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Which luau is the best?

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Sparwood, B.C.
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552 posts
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Which luau is the best?

I see ads for the Royal Lahaina Luau and the Old Lahaina Luau. Are these the same? If not, which is the best?

Kihei, Hawaii
Level Contributor
702 posts
38 reviews
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21. Re: Which luau is the best?

It's difficult to pick out the facts from all of these reviews. I'd like to know about: 1) the laua food; 2) the laua show; 3) additional activities; 4) child (keiki) friendliness; and 5) location.

Last week, my ticketing agency sent me to the Maui Prince Luau , the southern most resort in South Maui, on the reasoning that I was spending all of my time in Lahaina and Kaanapali.

At the Maui Prince Resort, the food was just the basic Hawaiian meat and potatoes, lomilomi and poi. The drinks were watery, and I passed on the desserts. The show was only fair due to the lounge lizard who dissed the tourists and polynesian cultures. The only pre-activity was for everybody to jump up and run to the imu to watch the pig come out of the oven. The tourists were mostly families with kids, and there was only a short hula dance with some of the kids on stage with the regular dancers. The location was okay. It was on the lawn, next the golf course. It was only a 35 minute drive from Lahaina, well after the pau hana (rush hour) traffic.

My advice is that the Mau Prince close down this luau and bus its clients to any of the other locations.

Northern California
9 posts
1 review
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22. Re: Which luau is the best?

1) the laua food;

2) the laua show;

3) additional activities;

4) child (keiki) friendliness; and

5) location.

OK - Our take on Old Lahaina for these five:

1) Average to poor for the food (tasted reheated). Drinks are free and of good quality though.

2) Top notch. This is a dedicated stage with professional lighting and sound. The band plays before and during the show, and they are very, very good. There were times we forget they were there and thought it was a pre-recorded soundtrack.

3) Pre-show there are vendors around the perimeter of the event, plus some other activities like watching poi being made, learning how to do the bamboo tapping thing (sorry, don't know the proper name), pictures, etc.

4) Can't say as we had teens, but there were plenty of families will small kids there and they seemed to have fun.

5) Right across from a major Lahaina shopping center (which serves as overflow parking).

6) Service (you didn't ask, but I'll comment otherwise). The staff tried their best, but it seemed like they've been doing this a long, long time for too many rude haoles. I'd rate their aloha spirit as 7 on a scale of 1 (low) to 10 (high).

Maryland
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212 posts
35 reviews
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23. Re: Which luau is the best?

I felt like a sardine at the Old Lahaina luau. The show was great. Went to the Marriot luau the second time. The food was great and inside, this was good because the cold salads. The MC was very funny, the show was great too. We just had a better time at the Marriott. I'll go there again this year.

Huntington Beach...
8 posts
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24. Re: Which luau is the best?

We went to the Old Lahaina Luau in July 2005 and had a pretty bad experience. It was a good show, but I thought it was way overrated.

We were told to show up and do stand-by since we didn't book enough in advance. They directed us to a person over by the "gift shop" who refused to take names or keep track of the order of people coming in. There ended up being a bunch of people and it turned into chaos quickly. It ended up that people either gave up and left, or they were sold tickets to a show a day or two later - which were all supposedly sold out. Anyway, I realize we took the chance by doing stand-by, but if they are going to offer it, then I would hope they could make it more orderly and fair. Otherwise, forget about offering stand-by at all.

In addition to the people out front who weren't friendly, the people working inside for the most part were not friendly at all. The exception would be the bartenders - they were great. The worst was the "host" guy who I watched make fun of a guest behind their back when they weren't looking and almost got caught - he was very rude.

I've been to other luaus and thought there was better food and a much bigger selection. I won't say it was bad - I did like what I had. Just that for the money, I think they could have offered a little more selection. I have a 7-year old who didn't eat anything except the bread because there was nothing he liked. While I'm sure the menu is probably authentic, there was really nothing for kids.

The show was okay. I guess I was expecting more since I had heard how it was the best luau around. It told the story of the history of Hawaii and it was pretty good. At another luau there was some audience participation, which I admit was a little cheesy at times, and fire dancers. OLL doesn't do that. Again, I think my 7-year old would have enjoyed the fire dancers. He had more fun talking to the other kid at the table about cartoons during dinner than watching the show. He thought the show was boring too.

I wish we had gone to a different luau because I left this one feeling very ripped off. I wouldn't recommend it to anyone, especially if they had kids (food selection, boring show). However, I will say our friend/travel agent raved about it and recommended it highly. To each his own I guess.