Chef Allen Hess will tee off his new “Mai Grille” restaurant at Kings’ Golf Course on Monday, October 5, 2015. Well-known for his deliciously skilled preparations of what he calls “chef-driven, house made, farm-to-table comfort food,” Hess brings a fresh new energy and style to the table. “We’re striving for a modern clubhouse with hand-crafted locally-sourced foods,” said Hess. “I’m inspired by good food, food that’s fun, really flavorful, and visually appealing.”
House made Mai Bacon will team up with aged top sirloin for Mai Grille’s signature “20/80” burger, 20% ground bacon and 80% local grass-fed beef. Other tasty-sounding twists on familiar favorites include bacon-wrapped Ali’i Mushrooms, Portuguese sausage corn dogs, smoked brisket tacos and fresh poke nachos.
On Sundays, a satisfying Brunch menu stars steamed crab legs and prime rib, served family style and priced per person. Craft beers from Big Island Brewhaus and others will be featured, along with creative cocktails and a wallet-friendly wine list.
On the Kona coast of the Big Island of Hawaii, we are graced with the presence of over 800 Hawaiian Spinner Dolphins, smaller pods of Spotted Dolphins, and Bottlenose, in addition to all-year round Pilot Whales, seasonal Humpback Whales, Manta Rays, Turtles and others.
The Hawaiian Spinners Dolphins are the most regular visitors to the shores along the Kona coast. Almost daily, they come into shore to rest, play and interact with their human friends. Nearly everyone, of all ages and snork-ability, can swim with the dolphins.
A phenomenal experience, as the OneLoveOneSpirit Team takes you on a customized half-day morning tour in the waters where the dolphins rest and play. They will share their experiences of swimming with the dolphins, and discuss techniques of surface diving and snorkeling to experience close and respectful contact with our finned friends.
The time in the water with the dolphins varies from a few minutes to 3+ hours. Remember it can take a one second of looking into the eye of a dolphin to have your life forever changed!
Certainly if time and financial resources are not issues for you, and dolphins / marine mammals are your priority, we highly recommend doing more than one trip. Although our boat trips are averaging 95% success with the dolphins, this will increase your chances of having a phenomenal time! Check it out for a “Spiritual Experience.”
Check out their website at www.oneloveonespirit.com
Hawaii Magazine asked their Facebook fans the following question: What’s your favorite scenic hiking trail (short or long) on the Big Island? Here are the top five results.
#5 WAIPIO VALLEY
Situated on the northern Hamakua Coast, is lush Waipio Valley, known as “The Valley of the Kings.” It was the boyhood home of King Kamehameha I, who established the Kingdom of Hawaii in 1810 and served as its first monarch. Surrounded by cliffs up to 2000-feet high, this deep valley is about one mile across. The Big Island’s tallest waterfall, Hiilawe Falls, cascades down 1,300 feet in the back of the valley. The paved path into the valley is actually a steep access road (4-wheel drive vehicles only). Most hikers park at the Waipio Valley Lookout. From there, a black-sand beach about one mile down the road. Further down is Kuluhine Falls, and at the bottom of the valley there’s a view of Hiilawe falls. The trail to the beach is public, but much of Waipio Valley is private property. If you plan to explore beyond the public access areas, seek out permission or sign up for a guided tour.
#4 PAPAKOLEA BEACH aka Green Sand Beach
The mineral olivine, found in a volcanic cinder cone at the Big Island’s southernmost point, is responsible for the green sand at Papakolea Beach. It’s one of only two green-sand beaches in the world. (The other is in the Galapagos Islands.) The beach is located near a 710-acre peninsula call Ka Lae (“the point,” in Hawaiian). Known among locals as “South Point,” the peninsula is the southernmost tip of the United States. (The first land due south is 7,000 miles away, in Antarctica.) The hike to the beach is about 2.5 miles (one way). Most hikers park in South Point, at South at the end of a single-lane road where the pavement ends and a rough trail begins. From here, the trek is limited to hikers and four-wheel drive vehicles. The intersecting ocean currents that make the area’s offshore waters dangerous for nearly all ocean activities make it one of the state’s best, if most remote, places for shoreline fishing.
#3 THURSTON LAVA TUBE
Hawaii Volcanoes National Park is crisscrossed with more than 150 miles of hiking trails, which range in difficulty from easy walks like Kipukapuaulu (Bird Park) to wilderness areas recommended only to hikers in top physical condition. The 20-minute walk through a thick fern forest to Thurston Lava Tube is among the easy-breezy hikes. It leads to a cave-like tunnel — a 500-foot-long lava tube that once carried fast-moving molten lava. Several hundred years ago, a large eruption near the summit of Kilauea volcano created the lava tube. (Lava now streaming from Puu Oo crater to the ocean winds through lava tubes much like this one.) Lorrin Thurston, a local newspaper publisher, reportedly discovered Thurston Lava Tube in 1913. The lava tube also has a Hawaiian name, Na Huku, which refers to the protuberances on the tube walls. A collapse in the tube’s roof serves as an exit back into the forest.
#2 AKAKA FALLS LOOP
Akaka Falls State Park is located along the northeastern Hamakua Coast, at the end of Highway 220, also known as Akaka Falls Road. The park — about 3.5 miles away from Honomu, a former sugar plantation town — sprawls over 65 acres with two waterfalls. There’s 100-foot Kahuna Falls and 442-foot Akaka Falls. The short hike to both is along a 0.4-mile paved footpath loop through a lush rainforest filled with wild orchids, bamboo groves and draping ferns. The trailhead is located just off the parking lot. Few Hawaii waterfalls of Akaka’s height are so easily accessible. Consequently, it’s very popular with visitors and residents alike. In a previous facebook poll, our reader ohana ranked Akaka Falls as their favorite Hawaii waterfall. Some readers noted that it’s a must-stop on every Big Island visit. And even Big Island residents are known to return to its visual splendor again and again.
#1 KILAUEA IKI TRAIL
Our facebook ohana selected Kilauea Iki as their top pick for a Big Island hike (short or long). Kilauea volcano, in Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, is currently ranked among the most active volcanoes on the planet. The park has many trails, ranging from a quick walk through a lava tube to multi-day hikes. Among the most popular with park visitors: Kilauea Iki Trail — a 4-mile loop trail through Kilauea Iki crater, the remains of a massive 1959 eruption. The trail begins off the park’s Crater Rim Drive near the Thurston Lava Tube. Its more than 400-foot descent takes hikers through a variety of scenery—lush fern-filled rainforests, with native birds in the trees, near active steam and sulfur vents and across a long-solidified lava lake. Follow rock cairns across the crater floor. Bring sunscreen as well as rain gear as daily weather can shift from warm and sunny to cool, wet and windy.