Hawaii Part 12: The Good-bye Luau

Okay, so maybe luaus aren’t for everybody. They are certainly touristy, and I’ve been to a few. But it had been 11 years since we had been in Hawaii and it was my idea that a luau might be fun to reconnect with the whole pig in the ground, Hawaiian music, singers and dancers thing. The problem is the Grand Hyatt doesn’t have a beach luau and those are really the best. Weather permitting, the luau is held in a grassy area not on the beachside of the resort. And should it rain, the luau is moved inside.

The last time we were here, we had the inside luau but the entertainment was in a covered, outside area, giving the feeling of being outside. We were hoping for an outside luau, but, alas, it was not meant to be. The disappointment was – not only had prices shot up – the indoor setup wasn’t as nice this time. Some things should not be revisited, but left to the memory of the past.

One thing I should mention is that the last time we were at the Grand Hyatt, we enjoyed lighting of the tiki torches and Hawaiian dancing and singing outside on the Seaview Terrace. This trip, entertainment varied throughout the week and that show was only on Saturday and Tuesday. We weren’t there on a Saturday and on Tuesday we were having Rich’s birthday dinner at Tidepools during that time so we missed this entirely. So the luau would allow us to experience some of that.

What can I say? By this time we were tired, and ready to go home. We spent the afternoon packing, and if we hadn’t already paid for the luau, we would have skipped it. It would have been better to schedule this earlier in the trip but the only other choice would have been the day we arrived, and we were exhausted then, too. So the good news was, the Mai Tais were free flowing, and the food was delicious. We stayed for some of the entertainment and then called it a night. We had a flight to Honolulu the next morning, and then a long flight to Las Vegas from there (long flight to us – don’t know how some of you do even longer or more flights).

One thing we forgot to mention is that we were able to check in for our flights 24 hours ahead from a kiosk at the Grand Hyatt. And, blessings of all blessings, we were able to change our assigned seats from those middle row seats like we had coming out – to the 2-seat side with window and aisle. WOO HOOOOOOOO!!!! The flight didn’t seem nearly as daunting now. And believe me, it made a huge difference on the flight back – not bad at all!

I should also mention that we spent some time walking the property and taking pictures. Here are some of the beautiful tropical birds in the open-air atrium of the resort. They each had their name posted, and Rich personally addressed each one. 🙂

The next day we ate our final Grand Hyatt Kauai breakfast buffet at Ilima Terrace, returned the rental car, flew to Honolulu, and then flew to Las Vegas via San Francisco from the sky. It was cool to see the San Francisco Bay Area again – our home for 20 years or so – even if from the air. And if we had to give up tropical beaches and the ocean and return to the harsh reality of the desert, well, there was no better time to fly into Las Vegas than at night where we landed around midnight – flight time an hour less going west – woo hoo!

The dry temperature was still warm (app. 80 degrees) but refreshing at that time of night, the neon lights were electrifying, and the pulse of such an exciting city welcoming. We were glad to be back home, and the vacation and birthday celebration had done what it was supposed to do.

Thanks, all, for sharing in our journey. We hope you enjoyed it, too. 🙂

About Kathy

Author of Cruise and Travel-Themed Novels ("Real Women Wear Red" / "Real Women Sing the Blues"), Songwriter & Poet