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The center point of the resort houses the Kaupulehu Cultural Center

From room to private lanai the views are expansive

Tropical woods frame the warm interiors of the guest suites
Handsome and spacious bathrooms;
some with outdoor showers
Magical sunsets and cocktails at The Beach Tree Bar and Grill
Flying into Kona Airport on the Island of Hawaii, I am fascinated by vast black lava fields stretching all the way to the azure shores. It is from within a dramatic barren lava field that The Four Seasons Resort Hualalai at Historic Ka'upulehu beckons like an oasis, welcoming visitors with lushly landscaped grounds, subtle architecture and majestic views. The well-deserved reputation for discerning luxury and exemplary service of the Four Seasons, known throughout the world, is enhanced by the aloha spirit that prevails at every encounter. On these historical grounds the charm of a most perfect, romanticized Hawaiian paradise will seduce you and overwhelm your every sense.

It is picture perfect at poolside where three edgeless pools look out over the ocean towards the distant horizon. Stately palms and tropical foliage frame the blues of the sky and sea, and the only sound is of the gentle surf. This is also the view from my private lanai and my room, which is decorated with local woods and rattan furniture upholstered in warm tan muted tones. A canopy of dark bamboo offsets the crisp white linens on the bed. The inviting spacious bath, with a generous tub and shower, is regally appointed with tropical woods and marble. The room's décor is lovely and the quiet Hawaiian-Pacific elegance of the resort is transcending.

But my Zen encounter with my surroundings must end so I may explore and experience all that this paradise offers. My sunrise shoreline power walk takes me past sea turtles feeding in the shallow lava ponds, then along the Resort's man-made King's Pond stocked with tropical fish for guests to snorkel and swim amongst. Past the sandy beaches, I make my way between the fairways of the Jack Nicklaus Signature Golf Course and the rocky coastline. The brilliant green fairway's contour against the striking black lava and the natural coastline make for a remarkable golf experience, and the Hualalai Golf Club is considered by many to be the finest in Hawaii.

At the Hualalai Sports Club and Spa, state-of-the-art health and fitness concepts are set into a spiritual environment that allows for workouts with a view! Later at the Resorts Spa I understand why Condé Nast Traveler has rated this Spa the number one Resort Spa in North America for the past two years. Much of the spa's massage services are outdoors in Hawaiian huts, including the famous Hawaiian lomi lomi massage made even more invigorating by the passing trade winds. Pampering of every kind is available at the Spa including many types of massages including La Stone (hot Rock) and myofacial release, to Hydrotherapy and body treatments. My Zen-like feeling of well-being returns after my afternoon is resigned to the comforts of this wonderful Spa.

At sunset, guests gather at the oceanside Beach Tree Bar for cocktails and to enjoy the freshest sushi, sashimi and light appetizers. The passing of the day brings a sky full of stars. Wonderful warm tranquil winds are best experienced at the Resort's signature beachfront restaurant, Pahu I'a. The Creative "Pacific Fusion Cuisine" combines the freshest seafood with local and traditional specialties. Executive Chef James Cassidy's use of the Island's specialty crops and the offerings of local purveyors of gourmet ingredients make for a first-rate uniquely Big Hawaiian dining experience.

Throughout the Four Seasons Resort Haulalai, the rich heritage and traditions of the historic area and the Hawaiian people are savored and cherished. Many ancient artifacts enrich the beautiful and impressive Hawaiian art collection, with works by noted printmakers, painters and weavers. The Ka'upulehu Cultural Center is the heart of the Resort and its cultural activities, and its exhibits, and it's walking tours are fascinating. The Four Seasons Hualalai is seductive and you will long remember the warm winds and feeling of serenity that overtakes you during your stay.

For more information on experiencing the seduction of The Four Seasons, click here. To plan your Hawaiian vacation go to Pleasant Hawaiian Vacation.
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