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Season’s Aloha! Holiday Fun for All Ages Coming to Aulani

posted on November 16th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


The holiday season arrives at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, Hawai`i, on Thanksgiving Day, with appropriate island holiday enhancements throughout the resort.

“Holiday

Beginning Thursday, November 22, Aunty, Uncle and all the welcoming cast members at Aulani will be celebrating the holidays with songs and stories. Aunty will perform “Santa’s Hula” as part of her Breakfast Celebration at Makahiki. The Aulani Starlit Hui band will add island holiday tunes “Mele Kalikimaka” and “Christmas Luau” to their repertoire. And Uncle will tell stories that celebrate the Makahiki season around The Circle of `Alae `Ula Fire Pit. Movie Nights will include titles like “The Santa Clause,” “Tim Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas” and “Prep and Landing,” as well as a holiday-inspired `ohana trivia game with a special gift for the winning family.

And if everyone has been nice – not naughty – this year, Santa will make a special visit to Aulani on Christmas Eve morning.

Mele Kalikimaka to all!

Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for more updates on the holiday season at Disney Parks, and join the conversation on Twitter by using the hashtag #disneyholidays.

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Cars Land, Radiator Springs Racers, Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge, and Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, Hawai`i, Receive Honors

posted on November 13th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Cars Land at Disney California Adventure Park Receives Honor From TEA

Today, the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA) announced the winners of the 19th Thea Awards, recognizing excellence in the creation of extraordinary visitor experiences, attractions, exhibits and places. It’s been a big year for Disneyland Resort and Aulani in Ko Olina, Hawai`i, and we’re happy to report that the following projects were all honored:

  • Cars Land received the award for New Theme Park Land, with the citation noting, among many other details, “…the overwhelming scale of the rockwork panorama…”
  • Radiator Springs Racers was honored in the Attraction category for “…true excellence in design, technical innovation and execution.”
  • Carthay Circle Restaurant and Lounge received the citation for Theme Park Restaurant, noting, “…high quality service, distinctive setting and cuisine…”
  • Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, Hawai`i, received the award for Themed Hotel Resort – “The Aulani resort experience is one-of-a-kind.”

In addition, Frank Stanek, former Corporate Vice President of Research and Planning for the Walt Disney Company, will receive The Buzz Price Award – Recognizing a Lifetime of Distinguished Achievements. During his years with Disney, Stanek provided background and analysis in the original development of Walt Disney World Resort and the expansion of Disneyland Resort, as well as Epcot, Tokyo Disneyland and Disneyland Paris. His wide-ranging professional career also includes developments for the City of Osaka and Universal.

Each of the winning projects will be recognized at the Thea Awards ceremony, a black-tie gala to be held April 6, 2013, at the Disneyland Hotel.

Congratulations to all of our Thea Award winners!

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Halloween in Hawai`i! Aulani Offers Spooky Fun for All Ages

posted on October 19th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Even people on a Hawaiian vacation like to get dressed up and go trick-or-treating for Halloween. The Halloween season arrives at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, Hawai`i, this weekend, with special activities for guests of all ages through the end of the month.

Halloween in Hawai`i! Aulani Offers Spooky Fun for All Ages

Between now and Friday, November 2, Aulani will offer “Happy Halloween Hawaiian Style!” featuring Disney characters in costume, Halloween arts and crafts and, on select days, trick-or-treating around the resort, Halloween parties for the kids in Aunty’s Beach House, spooky family film nights and, for older kids, “Hallow Teen” events on the beach and in the Painted Sky teen spa.

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Starlit Hui is Back! And New Programs Delight Aulani Guests as Work Continues on Resort Expansion

posted on October 8th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Starlit Hui is Back at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

After a month-long hiatus while work progressed on expansion to the resort, Starlit Hui returns to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, this evening in its new location on the Halawai lawn. It’s the same exciting and eloquent gathering, featuring live music, world-class hula performance and an after-party with visiting Disney characters. And as before, it will be presented each Monday and Thursday evening.

While work continues on the amenities being added to Aulani, new programs are already being offered for Aulani guests. On the beach adjoining the resort, guests can learn sand sculpting techniques – and compete in a sand sculpting competition – in a program called Ki`I One (Sculptures in the Sand). Uncle shares his knowledge of canoes so that guests and their `ohana can build smaller canoes to race in Uncle’s Kahakai Canoe Racing. There’s also a special teen event, NSBZ (North Shore Beach Zone) designed to evoke the essence of an exciting and fun-filled “North Shore” beach experience.

Aulani guests can experiment with animation cel painting and character drawing, learn more about Walt Disney’s history and inspiration, and take some of that magic home with them when they participate in Disney Family Fun Animation. And kids visiting Aunty’s Beach House at Aulani can learn some comedy tricks of the trade from Johnny Coconut in The Coconut Kings and Queens of Comedy.

These are only a few of the programs available to Aulani guests of all ages. There’s lots of magic waiting to be discovered on an Aulani vacation.

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Celebrating One Year at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

posted on August 29th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


Aulani Opens its Doors to the First Guests

One year ago today, we welcomed the first guests to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina, Hawai`i. Throughout the past year, many guests have discovered paradise with a touch of Disney magic at Aulani and, earlier today, we shared details on the resort’s upcoming expansion, which will bring even more magical experiences.

Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa Twitter Page

Also today, in celebration of the one-year anniversary of Aulani, we’re launching a new way for you to keep up with all the fun, magic – and expansion – at the resort. Follow @DisneyAulani on Twitter for daily updates and information from Aulani. And don’t forget – you will also continue to find the latest Aulani news here on the Disney Parks Blog, and you can connect with Aulani on Facebook.

Please join me in wishing Aulani a happy anniversary: “Hau`oli la Ho’omana’o!”

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Details Announced for Expanded Water Fun and Dining Options at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

posted on August 29th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


I told you a few weeks ago about the enhancements coming to Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Ko Olina, Hawai`i. This morning, some additional details about the new water features and two new quick-service restaurants were unveiled by Joe Rohde, Walt Disney Imagineering Senior Vice President, who led the design work on Aulani.

“Artist

New water features will include a themed family pool, extending literally to the very edge of the resort property and highlighted by a misty grotto from which relaxing swimmers may view the sunset. After dark, a magical starscape of glimmering lights will appear on the grotto ceiling and the floor of the pool.

Near the family pool will be a new kids’ splash zone, designed to resemble tidal pools with some playful surprises for youngsters, including rainbow water jets, images of tidal pool creatures on the pool floors, and hidden Menehune – the legendary little people of the islands – who may be spotted through chinks in the rocks. Additional deck space, chairs, chaises and cabanas will surround these new water features.

Also coming to Aulani will be two new food service locations. One of these, located adjacent to the new water play area, will serve continental breakfast and offer a lunch and dinner menu with a selection of sandwiches, salads and snacks that can be enjoyed in the adjoining outdoor patio, which provides a beautiful ocean view. A second quick-service eatery will be located beachside, offering grab-and-go snacks and easy access for beachgoers.

Work on these enhancements will begin in September and conclude in mid-2013, coinciding with the final build-out of the resort. Along with the water play and dining additions, the expansion will provide a new, larger lawn location for events, weddings and the guest-favorite nighttime Starlit Hui show. There will also be additional merchandise space – to provide guests with a greater variety of Aulani products, apparel and memories – and a protective awning over the patio of Makahiki restaurant, home of “Aunty’s Breakfast Celebration,” featuring breakfast with Disney characters.

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As Aulani Expands, Vacationers Can Enjoy a Five-Night Stay for the Price of Three Nights

posted on August 3rd, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


It’s hard to believe, but it’s been almost a year since Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, welcomed its first guests. Over the course of that year, the resort has proven so popular that plans are already underway for expansion, beginning in September.

Aulani Announces a Special Offer During its Expansion

For those who stay at Aulani this fall during the expansion work, there’s an extra-special travel offer: five nights for the price of three. With this offer, guests can extend their stay for five consecutive nights and get two of those nights for free. That means two extra days to enjoy all there is to do at Aulani – pools and water slides, restaurants and lounges, entertainment, excursions, Aunty’s Beach House kids club, Laniwai Spa, etc., etc.

To take advantage of the offer, visit DisneyAulani.com or call toll-free (866) 309-2384 and mention offer code O8V. This offer will be available for stays most nights September 10, 2012, through December 18, 2012.

Here’s some exciting, additional information:

5 Nights for the Price of 3 Nights promotion for guests who stay five consecutive nights all between September 10, 2012, and December 22, 2012. Book from July 25, 2012, through November 10, 2012. The number of rooms allocated for this offer is limited. Excludes Resort fees and taxes. Not valid in combination with any other discounts or offers. Offer excludes suites and 3-Bedroom Grand Villas. Additional per adult charges may apply if more than 2 adults per room. Offer applied once per reservation. Check for offers for other lengths of stay. Advanced reservations required. Subject to restrictions and change without notice. Limit 2 rooms per reservation.

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More Water Fun, Dining Options Coming in Aulani Resort Expansion

posted on July 26th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


If you’ve had the opportunity to visit Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa – or even if you’ve just been reading about it – you know how much fun it is and how popular it’s been with families visiting Hawai`i.
Waikolohe Stream at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa in Hawai`i

As a result of all the excitement about Aulani and its amenities, we’re already planning an expansion of the resort. New water features will be added to the Waikolohe Valley pool area, along with additional deck space for sunbathing and relaxing. Two new quick-service food locations also will be part of the enhancements, and the popular “Starlit Hui” show will move to a larger lawn so that even more guests can enjoy the performance.

Work on all this is scheduled to begin in September. Keep an eye on the Disney Parks Blog for regular updates on plans and progress.

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Families Practice Healthy Living Over ‘The Weekend’ at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

posted on June 5th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


If concentrating on fitness is your goal, you might as well do it in a place where getting outdoors and focusing on recreation come easily. Need I add, a top choice would be Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, in Ko Olina, Hawai`i.

This past weekend at Aulani, seven lucky families participated in “The Weekend,” an annual event presented by Disney Magic of Healthy Living, the Disney program that encourages kids and families to try new foods, fun moves and simple ways to be the best they can be.

The participating families were the national grand-prize winners of the TRYit! Photo Contest from Disney Magic of Healthy Living. Families were encouraged to send photos and explain in the caption the ways their families TRY to stay healthy and active.

Families Practice Healthy Living Over ‘The Weekend’ at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

The families spent the weekend soaking up the Hawaiian sun – trying new cuisines, experiencing some of the resort’s exciting excursions, and participating in Disney’s TRYathalon. Disney XD stars Kelly Berglund (“Lab Rats”), Kelsey Chow (“Pair of Kings”), Jason Earles (“Kickin’ It,” “Hannah Montana”), and Adam Irigoyen (“Shake It Up”) were on hand to cheer them on and compete in some of the challenges.

Families Practice Healthy Living Over ‘The Weekend’ at Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

TRYathalon challenges included snorkeling, sailing and hiking. Mickey Mouse and Minnie Mouse were on hand to participate, and a highlight of “The Weekend” was a special ceremony recognizing the families’ efforts to lead healthier lifestyles.

To learn how you and your family can be a part of Disney Magic of Healthy Living and about fun, upcoming opportunities like “The Weekend,” you can visit www.Disney.com/TRYit.

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Aulani and Laniwai Make the Conde Nast Traveler ‘Hot List’ for 2012

posted on May 18th, 2012 by John McClintock, Disney Public Relations


If you picked up the May issue of Conde Nast Traveler, you may already know that Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa, Ko Olina, Hawai`i, is one of 12 U.S. hotels included on the “Hot List” for 2012. Also on the list, in the spa category, is Laniwai, a Disney Spa at Aulani.

Conde Nast Traveler’s annual May Hot List is the ultimate insider’s guide to the hottest new hotels, spas and restaurants of the year. Editors traveled to 49 countries and evaluated 172 new hotels to discover the best in the world, and Aulani was included among the best.

Aulani and Laniwai Make the Conde Nast Traveler ‘Hot List’ for 2012

In their evaluation, Conde Nast editors particularly cited “the resort’s main attraction…the pool area” (aka Waikolohe Valley) and noted, “Apart from meet-and-greets with Mickey and Minnie and themed activities like ‘Surf’s Up’ time with Chip and Dale, the property feels more like a five-star family-focused resort than a Disney showcase. And it lives up to its promise to educate kids about Hawaiian culture…”

The Waikolohe Valley at Aulani, a Disney Resort and Spa

The “Hot Spas” citation noted the six outdoor rain showers and the “tranquil, wood-paneled” interior, and observed “excellent technicians choose just the right massage pressure and products.” Of course the Aulani and Laniwai teams always strive to provide Disney levels of quality and service, so it’s nice to be recognized by veteran travelers.

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