Story by Sarah Ruppenthal | Illustration by Guy Junker
The bachelorette party. It’s a rite of passage, a pre-wedding tradition that conjures images of tequila shots, party-store veils, and (let’s be honest here) Chippendales dancers. But many brides are opting for a less-conventional fete—one that doesn’t require a bulk supply of Alka-Seltzer for the morning after. Happily, Maui offers an array of opportunities for a bride-to-be to unwind with her girlfriends. Here are some of our favorites:
1. Get pampered in paradise
The award-winning Heavenly Spa at the Westin Maui Resort offers the ultimate in pampering. What could be more decadent than shedding your pre-wedding jitters by sipping champagne, nibbling on fresh strawberries and reminiscing about your single days with your closest friends? Bachelorette spa parties are on the rise, says spa director Leah Strohecker. Packages include hot-stone massage, salon and body therapies, an herbal-infused steam room, sauna, and oceanfront relaxation lounge. You and your best girlfriends will spend quality time together and be gorgeous for your close-ups on the big day.
2. Cruise with your crew
Before you set sail on the sea of matrimony, share a fling with your girlfriends aboard a chartered catamaran. Trilogy Excursions books charters for bridal parties of nearly every size, with several sailing options to choose from: snorkeling, swimming, sunbathing, or just soaking in the resplendent scenery. “I booked a private snorkel tour out of Lahaina for my bachelorette party,” recalls Los Angeles bride Carly Wilcox. “It was the best day of my life—next to my wedding day, of course!”
3. Grab a paddle and dig in
The Fairmont Kea Lani Resort lets you dip your toes in the rich culture and scenic grandeur of Hawai‘i. Bridal parties of up to six can book one of the resort’s exclusive Hawaiian Canoe Experiences and glide across the crystalline ocean, guided by a Native Hawaiian cultural practitioner. Bride and bridesmaids will get a great upper body workout while learning the history of paddling, ancient Polynesian chants, and how to navigate the sea.
4. Spread your wings before exchanging rings
Take your bachelorette bash to new heights on a Skyline Eco-Adventures zipline tour, soaring high above the trees and taking in a rare, bird’s-eye view of the island. Bring your camera; there are fantastic photo ops. After your flight, dip into something delicious with a fondue extravaganza at the Melting Pot. This Lahaina hot spot will happily host your private party, where you can celebrate over a pot of bubbling cheese or chocolate fondue.
5. Plan a swell soirée
Hang ten with your best “Bettys” at a private surfing lesson. Maui Surfer Girls offers two-hour, personalized surf lessons for parties, and as the name suggests, it’s a girls-only affair. “A lot of my girlfriends will be flying in from the Midwest for the wedding, so a group surf lesson is a perfect idea,” says Maui resident and soon-to-be-bride Anneve Strong. “It’s something we can all enjoy together, and something they can only do here in Hawai‘i.” Once they’ve worked up an appetite, we suggest Anneve and her friends head over to Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar for dinner, saké, and a karaoke song or two.
6. Savor a Vintage Experience
Take the scenic trek Upcountry for a private wine tasting and catered lunch at Maui’s only commercial winery. Located on Haleakala’s leeward slopes at an elevation of 2,000 feet, Tedeschi Vineyards offers private tours and tastings, with knowledgeable staff who’ll expound on winemaking techniques and the history of the region. The winery’s tasting room was once a guest cottage for Hawai‘i’s last king; the grounds surrounding the tasting room offer a spectacular view, with picnic tables beneath 100-year-old trees. “We have some incredible wines to try, in an incredible location,” says winery manager Beth Anderson. “It’s a great idea for a classy bachelorette party.”
However you choose to celebrate your last days of single life, Maui will make it memorable for you and your dearest friends.
Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui
4100 Wailea Alanui, Wailea
(808) 875-4100 • Toll Free (866) 540-4456
The Westin Maui Resort & Spa
2365 Ka‘anapali Pkwy., Lahaina
(808) 661-2588 • Toll Free (866) 500-8313
Maui Surfer Girls
(808) 270-1980 • www.mauisurfergirls.com
The Melting Pot
Lahaina Gateway Center, Lahaina
(808) 661-6181 • www.meltingpot.com
Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar
600 S. Office Rd., Kapalua • (808) 669-6286
1881 S. Kihei Rd., Kihei • (808) 879-0004
Ka‘anapali & Kula
10% discount for online bookings: www.ziplines.com
(808) 878-1266 • Toll Free (866) 878-1266
Private charters: (808) 874-5649, ext. 223 or 225