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“Good show, awful food.”
Review of Paradise Cove Luau

Paradise Cove Luau
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$97.00*
and up
Paradise Cove Luau
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: In the traditions of our ancestors, we pass on to you the knowledge of our rich history including the arts & crafts, games of skill, songs, dances and food.
Reviewed July 7, 2013

We wanted to attend a luau while visiting Hawaii. I checked their website and this looked like the perfect place, right on the ocean, beautiful sunset, what more could you ask? We purchased the deluxe package which included up front seating, a picture, a gift from the luau (which turned out to be a small insulated lunch bag) and three premium drinks each person. We also received small flower leis for the women and nut leis for the men. The total would have been 158.00 each but I bought the Hawaii Entertainment Book which brought the total down to 105.00 for each adult. I still had to pay 124.00 for my 18 yr old son because an adult is considered over 21. We got there at 5:00 and didn't have to wait long. With the deluxe package you don't have to wait in line with everyone else. They take you in earlier. We stopped for a picture with a couple dancers and off we went. There were four in our party and two received family pictures with the dancers and two without.
The grounds are really pretty. It's right on the ocean and it was a really nice setting for the luau. There were games and demonstrations but like everyone said, they were really crowded. I did the spear throwing and that's about it. There were people selling crafts too.
With the premium drink coupons that were offered you had to add a couple dollars. I wanted a pina colada so I had to add an additional 3.00 to get it. You could also pick drinks from the list that weren't additional. I got some lime drink which I ended up pouring out. It was made with cheap booze and it just wasn't good.
Before the show they take you over to an area where they do a ceremony to raise the pig out of the ground. Two men carry the pig away to get ready to serve it up. My husband hit the nail on the head when he said the pig they serve you was the pig they cooked the day before. There is no way they carved that pig up in the time frame from ceremony to serving.
Okay, now the huge disappointment, the food was awful!!!!!!!! We didn't have to go in the buffet line with the deluxe package which was nice. They served us a plate with pasta salad, garden salad and I think potato salad. That was pretty good. You enter at 5:00 and they don't serve until 7:00 so by that time you're hungry. Then the main meal came and it went down hill from here. We were served tasteless pork, poi which I guess you need to acquire a taste for, canned corn, dried out chicken, fish, and sticky white rice. All of it tasteless. It's really too bad too. My husband was expecting fruits and vegetables. Not happening. You also got dried out cake for dessert. This is sad too, because this luau could be excellent. We ended up going to Subway when we left there so what does that tell you?
Now the good part. The show was really good, the fire dancer was excellent. I enjoyed it very much so I feel I got some value for my money. If you go into this thinking your food is going to be average than you'll have a good time. If you're expecting a feast, forget it. My husband and boys were disappointed. I thought it was average at best.

Thank msar1076
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed July 6, 2013

We actually prebought the midrange (orchid) seating because we wanted good seats since we were paying so much. We went through a second party & was able to get a small discount. There were 11 in our party & we were told to get there early to get good seats. We were first in line, only to be seated at the back of our section. I asked if we could move, and was told that seating was determined when you buy the tickets. ?? So we wasted 2hours of time getting there early to stand in line for no reason. Chairs were very uncomfortable and viewing was awful because of seating arrangement. The preactivities were really great. We got to make lei headpieces & wrist pieces. Body tattoos, boating, spear throwing & much more. Food was just ok...but the pork was very good. Drinks were good also, and they had a few frozen ones to choose from. The show was great...dancers were trained excellently. In my opinion this luau could be 5 star if they just downsized a bit. Way too many guests.

Thank Sandrakintex
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 5, 2013

When we were planning our trip to Hawaii, I started asking friends who have lived on the island where should we go that is not so touristy. They gave us a long list of places to visit, things to do and foods to try. I then told them I wanted to go to a luau - which I KNEW would be touristy. My question posed was, "If you had friends who wanted to go to a luau, where would YOU take them." Everybody's answer was "Paradise Cove".

After we arrived in Hawaii, as went toured around and did our less "touristy" activities, we were asked by the locals if we planned to attend a luau. When we told them which one we were attending, they uttered approval of our choice.

We were not disappointed. As long as you remember this is strictly entertainment, you should have a good time. We chose the deluxe package for the purpose of sit down service and being closer to the stage. The deluxe area was not sold out, so there was plenty of room to eat, move around and spread out. (The other seats resembled a sardine can.)

In addition to the service and view, deluxe package receives pictures, three drink coupons (yes, you DO have to pay extra for the glass and larger drinks - we paid the extra $7 to upgrade our drink and get the glass, then only used our coupon for the next two drinks - pouring them into our souvenir drink glass - filling it about 2/3 full.) and special escort into the area.

The dancers were fabulous - preshow activities were fun - the sunset gorgeous. The food was good - but rare is the event that has fabulous food when feeding such a large group.

1  Thank Rockcress
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 4, 2013

Paradise Cove is one of the larger luau attractions on Oahu. They advertise a lot and as the crowds showed, they get a lot of folks to attend.

They advertise pre-luau attractions such as games, boat rides, lei making, but for each of these, the lines are very long and you feel like you are at Disney waiting for a 30 second ride. We tried several of the activities, but with the shear number of people (1500+) it was not possible to do more than 2 or 3 in the two hours given before the events begin.

There are three seating options, but all of the seating is very cramped and difficult to access, sitting in stiff plastic chairs.

The food is served buffet style, which includes many of the typical luau foods, pork, lomi lomi, fish, poi, etc. The food was okay but not worth the 100 bucks entry fee for the place.

The dancers were very good when they were on stage, but so much of the show was 'audience participation' - a group of vacationers on stage making fools of themselves. The MC was horrible, reminding me a bit of Ethel Merman - but was mostly loud and obnoxious. The fire knife dancer was impressive and as stated above the hula dancers were good, but they were on stage for only about 25% of the show.

I would not recommend this luau at all. It was a joke and not a funny one

2  Thank PeterRose14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 2, 2013

The bad: the luau is simply tooooo large. There were near, approximately, 900 people here for the luau - and it was just too big - we did have great seats, but suspect some of the folks in the back couldn't even see the stage! The food: OK at best - how can you make masterpieces of cooking for so many people? Entertainment - very good to perfect - the stage show was great and the performers wonderful - all of them were excellent and THIS is why you should go...

Thank Perigrinator
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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