It is Well

[trip style = luxe + food + beach]

Editor's Note: Hello 2017! Here's a dose of wellness to kick off Trip Styler version 2017!

Built on land known as Kalahuipua’a where Hawaiian royalty used to retreat for mind-body-spirit rejuvenation, Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows is a touchstone to its well beginnings. Just stepping foot on the property you feel a sense of renewal beyond the bliss that splashes your soul when you first arrive at a destination.

With a prime position pointing due West, the arrow-shaped property is situated along the Kohala Coast where quiet coves, sugary sand, and the rugged remains of the Hualalai volcano cozy up to the coastline. 

As one of the first hotels in the area, the land is wide open {read: Views for miles} and filled with native Hawaiian flora and fauna saturating the resort from its ancient fishponds to the hotel’s atrium, a botanical garden where nature is the main showpiece. 

At this divide between surf and turf, sparkling water, historic petroglyphs, a thatched-roof spa, or dinner at the sunset's edge will make you want to relocate to the island permanently. Wherever you go in the 30-acre property, it becomes clear why the land was once a royal retreat. It is well.  

The pool at twilight.

The pool at twilight.

The supermoon I captured at 5:30am from my oceanfront suite.

The supermoon I captured at 5:30am from my oceanfront suite.

I spy a Trip Styler beelining for the shaded beach cabanas, an inclusion that ensures there's somewhere to retreat from the heat. {Most hotels charge extra for beach lounges like this...}

I spy a Trip Styler beelining for the shaded beach cabanas, an inclusion that ensures there's somewhere to retreat from the heat. {Most hotels charge extra for beach lounges like this...}

A feel-good stay: Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows was the first resort in Hawaii to implement commercial-scale solar energy with a photovoltaic system so major, its panels span three acres. 

A feel-good stay: Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows was the first resort in Hawaii to implement commercial-scale solar energy with a photovoltaic system so major, its panels span three acres. 

Bird's-eye view of the pools.

Bird's-eye view of the pools.

Blue Styler plotting his path for the day.

Blue Styler plotting his path for the day.

A bridge over one of the seven ancient Kalahuipua'a Fishponds used by ancient Hawaiians to raise fish and supplement their ocean fishing efforts. 

A bridge over one of the seven ancient Kalahuipua'a Fishponds used by ancient Hawaiians to raise fish and supplement their ocean fishing efforts. 

I'm pretty sure he was thinking: "Why can't I spend every day like this?" 

I'm pretty sure he was thinking: "Why can't I spend every day like this?" 

Plotting my retirement, part one...

Plotting my retirement, part one...

Plotting my retirement, part two...

Plotting my retirement, part two...

The Mauna Lani Spa, ahhhhhhh, one of the island's best wellness retreats.

The Mauna Lani Spa, ahhhhhhh, one of the island's best wellness retreats.

Outfitted in a traditional lava lava, I felt lighter the minute I stepped on the ancient lava flow’s grounds graced with thatched-roof huts, pools of orchids, and palms rustling in the wind.

Outfitted in a traditional lava lava, I felt lighter the minute I stepped on the ancient lava flow’s grounds graced with thatched-roof huts, pools of orchids, and palms rustling in the wind.

Two treatments that keep you connected with Hawaii's healing and calm your senses draw on the energy of the island’s essential elements. In the first, detoxify and destress as you sit under the sun in open-air lava sauna slathered with volcanic clay. A private outdoor shower is the treatment’s cleansing crescendo. Also using water—but a lot more of it—is the Lava Watsu Pool situated in an ancient lava tube. Here, aquatic body work focusing on tranquility, stretching, and meditation harness the power of planet Earth to fill your cup with more than just water.

Two treatments that keep you connected with Hawaii's healing and calm your senses draw on the energy of the island’s essential elements. In the first, detoxify and destress as you sit under the sun in open-air lava sauna slathered with volcanic clay. A private outdoor shower is the treatment’s cleansing crescendo. Also using water—but a lot more of it—is the Lava Watsu Pool situated in an ancient lava tube. Here, aquatic body work focusing on tranquility, stretching, and meditation harness the power of planet Earth to fill your cup with more than just water.

Room service breakfast, obvi.

Room service breakfast, obvi.

Sesame-encrusted island goat cheese with Waimea strawberries and edible flowers enjoyed {immensely} while partaking in the below view at CanoeHouse...{more below} 

Sesame-encrusted island goat cheese with Waimea strawberries and edible flowers enjoyed {immensely} while partaking in the below view at CanoeHouse...{more below} 

CanoeHouse: A mainstay in Hawaii's dining scene since the 1980s, and the resort's alfresco, oceanside eatery where Chef de Cuisine Allan Nagun dials Hawaiian regional cuisine up a notch with his take on every dish, including his signature and award-winning poke: Served in a flavor-enhancing glass and topped in truffle dust.

CanoeHouse: A mainstay in Hawaii's dining scene since the 1980s, and the resort's alfresco, oceanside eatery where Chef de Cuisine Allan Nagun dials Hawaiian regional cuisine up a notch with his take on every dish, including his signature and award-winning poke: Served in a flavor-enhancing glass and topped in truffle dust.

[Photos by @tripstyler, taken as a guest of Mauna Lani. Select photos, including lead, courtesy of the hotel. PS: I only write about standout experiences, read my strict editorial policy.]