Upcountry Maui is a great place to see a different side of Maui.
After four fun filled days it’s time to say goodbye to Oahu and hello to Maui, the home of Maui Onions, Hawaiian Gold pineapple and a sunrise that is second to none viewed from high on Haleakala. In fact it is that iconic Hawaiian sunrise that determines where I’ll be staying for my first couple of days in Maui. Sunrise in Hawaii during March can range from 6:50am to 6:25am which means that if I want to catch it I’ve got to be up earlier than the roosters of Kauai. Unless I want to get up at 3am my best bet then is to stay in a Maui bed & breakfast in a little town called Makawao. In the heart of Makawao is an old plantation home turned bed & breakfast called Hale Hookipa which sounds like a perfect place to call home for a couple of nights as part of 30 Days In Hawaii.
Located about 25 minutes from the airport the first thing I notice about Maui is how amazing the roads are, not a single pothole in sight. Easy to find, Hale Hookipa was built in 1927 and the literal translation is house of hospitality. I feel welcomed as soon as I turn into the driveway. Nestled in a residential roundabout it’s a quiet little neighbourhood and about 30 feet from the street is the front door to my new home. In true Hawaiian fashion the door isn’t locked and clipped to it is an envelope with my name on it. Inside is my welcome package (I’ll keep this private for obvious reasons) which includes my room details and a note from the owner Cherie asking me to call her on her cell.
Inside the front door I’m transported back in time to an era of cozy clutter. This is not a sparsely furnished hotel lobby with only the bare essentials out for display, this is a home. Dining room and a welcoming sitting room with books and art everywhere. Take a wild guess where I plan to do some writing.
To the left is the kitchen and the entrance to my room. I say room but what I was given was actually a two bedroom suite called the Kona Wing.
My suite has two bedrooms and a full bathroom between them. Perfect for a travelling family or friends. You are together yet separate, each with your own space. If you are a big bathroom person you’ll love the claw foot tub, I must say it had great water pressure too!
I took the back bedroom for my own. It had a view through the windows to the garden and my own door onto the back lanai. Very comfy and if needed there is even a small TV on the nightstand. Not needed for me though as I just plugged into some American Netflix on my IPAD and caught up on a couple of my shows.
I loved my 2 nights I spent here at Hale Hookipa. I barely every saw any of the other guests as I’m guessing we all were out an about adventuring in magical Maui. I was certainly busy exploring Makawao, Haleakala, the town of Paia and more…. all to come in future posts of course The one part of Hale Hookipa that I didn’t get to experience though was their famed breakfasts. The reason of course was the sunrise (I left at 5am to capture it) and the following morning I also had to leave early because breakfast so I can make a live Skype interview with The Rush TV. I’m an early riser normally but those mornings meant I really missed out, just look at the picture of breakfast sent to me by the owner Cherie. It doesn’t even include the eggs from her own chickens and ducks.
A magical stay in a part of Maui that you may not automatically think about staying in. Seriously consider it because you get to experience a different vibe and it’s just as Hawaii as the beaches are. Aloha and Mahalo Cherie for welcoming me into your home and business.
As a wonderful footnote to my stay at Hale Hookipa I was able to return Cherie’s hospitality with some of my own. It turns out Cherie was turning a magical number and family from all over was coming to visit her to celebrate with one big party. One afternoon as I was writing about my adventures on Oahu I heard Cherie and a friend planning out the party, what would go where, etc… I couldn’t resist and offered some tips ( I was an even planner for 15 years after all) to help make the [arty run smoother and more efficiently. I just heard from Cherie and apparently the party was a huge success. Happy to help, we are all family and it made me feel good to give a little back as my way to say thank you, Mahalo.
Thank you to my friends at the Hawaii Visitor’s Bureau for helping make this adventure possible. If you want to have your own Hawaiian adventure there is no better place to start than Go Hawaii, after you read this blog series though first.