Maui, HI

Maui is Waui.
How do you describe it other than just, WOW?!
I do have to note other than the Road to Hana, we did not get to see as much of Maui as I would have liked. Because we had wedding duties, there was not as much time for exploration and finding some of the white, sand beaches Maui is famous for. The Road to Hana does provide you with a little bit of everything that you want to witness in Hawaii, but there were some restaurants, hikes and beaches I would love to visit more thoroughly. We also rushed through Road to Hana because of wedding obligations, so I would return to Maui and do Hana for a second time, no question’s asked. In fact since returning I have told several people to visit Maui just to do Road to Hana, it had such a huge impact on me. But that is a whole other post, I will share soon!
It really doesn’t matter where you stand or which way you turn in Maui, there is always a breathtaking view waiting to blow your mind.
Everywhere in Hawaii there are surfers. There seemed to be even more in Maui. At times I thought I was seeing dolphins or a whale, then you quickly realize it’s a pod of surfers out there hanging ten.
More in Maui than Kauai, I noticed lot’s of homeless people as well as people clearly living out of their cars along the beaches. Maui is as close to paradise as it gets, I think I might be able to manage living out of my car or in a shanty, to wake up and take in those views every morning and live the life of a surfer.
Blue Crush, anyone?
Known as the “Valley Isle,” Maui is dotted with quaint towns, artistic communities and local favorites that have been around for generations. Maui is the second largest Hawaiian Island and is considered the commercial and financial hub of Hawaii. Much like Kauai, parts of Maui’s landscape are lush and green but unlike Kauai it was much more developed and touristy. 
Maui looks good on us.
Views everywhere…. depending on what you’re looking for.
{The guy with the video camera, crack’s me up, he clearly found his favorite view!}
Hotel: The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua, Maui
If it hasn’t become clear, Jordan and Jeremy don’t skimp and prefer things be kept fierce and fabulous at all times. The Ritz-Carlton in Kapalua, Maui immediately enfolds you into it’s secluded luxury paradise with it’s captivating views, treasured traditions, offering a true Hawaiian experience as one of the island’s most renowned hotels.
Aloh-HEYYYYYY! 

Only Jordan, my Brother, the Bride would walk around a 5-Star Resort and say, ALOH-HEYYYY to everyone.
The Ritz-Carlton was about as fabulous as a hotel as I will ever stay in.

With an open floor plan, the hotel was airy and inviting, not to mention impeccably kept.

Everywhere you turned there were fresh flowers, dozens of orchids, a stunning view or someone waiting to serve you a drink.
It’s an easy life to adjust to, it’s a hard life to adjust away from.
Orchids are one of my favorite flowers and they were everywhere.

They lined the entrance, the secret patios scattered around the grounds and almost every table in the hotel. It was orchid heaven.

Our rooms were swanky and as homey as hotel rooms get. The bed’s were comfortable but the best part was by far the bathroom. A bathtub separate from the shower. Enough room for the three of us to comfortably all fit, while getting ready. And a bathroom that is it’s own stand alone room with a door you can close, a nice feature when the whole family is sharing one room, if you know what I’m saying.
The week before we arrived, the PGA Tour stayed at the hotel and held a tournament at the world renowned golf course on site.
The pool area was huge, with three tiered levels, chairs and chair attendants that know what you want before you even think it. My favorite part of the pool at the Ritz-Carlton was the chair cover, towels. They looped over the back of the chair and were soft and thick. Ensuring comfort and that the towel didn’t move or fall off.
An experienced sun bather, came up with these towels. Implementing into their  everyday pool services was a well played move on the Ritz’s part.
My only complaint about the hotel was how far removed you are from the ocean.
I think we were spoiled at The St. Regis in Kauai, having the ocean a few steps away from the pool. Here at The Ritz-Carlton in Maui you had to (what I consider) hike or catch a trolley car down to the beach, which was out at the bottom of the property, down a large hill.
It really isn’t even a true complaint, but I love to be on the beach and in the ocean and while we were in Maui we spent all of our time at the pool because it was so convenient. There was a burger shack down by the beach that I never got the change to check out. Another reason to return immediately.
In the drink department, the Ritz-Carlton takes the cake, they made my #1 favorite of the trip. 
The Miami vice’s were delicious, I consider myself to be a border line Miami vice conossiuer at this point, so I know a good when I taste one. My personal favorite and most consumed were the spicy margaritas. Legitimatley spicy with an amazing jalapeno flavor, I need to figure out a way to recreate them and make it just as tasty.
A playground and a kid’s pool within 20 feet of each other is never a bad thing when you are traveling with a four year old. I was able to sit between the baby pool and the adult pool and engage in both world’s, leaving everyone happy.
I would definitely recommend this hotel to anyone traveling with kids or a family.
Poppi, Evelyn & CiCi.
Jordan’s high school friends.
#uaalltheway
I know Jordan and Jeremy getting married should probably be the best part of the vacation and it wassssss. But before the vows were even exchanged they got upstaged by a tranny.
I thought the rainbow unicorn was going to draw enough attention to our big, gay wedding, boy was I clueless.
World, meet Jason. He was fabulous, fun and made me laugh harder than I knew I could.
What goes perfect a top a rainbow unicorn? A Hawaii inspired, full drag, red heel wearing, hot tranny mess. I can’t even.
Casually hanging out at the pool, nothing to see here.
I thought we made a lot of Snapchat and Instagram stories with just the unicorn… Jason is a one man show everywhere he goes.
My absolute favorite part about the hotel were the balconies off our room’s
The view overlooking the pool, the immaculately kept grounds with the world renowned, championship golf course set way in the background, bordered by a crashing and swirling ocean. I could sit on the porch and see ocean and watch whale’s breaching in the distance, something I could have done for hours on end.
Whale Watching:
The best thing about Maui between the span of December 15th – April 15th are the Humpback whales that visit annually. Maui is a leading whale watching spot due to the Humpback whales wintering in the Au’au Channel.

It is not uncommon to be driving along the coast of Maui and see cars pulled over or a group of people all huddled together, looking in the same direction with anticipation and cameras.

Spotting the whales from shore happens more than you probably would expect. I had better luck just standing on the beach watching than we did while we were actually out on the boat. No matter where you see them from, every single time, time after time it’s exhilarating and thrilling!

Early in the season, the first sightings are usually of males who have made the swim from Alaska, awaiting the females who usually show up between Thanksgiving and Christmas. For the next few months, the sea is alive with thunderous splashes, spouts, pec-slaps and breaches, as the 50-ton mammals will mate, give birth and frolic in the Maui waters.

The whale’s are usually spotted in pods, small groups of several adults or a group made up of a Mother her calf’s and a few possible, interested suitors hovering near by.

As I am watching this a Pacific Life commercial just came on featuring none other than the Humpback whales! Make’s me want to be a customer, well played Pacific Life, well played.

You can’t miss the many opportunities for a whale watching cruise, if you desire while visiting. All you have to do is walk down Front Street in Maui and you’ll be overwhelmed with all kinds of possibilities and offers.
Where to Eat:
Jordan and Jeremy chose dinner at Lahaina Grill as our last family dinner before the wedding festivities began. They started the evening by making a little toast and sharing with us that this was one of their favorite restaurants in the world!
They have dined all over the world, so I knew we were in for a delectable dinner.
Lahaina Grill is located in Lahaina Town on the West side of the island. 
We were seated at a fabulous round, window table with a view of the street, that also offered our rambunctious group some privacy.
The attention to detail in everything that was done at Lahaina Grill was impeccable. All the way down to the napkins that were folded funky in our wine glasses. 
Lahain Grill opened in February of 1990. Considered by many to be Maui’s prettiest, freestanding restaurant, the soft tones and tin ceiling creates a quaint and sophisticated atmosphere. The tabletops are set with fine china, flatware and crystal. We are not the only ones that think this restaurant is simply divine, Lahaina Grill has received countless accolades from publications around the world. 
Everywhere you go in Hawaii there is fresher than fresh, ahi poke. I was never once disappointed and have craved a true ahi poke bowl several times since returning home. There is nothing better then a poke bowl filled with fish most likely caught within the past 24 hours.
Ahi Poke
sashimi-grade, local ahi, seaweed salad, cucumbers, avocado, watermelon radish, mild red jalapeno, lime, tamari-ginger dressing.
I don’t know why I didn’t take more pictures throughout dinner. I guess my family was less than enthused about my huge camera flash going off in the swanky, dimly lit bistro.
My true love of the evening, that is not pictured was the,
Blue Corn Panko Crusted Chile Relleno
Filled with tiger prawns, diver scallops, monterrey jack cheese on roasted sweet corn relish ,avocado, creme fraiche, roasted tomato-ancho chile salsa.
Bufala Tomato Salad
Locally grown kamuela tomato, bufala mozzarella, Maui onion, fresh basil, shallots, truffle oil, aged balsamic vinaigrette, extra virgin olive oil with black Hawaiian seal salt. 

I started with the warm pecan crusted goat cheese and baby arugula salad which was scrumptious as it sounds. As soon as I see goat cheese on a menu, I usually know that’s what I’m ordering. And when they warm it up and toast it into little cakes coated with crumbs it makes my mouth water.
My main course was so delicious it is hard to adequately put into words. 
Sauteed Local Mahi-Mahi
Herbed mashed potatoes, sauteed spinach, gorgonzola cheese, pancetta, chardonnay beurre blanc.
Everyone at the table thoroughly enjoyed their respective dishes. I know my Mom and Manfriend both had the special, Risotto with one of the fresh local catches atop and they both raved about it for days.
I can’t for the life of me figure out which dessert this, from looking at the menu. I don;t remember if this was a special, or something brought to them to celebrate their impending nuptials, but it was pretty.
You cannot go wrong dining at the Lahaina Grill. I truly would recommend it to anyone traveling to Maui, and think it is worth every penny of it’s pricier menu.
You really can’t go wrong with Maui or Hawaii.
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Leave a comment

  1. February 9, 2017 / 3:46 pm

    Looks like such an amazing trip!! Hawaii is so beautiful and I hope I can go one day!

  2. February 9, 2017 / 4:10 pm

    That seems like such a fun trip! I've always wanted to someday travel to Hawaii and explore the beaches!

  3. February 9, 2017 / 5:30 pm

    EVERYTHING about this is perfection, like I'm seriously so jealous of your post right now. My family and I are planning a trip to Hawaii for early next year (SO FAR AWAY!). But I'm seriously going to bookmark this and hound you with questions when we start seriously planning! Thanks for sharing!
    XX-Samantha | chicserendipityblog.com

  4. February 9, 2017 / 7:16 pm

    Super informative! I feel like I'm ready to book my trip to Hawaii right now. All of that food looks so delicious! (But no really, I need to plan a trip ASAP). Thanks for the round-up!

  5. February 10, 2017 / 12:45 am

    I want to go there! It's at the top of my bucket list!

    Emily
    withstyleandgrace.net

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