Random Musings From Aulani

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Hey everyone…my wife and I are here now. Thought it might be fun to check in every once in a while with some thoughts and impressions! So, here’s today‘s top 10!

1. Our one bedroom ocean view is in that section of the Ewa Tower nearest the lobby. We’re high up, the view is stunning, and the balcony is enormous. It’s one long rectangle that connects with both the bedroom and living room. The layout isn’t angled to face the water because it doesn’t need to be. We love it!

2. Grounds as usual are immaculate and beautiful. All cast members are super friendly, and it certainly seems genuine.

3. Not a huge deal, but this is the first time the gym has been open for us, and it’s a bit disappointing. Who builds a giant, somewhat bleak windowless room in which to workout, especially in Hawaii? Disney!! Especially during these times, would be great to have at least some part of it open to the outside for air circulation. But, alas, that won’t be be happening…ever.

4. Am seeing lots of characters out and about for photo ops and such. From our balcony, where we’re having breakfast right now, we can see Moana down there by the koi pond posing for pix.

5. New Mexican restaurant across from Monkeypod! Mekiko Cantina! Excellent and reasonably priced!

6. Not at all reasonably priced is Mina’s Fish House, but we loved it last time we were here so thought we’d splurge and went back a few nights ago. Big disappointment. Huge crowd, impersonal assembly line service, and our fish was served lukewarm at best. The taste was just ok. Nothing special. Not going back.

7. Longhi’s, as always, is delicious!

8. Something going on in the Ama Ama space. We love those lounges in front of it, and could hear the occasional jackhammer sound from inside intermittently on thurs and fr.

9. Weather is warm and wonderful…mid 80s. Water in the lagoon as always fantastic!

10. New scanner at the towel dispensing station, similar to the ones used for rides at WDW. Perfect for magic bands I would guess, but I haven’t seen a single person with one here. Works fine with key cards!

Aloha!
 

Sydnerella

enough is as good as a feast
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
Thanks! We booked Longhis for my 50th in July while at Aulani not wanting to go far after a day of som spa and pool time. But reviews are always mixed online - as more disappointed people tend to elaborate than others. But it still overall had higher ranking and more reasonable than Minas for my family of four. Any recommendations?

What was your room number with the long balcony and sunset view I assume?
 

aboveH20

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 9, 2010
Are you taking questions?

Wondering if you rented a car or not. We're coming in September and do not want to rent a car. I've seen a couple recommendations of shuttle services and I guess I should go ahead and just book one instead of spending too much time researching!

We had ocean view for our last trip but they were't available this go 'round. Enjoy!
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Thanks! We booked Longhis for my 50th in July while at Aulani not wanting to go far after a day of som spa and pool time. But reviews are always mixed online - as more disappointed people tend to elaborate than others. But it still overall had higher ranking and more reasonable than Minas for my family of four. Any recommendations?

What was your room number with the long balcony and sunset view I assume?
Our room number is 1152. Best one bedroom ocean view we’ve ever had!
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Thanks! We booked Longhis for my 50th in July while at Aulani not wanting to go far after a day of som spa and pool time. But reviews are always mixed online - as more disappointed people tend to elaborate than others. But it still overall had higher ranking and more reasonable than Minas for my family of four. Any recommendations?

What was your room number with the long balcony and sunset view I assume?
We really enjoyed Longhi’s! Both my wife and I had the macadamia crusted island fish, which was mahi mahi. Excellent! It’s also a very nice location at the resort, surrounded by pools and koi ponds.
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Are you taking questions?

Wondering if you rented a car or not. We're coming in September and do not want to rent a car. I've seen a couple recommendations of shuttle services and I guess I should go ahead and just book one instead of spending too much time researching!

We had ocean view for our last trip but they were't available this go 'round. Enjoy!
Yes, we’ve rented a car for our entire trip. 15 nights, Budget Rental, approx. $1300. That said, we absolutely love hanging at the resort, it’s super fun, and my recommendation is always to enjoy Aulani as much as you can. If you’re beach, pool, lazy river people who want to maximize your time, it’s best spent right here.

We rented a car because we’re here for over two weeks and wanted to have the option to check out some other sites and activities on Oahu. But if we were here for a more limited time, we’d just stay at Aulani.
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Today’s Top 10!

1. Yesterday we rented a “Casabella” for two on the beach…basically a very nice chaise lounge for two with a retractable shade cover. DVC cost was approx. $75. Very comfortable and great sun protection. A but too pricey for every day, but a good option for every once in a while.

2. There’s a great one hour walk that’s beautiful especially at night after dinner. Down the road Aulani is on to the Marriott then back up by the beach walkway.

3. The Greek salad and veggie platter to go are a great light takeout lunch from the Ulu Cage.

4. Theres a nice selection of Aqua Frescas and vitamin waters from the soda machines if you want a little less sugar for your refillable mug.

5. Off The Hook’s new menu is really good and is very popular for dinner! No wait.

6. They don’t offer Disney + or any other streaming services, BUT you can cast to the tv from your iPad. Easy and convenient.

7. Some people were stand up paddle boarding at night in one of the other lagoons, using boards whose undersides lit up in various colors. Looked eerie and beautiful and was fun to watch!

8. While on the lazy river, see how many animal figures you can find carved into the faux stone. There are tons of them.

9. There’s a massive store in Honolulu that’s very well known called Don Quixote. It’s massive, part supermarket, part Target, filled with low cost Japanese products. Everything you can imagine. It’s a big chain in Japan. Great!

10. Download a stargazer app for your iPhone to use for the night sky!
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Thank you! So could you see the sunset and also the ocean from this location set so “far back” from the beach area?
Ocean yes (it’s an ocean view), but the sunset goes behind the four seasons. We love the view because of the ocean and panoramic view of the pool area as well. Feels like we’re in a fantasy world.

The music from the Olelo Room drifts up which is nice too.
 

Sydnerella

enough is as good as a feast
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
To rent the casabella how early and where did you line up - it’s my understanding that they are rented day of, is that correct?
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
To rent the casabella how early and where did you line up - it’s my understanding that they are rented day of, is that correct?
Yes day of. Apparently there’s a line at 8 am that forms around 7:45, but we’ve rented one as late as 11 am. Today, though, we tried at 10:30 and they were all gone.
 

Sydnerella

enough is as good as a feast
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
Yes day of. Apparently there’s a line at 8 am that forms around 7:45, but we’ve rented one as late as 11 am. Today, though, we tried at 10:30 and they were all gone.
Thank you! And from where do you rent the Casabella? Is this rented at 8:00am from Makiki Joes Beach Rentals? Or another place?
 

WAstateDVCDaddy

Mouseketeer
Joined
Nov 16, 2021
9. There’s a massive store in Honolulu that’s very well known called Don Quixote. It’s massive, part supermarket, part Target, filled with low cost Japanese products. Everything you can imagine. It’s a big chain in Japan. Great!
LOL - we were just there yesterday, picking up some groceries. For my family, it’s just one of the local markets, but in addition to the supermarket and Target combo, it also has a big section of local stuff to take off island (chocolate Mac nuts, Hawaii toys, local gift food stuffs, etc), and it has a huge prepared food section (Sushi, bento boxes, Hot bbq and Filipino food, baked goods, etc.). Good stop for anything you might want to bring back from vacation, or to stock up on groceries and food for a stay.
 

Lilsia

DIS Veteran
Joined
Feb 17, 2018
Are you taking questions?

Wondering if you rented a car or not. We're coming in September and do not want to rent a car. I've seen a couple recommendations of shuttle services and I guess I should go ahead and just book one instead of spending too much time researching!

We had ocean view for our last trip but they were't available this go 'round. Enjoy!
Most people rent a car to be able to go out and explore the Island. We like having one even if we just use it to go to Kapolei for dinner. I also don't like to feel "stuck" at a hotel, especially one that is so far away from everything like Aulani is. The way that I look at it is that I am going on vacation to Hawaii and want to go out and about and enjoy the Island. I didn't travel for 2 days and fly to an Island in the middle of the ocean just stay at a hotel the whole time. No matter how nice the hotel is.
 

Paul Stupin

New DVC Member
Joined
May 8, 2016
Most people rent a car to be able to go out and explore the Island. We like having one even if we just use it to go to Kapolei for dinner. I also don't like to feel "stuck" at a hotel, especially one that is so far away from everything like Aulani is. The way that I look at it is that I am going on vacation to Hawaii and want to go out and about and enjoy the Island. I didn't travel for 2 days and fly to an Island in the middle of the ocean just stay at a hotel the whole time. No matter how nice the hotel is.
Good point. We went ziplining on the north shore today, drove to the Turtle Bay Resort for lunch, went to Haleiwa to just explore around, then back to Aulani. A fun day not possible without a car.
 

CaptainAmerica

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 12, 2018
Our room number is 1152. Best one bedroom ocean view we’ve ever had!
We were in 1450, which is the two bedroom one door down and two floors up. 50 and 52 are the best units in the place, there's no doubt it my mind. Our only problem is that our kids are pretty early to bed, and the live music at the Olelo Room was too loud for us to sleep with the sliding doors open.
 

CaptainAmerica

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 12, 2018
Thank you! So could you see the sunset and also the ocean from this location set so “far back” from the beach area?

Ocean yes (it’s an ocean view), but the sunset goes behind the four seasons. We love the view because of the ocean and panoramic view of the pool area as well. Feels like we’re in a fantasy world.

The music from the Olelo Room drifts up which is nice too.
I think the issue here is time of year you visit, not necessarily where you are in the building. We were there in January and the sun did not pass behind the Four Seasons at all.

1450, one unit "further back" than 1152.

PXL_20220213_033829165.jpg
 

Sydnerella

enough is as good as a feast
Joined
Mar 24, 2008
I think the issue here is time of year you visit, not necessarily where you are in the building. We were there in January and the sun did not pass behind the Four Seasons at all.

1450, one unit "further back" than 1152.

View attachment 671579
Since we go in July I woner what that means, not being an astronomer and all… more similar ro January i suspect but higher in the sky later?

Did you have a single long balcony as well or two? was that a one BR? Thanks!
 

CaptainAmerica

DIS Veteran
Joined
Oct 12, 2018
Since we go in July I woner what that means, not being an astronomer and all… more similar ro January i suspect but higher in the sky later?

Did you have a single long balcony as well or two? was that a one BR? Thanks!
Ours was a Ded. 2BR. Single long balcony across all three sections... The Master bedroom, the living room, and the second bedroom.
 








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