The Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, project represents a departure from tradition for the Walt Disney Company. It is a major resort that is not situated near one of the company's theme parks. Ready for guests to arrive on August 29, the Aulani, which sits right outside Honolulu is a mixed destination resort.
Consisting of two 15-story towers it will feature 359 hotel rooms and 481 two-bedroom equivalent Disney Vacation Club villas upon its completion. According to Disney, the Aulani will reflect the company's commitment to Hawaii's native culture. Disney Imagineering has been working Hawaiian stories into the buildings, interiors, art and gardens of the resort with the help of local architects, artisans and historians.
Joe Rohde, an executive with Walt Disney Imagineering said that a translation of the name Aulani into English means "the place that speaks for the great ones" or "the place that speaks with deep messages." You can watch Mr. Rohde give you a bit of the flavor of the Aulani in the video posted below.
Set on 21 acres on the beachfront, the resort tries hard to blend Hawaiian history and culture with the magic that Disney likes to create on its own. Planned excursions across the island of Oahu are on the menu of activities offered by the Aulani, along with the usual recreational fun expected when customers land at an exotic beach location.
The resort's website promises two on-site restaurants will be ready to feature foods unique to Hawaii. One of the restaurants will offer views of the spectacular sunsets for which the Leeward Coast is famous. Couples looking for a destination wedding will be pleased to know that plans call for a wedding lawn with a view of the Pacific.
Want to enjoy water sports? A central swimming pool, 900-foot tube floating watercourse, wading pool, body slides, sunset-facing hot tubs, a quiet adult pool, a snorkel lagoon, and a conservation pool are all on on-site. The Aulani will also include a signature kids’ club – Aunty’s Beach House – where kids can explore Hawaiian culture through fun and games, arts and crafts, and many other experiences created just for them.
There is a 2000-square-foot, state-of-the-art health club and a spa unlike any other you will experience in Hawaii, according to Disney, featuring the only outdoor hydrotherapy garden on Oʻahu. They have even created a teen-only spa
The Aulani will be part of the Disney Vacation Club, a vacation-ownership program. Customers will be able to utilize their membership in the Vacation Club to travel and stay at Disney destinations worldwide as well as hundreds of other popular Member Getaways vacation locations around the globe.
Image credit: Wikimedia Commons