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The echoing of island drums. Swaying palm trees, backlit by a fiery Hawaiian sunset. The scents of exotic meats and fruits, wafting on tropical breezes. Nothing says “Hawai‘i” like a luau, a celebration of the islands’ culture, cuisine, and community. And there is no luau quite like the Grand Luau at Honua`ula in Wailea on the island of Maui.

A Good Old Fashioned Party at the Wailea Grand Luau

The modern luau took shape in the 19th century. King Kamehameha II, recently ascended to the throne, sought to unite the Hawaiian people. He put a halt to the ancient tradition of separating men and women at meal time, and removed the ban on foods previously enjoyed only by the ali`i (elite). To celebrate, the court held the very first luau feast, a gala affair that lasted several days. Over time, the luau adapted to reflect elements of the islands’ culture, from hula dances to fire spinning to Polynesian knife dancing. Each island contributed its own flair, and the result today is the incredible celebration of life, culture, and food of the Hawaiian people.

The Wailea Grand Luau

The journey to Hawai‘i of yesteryear begins with a lei greeting, followed by meeting your dinner companions and soon to be new friends. Hawaiian Luau bring the rich Polynesian culture to life, and guests can try their hand at traditional Hawaiian games, learn to hula, bring in the hukilau (a shore-cast fishing net, named after the “dancing of the leaves” on the rope, used to herd fish), and sing along to mele, Hawaiian chants used to pass down oral traditions and stories. Of course, luaus derive their name from a featured dish, lu`au, chicken steamed in taro leaves and coconut milk. And any party named after food is sure to be a culinary treat.

The Wailea Grand Luau kicks off its epic buffet with pupus (appetizers) like surf and turf poke, green papaya salad, fresh poi (a must try), macaroni salad, and fresh pineapple. The entrees are gourmet tributes to the traditional luau dishes; you are sure to enjoy Maui Cattle sirloin steaks with Teriyaki sauce, baked Moloka‘i sweet potatoes, and seared Mahi Mahi with coconut and lime. Traditional offerings like Shoyu chicken and Kalua pork are sure to delight, and a selection of vegetable and noodle dishes are also available. Delicious desserts are included at this Hawaiian Luau, and the bar serves your favorite island cocktails, wine, and beer all night long.

Hawaiian Magic with I Love Hawaii

There is simply no better way to experience the magic of Hawai‘i than by embracing its history, traditions, and delicious foods than a luau experience at Honua`ula. This authentic feast includes breath taking live shows and performances, fabulous music, and all the food you can eat. Online reservations are encouraged and available here. Plus, with several beautiful vacation rentals nearby on the beautiful beaches of Maui, I Love Hawai‘i has the best Hawaiian-inspired homes to complete your picture perfect vacation in paradise.