aloha olympics

Aloha Olympics

By | Hawaii, Maalaea, Maui | No Comments

We’re not sure about you, but the Summer Olympics are one of our favorite things to watch! And as much as we support all of our U.S. teams and athletes, we can’t deny our excitement for the Aloha Olympics, open only to Hawaii residents.

So without further ado, we present the Aloha Olympics.

volcano volleyball

Volcano Volleyball 

This Aloha Olympics team sport begins with a qualifier round on flat ground to see who will be given the advantage of the higher elevation side of the net once the official games begin on the slopes of Haleakala Volcano. The two teams of 6 will be challenged not only by the intensely sloping ground, which must be played at elevation levels of no less than 8,000 feet, but the added challenges of occasional fly-by clouds or Nene goose visitors.

 

tiger shark tagging hawaii

Tiger Shark Tagging

Working in teams of two, Tiger Shark Tagging is… well… just like it sounds. Departing from the starting point of Makena “Big” Beach on the most ideal murky-water days, athletes will swim out to sea in shiny, metallic wetsuits in search of tiger sharks. While one team member is in charge of grabbing the shark’s dorsal fin and holding on for a ride of no less than 10 feet, the other team member must attach a satellite-transmitter within the following 20-second span. Whichever team tags the most tiger sharks in 2 hours is deemed the winner.

 

rainbow gymnastics

Rainbow Gymnastics

Known for its extreme difficulty, Rainbow Gymnastics is also limited by its ability to only commence once an appropriately bright rainbow has been spotted by a member of the Aloha Olympics Board. Once this has occurred, a chosen gymnast from each island must then tumble their way in the direction of the perceived end of the aforementioned rainbow. Whichever gymnast can successfully complete the most amount of required tumbling skills without veering from the rainbow’s end path will be awarded the Gold medal.

 

pele persuasion

The Pele Persuasion

The Hawaiian Goddess of Fire, Pele is widely recognized for her ferocious and unforgiving temper. In this Olympic Sport, brave residents must travel to Hawaii’s Halemaumau Crater at the summit of Kilauea Volcano in order to gather sizable amounts of lava rock and sand to remove from the park. Whoever escapes and avoids Pele’s Curse of noticeably bad luck for the remainder of the Olympic Games is deemed a lucky winner indeed. Gold, silver and bronze medals go to the three participants who escape any obvious bad luck, as they have somehow managed to charm Pele despite all odds.

 

resort rugby

Resort Rugby

By far the most costly sport in the Aloha Games, Resort Rugby is held at one of Hawaii’s top 5-star resorts, previously chosen by a vote from Hawaii’s resident population. Two teams of 15 players must then play a full game of Rugby in the resort lobby, with the winning team deemed as the one who causes the least damage to the interior of the resort without forfeiting any kind of normal or expected roughness of play. You know the saying, “like a bull in a china shop?” Yeah well, around here we say “like a rugby game in a resort.”

 

synchronized surfing

Synchronized Surfing

Since surfing competitions are a dime a dozen, the Aloha Games decided to step it up a notch and pair up surfers for partnered Synchronized Surfing, a graceful and elegant sport that pits two rival surfers against each other and forces them to choreograph a surfing routine that compliments their similar skills and styles. Points are earned by not only the amount and level of tricks performed, but synchronicity, costume design, creativity in choreography, chosen wave soundtrack, and level of overall camaraderie.

 

speed snorkeling

Speed Snorkeling

Armed with a GoPro, mask and fins, this individual Olympic sport challenges athletes to snorkel a total of three of Hawaii’s best snorkeling sites, all while capturing GoPro footage of an extensive list of endemic marine species. Similar to an underwater scavenger hunt, speed snorkelers must pair their quick swimming speeds with their keen eye for spotting some of Hawaii’s most unique marine life, from the easy-to-spot Hawaiian Green Sea Turtles to more elusive species like the Hawaiian Chub, Hawaiian Garden Eel, Male Psychedelic Wrasse, Hawaiian Pigfish and more.

 

whale weightlifting

Whale Weightlifting

If you think you’ve seen it all, think again. As opposed to the standard barbell and weight plates, a humpback whale is substituted in this Aloha version of Olympic weightlifting. Using the entire resting weight of a volunteer humpback, athletes must perform two standard competition lifts, the snatch and the clean and jerk. The individual with the highest average of humpback whale movement, most often measured in millimeters, takes home the Gold medal. And likely a hernia.

 

blowhole basketball

Blowhole Basketball

Played with the standard two teams of 5 players each, blowhole basketball is pretty much exactly like it sounds. Substituting the basketball hoop for one of Hawaii’s many blowholes, as well as regular basketballs for their biodegradable counterparts, team members must be careful not to slip on wet ground, and learn the art of dribbling the less-bouncy, environmentally-friendly balls on the surrounding sharp lava rock while still abiding by Olympic basketball rules and regulations.

 

musubi mayhem

Musubi Mayhem

One of the most beloved foods in the Aloha State, spam practically has its own section on The Food Pyramid. Musubi Mayhem is a team sport consisting of 5 well-known spam aficionados from each Hawaiian Island. After lining up with all of the necessary ingredients, including spam, rice and seaweed, each member of the team must construct a perfectly made Spam Musubi in relay-fashion. Once each member on the team has completed the building process, the relay begins again to see which team can consume theirs the fastest.

…and for those of you still in the dark

APRIL FOOLS!

 If you got a chuckle, please share this with a friend.  If you’re upset, lighten up.  It’s not real.

weird aloha

Roger Gildersleeve

Life Lessons from a Legendary Maui Captain

By | Hawaii, Maui | 3 Comments

By Chris Norberg

Reflecting on what I’ve learned from a friendship with Roger.

Roger Gildersleeve Maui

Captain Roger Gildersleeve gave me the support and confidence to live the life I lead.  He was my first marketing client on Maui, where I help promote his beautiful vessel the Kai Kanani.  He gave me a shot, and his confidence in me was priceless.  I now have 70 clients, support a family of four, and am positively growing every day thanks to his inspiration.

His loss is being felt throughout the islands, but his absence is not what this article is about.  It’s important we share what he left behind.

I’ll never forget my first meeting with Roger.  He’d seemed to have figured things out.  Having had been through a life threatening illness (physically evident from a scar on his head.)  He admitted to looking at the future with a positive nature and love for life.  He was taking advantage of the gift of second chance.

For those not on Maui, it would seem that running a successful luxury catamaran in paradise would leave very little room for negativity.  Those that live on Maui know that life’s challenges follow anywhere you go. But for Roger, even during a particularly stressful time in his life, he remained positive, celebrating each small success he managed during the turmoil.  At least to me, he always seemed to be living with that 2nd lease on life mentality.  Each additional breath was a blessing.  Can you imagine our world if we all had that gift?

Over the near decade that I’ve had the pleasure of knowing him, he’s increased his dependency on his Kai Kanani ohana.  He treated his captains and crew like family–he’s given his trust to great people like Captains Cary and Anthony–in order to spend his valuable time doing what he loved (even more than being on the water): time with his kids and grand kids.  He’d also spent countless patient hours taking the most beautiful photos of birds I’ve ever seen.  He dove into photography like a boy in love.  His passion was infectious.

Kai Kanani captains

I loved meeting with him.  We would talk work, but we mostly talked family and art.  He would always emphasize how important it was that he support what I was doing.  What client does that?  (Now that I write that, I have a few clients that do.  Unique to Maui?  Not sure.  Whatever it is, it’s a beautiful thing.) His trust was a big boost for me, which gave me more motivation to promote his business.

Roger Gildersleeve left behind qualities that are instilled more than ever in his Maui ohana.  Kindness, respect, love, passion, accountability, great humor, creativity, stability, encouragement, and warmth.  His loss is crushing, but what we have gained from his time with us eclipses all.

Captain Roger

He would listen, but he didn’t waste time.  I regret not having shared with him the kind words I spoke about him to others.  He will be greatly missed and I’m so grateful for his being here.

On that note, I’d like to share my thoughts on someone else that has helped shape my life on Maui.  Greg Hoxsie introduced me to Roger, ultimately encouraging him to take a chance on this web geek.  Greg has helped dozens of people (at the very least) towards success on Maui.  His selfless guidance has been an inspiration.  There are many others on this incredible island that have similar generosity.  I’ll make sure to let them know how I feel from now on.

Captain Roger, you will be missed.  Mahalo for everything.

Maui sailing captainMost of the photos were taken by Greg Hoxsie.

sailing around Maui

Treat Yo Self!

By | Maalaea, Maui | No Comments

luxury resortRaise your hand if money has ever stopped you from doing something absolutely amazing.

Right.

Now assuming you’re not Larry Ellison, and everyone else has answered in the affirmative, let’s now assume that you have the opportunity to explore Maui with the ultimate ‘treat yo’self’ mantra in mind. You don’t need to be Ellison to enjoy some luxurious Maui experiences.  It’s worth holding back on consistent and extravagant vacation indulging in order to enjoy one or two truly sumptuous life long memories.

While everyone’s list would obviously vary based on their specific desires and interests, we hope you enjoy the following treat yo’self suggestions! And get a +1 to join you. Ahem.

 

Snorkel in Style

The reefs and ocean life around Maui are a ton of fun to float over and through.  Snorkeling is one of the most popular things to do for visitors, which is why it’s worth finding a private charter away from the crowds.  You can take a small group with Hawaii Ocean Rafting or charter their private scarab.  Both trips offer the thrill of flying over the water at fun speeds, as well as peaceful snorkeling at your destinations.

snorkeling in Maui

Call (808) 661-7238 for the 6 passenger scarab or small group rafting trips.

 

Champagne & Helicopters

Yep, you read that right.

helicopter Maui Hawaii

On Blue Hawaiian Helicopters’ own Maui Spectacular Tour, not only will you experience a helicopter tour of the whole island of Maui, including the remarkable West Maui Mountains and otherworldly Haleakala Volcano, but you’ll briefly land in Upcountry Maui for none other than a champagne toast before continuing onto the remainder of your full island aerial tour. Heyo!

 

Chef’s Table Dinner

Located at the stunning Maui Tropical Plantation, The Mill House Restaurant is the stuff foodie dreams are made of. With exquisite views of the West Maui Mountains and finely manicured Plantation grounds, sit back and enjoy craft cocktails under the stars along with 7 courses of innovative, fresh, farm-to-table cuisine at their weekly Chef’s Table dinner events. Call (808) 270-0303

Maui dinner

Bonus? Nobody’s ever complained about having to look at Executive Chef Jeff Scheer make them seven courses of delicious food. Nope.

 

Outcall Massage in your own room

When there’s valuable mai tai drinking and sunbathing time to be had, who wants to waste it on a drive to a massage studio?  Maui’s Best Massage will drive to your hotel, resort or condo, set up their massage table in your room, set some mellow music and melt all your cares away.  They offer soothing relaxation massage, deep tissue, couples massage as well as lomi lomi.

massage Maui Hawaii

Or, if you’re staying near Wailea, you can go to their studio at 161 Wailea Ike Place, Suite A105-2.  Call (808) 426-7418 for an appointment.

 

Spend the Night on a Sailboat

Though purchasing your own private yacht sounds more Ellison-like than anything, it also sounds like kind of a lot of work, both paper and maintenance wise. So for purposes of a one off treat yo’self moment, we recommend hiring a private sailboat (and the skills of a private sailboat captain) for ultimate Pacific Ocean awesomeness.

Maui sailing charter

Shadowfax, a sailboat offering private tours to areas of Maui, Lana’i and Moloka’i, also offers the option of overnight sailing tours in the comfort of its spacious cabin. With the friendly and welcoming Captain Mike behind the wheel, you’ll set sail for wherever the hell you please, enjoying amazing activities like whale watching, stargazing, snorkeling, dolphin watching, stand up paddling, eating, drinking and more along the way. Arrange for some French champagne, freshly caught fish and eco-friendly sparklers to accompany you – hey, it’s our fantasy! – and thank us later. Preferably with an invite, of course.

 

Sport a Sparkly Mermaid Tail

It’s no Batman costume or fine leather goods, but it is a sparkly, wearable mermaid tail. Cheehoo! Available for purchase from Maui’s own Hawaii Mermaid Adventures, these mermaid’ing pros know just how to make you feel like a legit mermaid, or even merman.

Mermaids going wild

With three current options to choose from, including the Catalina Aqua Sparkle, Sea Green or Sea Pearl Mermaid Tails, these 4-way nylon stretch beauties will have you feeling fancy, sparkly, and ultimately glorious in no time.

 

Host a Private Luau

If married couples can do it, so can we! Instead of celebrating recent nuptials, however, how about we simply celebrate life with a private luau? On a Wednesday! Just because! From authentic hula dancers and fire spinners to traditional Hawaiian food, an actual private luau on Maui sounds like the paradise party of a lifetime.

Private Luau in Maui

Hire yourself a mai tai mixologist to accompany the evening entertainment, and you’re set.  Or, book an inexpensive Maui luau.  Learn about your options and find the best luau for your group by calling (808) 892-3177.

 

We hope this list of Maui experiences treat you well!  You deserve it.

chefs bbq

Chef’s Barbecue Celebration

By | Maui | No Comments

Maui Chefs Invitational: BBQ

What happens when you pair eight prominent chefs with a perfect Maui Sunday and live music by the inimitable Marty Dread—and set it all among the exquisite grounds of Maui Tropical Plantation?

Nothing less than pure exuberance, fantastic eats, and a celebration that’ll appeal to the whole family.

chefs bbq

The 1st Annual Maui Chefs Invitational—a three-day fête showcasing some of the most visionary culinary masters in the U.S.—will culminate in a barbecue and celebration on Sunday, November 13th. Held in gorgeous Waikapu, this five-hour shindig will highlight Maui’s marvelous bounty and give kama’aina and keiki the chance to come together to enjoy what these star chefs have to offer. TICKETS

Intrigued? Here’s the deets:

 

When

Sunday, November 13th, 2016

1pm-6pm

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Scuba Diving Spots

Best Scuba Diving in the World

By | Hawaii, Maui | One Comment

We’ve put together some of our favorite spots to scuba dive around the world.

World Scuba Diving Map

These scuba dive spots are just a few of the best in the world.  Please add more suggestions in the comments below, and we’ll add them to the list.

 

Barracuda Point, Sipadan Island, Malaysia

Boats at Dive Site in Sipadan Island, Sabah, Malaysia

Wall and drift dives await advanced scuba divers at this famous spot.  Jacques Cousteau raved about the water clarity and abundant ocean life here in Pulau.

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Maalaea History

By | Hawaii, Maalaea, Maui | No Comments

Captain George Vancouver first landed his ship at Maalaea Bay in 1793, when he brought the first cattle to Maui’s fertile grounds. Since then, Maalaea has served as a major commercial port, as well as Maui’s first airport, and finally, its current status as a harbor.

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