Gogo winter plans leave no one out in the cold


RAMSEY, N.J. -- Gogo Worldwide Vacations announced new rates for island packages that will run through the remainder of this winter.

"These packages have something for everyone," said Richard Pressman, Gogo's director of Hawaii marketing. "Whether you like soft adventure, golf and tennis or a spa getaway, you can literally do anything in Hawaii."

Packages begin at $479 per person, double, for a five-night stay, inclusive of roundtrip, midweek air fare, hotel accommodations, tax and flower lei greeting.

Oahu packages include all airport transfers, breakfast, a single-day trolley pass and a dining discount card. Maui, Kauai and Big Island packages include the use of an Alamo rental car with unlimited mileage for the duration of the stay.

"Hawaii is one of the few destinations that continues to do exceptionally well," Pressman said. "It has always maintained its draw for honeymooners, yet we are now seeing more and more of the luxury traveler as well as families."

Pressman cited the Fairmont Kea Lani, the Ritz-Carlton and the Four Seasons on Maui and the Kahala Mandarin on Oahu among the properties that are attracting baby boomers with their spacious suites, upscale amenities and extensive spa menus.

Monies freed up in these empty-nest households enable this demographic to spend more on golf, spa and off-site activities, all of which can earn agents additional commissions, he said.

The secondmost notable trend is within the family market, according to Pressman, who said families are now traveling with extended members, including grandparents and in-laws.

"The Hawaiian culture emphasizes the family very heavily, and the mainland vacationer is getting the idea," he said.

Keiki (children) programs are expanding and diversifying to keep up with today's kids.

"We need to find more and more ways to keep the kids entertained," said Nancy Brown, director of marketing communications at Maui's Grand Wailea Resort.

The hotel's Camp Grande is a prime example, boasting a 20,000-square-foot playground. The camp has a computer and game room, crafts area, a cultural center and theater.

The pool has a 2,000-foot-long waterslide that snakes around waterfalls; caves; a rope swing; and a separate white-sand pool, where older children can train for scuba diving.

The Grand Wailea charges $75 per child per day, and children must be at least 5 years old.

"Parents want to use vacation time as productive or learning time with the family. It is valuable time that should enrich as well as entertain," said Pressman.

Sample getaways offered by Gogo are priced per person and based on double occupancy:

Kauai's Radisson Kauai Beach Resort, an oceanfront property surrounded by lagoons and waterfalls, has a package that offers travelers the fifth night free, a double room upgrade and a $100 dining credit.

Rates begin at $939 for five nights from Los Angeles; $1,219 from Dallas/Fort Worth; $1,265 from New York (Ken-nedy) and Boston; and $1,275 from Miami. The package is valid to March 31.

The Fairmont Orchid on Hawaii's Big Island also has a fifth-night-free plan, valid to March 31. Oceanside massages, 36 championship golf holes, scuba-diving lessons in a 10,000-square-foot pool and the KSwiss Tennis Pavilion make this property stand out as a destination in itself.

Rates start at $1,039 for five nights from Los Angeles, $1,319 from Dallas, $1,365 from Boston and $1,415 from Baltimore.

A whale-watching cruise along with the fifth night free are elements of the plan being offered by the Waikoloa Beach Marriott, an Outrigger Resort on the Kohala Coast.

Thirty-six holes of championship golf and the Hawaiian Rainforest Salon and Spa are a huge draw. Rates start at $969 for five nights from Los Angeles, $1,199 from Dallas, $1,255 from New York and $1,299 from Miami.

On Oahu, the Ohana Maile Sky Court provides guests with panoramic views of Honolulu and the Waikiki coastline. From April 21 to May 31, the resort is offering the first night free with a five-night minimum stay.

Rates begin at $479 for five nights from Los Angeles; $735 from New York and Dallas; and $785 from Baltimore and Hartford, Conn.

The Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa is offering the fifth night free, daily buffet breakfast for two and up to two $100 flight credits for future travel.

Rates from April 25 to May 31 start at $1,199 for five nights from Los Angeles; $1,459 from New York, Dallas and Philadelphia; and $1,499 from Baltimore and Miami.

For information or to make reservations, call (800) 229-4999 or visit the Web at www.gogowwv.com.

To contact the reporter who wrote this story, send e-mail to [email protected] .

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI