Choose to wed on Maui or its sister island, Lana‘i, and you’ll find myriad scenic settings in which to say “I do.” When it comes to the party that follows, we’re fans of letting the experts do the work, while bride and groom revel with family and friends.
Hosting the ideal wedding reception—whatever “ideal” means to you—is what Maui’s resort hotels do best. Here are a few of our favorites along the island’s leeward coast.
As for Lana‘i, it’s the one place in all the world where a certain couple named Bill and Melinda wed. Need we say more?
Fairmont Kea Lani
Located above Polo Beach at the southern end of Wailea Resort, the Fairmont Kea Lani offers five distinctive reception sites with seating for 50 to 450. Outdoor venues have a 9 p.m. curfew—after which the hotel will be happy to move your party into the Kea Lani Ballroom, with dance floor, deejay and cocktail seating. Except on “golden days” such as 8/8/08 and 9/9/09, the Fairmont Kea Lani hosts only one sunset wedding ceremony per day.
Wedding Service Manager
Hyatt Regency Maui
Located in the heart of Ka‘anapali Resort, the Hyatt offers three outdoor venues for parties of 20 to 1,000. The Oriental Gardens overlooks Swan Court Lagoon; swans, flamingos and Mandarin ducks may attend. The smaller Statue Gardens and the spacious Napili Garden & Lawn both offer panoramic ocean views.
Wedding ceremonies are spaced a minimum of two hours apart, and the Hyatt offers a personalized reception menu that allows guests to choose among a variety of entrée choices at the table.
Wedding & Catering Sales Manager
Puttin’ on your reception at the Ritz? The Anuenue Room is a sheltered, open-air restaurant with gorgeous views of the ocean, verdant fairways, and the neighboring island of Moloka‘i. A 10 p.m. curfew applies at Anuenue, but not in the Plantation Ballroom, where you can party through the night. Located above D.T. Fleming Beach, the Ritz’s Beach House Lawn provides a romantic Hawaiian setting for up to 500 guests: lapping waves, swaying palms, and at night, the glow of tiki torches.
Director of Sales & Catering
The Sheraton was the first hotel built on Ka‘anapali Beach, and landed the most spectacular setting along that three-mile stretch of sand. It perches atop majestic Black Rock, with sweeping views of the ocean and the islands of Moloka‘i and Lana‘i.
From the intimate Black Rock Lawn to the Ocean Lawn’s pristine expanse, the Sheraton offers a variety of outdoor venues for 30 to 600 guests. The Coral Reef’s floor-to-ceiling windows belie its indoor setting, while Moana Lawn and Lounge provide the best of indoors and out.
Catering & Conventions Services Manager
At Makena’s only resort hotel, you can choose from a pair of oceanfront lawns above scenic Maluaka Beach, with seating for up to 200 . . . a Garden Courtyard with waterfall, koi ponds, and year-around blooms . . . or the sheltered Holokai Pavilion, three of whose sides look out onto gardens, ponds and fountains.
After 10 p.m., outdoor receptions move inside, as the Prince Ballroom transforms into a private nightclub for up to 250, with dance floor, mirrored wall and deejay.
Wedding & Catering Services Manager
Lodge at Ko‘ele
The Island of Lana‘i boasts two luxury hotels, both of them operated by the Four Seasons. The Lodge at Ko‘ele sits above tiny Lana‘i City at an elevation that affords cool days and crisp evenings; Manele Bay perches on a cliff overlooking the sea.
Only one wedding is scheduled per day, and couples are welcome to use either venue for rehearsal dinners, wedding ceremonies, and the like. Reception venues at the Lodge range from the intimate Pagoda, seating 30, to the Great Lawn, seating 600.