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Old 11-13-2012, 04:30 PM   #61
stitch'sgirl
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mouseaider View Post
We were at Aulani in April and I can tell you that the Luau at Paradise Cove was just OK.

We booked the VIP Royal Box to celebrate our anniversary and we thought the food was horrible.

Everything was overcooked and you could not eat the chicken if you tried. It was the worse dinning experience that we've ever had.

Save your money and go to see the Starlit Hui for your luau fix.
Agree as well! The Starlit Hui is beautiful and so much more intimate.

As far as best food value goes, I have to agree with Costco. Large pizza for $10, eat some there and have enough left over to throw in your fridge for snacks later after swimming. We did it a couple of times!
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:24 PM   #62
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Really want to do a luau when we go in May. I really love the idea of walking to the Paradise Cove. Has anyone tried the deluxe luau package they have. They say you are served table side, not buffet style, with this package. The list of food was a bit different on the website. Also, it appears that drink orders are taken at the table for this package. Any thoughts or more reviews?

Also, if this is really that bad, are there any more recommendations for luaus?
We did the Deluxe luau at Paradise Cove in June of this year. We really enjoyed the whole experience. The food is served to you at the table instead of going through the buffet line. Also, like you see on the website, the menu is a little different. They bring seconds if of anything if you request. You can also order drinks from the table and they will bring them to you. You can also use your tickets at the bar area as you walk around the grounds before the luau starts. Being a literal 2 minute walk from the front of Aulani to the entrance of the luau was a huge plus also.

As I mentioned earlier, we really enjoyed the luau and the deluxe package. You will read differing reviews, but for the most part I think most people like this luau.
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Old 11-28-2012, 06:09 PM   #63
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I didn't see anyone mention Germaine's Luau - is it a NO or just too far?
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Old 11-28-2012, 09:43 PM   #64
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I didn't see anyone mention Germaine's Luau - is it a NO or just too far?
Mediocre.
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Old 11-29-2012, 09:48 AM   #65
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Make sure you hit the Rainbow Drive-in of you have a car. It was featured on diners, drive-ins, and Dives. It was awesome. My DW was not sure about it but loved the food and could not stop eating mine.
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Old 11-29-2012, 09:53 AM   #66
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Saw some one mention Ted's on the North Shore and Leonard's bakery. I want I go back!
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Old 11-29-2012, 11:38 AM   #67
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Make sure you hit the Rainbow Drive-in of you have a car. It was featured on diners, drive-ins, and Dives. It was awesome. My DW was not sure about it but loved the food and could not stop eating mine.
Be warned this place can be a zoo! The day we were there it was PACKED and loud. I thought the food was ok noting memorable compared to other "plate lunches" we have had.

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Saw some one mention Ted's on the North Shore and Leonard's bakery. I want I go back!

Yes to Ted's a hidden gem!
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Old 11-29-2012, 08:53 PM   #68
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Yes to Ted's a hidden gem!
Tell me about Ted's!
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Old 11-30-2012, 11:45 AM   #69
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A nice stop on the north shore for baked treats
http://www.tedsbakery.com/
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Old 12-03-2012, 04:24 PM   #70
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Wow, I saw that I posted almost a year ago on this board. Glad we didn't end up at only chain restaurants like we planned! Below is a short summary of my likes/dislikes:

Likes
  • Koa Pancake House
  • Zippy's
  • Ko Olina BBQ
  • Forty Niner Restaurant (the locals thought we were locals at first and couldn't believe TOURISTS had found their beloved little place)
  • Island X Hawaii (North Shore coffee and chocolate store that also offers natural flavored shave ice that was to die for. Even though I knew what I was ordering, I was still in shock that the strawberry and coconut tasted REAL. Some of their natural flavors are from ingredients grown on Oahu.)
  • Auntie Pasto's
  • One Paddle Two Paddle
  • Off the Hook
  • Papalua Shave Ice

Dislikes
  • Makahiki (breakfast buffet was so disappointing it made me sick how much it cost for the two of us and lunch was the same; service was so-so both times; most of the breakfast items were cold or lukewarm, and this was at 7:30)
  • Boston Style Pizza (couldn't eat more than a few bites of my slice that had spinach on it; tasted like it had been sitting for hours, and even though they reheated it, it was so gross; DH liked his pepperoni well enough)
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Old 12-03-2012, 06:44 PM   #71
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Ayme, where is the Forty Niner restaurant?
And thanks for the heads up about Makahiki. It's soooo expensive for the 4 of us- if it's not great, then we can skip it.
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Old 12-03-2012, 10:25 PM   #72
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In Haleiwa on the North Shore try the Grass Skirt Grill!

Paradise cove was dissapointing, we even went last Valentines Day. I heard the Cultural center was better.

Try the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, The Pink Hotel. Waikiki. We ate at the outside lounge up against the beach! Nice atmosphere, less cost than the main rest.

Leonards!

Mosumoto's shave ice!

Ama Ama!
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Old 12-04-2012, 10:31 AM   #73
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Another local place to try is Lulu's down by the zoo end of the beach. Good local atmosphere
http://www.luluswaikiki.com/
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Old 12-04-2012, 11:55 AM   #74
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbenlee View Post
We did the Deluxe luau at Paradise Cove in June of this year. We really enjoyed the whole experience. The food is served to you at the table instead of going through the buffet line. Also, like you see on the website, the menu is a little different. They bring seconds if of anything if you request. You can also order drinks from the table and they will bring them to you. You can also use your tickets at the bar area as you walk around the grounds before the luau starts. Being a literal 2 minute walk from the front of Aulani to the entrance of the luau was a huge plus also.

As I mentioned earlier, we really enjoyed the luau and the deluxe package. You will read differing reviews, but for the most part I think most people like this luau.
Thanks so much! I think between the Paradise Cove luau and the Starlite Hui, we will be good to go. From a number of reviews, it appears it is worth doing the deluxe luau too. So I am going to reserve that before we go.
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Old 12-04-2012, 12:37 PM   #75
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Great thread! I only wish I had found it before our trip to Aulani in August/September...

We also did the Delux package at Paradise Cove luau, and liked it well enough. They offer two different delux packages: one where you sit right in front of the stage (less expensive) and another where you sit under covered seating at the back of the viewing area (more expensive). We opted for the more expensive, rear seating. It was nice not to have to push/shove with the throngs of people in the buffet line, and to be able to order your drinks from the waiter. Was it fine dining? No, but the overall experience was fun and that is what you are paying for.

You have to understand, there is always going to be a certain "cheese factor" at any luau. These luaus cater primarily to the tourists who want to enjoy what the media represents to us as an "authentic Hawaiian experience," and that is what they try to deliver, coconut bras, grass skirts and all. As long as you are prepared for that, you will be fine. My first luau experience was at the Spirit of Aloha show at the Polynesian resort at WDW. I was really looking forward to that show, and ended up disappointed. So after that, my expectations were not quite as lofty for the Paradise Cove luau, and I ended up genuinely enjoying it. If I go back to Hawaii with others who have never experienced a luau, I would probably go back to Paradise Cove. But if it's just me -- I feel that I have now "been there, done that" and don't need to repeat.

Have fun -- I bet you will really like it.
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