Category Archives: kamaaina

Kamaaina Deals at Travaasa Hana with Mokulele Airlines

This week, Mokulele Airlines made the the first of its twice-daily roundtrip flights between Kahului Airport and Hana, Maui. Flights start at $59 each way and should be booked well in advance – yes, this is a tiny plane to make the short 20 minute trip to Hana.

This is GREAT news for Kama’aina! While the famous Road to Hana is beautiful and well worth the drive, it still takes at least a couple of hours each way, making it a bit of a deterrent to many who have just a weekend or a few days to stay on-island. So a low-cost daily flight is the perfect answer.

Sea Ranch Cottages at Travaasa Hana (photo courtesy of Travaasa Hana)

>> To sweeten the deal even further, Travaasa Hana is currently offering these Kama’aina Packages only for Hawaii residents:

“Garden Suite Getaway” Package, $295/night

The delightful “Garden Suite Getaway” package includes accommodations in a low-rise bungalow Garden Suite; roundtrip air from Kahului Airport (OGG) to Hana Airport (HNM) on Mokulele Airlines for two (valued at $240); ground transportation to and from the Hana Airport; $25 per person spa credit; $25 per person private activity credit; and $50 food and beverage credit. Based on double occupancy; excluding taxes and service charges. Two-night minimum stay required. Certain restrictions and blackout dates apply. Proof of Hawaii residency is required at check-in.

“Sea Ranch Romance” Package, $395/night

For the ultimate romantic escape, experience Travaasa Hana with the “Sea Ranch Romance” package. This seductive offer includes accommodations in a plantation-style, ocean view Sea Ranch Cottage with a private lanai; roundtrip air from Kahului Airport (OGG) to Hana Airport (HNM) on Mokulele Airlines for two (valued at $240); ground transportation to and from the Hana Airport; $25 per person spa credit; $25 per person private activity credit; and $50 food and beverage credit. Based on double occupancy; excluding taxes and service charges. Two-night minimum stay required. Must be 16 years or older to stay in Sea Ranch Cottage. Certain restrictions and blackout dates apply. Proof of Hawaii residency is required at check-in.

>>To book, visit and enter rate code KAMAAINA, or call Travaasa Hana, Maui directly at (808) 248-8211.

>> Looking for hotel or other Kama’aina deals? Visit our Kama’aina Travel Deals page.
>> For the most recent posts on specific kama’aina deals, click here.
>> For more on MAUI, click here.

Pau Hana in Honolulu: Fridays at the Modern

If you’re looking for an excuse to break out the high heels and your flashy new shades for Friday pau hana, let me introduce you to what may become your new Friday night tradition… Fridays at the Modern.

This coconut-cucumber mojito is not something I normally would have ordered, but ended up being one of my favorites! So refreshing, and somehow avoids that “tastes like liquid sunscreen” flavor that tropical coconut drinks normally have. Highly recommended.

Last week, I was invited to check out the updated menus for both the Sunrise Pool bar as well as the Study (formerly one of my favorite spots for cocktails – the Lobby Bar). While I’m still interested in how the rebranding and updates at the Study, I think the real draw for the pau hana crowd is the chic lounge area around the Sunrise Pool Bar.

Check out the new menu, including these adorable mini-burgers. Not to miss: the hummus w/ roasted garlic and naan bread.

With new Executive Chef Scott Toner taking the culinary reins at the Modern, the menu has been refreshed – emphasizing fresh, local ingredients and lighter fare to compliment the popular cocktail menu. Chef Toner was most recently at the Grand Wailea Resort and the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua, both on Maui.

Some of the highlights included Dungeness Crab Cakes, given an asian flair with a thai curry sauce and cucumber radish namasu, and classics like mini burgers, caprese salad and a daily specialty pizza. My favorite was the Hummus and Naan Bread, which comes with roasted garlic and balsamic tomatoes.

Love the wine bottle lights strung up in the shade trees around the pool area. Great ambience for watching the sunset, then the fireworks next door!

On the day we visited, you could catch Tahiti Rey and Jason Alan down at the study, which was uncrowded at such an early hour. Their happy hours run a bit later (they were talking about 10pm) but it’s worth it to come down for a cocktail or some pupus to listen to this duo. They also play up at the Sunrise Pool Bar certain days as well. Check out their website here.

The food downstairs was a surprise for me, I really enjoyed the petite sliced ribeye and tuna tartare. No real surprises, just good food done well. Small portions, but they really pack in the flavor. If you do head down to the Study, be sure to head back up to the Sunrise Pool Bar for the Friday night fireworks at 7:45pm. They’re launched from the lagoon at the Hilton Hawaiian Village, so you’ll have a front-row seat to ring in the weekend.

Cheers to the weekend!

>> To see a full photo album from my visit to the Sunrise Pool Bar, check out the Shoyu Sugar Facebook page. Don’t forget to “like” us while you’re there for updates!

Tips for visiting the Modern:

The Modern Honolulu
1775 Ala Moana Boulevard
Honolulu, Hawaii 96815
Phone: 808-943-5800

– Parking is always the hard part in getting people to venture into Waikiki. The Modern offers complimentary valet, and if for some reason it’s full, you can park across the street at the lot for Red Lobster for $7, or the paid lots at the Ilikai harbor. (I’ve personally never had a problem with the valet.)

– Fridays are the best night to visit the Sunrise Pool Bar since you’ll have a close up view of the fireworks show next door at the Hilton. Fireworks start promptly at 7:45pm, so grab your cocktail and position yourself for a great view.

– To swim in the sunrise pool, you’ll either have to be a guest of the hotel or have reserved one of the cushy beds that line the perimeter of the lounge area. The cabanas around the pool can be reserved with a food & beverage minimum of $250 for up to 6 people, which isn’t too bad if you plan on staying awhile.

– The Modern often offers a Kama’aina rate, so if you want to turn your Friday at the Modern into a weekend, check out their specials here. Highly recommended if you really want to indulge in all the great cocktails!

>> For other great Waikiki Kamaaina deals, click here.

Mahalo to the Modern Honolulu for hosting us for the evening and allowing us to bring you a preview of some of the new cocktails and drink items for the Sunrise Pool bar and the Study. I’ll be back!

Still hungry??
>> For a list of the latest posts related to FOOD, click here.
>> For a Honolulu Restaurant Recommendations, click here.

Where to Stay on Maui: Ka’anapali Beach Hotel

While the Ka’anapali strip is now home to flashier, more luxurious properties all competing to out-do one another, there is something that remains timeless about Ka’anapali Beach Hotel. Proudly known as “Hawaii’s Most Hawaiian Hotel,” KBH really does it’s best to live up to it’s reputation.

Employees participate in a cultural awareness program called Po’okela and genuinely seem happy to be there. Many have worked there for decades. There are programs and activities for guests like lei-making, ukulele classes, and more. When you walk into the grounds you’ll see beautiful landscaping with plants like taro and plumeria trees throughout. We were lucky enough to be visiting right in the middle of plumeria season – the scent of the flowers in the evening was absolutely heavenly.

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Where to Eat on Maui: Kama’aina Discounts

*Just a quick note: This page was most recently updated in August 2014. If you hear of any other offers, or find out that those listed here are no longer being honored, please leave me a comment or drop me a line at Thanks for reading!

A few weeks ago a little birdie informed me that there are some great Kama’aina discounts available on some of Maui’s top resort restaurants, so I thought I’d do a little more digging for you…

Wailea/Kihei Kama’aina Dining Discounts

Ko IMG_1492
Fairmont Kea Lani
100 Wailea Alanui
Wailea, HI 96753
(808) 875-2210
Reservations click here.

The deal: Ko at the Fairmont Kea Lani offers Kama’aina buy one get one free on entrees and 25% off on drinks. Available any time of day, although you must be seated at the high top tables or at the bar.

Morimoto Maui
Andaz Wailea
3550 Wailea Alanui Drive
Wailea, HI 96753
(808) 879-1234
Reservations click here.

The deal: Kama’aina receive 20% off the lunch & sushi menu between 11:30-2pm.

Migrant Maui
Wailea Beach Marriott
3700 Wailea Alanui Drive
Wailea, HI 96753
(808) 875-9394
Reservations click here.

The deal: Happy hour is from 4-6pm daily (50% off food & drink) and Kama’aina receive 25% from 6pm through closing.

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Where to Eat in Hilo: Local Favorites

When I was on the Kona side of Hawaii Island, a friend who lived there told me they go to Hilo to eat. After having visited, I can understand this. While there is some spectacular food on the Big Island – fresh, locally-sourced, and sometimes pretty pricey, there’s something to say for good old home-style comfort foods, and I think this is really something that Hilo does exceedingly well.

Two Ladies Kitchen

When I asked around for where to eat in Hilo, EVERYONE recommended the strawberry mochi at Two Ladies Kitchen. It’s recommended to call ahead but we were pretty lucky since they still had some available. We also were able to sample fresh grape mochi while we were waiting and bought a big sampler pack to try out some of the other varieties.

Strawberry Mochi from Two Ladies Kitchen

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