Christmas 2014 on the Big Island of Hawaii Things to Do

November 22nd, 2014

The Holiday Season is the one of the busiest times of the year on the Big Island. You will find that many of the most popular restaurants and activities are either sold out weeks in advance or are not available, especially on Christmas Eve and Christmas Day.

Rental Cars

It appears that most of the rental cars are sold out. Some companies may have extra vehicles that do not show available online so if you are having trouble finding a vehicle, please contact us at concierge@waikoloavacationrentals.com.

Whale Watches/Sunset Sails/Luaus/Helicopter Tours

These are the four most popular activities during the holidays and typically are sold out weeks in advance. Please contact us at concierge@waikoloavacationrentals.com if you have any questions regarding these activities.

Mauna Lani Charity Trees at the Mauna Lani Bay Resort

From December 3rd-December 28th the lobby will be filled with trees decorated by local organizations and charities participating in the 21st Annual Charity Trees. This event helps raise awareness and funds for local non-profit organizations. Everyone is invited to view the entries and vote for their favorite tree ($1 donation per vote). Mauna Lani Bay will be awarding cash prizes to the organizations whose trees receive the highest number of votes.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Dining Options

December 24, 2014:

Christmas Eve Royal Luau at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa: Santa will share holiday aloha during this special Christmas Luau, featuring Polynesian entertainment, ‘ono Hawaiian food including kalua pig fresh from the imu, holiday desserts, and an open bar. Adults $102; children $48.

 

Christmas Eve Buffet at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa: Enjoy prime rib, steamed snow crab legs, hand-crafted sushi, shrimp, and vegetable tempura, and other scrumptious items inspired by holiday flavors. Adults $50; children $30.

December 25, 2014:

christmas 2014 waikoloa beach resortChristmas Dinner at the Hilton Waikoloa Village: A full carving station will be serving turkey and prime rib, plus we’ll be offering lots of delicious chef-designed soups, salads, sides and desserts … and live entertainment! Adults $79 plus tax and 15% gratuity (includes one glass of

champagne); children 5 – 12 $31 plus tax and 15% gratuity; children 4 and under free with paid adult.

Christmas Dinner Buffet at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa: At Hawaii Calls Restaurant, enjoy a bountiful feast that includes lamb chops, mahi mahi, prime rib, chilled jumbo shrimp, and egg nog cheesecake, along with other holiday treats. Adults $69; children $30. Please contact us at concierge@waikoloavacationrentals.com if you have any questions regarding these dining options or would like to make reservations.

Recommended Churches for Holiday Services

There are several churches on the Kohala Coast offering Christmas Eve and Christmas Day services.
Annunciation Catholic Church in Waimea offers Christmas Eve masses at 5 pm and 10 pm. The 5 pm mass is family friendly. The Christmas Day mass is at 8 am. It is a beautiful church with windows throughout which allows visitors to see the mountainous terrain in Waimea. Please click here to view a map of how to get to Annunciation Catholic Church.
New Hope Waimea is a nondenominational church in Waimea and offers a Christmas Eve service at 6:30 pm as well as a Christmas Day service at 10 am. The Christmas Eve service is typically a child friendly service. Click here to view a map of how to get to New Hope Waimea.
Ascension Catholic Church is one of the closest churches to the Waikoloa Beach Resort. It offers a Christmas Day mass at 10 am and is about a 10 minute drive from the Waikoloa Beach Resort.
These times are tentative and may be updated as the holidays get closer..

New Year’s Eve Events

Tropical Hawai’i New Year’s Eve Part at the Hilton Waikoloa Village: Dance in the New Year at Hilton Waikoloa Village to the energetic sounds of the Son Caribe Band. Dinner stations will be open from 7 – 9 pm, but the party goes on even after New Year is rung in. Adults $129 (general seating); teens $89 (general seating); children 5 – 12 $49 (general seating). All prices plus tax and 15% service charge. Upgrade to Ali`i seating (includes tableside pupu, additional drink ticket, preferred seating) $40 plus tax and 15% service charge.

Reservations are required.

New Year’s Eve Buffet and After Party at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort and Spa: Ring in the New Year with a dinner buffet; $89/adult and $40/child (6-12). After dinner join them for an after party which will include a DJ, desserts and a complimentary champagne toast at midnight. There will be a cash bar as well with drink specials. The after party is $30/person. If you decided do the dinner buffet you get the after party at 50% off, so $15/person. Dinner reservations are recommended, however, reservations are not required for the after party.

new years 2015 waikoloa beach resort

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you are still looking for accommodations, please check out one of the largest selection of Waikoloa condos.

Big Island Vacation Rental Market Update

September 17th, 2014

Every year I enjoy looking at the trends for the Hawaii tourism industry as there always seems to be some interesting and useful information. This year has definitely been a slightly different year than previous years in some positive and negative ways. While the Hawaii Tourism Authority only provides general information and comes to conclusions about tourism in Hawaii as a whole, I try to break it down even further to make it more relevant to vacation rentals on the Big Island. The following information is based on data through July 2014 and estimates for the remainder of 2014.

Big Island Vacation Rental Trends
While most of our properties did not see much of a decrease through July 2014, the two main figures we would be interested in decreased in comparison to the same timeframe in 2013. Of the major Hawaiian Islands, the Big Island saw the largest decrease in visitors, 2%. While for a long period condos were seeing steady growth, this is the first year people staying in condos decreased by a fair amount (close to 3%).

What to Expect for the Remainder of the Year
Although not in line with the statistics, most of our properties did better through July this year than last year. I do not see the remainder of the year being the same, which will probably make things balance out overall for the 2014 year. While typically September in a slow month, the number of air seats to the Big Island are down in 2014 as opposed to 2013. October and November are roughly the same as 2013. December has a significant increase, but that is mostly during the holiday season. Maui is seeing significant increases in all of those months.

The Canadian Market
While the US visitors are typically pretty consistent from year to year, the increase in Canadian visitors over the past few years has seemed to make the difference in the overall statistics. While they do help increase the numbers over the course of the year, they are typically seasonal and come out during the peak seasons, which really does not help vacation rental occupancies too much over the course of a year. That being said, we could see a decrease in Canadian visitors over the course of the next year for the two following reasons:
Canadian Dollar- Due to a sharp devaluation against the US dollar, Canadians will now be paying roughly 15% more than they were last year for accommodations.
Alternate Destinations- With the cost of vacationing in Hawaii increasing, Mexico looks like a more appealing alternative. Through July 2014 Canadians visiting Mexico hit a record high with over 1 million Canadians traveling to Mexico by air.

Looking Forward to 2015 and 2016
According to MMGY Global travelhorizons data, a record number of travelers (36%) say that they are extremely likely to visit Hawaii in the next 24 months. Although this is great, converting that number to actual visitors is extremely tough. The largest factor is airfare with over 42% of people stating that they chose to vacation elsewhere due to the cost of air to Hawaii.

How are People Booking?

As I mentioned in the prior newsletter, we had made a fairly large update to our web site. Although the update was not too large as far as appearance goes, it did make it more mobile friendly. We have seen positive numbers in all the relevant web site traffic stats relating to mobile devices since making the change. This has been a nice modification given that the use of mobile devises to book/research travel is continuing to increase. Roughly 35% do their research on travel on a mobile device with over 20% actually booking on a mobile device.

devices

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

In conclusion it does look like things are continuing to move in a positive direction for the tourism industry in Hawaii as a whole.  It is just a matter of people choosing the Big Island as opposed to other islands such as Maui, which is seeing the largest growth, and choosing to stay in a vacation rental versus a hotel.

Waikoloa Vacation Rentals Excited to Expand to Hualalai Resort

May 19th, 2014

Recently we had the opportunity to expand our selection of vacation rentals with the addition of a Waiulu Villa at Hualalai Resort.  With this addition we are excited to potentially add more villas or homes at Hualalai to our vacation rental program.

Hualalai is home to some amazing multi million dollar properties.  Annually it is recognized as one of the top vacation destinations in the world.

With the Four Seasons Hualalai as the cornerstone, not only are the accommodations amazing, but also world class service is offered. All guests of the resort have access to the amenities of the Four Seasons Hualalai, which includes world class restaurants, a selection of pools, a lagoon, and much more.  The Hualalai Spa has been recognized as one of the top spas in the world and offers an array of services to guests of the resort.  There are two highly desirable, exclusive golf courses.

While trying to offer a high level of service at Waikoloa Vacation Rentals, we are excited to start venturing into the resort that is known to be the most luxurious on the Big Island of Hawaii.

Choosing a Waikoloa Beach Resort House Rental

March 15th, 2014

While the Waikoloa Beach Resort boasts over 1000 vacation rental condos and villas, it only offer few luxury oceanfront luxury home rentals.  These homes can offer perfect vacation spots for anyone from the distinguished traveler to someone just looking for enough space to accommodate their family in one location.

Only two of the communities in Waikoloa Beach Resort offer private homes, Kolea and Naupaka Place.  While Kolea is home to over 100 vacation condo rentals, it also has 16 lots.  As of 2014, over half of these lots have been developed on and only few are vacation rentals.  Naupaka Place is a luxury community with only private homes.  As of 2014, there is one private home and it is a vacation rental.

All of the Kolea vacation home rentals are 5 bedrooms with ocean views.  The prices vary based on location, view, and size.  The Kolea House of Tranquility offers a spectacular view over the fishponds of the beach at A’Bay and the ocean.  This house offers each beach access as well as offers easy access to the Kolea Beach Club next door.  Hale Kolea is one of the larger homes with 3 master bedrooms.  It is set back a little further from the ocean, but offers a peaceful panoramic ocean view.  The 5 bedroom house at Kolea is great for families.  It is a little smaller than the others, but offers a nice lawn area in the back that is great for children.

The Pacific Sunset Villa at Naupaka Place is nothing short of spectacular.  This state of the art home is located as close to the ocean as one could desire.  In the winter months you have the sounds of the waves crashing just in front of the home as well as beautiful sites of the whales.  This 4 bedroom home has been thoroughly finished and offers smart home technology as well as a private theater room.

While you can not go wrong with any of these homes, feel free to contact Waikoloa Vacation Rentals at (808) 987-4519 if you have any questions about choosing the perfect place for your upcoming vacation to Waikoloa Beach Resort on the beautiful Big Island of Hawaii!

Hawaii Vacation Rental Trends ~ 2013

February 22nd, 2014

Each year we try to put together a report of what tourism in Hawaii seems to be doing as well as how that is affecting the vacation rental industry on the Kohala Coast.  Every year the data seems to be very telling as to what is going on.  2013 is the first year that not only is hard to decipher as far as trends go, but also seems to be a bit negative in relation to the previous years.

Overall tourism is up in Hawaii slightly with an increase of 2.5% from 2012 to 2013.  The main factor driving this trend is international guests with Japan leading the way.  The largest percentage increase has been in the “Other” category, which includes China.  It is suspected with the increase in 2013, with Hawaiian Airlines lobbying to get a direct flight from China to Hawaii, and with China’s economic state that this number will drastically increase in the coming years.

When you look at how the islands fared specifically, Oahu was the only island with a significant increase.  This logically makes sense given that the island of choice for the visitors from Asia tends to be Oahu.  With an increase in international visitors, Oahu will typically see the largest increase in visitors.  It is worth noting that some of the smaller islands such as Kauai and Lanai saw the largest percentage increase of international visitors.

What I found extremely interesting was that the largest increase in accommodation type was with vacation rentals. In years past, international visitors have traditionally stayed in hotels due to packages such as JALPAK and that the hotels typically have services for guests that do not speak English.  In fact, vacation rentals were really the only type that saw an increase.  Vacation rentals saw an increase of almost 5% while hotels saw an increase of just over 1%.

For the second year straight, there was a decrease in the average night stay.  This is in line with the fact that the largest increase in people were due to vacations and conventions.

How does all of this relate to your vacation rental on the Kohala Coast?  This is the first year in a while that there was not much change related to vacation rentals on the Big Island.   With the visitors increasing by less than 2% and vacation rentals increasing by less than 5% there was some positive growth, but not as much as recent years.

As a whole, the State of Hawaii had a very positive first half of 2013 to offset a somewhat negative second half.  While the first half of 2014 looks to be very positive, the second half is what will make the difference for 2014.

Hawaii Tourism Update

September 4th, 2013

The Hawaii tourism industry continues to be on the rise in 2013 with both arrivals and expenditures up!

Where Are the Visitors Coming From?

For the past couple of years the largest growth has been with the Canadian market. That has not been the case for 2013, which has seen the largest growth come from the US West market. The least amount of growth has come from the US East market. The Japan market is the only market that has shown a decrease in visitors for the summer.

How Are the Islands Faring?

While the Big Island of Hawaii has seen some of the best growth in previous years, that is not the case for 2013. Lanai’i has seen the best growth, with Oahu seeing the best growth of the larger markets. The Big Island did see a fair amount of growth in the spring, but has just seen a 2% increase over the summer. The other major markets experienced growths of 6-7% during the summer months. Many people speculate the sudden growth for Oahu is partially in relation to the popular Disney resort, Aulani, becoming more well known.

Where Are They Choosing to Stay?

The vacation rental industry has seen the largest growth for the past four years and that is continuing in 2013. The vacation rental industry has been a bit more sporadic this year with small increases in the winter months and increases of close to 10% in the summer months. With the space and amenities that vacation rentals offer it makes sense to see them do well in the summer months when a lot of families are traveling.

What Does All of This Mean For Vacation Rentals on the Big Island?

While things are moving in the right direction for all areas of the travel industry in Hawaii, they are not increasing as aggressively for the Big Island this year and especially this summer. The positive is that the vacation rental sector has been very strong this summer partially offsetting the minimal increase in visitors and decrease in length of stay.

What Does the Future Look Like?

I suspect that a lot of this is temporary. The vacation rental industry has continued to grow nationally over the last few years and I suspect that to continue. With average spending continuing to increase I would suspect that higher end properties will increase more rapidly than others.

Kolea at Waikoloa Beach Resort Market Update

May 4th, 2013

Recently we wrote a blog about how the tourism industry in Hawaii experienced nice growth in the first quarter of 2013 and more specifically the vacation rental industry.  At Kolea at Waikoloa Beach Resort, where we manage the largest percentage of vacation rentals we experienced even better growth.   While the vacation rental industry as a whole in Hawaii has experienced a significant growth in occupancy, it has not experienced that significant of a growth in rate.  Kolea saw growth in both areas.

With Kolea offering a variety of vacation rentals, they all saw a fair growth.  The larger 3 bedroom oceanfront villas saw the largest growth in occupancy.  The two bedroom villas saw a growth that was just slightly less than that of the larger villas.

Two factors help contribute to the growth in average rate.  With the increase in occupancy of the larger villas being greater than that of the smaller villas, it naturally raised the average nightly rate slightly.  Across the board, all villas experienced over a 7% increase in the average nightly rate.  Combined the average nightly rate at Kolea increased over 10%.

With April 2013 already being significantly better than April 2012, it appears Kolea should continue to have success throughout 2013.

Hawaii Vacation Rental Market Update ~ 2013

May 4th, 2013

The first quarter of 2013 has been very promising for the tourism industry in Hawaii. With almost all aspects of the industry growing from 2012 it appears 2013 will be an excellent year for the vacation rental industry in Hawaii.

Each island specifically enjoyed growth.  Of the more popular islands, Oahu enjoyed the largest growth in visitors with an increase in visitors of 7%.  The Maui had the smallest growth of 6%.  All the islands seem to fair pretty.  Within 1% of each other, all the islands fared relatively the same.

As the vacation rental industry continues to grow in popularity nationally, vacation rentals were once again the sector that experienced the largest growth of all the accommodation types.  With a 7.2% growth, it fared over 1% better than the hotels did for the first quarter of 2013.

With spending up and the popularity of vacation rentals increasing, luxury vacation rental complexes such as Kolea at Waikoloa Beach Resort on the Big Island of Hawaii are seeing significant increases in demand and rates.  Looking into the second quarter of 2013 better increases are expected for the vacation rental industry in Hawaii.

Waikoloa Vacation Rentals Welcomes Pacific Sunset Villa

March 19th, 2013

Recently we had to opportunity to add one of the most spectacular homes on the Kohala Coast to our vacation rental program.  This home offers rare oceanfront luxury and is comfortably furnished for the most discerning traveler.

Located at Naupaka Place between Kolea at Waikoloa Beach and the Hilton Waikoloa, this home offers easy access to many amenities of the Waikoloa Beach Resort.  Just a short walk down the oceanfront path off the backyard area is the Hilton Waikoloa.  Here guests of Waikoloa Vacation Rentals have access to the popular pools, slides, grotto, and much more.  Within 1/2 mile are the Kings Shops and Queens Shops, which offer ample shopping and dining.

Just off the entrance of the house is a large great room with spectacular views.  Here there is plenty of space for everyone.  There is a nice sofa and chair for lounging facing the ocean, a dining area for eight, an entertainment area with a wall mounted LCD television, and a large state of the art kitchen.  With a click of a button the large pocket doors can be opened to bring in the view and the sounds of the tropics.

This home also offers a private movie theater with six comfortable reclining chairs facing a big screen LCD television with surround sound.

The bedrooms have been nicely furnished and all have a LCD television and private bathroom.  The two master suites offers views of the ocean.

View more information on Pacfic Sunset Villa

Hawaii Vacation Rental Market Update: January 2013

March 8th, 2013

January of 2013 offered the same positive momentum the State of Hawaii has seen in recent history. This trend actually continues the upward momentum on record for every month since January, 2011. Both total arrivals and overall expenditures increased during the month of January, 2013.

For the first month of 2013, total arrivals into the state increased by nearly 6% overall compared to January of 2012. Total visitor expenditures grew by nearly the same number. The US West region arrivals grew by 9% and expenditures increased by over 14%. Total arrivals from the US Eastern market increased by almost 2% while visitor spending improved by nearly 11%. Arrivals from the Japan market continued its eighteen month consecutive run, improving by nearly 8%. Expenditures increased by nearly 4%. Canadian visitors continued their support, offering over 5% additional visitors and almost 2% higher spending compared to January, 2012.

Each of the major Hawaiian Islands had increases with arrivals and visitor spending this last January. Kauai led the charge followed by the Big Island of Hawaii, then Maui and finally Oahu.

Chinese visitors decreased overall due to a shift in the Lunar New Year from February this year to January of last year. February should show improvements for that specific market. Though there were fewer visitors getting married on the islands this past month, honeymoon arrivals did increase by over 8%. Incentive trip arrivals increased however convention and corporate meeting visitors did decline compared to last year.

Guests staying in condos vs. hotels did increase for the month, improving by nearly 6%. Guests selecting hotel accommodations increased by almost 5% compared to January, 2012. These numbers are not surprising given the vacation rental market has been extremely busy over the past few months.

As we move further into 2013, business levels continue to improve. The Hawaiian Islands are busier than ever and the trend appears to be holding steady. The economy of Hawaii welcomes this continued success and we look forward to the future.