July and August were months for guest family and friends. We have been extremely fortunate to have hosted several wonderful large family groups and one incredible reunion these last two months. In each case, the guests rent the entire house so that each couple has their own private room, but end up spending loads of time together on the pool lanai for communal meals and relaxation.
Ken and I love to see our guests enjoying this beautiful property in this way. Luana Inn is really the perfect property for such gatherings: family reunions, retreats, small weddings and receptions. It’s a fabulous party house! The way the property is designed, each couple can feel they can get away from it all and escape to their own private, quiet space, yet come together on the huge lanai when they wish to. The grounds are spacious enough that guests don’t feel they’re right on top of one another: you can stroll down the driveway to look at our fruit trees, walk through the beautiful yards or simply hang out on the grass.
We’ve had guests do yoga, meditate, and sunbathe on each of the side yards. The Ohana Cottage has its own little patio, and we’ve also got the huge Guest Common Room (Great Room) which all of our large groups have used. The Great Room is a huge space, excellent for relaxing in when it’s raining out, or just for working on the computer or reading. We’ve conducted hula class and massage and a wedding makeup session in this lovely space.
The reunion we hosted threw an amazing luau complete with live band and about forty guests. The wedding we hosted also had about forty guests. The wedding was conducted on the ocean-facing front yard in front of the wedding arch, and the reception was held on the lanai, complete with tables, buffet, and live music under the covered area. For such events, guests have parked on the grass yard in back. There is plenty of convenient parking on this property.
It’s such a pleasure to see these wonderful families and old friends relaxing on the lanai, playing in the pool, and enjoying themselves here. We really love hosting our wonderful guests, and it is deeply satisfying and inspiring to be able to be the backdrop to their well-deserved week or two or relaxation, contemplation, and celebration. That’s what we’re here for.
This morning I was on maid-service duty while Ken did breakfast. This always involves a variety of other tasks in addition to regular maid service, like caring for the koi, light landscaping, pool maintenance, hauling trash and recyclables, laundry, harvesting fruit, working in the garden, etc. It was a sunny, bright morning and I noted as I was out and about that everything seemed extra green and fresh. After a few months of dry weather we’ve had a week of evening showers and the land is turning green and lush again. The lava rock looks extra black, the grass extra green, the ocean and sky a more vibrant blue.
It poured last night and this morning once the clouds had cleared and the bright sun emerged, the land seemed to breath and sigh. The baby coffee plants next door to us seemed taller, our trees—our swaying cocoa palms and baby citrus and plumeria and palms—all seemed extra green and lush. The grass shot up and the honeysuckle sent new creeping tendrils down the hill. Our herbs are spreading, our fruit trees shooting up, our greens pushing out huge new leaves.
But it was the scent on the air that forced me to actually stop what I was doing and stand still. I was in the driveway, which is lined with beautiful colorful plants: spider lilies and hibiscus and croton and Hawaiian ti, to name a few. The sun was shining down hard and the sky was heavenly blue punctuated with fluffy white clouds. The birds and butterflies and bees were tending to business all around me. The air here is humid but not overwhelmingly so, warm but not hot. It feels like a gentle caress, and smells of rain-washed flowers.
I stood there and paused and breathed deeply, detecting the scents of damp earth and honeysuckle and citrus flowers and gardenia and plumeria and wet grass and starfruit riding the sea wind. I breathed and breathed until admittedly, I got a little light headed. But I couldn’t get enough. This is the perfume of our days here, the scent of the island. I feel, and our guests concur, that this special scent is part of what makes you feel so relaxed and loved and peaceful on the Big Island. It’s like the island’s giving you a big hug.