Concierge Recommendations

Lanai, Hawaii: Manele Bay

Feb 10, 2014

We asked Adam Lieberman, Chef Concierge at Four Seasons Resort Lanai at Manele Bay, to gather the savviest sight-seeing suggestions he could find—not just his own, but also those of the local connoisseurs, including some he works with every day at the Resort. Lanai is an intimate and quiet island several miles west of Maui. Here, crystal-clear waters and white sand beaches ring the coast, which is set off by rugged red lava cliffs and misty highland forests.

Lanai City, Past and Present

Charming Lanai City is more like a very small town, a clear reminder of how the spirit of old Hawaii has been preserved on this unspoiled island. Just a handful of mom-and-pop shops and restaurants surround Dole Park, where you can shop for fashionable island apparel, souvenirs and art. Don’t miss the Mike Carroll Gallery, where the work of the island’s finest artists is displayed in a traditional bungalow. For lunch, join locals at Lanai ‘Ohana Poke Market, which serves the classic Hawaiian hors d’oeuvre, poke—bite-size pieces of fresh raw fish mixed with seaweed, relish, nuts, tofu, vegetables and more. Then discover the rich history of “the Pineapple Island,” once Hawaii’s largest pineapple plantation, at the Lanai Culture and Heritage Center.

Family Fun

Hawaii is a paradise for children, and its resorts are no exception. The complimentary Kids For All Seasons programme at Manele Bay features authentic and unique daily activities such as gecko hunts, building volcano models and lei making. Four Seasons Resort Lanai, the Lodge at Koele, offers its own array of family pursuits: Feed the fish at the Reflecting Pond, try croquet or lawn bowling, or test the greens at the executive putting course.

Off-Road Odyssey

In most of the state, the ultimate Hawaiian fantasy of a private beach is just that: a fantasy. But on Lanai, with only 30 miles (48 kilometres) of paved roads, there are still many wonderful places to enjoy alone. The island is one of the best places in the world to rent a 4×4 for off-roading, a must-try activity. Explore miles of rugged terrain on old roads that will lead you to breathtaking scenery like the Munro Trail, Keahiakawelo (Garden of the Gods), Polihua Beach and Kaiolohia Beach (Shipwreck Beach). Ask the Resort to pack a gourmet picnic for a private, unforgettable experience. For those who prefer, guided tours are offered.

Great Golf

Golf great Jack Nicklaus has designed courses throughout Hawaii, but he considers The Challenge at Manele Bay one of his finest, providing a strong challenge for pros while still being ideal for a round with friends. Overlooking the Pacific from a cliff-top setting, the course has the most ocean exposure of any in the state, with views that stretch across to Maui and as far as the Big Island. The unforgettable par-3 12th hole plays from one cliff to another, over 202 yards (185 metres) of ocean abyss. Not to be outdone, The Experience at Koele sits inland on rugged, mountainous terrain 2,000 feet (610 metres) above sea level, in a radically different, fog-shrouded ecosystem of towering pines and massive elevation changes. Closed for renovations until later this year, the course features a tee shot on hole 17 that drops from a cliff to a fairway 25 storeys below. Because of its cooler weather, the Experience is the only course in Hawaii that can maintain bent grass greens, widely considered the finest putting surface on Earth.

Ah, Spa!

The Spa at Manele Bay offers more than just authentic Hawaiian treatments, expert therapists and a luxuriously tranquil setting. For a unique experience, observe the traditional ritual that precedes the ki pola ho‘olu, or cooling ti-leaf wrap. Twenty-four hours before your treatment, your therapist will carefully select six live ti leaves from the Resort’s extensive Hawaiian Garden, and then ask the land for permission to pick them. After a period of meditation, the leaves are washed and cleaned by hand. Enjoy this calming, aromatic wrap, which begins with lavender-infused aloe vera gel, followed by an overlay of the fresh ti leaves. Your body is wrapped to improve hydration while pressure points are stimulated on your face and scalp.

Extraordinary Restaurants

Under the watchful eye of Executive Chef Kevin Erving, the restaurants at Manele Bay and Koele—such as One Forty and Dining Room—showcase local ingredients whenever possible, and the finest imported ingredients when it’s not. Erving buys produce from local farmers to guarantee the freshest quality. And at the new Nobu Lanai, the first and only restaurant by famed chef Nobu Matsuhisa at Four Seasons, vegetables come from the Nobu Lanai farm in the up-country. Daily catches, which typically include opakapaka and Pacific snapper, are purchased from local fisherman. Guests of Manele Bay and the Lodge at Koele are invited to enjoy dining privileges at both Resorts.

Swimming and Snorkelling

Named one of the world’s 10 best snorkelling spots, Hulopo‘e Bay is located just steps from the Resort. A crescent beach of soft white sand surrounds this protected marine reserve. Begin or end your day with a dip and discover Lanai’s magical underwater world, including a healthy and colourful coral reef and equally vibrant tropical fish, along with playful spinner dolphins and green turtles. To make the most of your time, take advantage of the Resort’s complimentary snorkelling equipment, which even includes prescription masks.

New Sports

Vacations are the perfect time to try something new, and Lanai offers plenty of options. Experience a sport once reserved only for the ali‘i (Hawaiian chiefs) with a half-day private surfing lesson from champion surfer and Lanai resident Nick Palumbo. Half-day lessons in stand-up paddling are also available. Then take off on a 4×4 safari adventure to a secluded surf spot, with a stop at historic Keomoku Village. For something completely different, try sporting clays. Often called “golf with a gun,” this is the most challenging of all clay-shooting sports. The Lodge at Koele operates Lanai Pine Sporting Clays, with target stands carved out of wood from the tropical jungle. You can also try your hand at archery; highly qualified instructors are available for both sports.



9 Comments about Lanai, Hawaii: Manele Bay

  1. Jennifer Pooley says:

    Hello. We are an older couple with a 17 year old daughter and are visiting Lanai in late November/ early December for 7 nights, 4 at The Lodge and 3 at Manele Bay. What would your recommendations be for our stay?

    • Jordan Carmichael says:

      Dear Jennifer,

      Thanks so much for your comment! I’ve forwarded your request onto the Resort so that someone can be in contact with you directly.

      Thanks for reading,

    • Adam Lieberman says:

      Aloha Mrs. Pooley –
      We are eagerly anticipating your families arrival with us at the end of November. Despite being such a small island, Lana’i offers a wide range of activities to enjoy including golf, horseback riding, spa services, hiking, 4×4 rentals and surfing; just to name a few. Or you could choose what I love best and just relax on the beach listening to the waves crash. We have sent you an email detailing more amazing adventures awaiting your family. It would be our pleasure to assist with making your stay a memorable one. We look forward to hearing from you. Mahalo!
      Adam Lieberman – Chef Concierge

  2. De Mello says:

    My family plans to visit Hawai’i from Oregon during the Spring break 2015. I would love to send them to Lana’i as an over night package or possible 2 nights. Horse back riding ( if you have) and other activities…. Can you recommend idea’s to enlighten the ambience of Lana’i in making this trip a memorable one for them….

    • Kelly Neubeiser says:

      Hi there,

      Thank you so much for your comment! I’ve forwarded your request onto the Resort so that someone can be in contact with you directly.

      Thank you!

  3. Dr William Kidd says:

    My wife and I would like to visit Lana’i in early November this year. Could you give me some insight as to what the weather is like at that time of the year? We prefer snorkeling and water activities. Is this a good time to visit and stay at the Four Seasons in Manele Bay?

    • Emily Littlepage says:

      Aloha Dr. Kidd! We hope you are able to join us at our Island Paradise this fall. We are lucky enough to enjoy a year round tropical climate, so everyday is a great day on Lana’i! I will have our concierge team email you activity information and they would be more than happy to assist you with all bookings. We look forward to working with you. Mahalo.
      Emily Littlepage- Director of Guest Experience

  4. Annie Tsang says:

    We are planning to visit Four Seasons Manele Bay late July to early August this year. Is this a good seasons for diving and snorkelling? Are you able to recommend a good dive operator preferably able to pick up from the hotel or only a short drive away?

    Many thanks.

  5. howoon park says:

    I have a plan to visit four seasons resort in Lanai and I ‘ll bring two kids(2 and 4 years old) and my beautiful wife. Could you recommand something to do in Lanai for me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>

Today's Top 5

Four Seasons Magazine

Red vase by Bořek Šípek on display at Four Seasons Hotel Prague

The best of luxury travel, style and culture from thought leaders and tastemakers

Issue 1 2015