Beaches, sunsets, lei’s, waterfalls, the ocean breeze, and the aloha of Hawaii can make any wedding even more memorable. Whether there are three people or one hundred and three in the wedding party, the Big Island has everything to make it a total experience.
According to Frommers, a world-renowned travel resource, “Hawaii is a great place for a wedding. The islands exude romance and natural beauty and after the ceremony, you’re already on your honeymoon. The members of your wedding party will most likely be delighted since you’ve given them the perfect excuse for their own island vacation.”
When deciding where, when, and how to get married, many questions may arise. Over the years, Waikoloa Vacation Rentals has hosted several wedding parties at their vacation rental locations. Here are some things learned along the way that may be helpful.
One option available for wedding services here on the Big Island of Hawaii is the beautiful Hilton Waikoloa Village. The property offers full service wedding planning, catering, and a large assortment of ceremony and reception venues able to accommodate three to three hundred guests or more. These venues currently have pricing structures based on the time of day as well as the season.
The Hilton Waikoloa Village has four different venues for a ceremony. Each of these venues were specifically selected by the hotel to create a truly memorable experience based on view, size, and overall atmosphere. Some of the sites do have a specific number of guests they can accommodate, making them that much more intimate.
The Wedding Chapel is a smaller venue for up to eighteen guests while the Palace Garden and Grand Staircase can accommodate up to one hundred attendees. Buddha Point is a very private venue, located at the north end of the property, along the coastline. With a fabulous view of the ocean and the surrounding area, it is the perfect location for up to forty guests. This can truly be a place for a spiritual event.
After the ceremony, the property has five different locations available for the reception. Based on the size of the party, the decision may be difficult, as each venue is very different from the next offering an exciting location for any group. These venues have rental fees; however, they can be waived with an established food and beverage minimum.
Donatoni’s, The Palm Terrace, and The Ocean View Terrace are great venues that can accommodate a wide variety of groups and their needs. The Lagoon Lanai can accommodate up to three hundred guests or, two hundred with a dance floor and head table. The backdrop is a lagoon, tiki torches, and the stars above. Should weather become an issue, a covered area just off the lanai is available for the festivities to continue. If a larger area is necessary, ballrooms are available for up to nine hundred guests. This venue is great for the groups looking for more square footage or protection from the weather.
The property does all of its catering in-house. Sample menus, preferred vendor lists for entertainment, photography, florists, spa options and more can be viewed below. If a wedding party has an outside vendor in mind such as a photographer or disc jockey, they may work the event. If they are not a preferred vendor with the hotel, there will be an additional charge for them to work on property. This allows them access to the grounds and the event.
The wedding department has some fantastic packages including everything necessary to create an unforgettable experience. An à la carte menu is also available with specialty items such as harpists, solo acoustic guitarists, and more.
Shuttle service is available between the property and your villa or condo using SpeediShuttle, a reliable transportation provider throughout the islands. SpeediShuttle is available for larger groups at 877-242-5777.
Another available avenue is a private wedding coordinator to help with the arrangements. There are quite a few wedding planners on the island. These planners can offer a preferred vendor list for services such as catering, photography, makeup, entertainment, floral arrangements, etc. They can also assist with marriage certificates and public area permits. As these choices are extremely personal, viewing credible resources can be a valuable tool as well. Please contact Waikoloa Vacation Rentals for recommendations regarding these companies.
When contacting wedding planners, vendors, or anyone who may have an integral part in the event, there are a few extremely important things to consider and evaluate. Do they respond appropriately? What feeling do they evoke with their communication via email and telephone? Are they prompt? Do they offer confidence during the conversation? All of these criteria can help ensure the greatest of service and most positive overall experience.
Any of the wedding coordinators will have their preferred locations based on the needs of the client, size of the group and other various requests. Some of these locations can host the reception, ceremony or both. Wedding planners can assist with those decisions as well.
Some ceremony locations include Kukio (Hualalai) Beach, Pu’uhonua o Honaunau National Historic Park, Kikaua Point Beach Park, Saint Peter’s Church, Paradise Cove, and Secret Beach, just to name a few. Some of these venues do require permits if money is changing hands for goods or services rendered, especially if it is a public space. Any coordinator or authorized vendor can assist with these regulations.
Reception locations for a truly unique island experience are Anna’s Ranch, Parker Ranch, Kahua Ranch and the Sullivan Estate among many others. Some Big Island properties are equipped to host receptions too.
Some of the advantages to getting married on the Hawaiian Islands are the unique rehearsal dinner venues. Luaus are a great option as they are interactive and complete with food, beverage, atmosphere, and entertainment. Local restaurants such as Merriman’s Waimea, The CanoeHouse at the Mauna Lani Bay Hotel and Bungalows, or any of the larger hotel properties can host such events as well.
In Hawaii, tradition and culture reign supreme and are part of daily life. Their place in weddings is no different. Some examples are both the lei presentation, a symbol of love, respect and spiritual connection and the blowing of the conch shell. This act symbolizes the desire of all men and women to use their breath of life, also known as ‘ha’. The shell is a form of communication with anyone whom can only be present in spirit.
As these examples are extremely important to the Hawaiian culture, they most certainly are a part of the Hawaiian wedding celebration. The inclusion of the lei is typically part of the ceremony but please ask if the blowing of the conch shell is of interest as well.
An extremely important decision necessary to complete the total Hawaiian wedding experience are the accommodations. Considerations in regards to amenities and group dynamics are necessary. Waikoloa Vacation Rentals has quite a few luxury vacation rental selections available. These vacation rentals range in size from two bedrooms with 1,020 square feet of space, to three bedrooms, three and a half baths with 2,147 square feet. There are additional floor plans and sizes in between. These options will ensure any wedding party remains comfortable and allows everyone to be close to each other while also having plenty of space to relax. With amenities such as expansive lanais, additional outdoor kitchens, Anaeho’omalu Bay and both the Kings’ and Queens’ Shops within walking distance, there are plenty of activities and options for everyone.
Feel free to contact Waikoloa Vacation Rentals at (808) 987-4519 if you have any questions regarding accommodations or planning a wedding on the Big Island of Hawaii.
Additional Hawaii wedding information
For marriage license inquiries, visit http://hawaii.gov/health/vital-records/vitalrecords/marriage/index.html#howto.
Information regarding public area permits is available at http://hawaii.gov/dlnr/land/forms-1/forms.