Friendly service, gorgeous grounds, and amazing amenities… all this and more on Hawaii’s Big Island.
The moment we pulled up at the Fairmont Orchid Hawaii in Kona, our “second honeymoon” began for real. According to friends and family, by the way, any trip you take within the first year of your marriage is technically still a honeymoon… a fact I, for one, hope to make the most of this year!
Happy smiles and warm welcomes greeted us as we pulled up to the hotel’s beautiful entrance. Apparently the staff had been waiting for us, and within seconds, our bags were unloaded, our car was being driven away by the valet, and we were being whisked through the lobby en route to our private concierge. After an introduction complete with interesting information and helpful tips, the elevator doors opened onto the 6th floor – accessible only by our key cards – and the Fairmont Orchid’s Gold Floor, the property’s “hotel within a hotel” welcomed us with Hawaiian style, charm, and hospitality.
After a brief orientation by the concierge in the Gold Lounge, we were shown to our room. A king-size bed with a beautiful mahogany frame and soft white linens, a welcome plate loaded with all sorts of goodies – pineapple, crackers, cheeses, cookies, and chocolates – and a private, romantic balcony all welcomed us inside and encouraged us to put up our feet. We were informed that canapés were served in the lounge from five to seven o’clock every night, and then were left alone to relax and unpack.
I stood at the balcony and took a deep breath of fragrant Hawaiian air. The hotel’s classically beautiful structure and design embraced lovely grounds. Guests emerged from treatments at the hotel’s “Spa without Walls” below me, looking dreamily sated. At the beach, families and couples played in the private lagoon, where snorkel tubes poked out here and there – a turquoise, aqua-blue, and indigo canvas decorated with instruments of tropical pleasure.
Our huge bathroom – complete with bathtub plus rain shower, as well as a separate shower and private toilet – gave us our personal privacy and space, yet lent the room an air of elegant intimacy. Is it just me, or should all bathrooms have two sinks at the very least? After strolling around the grounds, chatting with the knowledgeable “beach boys” at the hut by the lagoon, and grabbing a quick bite to eat, we were ready to retire early to our beautiful bed and call it a night.
We stopped in at the Gold Lounge on the way to sample the incredible assortment of gourmet canapés, and then opened our door to a fragrant, immaculate room that had been discreetly visited by the turndown fairy.
The next morning, the breakfast buffet in the Gold Lounge was open at 6:30am and the hosts ensured that my husband – “The Doctor” – ate his fill. That kind of attentive service continued throughout the week, so perhaps I won’t need to feed him for a while?
We spent the rest of the time at the beach – relaxing, reading, snorkeling, swimming, kayaking, strolling, and snoozing – or dining on delicious sushi after watching whales play in the sea. One thing’s for sure: the next time we go to Kona, we’ll head straight for the Fairmont Orchid. It’s impossible to stay too long at a place that offers everything… I might even be convinced to take up golf and tennis on our next visit… or any of the other activities I simply didn’t have time to get to on this trip. Not that I’m complaining – this is the kind of place where no matter how long you stay, it’s never long enough.
Read all about heather’s First Honeymoon at the Wichannish Inn in Tofino