For me, 18-mile-long Lanai represents the Hawaiian idyll. So it is with keen anticipation that I have followed the progress of renovations at the two Four Seasons resorts on this unspoiled island. On the coast overlooking Hulopo’e Bay, the Four Seasons Lanai (formerly the Four Seasons at Manele Bay) has finally completed what can only be described as a gut rehab. Larry Ellison, the owner of almost the entire island, apparently spared no expense in refurbishing the hotel.
The décor in accommodations now looks chic, with wood floors and white-marble baths, in sharp contrast to the fusty “luxury tropical” style that was previously sported. Some suites also have wooden Japanese-style soaking tubs.
Public areas also underwent a complete transformation, including the refurbishment of the ONE FORTY and NOBU LANAI restaurants, and the addition of a free-form adults-only pool surrounded by tropical gardens. A new adventure center offers UTVs (utility terrain vehicles) and horseback riding, among other activities. And Four Seasons took over the management of an adjacent seaside golf course, the grooming of which is now immaculate. (We walked through part of it after an Un-Cruise-led hike along the coast.)
The Four Seasons Lodge at Koele, a 20-minute drive inland at an elevation of 1,600 feet, remains closed at the time of writing. Its renovations continue apace, and Four Seasons hopes to reopen the property by the end of 2016.