Family and friends, you’re invited to a PARTY in Hawaii to celebrate my milestone birthday in September 2022!
“Aloha” is the Hawaiian greeting to say hello and goodbye, but it actually means much more. Going deep into the heart of the culture, it’s a way to share love and to define a force that holds people and nature together – much the way I want bring together all the people I really care about to a place I truly love.
After living in Australia for over 15 years now, many of my closest friends still haven’t met my immediate family. Therefore, I’m hoping you need a good reason for a tropical holiday in Hawaii and will share this special day with me.
So now, I’m sending you this invite early to help you plan!
What to Know:
I plan to be in Honolulu on the Island of Oahu from 22 September until 2 October 2022 (my birthday is actually the 28th). How you get there, where you stay and what you do most of the time is completely up to you. I just hope you can be there for my birthday Luau on the 25th (more details below).
For your holiday, I have a few suggestions:
Frequently Asked Questions
Flights from Australia (~9 hours from Sydney)
Assuming most Covid restrictions have lifted by then, there are usually multiple direct flights from Sydney and Melbourne to Honolulu on Qantas, JetStar and Hawaiian Airlines. There may also be some from Brisbane too depending on the airline.
Often times, JetStar has some amazing flight deals to Honolulu for about $600 return in economy. I often take their “Business” class option which is more like Premium Economy if you want a little more space without the business class price tag. So, keep your eyes out for these deals if you’re interested.
I haven’t done the Hawaiian Airlines’ flight before, but people tell me that is quite good too. Of course, you can always count on a decent experience with Qantas. I took their flight on my recent trip, and it was great.
For those of you wanting to explore more than Oahu, there are other islands you could check out with a simple inter-island flight. I would suggest:
Hawaii (the Big Island)
Go to Hawaii if you want to see real environmental diversity. From tropical rain forests to the volcanic desert of Kona (home of the Ironman triathlon), it’s a full adventure in itself. You’ll need a hire car to get around. Just bring your motion sickness pills if you’re prone to it as the roads are really windy (but the beautiful views are worth it)!
Maui is your place to go if you want easy resort living. Hotels are mostly next to each other on a beach paradise. So, you don’t have to go far if you just want to hang out on the beach with a tropical drink in your hand or go for a quick swim.
Kauai is the place to go if you want to experience small village life (one of my favorite places). You’ll find fish taco stands on the side of the road and plenty of water activities. Life is sloooower there – driving, walking, talking, etc. You’ll need a hire car to get around.
Lanai is more of a private island with tech billionaires like Larry Ellison (Oracle) and Bill Gates owning homes there. Ellison actually bought most of the island which is controversial for a number of reasons as you can imagine. Last time I checked, there were only two hotels there: The Four Seasons and another local hotel. So, make sure you book a room before you decide to stay overnight.
Waikiki Hotel Suggestions
While everyone will have different needs when selecting a hotel, here are a few ideas in Waikiki. These hotels are near each other, and so we’ll more likely run into each other in the lobby or the beach.
I haven’t worked out where my family and I will be staying yet as there are different needs to consider. I’ll let you know once we confirm, but feel free to choose another option if you prefer too. These are only suggestions:
Aqua Aston ILIKAI
Right on the beach near the marina, this is a local favorite especially for those with families because there are suites and apartment options. There’s a lagoon nearby which is perfect for those that want to lounge rather than play in the breaking waves. In fact, I did a morning SUP yoga class there once.
Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach
This is a timeshare resort with lots of amenities. Most rooms are fairly basic (though you can find adjoining rooms). Instead, they expect you to spend all your time in their many restaurants, shops and pools (five!) downstairs. They also have a lot of organised activities for young and older.
Because many of the rooms are individually owned, you might be able to find a better deal on Airbnb than a normal booking site.
P.S. This is where my Aloha Birthday Bash Luau will be held.
The Modern Honolulu
The Modern is the smaller, but funkier options of the three. This is a boutique hotel near the marina and the other hotel suggestions. Rooms can be basic or suites, but not full apartments. If you want a kitchen, see the Ilikai option above.
Group Activities (Oahu):
While there’s no expectation for you to spend time doing group activities while you’re in Hawaii (except my Birthday Luau!), my brothers and I will likely organise a few things in case you do want to hang out with us more.
Aloha Drinks (Optional)
If you happen to be in Waikiki this first Friday, please feel to join us for sunset drinks at one of the local favourites.
What: Aloha Drinks at Sunset
When: Friday, 23 September 2022 at 5:00pm until Dark
Where: House without a Key – Halekulani Hotel 2199 Kalia Rd, Honolulu, HI 96815
RSVP: Let Tammy so we can reserve enough tables for everyone.
Aloha Birthday Luau
What: Hawaiian Luau (buffet dinner and entertainment)
When: Sunday, 25 September 2022 at 5pm
Where: Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki, 2005 Kalia Rd, Honolulu
RSVP: Let Tammy know by 25 August 2022 at the latest so we can book your seats (free for you).
Other Activities (Optional)
While we don’t have anything planned yet, we’re likely to do some fun things like paddling, snorkling, surf lessons and/or hikes if anyone is interested in joining us. We’ll post more information as we get closer to the date.
Frequently Asked Questions
I’ll add to this section as questions come through.
Q: Are we blocking out rooms at these suggested hotels to get a better price?
A: No. There is usually a minimum of 10 rooms per hotel to do a block. As everyone is likely to have different hotel preferences and dates, it’s too hard to do without becoming a full-time travel agent in our spare times. 😉
The only event I MUST receive an invite for is the Luau on the 25th of September. Aloha Drinks are important too as this venue is quite popular. Please let me know if you plan to be there with the form below by 25 August.
If you have any questions, feel free to contact me directly via the usual channels i.e. text, email, chat.
As with life in general right now, things are unpredictable and constantly changing. My milestone birthday is just a good excuse to get everyone together for a tropical holiday. Still, there’s no reason to save the “good wine” for a special occasion when you never know what will happen tomorrow. I hope you can make it to Hawaii, but if not – I hope we can toast our glasses sooner.