Variety is the Spice of Life When Dining at Waikoloa
For the first-time visitor to the Hawaiian Islands, going to a lū‘au is a must. So much of Hawai`i’s traditional Polynesian culture, cuisine, dance, and song are packed into a lū‘au that it becomes a feast for all the senses and an exciting, eye- opening education at the same time. To that end, two of the very best lū‘au on Hawai`i Island are found at Waikoloa Beach Resort, the Legends of the Pacific Lū‘au at Hilton Waikoloa Village; and the Sunset Lū‘au at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa.
Both of these lū‘au shows are a treat for the entire family, with delicious food (think hulihuli chicken, fresh fish, shoyu marinated beef ribs, and the traditional imu kālua pig), thrilling fire dancing, and captivating songs and dances of the Pacific.
But the cuisine of the islands is far more varied than that. Reflecting the diversity of the peoples and cultures who have migrated to Hawai`i over the years, visitors are treated to authentic Chinese, Japanese, Thai, and other cuisines; as well as a very popular blending of local ingredients with traditional American preparations that is called Hawai`i Regional Cuisine.
Best of all is the fact that Waikoloa Beach Resort is a place where the very best of these many cuisines are found. In all, Waikoloa features close to 30 different dining options, from sit-down meals in scenic settings, to grab-and-go snacks and fast foods for busy schedules; from juicy burgers in the Kings’ Grille after a round of golf, to an aromatic cup of coffee during a morning stroll.
Some of Hawai`i’s best-known and well-established chefs have eateries at Waikoloa, including Roy Yamaguchi (Roy’sWaikoloa Bar & Grill), Peter Merriman (Merriman’s Market Café), and D.K. Kodama (Sansei Seafood, Steak & Sushi Bar). But just as exciting is a new Hawaiian barbecue joint that is opening under the direction of up-and-coming chef Philip “Ippy” Aiona, who recently starred on Season 8 of Food Network Star.
Nationally known chains such as Romano’s Macaroni Grill, Arby’s, Dairy Queen, Marble Slab Creamery, Starbucks Coffee, and Subway Sandwiches & Salads share the Waikoloa food stage with local chefs and restaurants unique to the Big Island, such as Charley’s Thai Cuisine, Island Fish & Chips, Paradise Pizza & Grill and Kona Brothers Coffee.
One ever-popular choice for lunch or dinner is Waikoloa Grill’n Bar (formerly known as Buzz’s Sand Trap). Co-owner Dickie Furtado offers diners lighter, healthier menu choices, side by side with timeless favorites such as steak and salad meals.
At the beachfront Lava Lava Beach Club you can get some sand between your toes and enjoy lunch or dinner prepared by the same folks who have been pleasing visitors and locals alike for many years at Kona’s renowned Huggo’s. Surrounded by swaying coconut trees and tropical trade winds, Lava Lava features fresh fish tacos and burgers as well as the Chef’s creative preparations of steak, Hawaiian seafood, and more.
And in addition to the popular lū‘au format, each of the two hotels at Waikoloa are known for the excellence of their culinary offerings. Hawaii Calls Restaurant & Lounge at the Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa is a three-meal-a-day restaurant where patrons will find all their favorite foods from back home, plus prime rib and cracked crab buffets on Friday and Saturday evenings that leave no one wanting more.
At Hilton Waikoloa Village, nine dining options range from the Lagoon Grill (casual dining overlooking frolicking dolphins in the Dolphin Lagoon) to Kamuela Provision Company, with a spectacular sunset view featuring steaks and island fresh seafood. For a great breakfast buffet, you can head to Water’s Edge, and after a day of fun, several tempting options await you for dinner, including Dona & Toni’s Pizza, Imari Teppan & Sushi, and Kirin Chinese.
Wherever you are at Waikoloa Beach Resort, you are certain to find culinary delights that will please your whole family. The only problem is choosing from so many tempting options!