Category Archives: Hawaii
marriage is legal in Hawaii. The state has long been a destination for
weddings and honeymoons. And now state officials, as well as hotels and
restaurants, are hoping the latest marriage-equality law will spur a new
market for wedding tourism.
HOW COOL IS THAT PHOTO?
If you’re an experienced diver, have we got a special excursion planned for you!
Come have fun with other experienced divers for a privately chartered week long scuba excursion!
Maui Sunseeker has teamed up with Richard Lear, Founder of Gay SCUBA Week to bring you an amazing scuba experience.
already sold out of two full weeks of this SCUBA Adventure to Richard’s
list and just opened a third week exclusively for our Sunseeker Ohana.
From February 15-22, 2014, you can be one of only 24 divers on a privately chartered boat with other LGBT divers (yes its open to all sexes).
you are a couple or traveling single, if you are interested, you should
book now as some of the 24 spaces have already sold.
Here are the basic details:
Diving with Maui Dive Shop – Ranked the Highest Rated Dive Boat in Maui
Maui Sunseeker LGBT Resort
February 15 – February 22, 2014
This is what is included!
- 7 Nights Accommodations
- Welcome Dinner
- Departure Luau
- Transfers to and from Maui Airport
- Free WiFi
- Pool and Boat Towels Provided
- 6 Days Diving = 12 Boat Dives
- Transfers to and from the boat
- Tanks, Weights, Belts, BCD, Reg, Computer, Mask, Fins, Wetsuit & Snorkel
- Daily Breakfast on board Boat
- Daily Lunch on board Boat
- Partial Valet Service for Gear
- BCs and Regs will be washed, cleaned and stored nightly. They will be returned fully prepped for travel on Friday afternoon
- Nitrox – must be Nitrox Certified – Dive shop will be offering courses at a discounted rate of $175
- Diving on Air if not Nitrox Certified
- Beach Chairs, Umbrellas, Towels and Ice Filled Coolers
- Rental Car Parking
For more information and pricing OR to make your reservation for this very unique opportunity, please visit the Gay SCUBA Week Website.
TO BOOK THIS PACKAGE EVENT, YOU MUST GO THROUGH THE GAY SCUBA WEEK WEBSITE AT:
WHALE OF A SEASON!
doesn’t take much for most people to recognize that Hawai’i is a special
place. But did you know that Hawai’i is home to what is believed to be
the largest seasonal population of humpback whales anywhere in the
winter, from November to May, visitors, residents, and ocean users in
Hawai’i share the ocean with thousands of humpbacks that migrate
thousands of miles from their northern feeding grounds to the warm,
shallow waters of the Hawaiian Islands where they mate, calve, and nurse
their young. For this reason the Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale
National Marine Sanctuary (sanctuary) was designated to protect humpback
whales and their habitat in Hawai’i.
population of humpback whales (central North Pacific stock) that uses
Hawai’i’s waters as their principle wintering ground likely lies between
10,000 and 15,000 animals, although not all of these animals are in
Hawai’i at the same time during the season. The lower number represents a
population estimate determined by a comprehensive research effort done
between 2004 and 2006. The upper number represents a conservative
approximation of growth based on annual rate of increase determined in
2006 and observation of other population indicators indicating that the
population is likely still increasing.
whale season it is commonplace to see humpback whales resting near shore
as well as performing acrobatic displays that can be seen from miles
away. On one recent peak season day, researchers observed twenty
different mother calf pairs just in Maalaea Bay (the Maui Sunseeker is
located on the coast of this Bay).
no doubt that Hawai’i offers some of the most unique whale watching in
the world and that has led whale watching to become very popular among
both visitors and residents alike. There is nothing like experiencing
the breaches and tail slapping of humpback whales whether from boat or
shore, and, although populations seem to still be increasing the whales
still need our help! They are threatened by injuries caused by
collisions with vessels and by entanglement in fishing gear and marine
This season, four whales have been
reported and confirmed entangled and at least ten whales were confirmed
to have been involved in a collision with some type of vessel.
Monday, March 11, 2013, the sanctuary led a response effort to free an
entangled male humpback whale and the animal was successfully
disentangled in waters surrounding Maui. The entanglement involved
several wraps of small gauge line around the animal’s tail, which was
already cutting into the animal, making the entanglement life
threatening. In total, over 200 feet of line, and 2 buoys were recovered
from the entangled animal that swam off quickly once cut free. After
some investigation the animal appears to have been entangled in local
objective of the rescue program is not just to free animals but to also
gain information to reduce the future threat of entanglement.
help support this work and other work of the sanctuary by donating to
the Hawai’i National Marine Sanctuary Foundation or by supporting the
National Marine Sanctuary Foundation’s Kohola Campaign.
Enjoy the whales and help protect them for future generations!
Christine Brammer, Communications Coordinator
Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary
Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary was designated
by Congress in 1992 to ensure the protection of humpback whales and
their habitat in Hawai’i.
sanctuary is managed jointly by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration (NOAA) and the State of Hawaii’s Department of Land and
Natural Resources. The sanctuary focuses their management efforts focus
on education, outreach, research, and resource protection.
Visit us in person at:
Humpback Whale Sanctuary
Kihei, HI 96753
SPONSORED BY : MAUI SUNSEEKER LGBT RESORT
At the Maui Sunseeker we’ve taken every opportunity to make our studios,
rooms and suites especially inviting and comfortable. Our private
lanais with either garden or ocean views welcome you with true Hawaiian
MAUI PRIDE is just one reason to visit Hawaii!
that predicted a prolonged cold winter through April have been accurate
so far, so we thought we’d give you incentive to come to Maui and warm
Second season of ‘Hotel Impossible’ features a Maui, Hawaii resort that caters to the LGBT clientele.
“It was eye opening for all involved in this show” laughs Spence, “for us from a business perspective and for the cast when they discovered the clothing optional hot tub”.
gas prices what they are, renting a car on your vacation can prove to be one of
the larger expenses that you’ll face. Fortunately, you have options when
visiting Oahu, and you’ll quickly find that getting around without a rental car
is simple. The island features public transportation methods that can deliver
visitors to every corner, while renting bikes and cruising along one of the
many palm tree-lined boulevards to one of the many attractions around Waikiki
is also a great way to scratch things off of your itinerary. If you’re hoping
to keep travel costs down, consider the following options when visiting the
Gathering Place to make sure you’re able to see all that this dynamic island
has to offer on the cheap!
Staying Around The Capital
Picking a central location, such as the Ewa Hotel in the thick of
Waikiki, will ensure that you’re never far from a good time. With beach
activities, historical sites, and fantastic hiking just minutes away, hoofing
it won’t be a problem, helping you cut down on those gas expenditures and
giving you the opportunity to walk off that dinner while being bathed in the
light of a Hawaii sunset. Don’t miss Kapiolani Park, Waikiki Beach, or the
Honolulu Zoo while you’re making your way around one of the preeminent vacation
spots in the world.
Heading East To Kailua
Headlining the marquee for things to do on the Windward (Eastern) side of the
island is the charming city of Kailua. Home to some of the most pristine and
sought-after beaches, getting to this slice of paradise by bus from your hotel
in Honolulu or Waikiki is a breeze. The Bus system can carry you and your group
out to Kailua from Ala Moana on the Route 56 bus for $2.50 each way! Pack
yourself a picnic, hop on some eco-friendly public transportation, and go have
yourself a time at Kailua Beach.
Making It To North Shore
You won’t want to head back home without first heading to Oahu’s North Shore.
The promised land for surfers due to its absolutely awe-inspiring waves of
incredible force, watching people zip back and forth across these faces of
water will definitely give you a thrill. Once again, relying on the bus system
is no problem; it may take a bit longer, given the distance, but the ease of
the trip and the views that will accompany you along the way make this ride a
breeze. Bus 52 will get you there in no time so you can see what all of the
fuss is about!
AIRFARE TO MAUI
CONTINUES TO PLUMMET!
You Can Now Fly Roundtrip from the West Coast for $500 bucks OR LESS!!!!
As you may know, earlier this year, the major airlines were charging outrageous fares to Hawaii.
We could not believe
roundtrip airfare from LAX to OGG (Kahului, Maui) for mid-week flights
in July, 2012 ranged from $950 up to an outrageous $1,400 roundtrip in
Then we got the great news,
the three major airlines (United, American and Delta) all cut their
fares from the West coast cities down substantially down to about
Well now Hawaiian and Alaska Air have undercut the major airlines, forcing them to cut again.
We just went online and here are some sample fares for these cities for travel in the fall (8/21 to 11/14):
LAX to OGG $462 Roundtrip
SJC to OGG $499 Roundtrip
OAK to OGG $519 Roundtrip
SFO to OGG $439 Roundtrip
SAN to OGG $509 Roundtrip
SEA to OGG $478 Roundtrip
PDX to OGG $475 Roundtrip
Be sure to book your room at the Maui Sunseeker LGBT Resort at our already low rates for the fall!!
Paradise is a strong word, and I don’t use it lightly. But Maui, Hawaii
is truly a paradise in every way.
It has glorious warm weather all
year, with just enough of a breeze from the trade winds to keep you
feeling refreshed. The tropical greenery and colourful flowers are
spectacular, and there’s nothing better than the relaxing sound of the
surf crashing on the beach as you drift off to sleep every night.
Wouldn’t you want to get married in Paradise?!
A gay Oklahoma City couple is happy to be on Maui and among the
first couples to be joined in a civil union after a state law allowing
such unions went into effect last Sunday.
“We are proud to be part of
it,” said 40-year-old Rich Tucker, a mortgage company owner, shortly
before his Monday sunset ceremony with partner 37-year-old David Dobson,
“We wanted to have the ceremony somewhere tropical. It’s awesome to have accepting people that accept everyone. No one
is segregated,” Tucker said about Hawaii and the civil unions law.
Dobson added: “In Oklahoma, it’s still very much the Bible Belt.”
Industry insiders have said they expect that the law legalizing civil unions, which took effect Jan. 1, will lead to a boost in tourism among same-sex visitors. Hotel executives said they’re actively reaching out to the gay and lesbian community with promotions and packages aimed at couples who are eager to make their commitment official.
“We’ve had 10 ceremonies booked so far,” said Chuck Spence, owner of the Maui Sunseeker LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered) Resort in Kihei. “Already we’ve also seen an immediate boost in bookings, and not just because of civil unions, but because the law also opens up the perception by the gay and lesbian community that Hawaii is truly a welcoming state. We are aloha.”
Hawaii’s hard-fought civil unions law was bitterly opposed by conservative and Christian groups, who said the measure posed a threat to heterosexual marriage and traditional families.
Deacon Walter Yoshimitzu of the Honolulu Roman Catholic Diocese said marriage should be only between a man and a woman.
“Even with civil unions, we believe it is same-sex marriage by another name,” he said.
State Sen. Roz Baker, who represents West and South Maui and was a supporter of the civil unions bill, said she hoped the law would attract couples to Hawaii.
“Let’s face it, too, nowhere is the weather nicer, or are there as many beautiful places to visit year round, than in Hawaii,” she said, adding that “the wedding business has always been good to Maui.” Year round the weather is gorgeous!
But she and West Maui Rep. Angus McKelvey noted that the new civil unions license will be recognized only in Hawaii, so they anticipated it to attract a wave but not a tsunami of same-sex visitors.
“It’s not going to be a billion-dollar law,” McKelvey said.
More significant than its ability to attract visitors, he said, the law was important for gays and lesbians living in Hawaii, because it would give them the same rights as heterosexual couples.
“We still have a long way to go,” said spokesman Don Bentz for Equality Hawaii of Honolulu, a gay rights advocacy group. “If a couple, let’s say, comes from Florida (which doesn’t have gay marriage or civil unions), they have rights here but lose them after the plane ride.”
Frank and Kevin, who own a wedding service on Maui, have been performing ceremonies for heterosexual and gay couples, recognized or not, for many years. They’ve said they expect their numbers to go from nearly 40 ceremonies a year to more than 100.
Maui SunSeeker is going to provide group room discounts and gifts like champagne. Rich and David were the first guests to tie the knot!
He noted that they’re bringing friends – as others certainly will – and that the tourists will spend money at other Maui businesses.
“In regard to tourism, absolutely this will have a great impact. No question,” said Spence, whose hotel currently has 25 rooms and now plans to add more.
Applications and information about civil unions are available online at hawaii.gov/health.
You may remember, when we reported that the staff and owners of Maui Sunseeker were ecstatic because they had bought the property behind the three buildings we all know and love as the current Maui Sunseeker LGBT Resort, pictured here.
That ‘new’ property is known as ‘Serenity’, located at 20 Wailana Place. At one time, Serenity was a ‘wellness center’ and rumor has it that even Whitney Houston stayed there at one time. (OK, so you say she’s been in and out of so many places, that any dive can make that claim…..point taken).
But hang in, the story continues.
We talked of great dreams of spas and even an outdoor jacuzzi.
We also asked for opinions in the last newsletter. Some said… ‘We want a 24 hour jacuzzi!’ Others said ‘We want a pool!’ And yet others said, ‘Build us a SPA!’ ‘ says a spokeperson for Maui Sunseeker.
“We can now say that the property behind Serenity (which is behind Sunseeker) known as Sugar Beach, a property located at 26 Wailana Place, is in escrow to be bought by Maui Sunseeker! We are just as thrilled!!”
Imagine a contiguous 1 acre gated compound of adults-only property right on the North Kihei shore that is fully dedicated to the LGBT Community!
“If all goes according to plan, we will close escrow in THIS MONTH and hope to have the ‘Sugar Beach’ property online in May with 4 poolside full suites, upstairs is a 2,000 sqaure foot Penthouse unit with an adjacent junior suite. The addition of these two properties will literally double the amount of land that currently comprises the Sunseeker resort.
Most exciting….in addition to giving the Maui Sunseeker LGBT Resort much more land, we will now have, most importantly, a pool!! Many guests just want a place to relax on property without all the Little Beach brouhaha, now they will have it.”
“When all is complete, we will increase from a 17 room resort to a 31 room resort with breakfast service, a pool, an in-ground outdoor jacuzzi and a total of 6 buildings on one acre of land with much more planned.
We would like to hear what your thoughts are for what’s important in our design and policies as we go forward. Please take a moment to complete our development survey. We want to know what you think of our clothing optional policy and what amenities YOU want to have. Your opinions matter to us, so please share them now as we go through our design.”
It’s going to be an AWESOME 2011 at MAUI SUNSEEKER
Gay Travel to The Hawaiian Islands!
Located in the central Pacific Ocean, are the most remote chain of islands in the world. Three hundred sixty-five days of the year, the islands of Hawaii promise magic and romance. Pleasant tropical weather year round, a laid-back Aloha attitude, and natural beauty will inspire you to keep the romance going beyond your island time.
Maui is the second largest of the Hawaiian Islands with a land area of 729 square miles with a variety of sights and experiences. The views from atop 10,000-foot Mt. Haleakala (especially popular at sunrise and sunset) are well worth the winding drive past fields of protea and other exotic flowers. The long, winding road to the village of Hana is lined with waterfalls and lush tropical foliage. The quaint old towns of Lahaina and Wailuku are fun for exploring, shopping, and dining. During the winter months, the waters surrounding Maui are ideal for whale-watching.
The gay population is second only to that on Oahu. The biggest concentration of our community is in the Kihei area of South Maui, although we’re everywhere on the island!
Most resort destinations really have two gay communities, and Maui is no different. The local community tends to socialize in their own ‘family’ in private homes, informal groups or a weekly excursion to the beach. Although the local community is typically low-key, there are fundraisers and social events happening often, and visitors are always welcome.
The other gay group on Maui is made up of vacationing singles or couples, many of whom return to the island every year. The scene on Maui isn’t focused so much on high energy or heavy cruising but more on enjoying the incredible beauty found here.
Whichever group you identify with, you’ll find lots of opportunities to have fun, participate in activities and mix with the locals. Information on current local gay activities can be found online at Maui Gay Info and Pride Maui .
Maui Sunseeker is our favorite place to stay! It is the place on Maui where you can feel free to be yourself. Welcoming all, but catering primarily to the gay and lesbian traveler. It is the largest and most known gay resort. A beautiful 17-room gay-owned and operated resort hotel located on a secluded beach in Kihei. It is a boutique hotel for adults only. The suites are spacious, many with their own kitchens, there’s a clothing-optional rooftop area complete with hot tub and massage services, you get free Internet access, and the staff is friendly and accommodating.
Kihei is known for its beaches, so you’ll want to make at least one trek to the stupendous Big Beach and its neighbor, the gay- and clothing-optional-friendly Little Beach. Glassy turquoise waves, caramel-colored sand, and the best bodysurfing ever await you.
“Our location is convenient to Maui attractions such as Little Beach, the Iao Valley, Hana, Lahaina and the volcano, Haleakala. The hotel has long been a fixture in South Maui; always offering a welcoming home away from home for travelers. Acquired by the current owner in 2008, the Maui Sunseeker remains Gay owned and operated. Fostering an atmosphere of quiet elegance, acceptance and aloha, guests truly become a part of our Hawaiian ohana or family. The Wailana Inn became a part of Maui Sunseeker in September 2004. An extensive renovation of the building, guest rooms and gardens was quickly accomplished. The unification of the two diverse properties resulted in an exciting and new haven to lose all cares and feel free to be yourself. Maui Sunseeker welcomes the diversity that is our community.”
Maui Sunseeker has an amazing staff that will help you plan your stay. Their in-house concierge service will help you plan and book your activities on Maui. There is an endless list of possible activities they will coordinate for you! Everything from wine tours and cooking classes to spa tratements, and water and air activities. They will even help plan your special day,
if you’re looking to exchange vows and have a romantic honeymoon.
“As our resort is LGBT clientele and owned/operated, we wanted to find the best activity providers on the island that are either gay owned/operated or are supporters of the gay community. We have worked hard to be sure our guests feel as welcome and comfortable at any activity we refer them to, as they do at home at the Sunseeker. We promise the loving Aloha spirit of these providers will welcome all and promises a fabulous time. “
Once you stay at Maui Sunseeker, you’ll come back again and again! Everyone agrees!
“My partner and I have stayed at the Sunseeker about 6-8 times. We love the atmosphere and the hotel staff. Maui is great; but staying at the Sunseeker is the vacation.”
“I have stayed here for 15 years (half the property used to be the Wailana Inn), and it is perfect for my needs: gay friendly staff #1, comfortable rooms (I always stay in one with access to the garden lanai), hot tub on the roof, wi fi and MORE!”
“Friends recommended I stay at the Maui Sunseeker for my first trip there. Looking at prices on the internet, it was great value compared to more expensive hotel rooms and vacation rentals that have gone up a lot recently. Also, it was very easy to book online. When I arrived, the staff was very friendly and I felt very comfortable… “
Hawaii truly exudes romance and peacefullness. Beaches, sunsets, stargazing, come to Maui Sunseeker and see what you have been missing!
Golfing. Beaches. Shopping. Clubs. Snorkeling. Surfing. Whale Watching. Swimming With Dolphins. Luxury Hotels. Hiking. Sunset Cocktails. Boat Crusies. Waterfalls.
Get Married! or just plain relaxing, Hawaii has it all!
Tropical Paradise. The Hawaiian Islands, located in the central Pacific Ocean, are the most remote chain of islands in the world. Honolulu is 2,398 miles southwest of San Francisco (the closest continental point), 3,818 miles southeast of Tokyo, and 5,067 miles north of Sydney. Oahu, the third largest island in the chain, contains about 75% of the state’s population and is considered the main island. Honolulu (the state capital and major city), and its beach resort area at Waikiki, are on Oahu.
Hawaii Welcomes All to Paradise“Perhaps because Hawaii is one of the world’s great melting pots, where people of many races and beliefs live in relative harmony with each other and nature, Hawaii is amazingly open and welcome to gay and lesbian visitors.” says writer John Fischer.
“Despite the defeat of efforts to legalize same-sex marriage in Hawaii, the government of Hawaii is anything but anti-gay. The Reciprocal Beneficiaries Law (Act 383) of 1997 allows any two single adults — including same-sex partners, blood relatives or just friends — to have access to less than 60 spousal rights on the state level. So, lots of couples “get married” here – it is such a perfect setting!
The hub of gay and lesbian activity in Hawaii continues to be Waikiki on the island of Oahu. For many years the gay center of Waikiki was along a stretch of Kuhio Avenue between Kalaimoko Street and Lewers Street. Hula’s Bar and Lei Stand was located here for many years before moving to its new location at 134 Kapahulu Avenue in the second story of the Waikiki Grand Hotel.”
Don’t come to Hawaii expecting Key West or some other big gay mecca. “Hawaii’s gay community is interesting because it doesn’t run like the anonymous gay Mainland cities. I learned that in Hawaii emphasis is placed on the ‘ohana, or family, aspects of the gay community. The queer communities are very grassroots. Especially on the outer islands, I found potlucks and beach gatherings and eco activities to be the norm. Hawaii’s gay scene is more about camaraderie versus numbers.”
The two beaches on Oahu which are most often considered gay/lesbian beaches are located nearby, the Queen’s Surf Beach on the eastern end of Waikiki near the recently renovated Natatorium War Memorial – the area from the park to the Waiikiki Aqaurium, is usually very gay. And there is a nice snackbar and restrooms right nearby.
Also, Diamond Head Beach at the foot of Oahu’s most famous landmark. Secluded and countrylike. Very gay usually near the lighthouse area. No facilities here and bring snacks if you are spending the day.
However, Mokuleia Beach Is the only beach to attract gay sunbathers on Gay Oahu’s Leeward coast. The remote “Mecca” comprises approximately six miles of narrows white sand beach only about
approximately 150 feet wide between Kaiaka Bay and Camp Erdman. The Gay area is near Mokuleia Beach Park located midway along the beach. Park facilities include restrooms, showers, camping sites, and parking. Follow the path into the brush area to find the boys.
Lanikai Beach: Remote and awe-inspiring, this beauty is off the tourist radar screen on the windward side of Oahu has a mile of perfect sand and water that’s crystal clear. If you are there of the sun think about arriving in the morning, as the shadow of the Koolau Mountains blocks the sun’s in the afternoon. This beach caters to both Gay Hawaii and straight sun bathers.
Kailua Beach: One of the best beaches on Oahu this paradise is popular with the local elite but rarely a stop for visitors that stick to Waikiki for the most part. Large grass and picnic area and changing facilities are available. After the beach stop in to Buzzes Steak House (right across the road) and sit at the table that President Clinton did. This is the beach to be seen at!
Each of the Hawaiian Islands has many things to offer gay and lesbian visitors. Maui has the second largest gay and lesbian community particularly in the Kihei area. Maui also has a popular nude beach, although public nudity is officially outlawed in Hawaii. On Maui you will find numerous gay and lesbian friendly bed and breakfasts as well as many services offering commitment ceremonies. Gay Maui is a magical island that has been named ‘Best Island in the World’ time and time again. Crystal waters, golden beaches, beautiful scenery, tropical breezes, swaying palms, award-winning cuisine and world class resorts just to name a few.
So much to see and do and explore in Hawaii! The best vacations are full of unexpected surprises. For more information see HAWAIIg Adventures and Only in Paradise – Hawaii’s only gay owned and operated travel and activity agency. Check them out if you are making Hawaii plans! “Being a local owned and operated gay company we know the best places to make your vacation all that it can be.”
More Hawaii info available at GAY HAWAII, and HAWAII’S GAY SCENE
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