Owner Newsletter Winter 2015
A warm Aloha to all of our Owners!  
Our winter guests are enjoying their tropical vacation and perfect balmy island weather. The winter swells have been delivering great surf and the whales have arrived! A guest reported witnessing a splashy performance from at least 20 whales playing close to shore at Majors Bay on the west side. She described seeing multiple whale spouts followed by a playful display of much pec and tail slapping, fluke diving, acrobatic peduncle slaps and awe-inspiring breaches! She said they frolicked in the same area for a long time as she lay on the beach watching them and feeling very blessed to be on Kauai surrounded by such incredible beauty. We are familiar with this feeling as we have all been enchanted by Kauai! We are extremely lucky to own property here and to have the pleasure of sharing our island paradise with others.

These are the types of magical encounters that we hope that all of our guests will experience and that they will return again and again. We continue to add content to our EXPERIENCE KAUAI guide on our newly launched mobile web-site. Guests can explore activities, culture, a food and restaurant guide along with shopping and entertainment options. We are interested in sharing personal and informative island experiences, off-the-beaten track activities and local favorites with our visitors. 

Welcome to the newest members of our ohana
We welcome Athena Kalalea, definitely the cutest addition to our extended family! Athena is Susan Leininger's baby granddaughter.
We also welcome Mark Minia to our GVR Ohana as the front desk manager.
Mark recently graduated from Eastern Oregon University and he is excited to start his career in customer service with us here on Kauai.


Keiki Surf Camp

It is winter break and there is no better way for our keiki to spend the holidays than cruising the island with local legend Kelly Hunt and exploring different surf spots. Presley is feeling the winter chill and decided it was time to wear her winter clothing i.e. a wet suit top to go over her bikini! Life on Kauai is truly wonderful! Our island keiki return to school on January 6th. Until then, there are a lot of waves to ride...
 GVR Christmas Party  
Our Great Vacation Retreats ohana gathered at Susan's home in Poipu to dine under the stars and celebrate Christmas and the start of the holiday season. We were treated to an amazing dinner catered by Chef Tommy and Custom Catering.


New Dining Options on the South Shore
As some of you may have noticed on recent visits, the dining scene is expanding at the Poipu Shopping Village.

Island Taco has moved to the old Puka Dog location (Don't worry Puka Dog fans, they are still there, they have just moved to a new central cart location near where they used to be). They have a small, semi fast food restaurant with a cute remodeled courtyard for diners that want to stay and eat. Island Taco offers a  local twist on traditional Mexican food items served in freshly made tortillas.

Olympic Cafe is opening soon and will be taking over the space where Roy's used to be. Olympic Cafe has been open in Kapaa for years and is known for delicious breakfasts and happy hour specials. It will be nice to have a casual and fun place to go and relax after a busy day at work.

Thai food has arrived to the south shore! Bangkok Happy Bowl Thai Bistro and Bar opened last week in the former location of Poipu Tropical Burger. We have been there a few times already and the curry is our favorite so far. We look forward to the opening of the Rock-n-Roll Sushi Bar in the near future. 

Bountiful Gardening
In our last owner newsletter we wondered if we would have  our first stalk of bananas by Christmas? It has been eight months since we first planted them and they are now well above the rooftop and providing welcoming shade. The first bunch of bananas appeared a few weeks ago!
 

We enjoy when guests visit our office to collect their beach rental gear or to discuss and reserve island activities with us. Sharing fruit and veggies from our garden and watching a guest leave with a handful of papayas and eggplant and a bag of fresh herbs is a fun way to share aloha! We want our guests to feel that they are part of our "ohana".  A new addition to our garden is Scott and Patty's aquaponic garden. Aquaponics refers to any system that combines conventional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as fish in tanks) with hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) in a symbiotic environment. The water in the aquaculture tank system is populated by fish and fed to the hydroponic system where the by-products are broken down by nitrification bacteria into nitrates and nitrites, which are utilized by the plants as nutrients, and the water is then recirculated back to the aquaculture system. Scott and Patty's first experiment has been extremely productive and they have supplied the neighborhood with cucumber, basil and tomato starts to plant and a variety of lettuce. It is great to leave work and snip a bagful of fresh lettuce for a dinner salad on the way out. Scott plans to replicate the system in much larger tanks so that there will be a bountiful harvest for all of our visitors to share!

Poipu Beach Athletic Club
Poipu Beach Athletic Club continues to line up exciting events and enhance their club amenities. Our guests that purchase weekly memberships are always highly complimentary of their experience at the club. The  brand new fitness facility is currently under construction and will open  soon. We are excited for the UB40 Reunited concert on Feb 5th. They have hosted great live music events this year and this new entertainment venue is a welcome addition to the south side of the island.



Happy New Year!
Thank you to the Poipu Beach Resort Association! For the past 4 years they have put on an incredible fireworks show, for FREE, for residents and visitors alike to welcome the start of a new year!  Join the community at the Poipu Beach Park for New Years eve fireworks. Bands, Food Trucks, movie, DJ music and of course fireworks! Fireworks between 9 and 10pm.

Visit Kauai Festivals and Events for an updated calendar of island wide festivities.  (pics from  kauaifestivals.com)
GREAT VACATION RETREATS 
808.742.9202
info@greatvacationretreats.com