As much as we loved our visit to Pearl Harbor, the next time we come to Hawaii (and gosh I hope there's a next time) we are booking a direct flight to Maui! The second we stepped off the plane, it was like we finally exhaled and knew this is where we would truly be able to relax and reconnect. Unlike Oahu, we had zero plans for our time on Maui. We upgraded our rental car to a convertible (why the heck not) and cruised with the top down past farm lands, with the mountains in the rear-view mirror, and the ocean at our side as we made our way to Wailea and our perfect resort. There are several different popular vacation areas on Maui (Kaanapali, Wailea, Lahaina) and though I say this with no concept of the other areas... Wailea is definitely the best one! It was exactly what the doctor order (and what my doctor husband needed), quiet, not that crowded, and fewer kids screaming marco-polo in the pools.
Andaz Maui at Wailea Resort, we instantly knew we'd booked a winner. It's always a risk booking a hotel in an area you've never been to before (and this hotel is only about 3 years old so there's not as much online) but I was so glad it was beyond all my hopes and expectations. It's not the stereotypical (sometimes tacky) Hawaii look. It's very modern, all open to the breeze coming off the ocean, and the decor blends in perfectly with the scenery (there is even sand in the lobby).
We headed back to our room to change for dinner at Ka'Ana Kitchen, the resort's farm-to-table restaurant. This was definitely our favorite restaurant of the week and we ended up coming back for our last night as well. They have an assortment of small plates and large plates that you can pick and choose and share. The best thing hands down is the Ahi Tataki with the burratta cheese and local tomatoes. You wouldn't think seared tuna and cheese would go together but oh. my. word. I'm still dreaming about it.
Tuesday we woke up bright and early, lathered on the sunscreen and headed down to the beach. Two chairs and an umbrella were set up for us and we grabbed our complimentary snorkel gear to explore the rocks and coral right off the shore.
The rest of the day kind of runs together in a relaxing haze of toes in the sand, a dip in the pool, a nap in the shade before we moseyed on back to our room to change for our dinner reservation at Mama's Fish House.
It ended up being more like a late lunch since 4:30pm was the only reservation available but that worked out great since we'd skipped lunch that day, planning to stuff ourselves on fresh fish and Hawaiian fare at this famous spot. Mama's Fish House is in Paia, about 30 minutes from our resort so we left early and got there with plenty of time to enjoy their envious view.
All the fish is caught daily, and the menu changes based on whats available. I had maybe the best seared ahi tuna of my life, and we loved the relaxed style of the restaurant, but it was definitely the most expensive meal of the trip and if we're being honest we both preferred Ka'Ana Kitchen.
Since we had an earlier dinner, we got back to our resort around sunset and grabbed our books and headed to one of the hanging beds scattered about the property to enjoy the fading light and warm breeze. The perfect end to a perfect night!
Somehow we ended up sleeping until almost 10 am the next day which is quite impressive considering we went to bed around 10pm. Wednesday was another beautiful day but really windy so after our lunch at the Bumbeye Beach Bar, we retreated to our room to watch netflix and chill and ended up taking a two hour nap. What are vacations for if not to fill your sleep bank??
We had planned to go into Lahaina and find something easy for dinner that night but, still feeling a little out of it from the surplus of sleep, we decided to skip right to dessert and grab shave ice a little closer to our hotel instead. And after our perfect sweet treat, we made it back to the hotel in time to enjoy another beautiful sunset.
Oh how I miss that view!! I want to keep reliving this vacation so part two of our time in Maui is coming up next.