With many Hawaii tourism industry experts calling 2010 a transition year for tourism in the Islands, wedding and honeymoon deals are sure to be plentiful throughout the state. The following represents just a small sampling of the romance offerings available over the next several months on Hawaii's four main islands.
• The recent recipient of a $110 million makeover, Waikiki's Outrigger Reef on the Beach is offering guests a complimentary vow-renewal ceremony. Held every Tuesday and Friday at 8 a.m. right on the beach in front of the property, the nondenominational Hawaiian ceremony is conducted by a practicing kahu, or priest. Couples are welcomed with a traditional chant and honored with an elegant hula and Hawaiian music near the water's edge. The two are then sprinkled with a gentle saltwater blessing before reciting their vows in the Hawaiian language. The conclusion of the ceremony features a rendition of "The Hawaiian Wedding Song," another graceful hula and a vow-renewal certificate. Guests of both the Outrigger Reef and the Outrigger Waikiki are eligible to participate. For more, visit www.outrigger.com.
• Couples hoping to enjoy a little quiet and serenity as part of their romance-travel visit to Oahu should peruse Turtle Bay Resort's North Shore Romance special package. Featuring daily buffet breakfasts, sparkling wine and tuxedo strawberries on arrival, along with rental of a convertible car throughout the stay, the Turtle Bay package starts at $369 a night. And for information about the resort's waterfront wedding venues on Oahu's north shore, go to www.turtlebayresort.com.
• Couples looking to savor one of Waikiki's most luxurious hotel destinations might want to consider the Halekulani's Romance Remembered special. The package includes a Chef's Special Dinner for Two at the property's Orchids restaurant, daily buffet breakfasts at House Without a Key or full American breakfasts at Orchids, a chocolate fondue service for two, flowers and admission to Oahu's finest art and culture venues. A minimum four-night stay starts at $2,420 in an oceanview room. For details, see www.halekulani.com.
• For $1,500, couples can book the picturesque Sunset Lawn -- complete with jaw-dropping views of the Pacific and, not so far off, the islets of Molokini and Kahoolawe -- at Aqua Hotels & Resorts' Hotel Wailea. The package includes the use of the gazebo, up to 50 folding chairs, an archway and pillars. Clients interested in the entire 72-suite property can also take part in the Own Your Own Resort promotion for $25,000 a day, based on availability. Go to www.aquaresorts.com.
• Guests of the Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa can take advantage of the You Complete Me romance amenity, which can be added to any existing package or rate. The deal features one room category upgrade, a king-size bed guarantee, champagne and tuxedo strawberries, a tropical floral arrangement and bath amenities along with his and hers Yukata robes and slippers. Couples can also select either an intimate dinner under the stars, a room service breakfast, the use of a beach cabana or a sunset sail. Cost of the You Complete Me amenity is $800. For more information, go to www.sheraton-maui.com.
• The Four Seasons Resort Maui at Wailea is offering prospective buyers a loaded Plumeria wedding package that includes personal service from a Four Seasons wedding manager, sedan transportation to an arranged marriage license appointment, a nondenominational ceremony officiant, and a traditional bouquet for the bride and either a Hawaiian maile lei or traditional floral boutonniere for the groom. The package also features flower petals scattered down the aisle, white folding chairs, a solo musician and two hours with a wedding photographer. Total price: $5,800. Visit www.fourseasons.com/maui.
• Aston Hotels & Resorts is offering Garden Isle visitors a chance to save with its Discover Kauai Romance package. The special features a minimum of four nights at the Aston Islander on the Beach, a choice between a kayaking adventure for two down the Huleia River or a Hawaiian lomi lomi couples massage, dinner for two at the Voyager Grille in the nearby Aston Kauai Beach at Makaiwa, a flower lei greeting at check-in, two cocktails at the hotel's pool bar, 6 p.m. late checkout and parking. The price is $206 a night in either an oceanview or oceanfront room. For details, visit www.astonhotels.com.
• Engaged couples looking for an excellent Hawaiian alternative to the standard wedding rehearsal dinner or reception might want to consider one of a couple of options at Luau Kalamaku, on Kauai's Kilohana Plantation. Wedding parties can book a pre-luau reception, complete with appetizers and full bar, in the private living room in the mansion on the property. Reception-goers then join regular guests at the luau at about 6 p.m. for live music and hula followed by a buffet dinner and the show. A private dinner at nearby Gaylord's restaurant, featuring a full menu, before a 7:15 p.m. luau is also an option. For pricing information and details, visit www.luaukalamaku.com.
• The folks at the Kauai Resort Marriott have put together an attractive nuptial special they're calling the Me Ke Aloha, or With Love, Wedding Package. The inclusive option lets couples choose their favorite wedding location on the property and features a nondenominational minister, private gazebo, cake, champagne, a deluxe bridal bouquet and a boutonniere for the groom. The music of a Hawaiian guitarist is also included along with 90 minutes with a wedding photographer and the personalized services of a Kauai Marriott wedding coordinator. The cost is $3,600. See www.marriott.com for details.
• Romance specialists at the Fairmont Orchid are full of ideas for those struggling with exactly how to pop the question. For example, a couple recently was paddled out in an outrigger canoe to enjoy the sunset over champagne. At dusk, during the paddle back to shore, the bride-to-be saw the words "Will You Marry Me?" spelled out by Fairmont staffers in black lava stones on the beach. The Fairmont folks had also set up a private, romantic dinner on a nearby grassy knoll overlooking the Pacific just in case a little coaxing might be necessary. Go to www.fairmont.com/orchid.
• The recently wed can also enjoy the Hilton Waikaloa Village's Honeymoon Wishes and Sunset Dreams package. For $419 a night, guests arrive to a welcome amenity of sparkling wine, or cider, and two Yukata robes. The package also includes a 50-minute couples massage, access for two at the Kohala Spa fitness center, daily buffet breakfasts, a $100 dining credit and an Ocean Sports sunset catamaran sail. Visit www.hiltonwaikaloavillage.com.
• Couples looking to tie the knot in style at one of the Big Island's most beautiful hotel settings might want to consider Mauna Kea Resort's Ilima wedding package. The inclusive deal features a personal wedding consultant, an arranged appointment for the marriage license, accredited clergy for the ceremony, tiki torches, a water station, white floral lei for the bride and a maile lei for the groom, a wedding cake and all sorts of fresh flowers. The Ilima option also comes with a pair of professional musicians, time with a photographer, a romantic dinner for two, a one-hour lomi lomi massage for the bride and groom, a spa treatment and a deluxe, oceanfront room for the wedding night. The cost is $6,800. Go to www.maunakearesort.com.