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Reaching Mountain Heaven

Photography courtesy of Mauna Lani

Mauna Lani redefines experiential luxury with its soulful Hawaiian escape

Paddleboarding at sunset

“True luxury is in the details,” said Sanjiv Hulugalle. “At Mauna Lani, our goal is to surpass our guests’ expectations and indulge them with moments of delight throughout their stay, making every visit here the trip of a lifetime.”

With a distinct, crafted approach to luxury and set on 32 oceanfront acres of alluring coastline marked by royal fish ponds, natural lava fields and a collection of sun-drenched beaches, Mauna Lani, Auberge Resorts Collection sets the stage for a completely reimagined, customized experience.

“Our team is honored to reintroduce this extraordinary resort here at Kalāhuipua’a along the Kohala Coast,” said Hulugalle, the resort’s vice president and general manager. “As the first Auberge Resorts Collection property in Hawaii, Mauna Lani is experiencing overwhelming interest for reservations, and we are delighted to begin confirming visits for January 2020.”

Destined to take its place as Hawaii’s best-loved resort, Mauna Lani is now accepting reservations to welcome guests to an authentic yet redesigned resort. Mauna Lani’s dramatic natural setting, its abundance of cultural experiences and active pursuits will offer guests immersion into Hawaiian traditions and the unparalleled beauty of the island of Hawaii.

“Among the many distinctive qualities of Mauna Lani are its exceptionally beautiful natural setting and iconic place in the history of Hawaii,” said Dan Friedkin, owner and chairman of Auberge Resorts Collection. “We are excited to elevate the great heritage of Mauna Lani with the Auberge sense of intimacy, world-class service, local adventures and a fresh contemporary aesthetic that will allow guests to experience the best that Hawaii has to offer.”

Mauna Lani, meaning “mountain reaching heaven” in Hawaiian, is deeply rooted in rich cultural traditions that inspire every facet of the guest experience. Following an extensive year-long renovation, Mauna Lani unveils 333 contemporary guest rooms, suites and private bungalows.

Mauna Lani includes five restaurants and lounges, each with an emphasis on seasonality and sustainability, guided by the Big Island’s natural setting and in collaboration with local farmers and fishers. Highlights include Mauna Lani’s iconic beachfront restaurant Canoe House, which celebrates Hawaii’s connection to the land and sea. From sunrise to sunset, HaLani, which means “breath of heaven” in Hawaiian, serves as the resort’s stylish open-air eatery, well-appointed alongside the pool and expansive lawn overlooking the Pacific Ocean. During the day, Ha-Lani offers a casual setting for families and friends to savor breakfast and lunch together, while in the evenings, the restaurant transforms into a modern, artisanal, coastal grille showcasing Mediterranean cuisine.

Mauna Lani features an Auberge Spa, a tranquil sanctuary for relaxation after an adrenaline-fueled day or a retreat for those seeking mindful practices such as yoga, meditation and healing rituals. The spa has an indoor/outdoor fitness center with state-of-the-art gym equipment, including Peloton bikes and high-performance exercise machines.

For golf enthusiasts, the resort features two acclaimed 18-hole courses, Mauna Lani North and South. Known for its lava bed terrain dotted by kiawe trees, the North Course offers the quintessential Hawaii golf experience. The South Course, with its stark a’a (dense) lava setting, presents a challenging layout with holes set before mountain and ocean views.

“Mauna Lani Golf’s North and South Courses are masterpieces of design and are stunning examples of what environmentally-sensitive golf course architecture can achieve,” said Rob Myers of Troon Golf, the resort’s golf management company. “There’s numerous archaeological sites, trails, fishponds and ancient Hawaiian petroglyphs preserved throughout the courses.”

The South Course was built on the 16th-century Kaniku lava flow snaking through stark, rugged a’a lava. On the other hand, Mauna Lani’s North Course was built on an ancient lava bed. Overlaying the rugged brown pahoehoe lava flow, it features rolling fairways through kiawe forests. A 230-acre protected archaeological district lies on the northern edge, while feral goats roam the course, cropping the grass and providing a unique neutral hazard.

“Golfer or non-golfer, guest or visitor, we invite everyone to experience what our team gets to experience on a daily basis,” said Scott Christenson, the resort’s director of golf. “The beauty of the Mauna Lani Resort, our two incredible golf courses and the Kohala Coast at sunset.”

And, let’s be honest: the feral goats are definitely worth experiencing.

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