Paradise Found: Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea

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 "This resort definitely lives up to its reputation..." 

Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea

3900 Wailea Alanui Drive  HI 96753, United States


By: Tessa Perkins

It is easy to see why the Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea is the only Forbes 5 star resort on the island. The service is absolutely impeccable, their amenities provide the utmost in entertainment and comfort, and they are located on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world on Maui's sheltered Southwest coast at the white sand Wailea Beach resort area. With such beauty at your feet, guests rarely leave the property, unless it's for a stroll along the beach to explore the other resorts or to peruse The Shops at Wailea.    

This resort definitely caters to an upscale crowd, but if you are looking to experience something really special, this is the place to do it. With three saltwater pools, three restaurants, a gym and games room, a full service spa, and Hawaiian art throughout the resort, they have thought of everything to make your vacation spectacular.  

After a long flight from Bellingham to Honolulu and then another short flight over to Kahului, Maui, we were relieved to drive up to the grand entrance of the resort and be greeted with warmth and a beautiful flower lei for myself along with a masculine kukui nut lei for my boyfriend. From the moment we arrived, everything was taken care of for us. The bellboy and valet kindly took our luggage and our rental car, and we proceeded to the front desk where we were greeted with lavender scented towels and the feeling that this would be an unforgettable couple of days. Walking into the resort feels like entering a stunning Hawaiian palace with high ceilings and large open spaces that lead to breezeways and look out on the gorgeous ocean view and Wailea beach.  

We had an ocean view room with a good sized lanai (deck) that was furnished with two comfortable padded lounge chairs and a nice wooden table. I really liked the sliding wood panelled doors that closed over the sliding glass door. The décor is modern and focuses on reds and browns. There was also plenty of space inside for the luxurious king bed as well as a couch, coffee table, desk, minibar, and dresser with a large TV sitting on top. Almost as big as the bedroom area, the bathroom was lovely and spacious with two sinks, a bathtub, shower stall, and separate room for the toilet. Another feature that we really enjoyed was the built in music in the bathroom. From a dial on the wall you could choose to listen to Hawaiian, R&B, easy listening, or classical. We kept it tuned to Hawaiian which sets a nice mood.

After a restful night’s sleep, I awoke to the unfamiliar sounds of the Hawaiian birds chirping – at first I thought the sounds were coming from my alarm clock before I realised that that was what the birds sounded like there. I went out on the lanai to check out our view in the daylight and was delighted to find that we had a beautiful view over a large lawn and out to the Pacific over the trees. Since I was in a rush to get ready for my massage that morning, I ordered some breakfast from the handy room service “quick bites” menu that is guaranteed to arrive within twenty minutes. The croissants with jam were delicious even though I found them to be overpriced. 

One of the best parts of our stay at the resort was my oceanside Lomi Mohala massage. After checking in at the spa downstairs and getting ready in the hospitable locker room complete with tea, hairbrushes, and other items that one might need to freshen up, I waited in the serene relaxation room. Myself and two other guests were escorted down to the oceanside massage hale (huts) which are built using only ferns, grasses, and bamboo in the traditional Hawaiian style. The only hardware used is the latch on the door. With the sound of the waves crashing on the beach in the background and the scents of the oils used by the masseuse, I was put into a state of pure relaxation as she used the mohala (opening) techniques to elongate muscles and release tension. This signature treatment was restorative and just what I needed after a long journey and getting cramped from sitting so long on a plane.

Later that day, we decided to have lunch at Ferraro’s, which is the only restaurant open for that meal. Duo, their steak and seafood restaurant is only open for breakfast and dinner, and Wolfgang Puck’s Spago is only open for dinner. We shared a tasty turkey club with avocado which comes with fries. We really enjoyed the sandwich, but found that the fries could have been better if they were made onsite. Before each meal they also serve breadsticks which was nice, and all the staff at the restaurant really make sure that you’re enjoying yourself and have everything you need. Located just above the beach and looking out over it, this open air restaurant has such a nice atmosphere, and even the cute sparrows looking to grab a bit of your food add to its charm.  

After a tour of the resort with Director of Marketing, Mark Simon, we returned to our room to find a chocolate fondu arrangement sitting on our coffee table. With brownies, cookies, rice krispie squares, pineapple, marshmallows, and strawberries, it was to die for. Sitting on our lanai eating the fondu by candlelight and looking out to the Pacific was one of those moments when you feel absolutely content. 

The next morning, we ate at the Duo breakfast buffet, and while there were a great variety of high quality foods, I found it to be quite overpriced. The cold buffet is thirty dollars, and if you opt for the hot buffet, that will set you back thirty-five dollars. Perhaps for people who like to eat large meals at breakfast time it is a better value, but I only really wanted a bagel and a yogurt parfait.   

We then made our way down to the beach for our Outrigger Canoe excursion, a unique Hawaiian experience that is offered complimentary for guests. We had two guides in the canoe, one in the front and one in the back, along with four of us to make up a full rowing team. After a quick lesson on the beach which included learning all of the calls to start rowing, switch sides, and stop that would be in Hawaiian, we pushed the boat into the water and hopped in. The forty-five minute ride takes you quite far out, and we saw a sea turtle swimming over the reef which is very common. During the trip, the guides explain the history of the outrigger canoe and the Hawaiian Islands, which helps keep your mind off the rowing and makes this a very rewarding and educational activity.  

As we were already in our swimsuits, it was time to check out the pools and spend some time on the beach. My favourite pool at the resort is definitely the Serenity Pool. I love the fact that it’s adult only, and there are so many features that make it unique including a really cool swim-up bar. The lounge chairs in this area are also more comfortable, and there is a focus on relaxation with spa services offered while you lounge. There are two hot tubs, and the pool even has soothing underwater music. Swimming to the end of the pool to the “infinity edge” as the water cascades down the wall gives you an incredible view out over the beach, and this is the perfect spot to relax in the water, drink in hand, and take in the beauty of this location.

All of the pools are saltwater, and while this is a neat feature that might make it seem more like swimming in the ocean, I would rather they be freshwater and save the saltwater for when I’m actually in the ocean. The Waterfall Pool is also very nice and feeds into the infant pool. There is also the beautiful Fountain Pool flanked by two hot tubs and surrounded by many lounge chairs. It is sometimes hard to find a chair at the Serenity Pool as it’s the most popular, but if it is full, then the Fountain Pool is a great second choice to hang out for a while until a spot opens up. Another option is to walk down to the beach and take advantage of the lounge chairs, umbrellas, towels, refreshments, and exceptional service of the Four Seasons “beach boys.” Since all beaches are public on Maui, the resort is not allowed to have anything permanent set up on the beach, but they diligently set up and take down all the chairs every morning and evening.  

If you plan to enjoy the resort to its fullest and stick around after checking out of your room, the “Aloha Suite” has been set aside for these guests who may need to freshen up or relax while their luggage is stored for them. We found this hospitality very helpful as we spent the day enjoying the beach and pools before getting ready for a dinner at Ferraro’s. 

While Ferraro’s is an attractive restaurant during the day, it becomes even more special under the stars. With live music, candlelight, a clear sky, and the sound of the waves crashing on the beach nearby, the atmosphere there was perfect. Their decent sized menu features elegant Italian cuisine and a large selection of wines. We were served bread with olive oil and salts to begin our meal, and the service once again was fantastic. I decided on the spaghetti carbonara with their only rosé wine, and Jeremiah had the rib eye steak. We were very pleased with both of our meals, except that I found my carbonara to be a bit too salty. For dessert we got their sampler which included strawberry gelato, tiramisu, and a hazelnut chocolate cake. Each of these was simply blissful.   

Full of delicious food from Ferraro’s, we left the Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea content and satisfied that we had just stayed in the most luxurious resort on the island. This resort definitely lives up to its reputation, and I can see why it would be a popular spot for celebrities to vacation.  The unparalleled service, special touches like their daily artists’ showcase, and complimentary features like a daily hula performance, fitness classes, and Outrigger Canoe program make this Four Seasons Resort located at the stunning Wailea Beach a perfect Hawaiian traveller’s paradise. 

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