You might expect a very “over Disneyfied” experience at the Aulani Resort in Hawaii: mouse hats at every turn, Mickey themed surfboards and cartoon art on the walls. You will be surprised at what a restrained and dignified presence Disney’s Aulani is on the Ko Olina coast. The entrance doesn’t shout itself with a neon Goofy, but rather whispers with flickering tree lanterns. The only Mickey in the guest rooms is a darling wooden lamp of my favorite mouse playing the Ukelele. Yet in true Disney style, everything is manicured perfection. At one point during our visit I was tempted to ask them to turn down the wind, then I remembered that Disney doesn’t control the weather, yet.
Here is a quick photographic tour of our stay last week. They recently expanded the resort to offer even more water attractions and restaurants. Pearl Harbor is a quick 30 minute drive from the property, Aulani is a must stay if you visit Oahu.
The Beach and Pool
Perhaps the biggest surprise at Aulani is the Laniwai spa. Laniwai could hold its own against any five star spa at any luxury resort in the world. Trust me. I know spas. Everything about it is a first class experience. The tranquil pool waiting area outside features a variety of tropical showers, cold pool plunges, hot tubs and lounge chairs under lit trees. Magical indeed.
We got lucky on our way to the beach and ran in to two of our old friends. We waited in line for all of three minutes for these photos. No Disney visit would be complete without a little Mickey (I do love him so). Hawaii Mickey is very hip and did a little “pound it” with Wilson. Like all Disney vacations, you can get a PhotoPass and print your souvenir pictures.
Wilson and I were the guests of Disney’s Aulani Resort for review purposes, my spa treatment was part of our package. I paid for the paddle board rental, the Mickey photos and all of the Disney presents that Wilson insisted his siblings needed.