Travel Weekly's Hawaii E-letter: Dec. 8, 2003

NCL AMERICA will host an overnight fundraiser cruise July 3 in Honolulu to benefit five Hawaii-based charities as part of the line's inaugural festivities for Pride of America, its new U.S. flagged ship. All ticket revenue from the cruise will go to Bishop Museum, Child and Family Services, Ready to Learn, the Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement and the U.S.S. Missouri Memorial. NCL America will donate the use of the ship and all food and beverage services during the overnight festivities. Prices include a stateroom, a cocktail party and dinner, live entertainment, a silent auction and breakfast. Inside cabins start at $300 while family suites cost $1,000. When booking the cruise, guests should contact the charity they would like to support: Bishop Museum at (808) 848-4157; Child and Family Services at (808) 543-8413; Ready to Learn at (808) 585-7425; Council for Native Hawaiian Advancement at (808) 521-5011; U.S.S. Missouri Memorial (808) 454-1434. NCL also unveiled "Cruise-and-Stay" packages for three- and four-day interisland cruises aboard Pride of Aloha beginning Oct. 1. For details, call (800) 327-7030 or visit www.ncl.com.

HAWAIIAN'S TRUSTEE, Joshua Gotbaum, filed a complaint against John Adams, former chairman and CEO of Hawaiian Holdings, parent company of Hawaiian, in an effort to recover $28 million paid to Adams and other shareholders in a 2002 tender offer. The bankruptcy court in Honolulu had appointed a trustee after it determined that Adams "consistently placed the interests of its shareholders ahead of the interests of its creditors, even while the company was in severe financial distress." Adams stands by his actions. "We intend to prove that everything we did was proper, based on advice of counsel, and fully disclosed," he said in a statement.

RKL BEACHSIDE purchased the Aston Waikiki Beachside Hotel for $9.8 million. Built in 1966, the Beachside is located on Kalakaua Avenue between the Hyatt Regency and the Pacific Beach Hotel. Renovated two decades ago, the 79-room property was the first Aston hotel founded by former owner Andre Tatibouet, who sold the brand to ResortQuest International in 1998. Aston will continue to manage the hotel.

MARRIOTT INTERNATIONAL will add a moderately priced Courtyard by Marriott hotel on Kauai in 2004. The result of a franchise agreement with California-based Presidio Hotel Group, LLC, the 312-room Coconut Beach Resort at Waipouli, Kauai, will undergo a multi-phased renovation while remaining open. Following the improvements, the hotel will be rebranded Courtyard by Marriott Kauai; it will be the 14th Marriott property on four islands in Hawaii.

TOTAL VISITOR ARRIVALS to Hawaii fell 1.5% in October compared with the same month last year, according the latest report from the Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism. Domestic visitor arrivals remained the same and domestic visitor days rose 0.6% during the month. International visitor arrivals remained 4.6% below previous-year levels, and international visitor days fell 6.2%. Year-to-date, visitor days from the western U.S. increased 5.5%. By island, visitors from the western U.S. were highest on Maui. Meanwhile, visitor days from the eastern U.S. rose 8.5% year-to-date due to increases in arrivals and length of stay.

RATES & DATES
• Northwest Airlines WorldVacations is offering agents a free Sony camera or camcorder for booking qualifying air and hotel packages to Hawaii online at www.nwaworldvacationsagent.com. They'll also get $25 off the package price if they add an Alamo rental car. Bookings must be made now through Dec. 31 for travel now through April 30. WorldVacations offers more than 90 hotels and resorts throughout the Islands. Agents can also book dinner cruises and other extras when making reservations. (The fine print: a $2,000 minimum package purchase is required to qualify for the camera.)
• Hanalei Colony Resort on Kauai's north shore has two new packages for 2004, available for travel Jan. 5 through Dec. 19. "Explore Napali" is for active travelers and includes five or seven nights in a two-bedroom oceanview condominium, use of a rental car, a two-hour guided tour of Limahuli Garden, a day of kayaking on the Hanalei River, his and hers massages, and a guidebook about hiking on Kauai. The five-night package is priced at $1,518 for two people during the low season (Jan. 5 to May 31 and Sept. 9 to Dec. 19). There's also a romantic "Honeymoon Hideaway" vacation. All two-bedroom units have fully-equipped kitchens and private lanais. Call (800) 628-3004 or visit www.hcr.com.
• Classic Hawaii partnered with Oahu's Waikiki Parc Hotel and the Embassy Vacation Resort Kaanapali on Maui to offer packages that include discount coupons and an aloha shirt from Hilo Hattie. Seven nights at Embassy Vacation Resort Kaanapali start at $801 per person, double occupancy for bookings and travel through May 14. The plan is offered at the Waikiki Parc for new bookings now through Dec. 31 for travel through Dec. 25, 2004.Blackout dates apply. To book, log onto www.classiccustomvacations.com.

Comments
JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI