A Tale of 2 Four Seasons Lanai

The state of Hawaii has some of the most luxurious hotels in the world. Maui is lined with top luxury hotels in Wailea and Kaanapali while Waikiki is littered with luxury hotels as well. What I didn’t know was that there are two Four Seasons Lanai. There is one at the beach and one lodge up in the mountains. Both are fabulous and this is a tale of the 2 Four Seasons Lanai.

Four Seasons Lanai Resort at Manele Bay
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Four Seasons Lanai Resort at Manele Bay is an amazing property. It is exactly what you’d expect from a Four Seasons Resort with some cool added touches that sets it apart from other resorts.
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My room was nice, airy, relaxing, comfortable and had a great view of the beach and Pacific. The lobby was open air and had a great view of both the ocean and the pool below. It was very welcoming and gave you a nice feeling but the star of the show was the pool area and of course, the hot Hawaiian sun.
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The pool is the centerpiece of the outdoor area with cabanas on each side and luxurious chairs flanked by tremendous poolside service. The spa was just behind the pool and the beach just down below. It was a great place to relax.
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What makes the Four Seasons Lanai Resort at Manele Bay stand out to me was the impeccable poolside service. They have people go around every hour to clean off your sunglasses, your mobile phone or iPad and of course to spritz you with cold water or offer suntan lotion. This is true luxury and something many other major luxury brands simply don’t do.
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I mentioned the spa before and that is because I had one of the best massages of my life. It was an hour-long deep tissue massage in a large cabana that was private but open-air overlooking the ocean. The mix of the sound of the waves crashing and the massage was unbelievably relaxing. It was perfect.
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The other great thing about the Four Seasons Lanai Resort at Manele Bay was the selection of restaurants. There is a Nobu. In my opinion, that’s all that needs to be said, as Nobu is one of my favorite restaurants in the world.
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Nobu is one of the premier Japanese restaurants in the world with several locations in major cities and resorts. There are 3 in New York where I live and I have been going for years. I was actually at the opening of the new Nobu Hotel in Las Vegas 6 weeks ago where I got to meet the partners, Robert de Niro and Chef Nobu himself. In six days, I ate at Nobu twice at the Four Seasons Lanai. Of course in true Four Seasons and Nobu fashion, the hosts and waiters remembered me five days apart. I love that.
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There are a few other restaurants as well around the pool and also a steak house in the main lobby area. However, what really caught my eye was the sports bar off the lobby that featured a 90-inch television. I watched the NCAA basketball championship game there while playing shuffleboard and pool. It was a great bar and really put the Four Seasons Lanai Resort at Manele Bay up a notch in my book.

Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele
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Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele is a rustic retreat about 20 minutes up from Manele Bay but it is really a world away. The weather up in Lanai city is about 15 degrees colder if the sun is out and if it’s cloudy, it can be downright cold. However, the Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele is a warm, comfortable place to relax and enjoy the country style living.
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My room at the Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele was basic, comfortable and really made you feel at home. I loved the room décor and especially the outdoor porch that overlooked the croquet grass and Norfolk Island pine right outside the window. It was pretty awesome.
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The great room was massive. Unlike the lobby at Manele Bay, it was enclosed and wooden. It was designed like a ski or luxury country lodge. It was fabulous and very inviting. It was the perfect place to relax and have some hot chocolate and stare at the beautiful grounds behind the hotel.
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At the Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele you don’t feel like you’re in Hawaii. It is really odd actually but that is what is so cool about it. It is so different than Manele Bay that it shows you all the sides on Lanai; which is a microcosm of Hawaii in general. Hawaii has many different islands with different and unique climates-even on the same island.
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The Terrace restaurant is a great place to eat for either breakfast or dinner. At breakfast you can gaze outside into the stunning green yard and at night you can cozy up for a nice dinner near the warm fireplace.
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The backyard at the Four Seasons Lanai Lodge at Koele is a mix of Asian countryside and old English grounds. There are croquet courts, lawn bowling courts and a Japanese pagoda. There is a small pool and a big pond that offsets the cloudy skies beautifully. But best of all there is an 18-hole putt-putt course for anyone at the lodge to use. I have never seen that before and that put the lodge over the top for me!
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Disclaimer: I was hosted by the Lanai Visitors Bureau and Four Seasons Lanai for this trip. The views expressed here are mine and have not been influenced in any way.

Comments

  1. Lee, these pictures are so beautiful. I was following your trip on Facebook and this makes me want to go even more now! I need a new job!

  2. My wife and I have stayed at both hotels on Lanai before and you summed them up pretty well although there wasn’t a Nobu when we stayed. That must be a new addition. Seems kind of strange that Nobu would have a restaurant on Lanai as opposed to some more well known destinations at a Four Seasons-interesting. I bet Larry Ellison has something to do with that since he bought the island.

    • Hey Michael and yes the Nobu opened up in late December I believe. It is just as good as any other Nobu in New York or Vegas. I wasn’t told explicitly that it was due to to Ellison buying the hotel but I imagine that didn’t hurt their decision to open up on Lanai, not to mention the setting is perfect.

  3. Now here’s an idea for my next vacation. Get a two for one….thanks!

  4. Tell me Lee, how much did you spent for your trip going to London? Do you think it is easier for me to have a tourist visa? I’m a Filipino and I just wonder if I would be given a chance to roam around Europe by possibly granting a visa…are hotels or apartelles in London cheaper? how about the food? and when is the best time to visit there? Thanks for the feedback.

    • Hi Don…London is a very expensive city without a doubt and accommodation is expensive. However, there are lots of cheaper places if you look hard enough. I know nothing of the Filipino visa situation with the UK and with Europe in general so I am not a good person to ask but good luck!

  5. Katherine says:

    That’s some carpet in your room at the Lodge! Looks nice though other than that!

  6. Lee, which place would recommend if you were just going to stay at one? My wife loves the Four Seasons, as I do, but I hate moving hotels when on vacation.

  7. Lee, you never said which one you liked better

  8. Sounds amazing Lee.

  9. I stayed at Manele Bay and LOVED it! I am dying to go back. The spa there is amazing and you are right about the pool service, impeccable!

  10. Lee, these hotels look amazing. Too bad I live on the other side of the world!

  11. Sam Anderson says:

    Great photos. Thanks for sharing. Before, you could stay at either hotel and use the pool and fitness centers of the other hotel. I heard that’s no longer true. We’re you able to do that?

    • Hey Sam, I’ve heard that’s true as well. Actually I had moved to the Lodge but came back to Manele for something and used the pool for an hour or so. They mentioned they weren’t supposed to let me use the pool anymore as they changed policies but they did. Seems silly they wouldn’t let you and I believe you can charge stuff to your room at the other hotel as well still.

  12. Awesome pictures Lee, I watched the BCS national championship game there at the pool side bar sitting next to LeAnn Rimes and her hub Eddie. That Ritz is out of this world, Maui No Ka ‘Oi !!!!!

  13. Hi Lee – Thanks for sharing! I haven’t stayed at Manele Bay but, after hearing your description of the massage, I think I need to check it out. ;) You’re absolutely right about Lanai City feeling almost like you’re not in Hawaii anymore! To me, it felt like being at summer camp, maybe because of the pine trees and croquet. One thing for sure, it’s a beautiful island that makes it easy to seriously get away from it all – literally and figuratively. Again, thanks for sharing – always love seeing more of Hawai’i!

  14. Jennifer says:

    I scrimp and save every penny to afford travel; sleeping in dorm rooms, riding on chicken buses and eating street food. Please dear God tell me how you manage to travel the world and stay at the Four Seasons.

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