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Getting the Aloha Feeling
From LAX, nonstop service to Kahului, Maui, is available on United, Delta, Hawaiian, American and ATA. Restricted round-trip fares begin at $653.
Pacific Wings, (888) 575-4546, www.newconcepts.ca/pacwings.htm, has nonstop daily service to and from Kahului and Hana. The fare is $92.50 each way.
Where to stay
Hotel Hana-Maui, P.O. Box 9, Hana, HI 96713; (800) 321-HANA (321-4262) or (808) 248-8211, fax (808) 248-7202, www.hotelhanamaui.com. From $295 for a garden junior suite to $725 for an oceanfront cottage.
Waianapanapa State Park Cabins, (808) 984-8109. Nothing fancy, but some have ocean views. Cabins for up to six people have ranges, refrigerators, cooking utensils and bedding. $45 a day for one to four people, $50 for five, $55 for six. Near pretty black sand beach.
Hana Alii Holidays, P.O. Box 536, Hana, HI 96713; (800) 548-0478 or (808) 248-7742, fax (808) 248-8595, www.hanaalii.com, rents 14 properties, $80-$400 a day, with most in the $120-$130 range. I liked the oceanfront locations of the three-bedroom Hamoa Beach House ($300 a night) and Hale Kilohana, with three bedrooms and a sleeping loft for $250 a night.
Hana Hale Malamalama, P.O. Box 374, Hana, HI 96713; (808) 248-7718, fax (808) 248-7413, www.hanahale.com. From $125-$225 a night. John Romain, formerly of Malibu, has created an inviting six-building complex of one- and two-bedroom cottages and bungalows set amid tropical foliage and overlooking a restored ancient fishpond and Hana Bay. The appealing units, tastefully furnished with bamboo and teak, have decks or lanais, kitchens and TVs. Free tropical breakfast buffet is served at the thatch-roofed reception area.
Ekena, telephone/fax (808) 248-7047, www.ekenamaui.com, is on 9 hilltop acres outside town. Robin and Gaylord Gaffney welcome guests to their beautifully appointed two-bedroom, two-bath rentals in a dramatic two-story pole house with wraparound decks and floor-to-ceiling glass doors opening onto panoramic ocean views. The 2,600-square-foot upper unit, Sea Breeze, accommodates four at $350 a night; the lower, Jasmine, with 1,700 square feet, is offered as a one-bedroom at $185 or a two-bedroom at $250. Unless parties are together, only one unit is rented at a time to ensure privacy. The property is not child friendly. There are fully equipped kitchens, cable TV and washers and dryers.
Hana Oceanfront Cottages, P.O. Box 843, Hana, HI 96713; (877) 871-2055, fax (808) 248-8034, www.hanaoceanfrontcottages.com. Location, location, location. Former Californians Dan and Sandi Simoni have it at their little tropical paradise steps from Hamoa Beach. They live upstairs in a plantation-style home and rent the one-bedroom lanai-fronted Hamoa Beach Suite below for $195 a night. The romantic one-bedroom Hamoa Beach Cottage, with oceanfront lanai and bamboo sleigh bed, is $235 a night. Both units have classic Hawaiian décor, full kitchens and TVs. Landscaped grounds include a gas barbecue and outdoor showers.
Hamoa Bay House and Bungalow, (808) 248-7884, fax (808) 248-7047, www.hamoabay.com. About 10 minutes from the town center on the beach loop road, a pair of stone monkeys wearing leis marks the entrance to Hamoa Bay House and Bungalow. It's a jungle out there -- a pretty 4-acre one -- and I half-expected Cheetah to jump on my back. The treehouse-like bungalow for two ($195 a night) has a screened ocean-view lanai with a Jacuzzi, bamboo furnishings and a well-equipped little kitchen. The main house, entered through a temple gate and garden, has a great open kitchen, a lanai with views of the ocean and Mauna Kea (if it's clear) and a dining table for eight, Balinese décor, two bedrooms (one smaller) and a bath and a half. There's an herb garden, a barbecue and fruit for the picking. It's $250 for two, $350 for four a night.
Where to eat
Hotel Hana-Maui (see above) serves breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days and packs picnic lunches for $18.50. Breakfast and lunch, $15-$20. Dinner entrees, $24-$37. Lighter fare and pupus served in the Paniolo Bar.
Hana Ranch Restaurant, at town center, (808) 248-8255. Moderately priced; open for breakfast and lunch daily and for dinner Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Wednesday is pizza night. Seating inside or on the lanai. There also is a walk-up window for burgers and sandwiches.
Tu Tu's, in the community center building at Hana Bay, (808) 248-8224. Snack shop open 8 a.m.-4 p.m. daily except Sunday. Inexpensive breakfasts and plate lunches.
To learn more
Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau, 2270 Kalakaua Ave., Suite 801, Honolulu, HI 96815; (800) GO-HAWAII (464-2924), fax (808) 924-0290, www.gohawaii.com or www.visitmaui.com.