evening and will have two sections catering to older and younger kids), a snorkel lagoon, a character breakfast featuring Disney characters who are on their own Disney vacation, and DVC Suites (that can be rented by standard guests, based upon availability). The resort will also offer interactive games, similar to the Kim Possible attraction at the World Showcase in Epcot. Even the deluxe spa will have its own junior wellness section, with internet access and a yogurt bar.
For the adults, there’s an upscale restaurant (in addition to the buffet restaurant), a lounge/pub, and the huge (but yet unnamed) spa. In addition to the DVC Suites (including some grand villas) standard rooms will also be available, and they will be similar in size to the rooms at the Animal Kingdom Lodge at Walt Disney World, with room for four guests. The resort will include art from sixty Native Hawaiian artists, and the room decor is heavily influenced by native Hawaiian kapa designs, created by Dalani Tanahy.
Disney’s Aulani Resort and Spa
Ko’Olina, Oahu, Hawaii
Image credit: The Walt Disney Company
Disclosure: Disney paid for my travel expenses for this Aulani preview event.