Review: Lava Lava Beach Club
Big Island, Hawaii
By Kathy Chin Leong


StatesMar13-6.jpgImagine the perfect, tropical vacation beach cottage. Does it have an outdoor lava rock shower? A front porch with a bucolic ocean view? How about a trendy kitchenette, plus an under -the-counter refrigerator always stocked with bottled water? The owners at Lava Lava Beach Club in Big Island, Hawaii, seemed to have pulled out all the stops this past July when it unveiled its four cozy, contemporary cottages adjacent to its hip and happening restaurant with Hawaiian music nightly.


Located on the Kohala Coast, in the Waikoloa area, each cottage on the property seems to have stepped off the fashion runway from the pages of home magazine. I recently came here for a vacation with my husband and daughter, and I was utterly charmed by the lull of the incredibly blissful ocean setting along with the spaciousness of the 576-square-foot abode, and clean and refreshing details.

 

DESIGN AND MORE
When Scott Dodd and Eric Von Platen Luder decided to build the cottages, they called upon the services of interior designers  with a vision was to create a luxurious, yet informal ambiance. The result in each cottage is a feeling of total ease and relaxation. From the sand colored floor tiles, to the king bed with white down comforters and micro fiber sheets and long pillow whimsically
labeled BEACH, and matching white cotton drapes, this hideaway is the kind of place I could easily stay for a month and not feel bored or hemmed in.


On the first day of our experience, we checked in at the Lava Lava Beach Club restaurant to receive our key to our abode for the next two nights (note-two nights is not enough, stay 3 or more). It was just past sunset at night, and we were so glad that we could park right up into our cottage carport. After staying at other places where we had to park far away or pay for parking in a lot, this was click-your-heels fantastic. Jason, the manager on duty, greeted us and showed us around. I hope he didn't see me drooling at the decor.


As I said earlier, there are only four cottages here. That'means no crowds, and every opportunity to enjoy the serenity and sounds of lapping waves. every single-room cottage is entered through a glass sliding door. This brings guests into a under-600 square foot space that has an eating area, wall mounted flat screen tv, daybed, and step up level with a king bed behind it. Techies will love the fact that there is wireless Internet and an iPod docking station. The flat screen tv, by the way, is really BIG! No DVD comes with the set, but you will find plenty of satellite viewing action. The first night, certain channels did not work,
but we were so tired from a full day of shopping that it did not matter that much.


StatesMar13-7.jpgBeachy interior details include a giant clamshell that holds rolled up beach towels, a glass'bowl of seashells, surfing art on the walls, strings of white shells that suspend off the curtain rods. Of course, the ubiquitous ceiling fan helps everyone cool and collected (along with air conditioning). Calm and soft patterned hues of turquoise, pumpkin orange,green, governors yellow make up a palette on the fabrics and pillows which is both a cheery and restful combination. Each room comes equipped with its own whimsical ukelele just in case the guest is in the'mood to go'local. Furnishings are made of deep and light woods, rattan,'and bamboo'motifs reinforce a tropical feel, echoing the earth and woodsy surroundings.

 

THE SHOWER, THE SHOWER
We could not get enough of the outdoor lava rock shower. While the room comes with an indoor shower, we didn't even touch it. The backyard shower features a high, curved lava rock wall made of many,many mortared lava rocks. A short bamboo reed is the shower head, and a small rock ledge at shoulder height serves as a soap and what-have-you holder. I loved seeing the tiny shells intentionally jammed between a few of the stones. Your feet are not harmed, for they rest on wide flat stones, smooth, but not slippery. A tree with an interesting twisty trunk is right in the center of your shower oasis, soyou feel you are caressed in the middle of a rain forest. There is plenty of privacy, and if you take your shower before 9 p.m., chances are that you will get to hear the live Hawaiian music playing next door at the restaurant.


We were so happy to be in the Wa'a suite, which is the farthest away from the restaurant and crowds. Being right on the beach, on day Number Two, I took a nice jog on the perimeter which isnext to a series of other condos and resorts.We loved the location of the resort. We walked along the shore by the rocky lava only to discover a whole world of sea turtles, tide pools teeming with exotic fish and aquatic life and washed up coral pieces and pebbles and seaglass.  And as people walking the beach came up to us, they were curious.  "You're staying here?" "Wow!" "We never knew this place existed."


StatesMar13-8.jpgOur family felt totally privileged to be in such a beautiful cottage with comfy decor and furnishings, directly steps from the water.  Now that I am home, my fond memories of Lava Lava echo like a lovely Hawaiian chant,
"Lava Lava Beach Club... Lava Lava Beach Club..."

 

****
DETAILS:
Lava Lava Beach Club
http://www.lavalavabeachclub.com/
Rates: Starting $450 per night.

69-1081 Ku'ualii Place
Waikoloa, Hawaii
Anaeho ' omalu Bay, Big Island
808/769-5282

 

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