I made my first visit last week to the Four Seasons Lanai lounge at the Honolulu Airport, which opened in the commuter terminal last February, but I had a hard time taking my eyes off one of the well-appointed waiting area’s 75-inch high-definition televisions.
Dwarfing much of the other decor in the room, the lounge’s two sprawling screens offered a stark contrast in viewing options. One was tuned to CNN, broadcasting live reports on a range of bleak news items. The other showcased dazzling footage of the remarkably diverse island of Lanai.
Jagged green mountains, towering sea cliffs, white sand beaches, vibrant coral reefs, one post-card-worthy image after another jumped off the television, and it wasn’t just landscape footage.
There was a surprising assortment of activities on display, as well, including Scuba and snorkeling outings, horseback riding, hiking, all-terrain vehicle excursions, fishing, golf, and even sporting clay shooting.
Meanwhile, a close-up series of aerial imagery shot during repeated flyovers of two large, rusting cargo ships, both of which ran ashore along the island’s coastline years ago, also added an unexpected but spellbinding touch of magic to the whole production.
Travel agents looking to interest clients in a visit to Lanai, the smallest of Hawaii’s visitor-friendly islands and home to just over 3,000 residents, can actually access much of that same stunning high-def footage at LoveLanai.com, a new website constructed by Pulama Lanai, the company that manages the 98% of the island that Oracle founder Larry Ellison purchased in 2012.
“The website was put together to give people a personal connection to the island,” explained Charles Fisher, the resort manager for Four Seasons Resorts Lanai, adding that it could be a good tool for agents who’ve not had a chance to visit the island.
“When a client walks in and says tell me about Lanai, an agent could say ‘You know, I’ve never been myself, but let me walk you through some videos,’” he said. “Lanai is such a special island and so different from the others here in the state.”
Along with the dramatic footage of the island's natural beauty, LoveLanai.com visitors will also find interviews with a number of residents, including a professional croquet player who used to work Lanai's extensive pineapple fields, a local artist and a Hawaiian craft maker. Foodies can tune into a collection of shorts with four different Four Seasons chefs, each discussing the island’s range of restaurant cuisine.
There is also an introduction to Lanai’s Hawaiian culture and chants through a video interview with Kepa Maly, the vice president of culture and historic preservation at the island’s wonderful cultural center. Maly talks about his own experience working in Lanai’s pineapple fields and explains the traditional Hawaiian nose flute before playing the instrument briefly for viewers.
And, of course, folks can check out a video interview with Tom Roelens, general manager of Four Seasons Resorts Lanai, who explains what makes working on the Lanai so unique for him and the company’s upcountry Lodge at Koele property and the Manele Bay oceanfront resort.