Free nights, good food in Hawaii

The Baltimore Sun

Hawaii is a big-draw for tourists. Here are some hotel and resort bargains to make it even more attractive:

Across from Kuhio Beach at the east end of Waikiki, the ResortQuest Waikiki Beach Hotel is in the swim with snazzy updates such as Tiki's Grill & Bar, where a "retro South Pacific design" evokes the 1950s. The "Fall Special" at this revamped hip hotel gives guests in ocean-view rooms every third night free, with room rates starting at $264 per night, valid Aug. 24-Dec. 20. A takeaway breakfast in a souvenir cooler is included daily for all guests. Tax is additional. Call 800-514-1969 or go to rqwaikiki

Moving from bustling Oahu to quiet Kauai, the oceanfront ResortQuest Kauai Beach at Makaiwa has been totally renovated with a canoe decor that recalls ancient Hawaiian voyagers. Here the "Fall Special" makes every fourth night free in a garden-view room, with rates starting at $211 per night, plus tax and a $12 per day resort fee. Good Aug. 24-Dec. 18, the special also includes one $50 credit on food or beverages. Formerly called Aston Hotels & Resorts, ResortQuest Hawaii manages 26 properties in Hawaii, all on or near the beach. Call 800-514-1969 or go to rqkauai

Overlooking Napili Bay - and some of the best swimming and snorkeling on Maui - Napili Kai Beach Resort offers a variety of room types, most with kitchenettes and most included in its "Fifth Night Free" program, where four nights purchased at the nightly $260-$440 standard room rate earns a fifth night free. Rates vary by view and size. The promotion is in effect Aug. 24-Oct. 19, Nov. 10-17 and Dec. 1-14. Tax is extra. Napili Kai is near the Kapalua resort area on Maui's western shore. Call 800-367-5030 or go and click on "Packages."

Most of Waikiki's Aqua Hotels & Resorts offer an "Aquavantage" package that includes a free night's stay after four paid nights, through Dec. 20, and some throw in daily continental breakfast as well. Waikiki is home to 10 Aqua Hotels & Resorts, half upscale and half geared to budget-conscious vacationers. In the latter category, room rates at the Aqua Continental start at $115 per night, plus tax. Call 866-406-2782 or go to

North of Kailua-Kona on the Big Island's ritzy Kohala Coast, Kona Village Resort is set to tickle the palate with its Sept. 15-20 "A Taste of the Village" food-and-wine extravaganza. Rates begin at $4,400 for two, including accommodations, all meals, cooking demos, wine tastings and some resort activities. Additional nights are $500 for two persons, including meals. Tax and tips are additional. Guests at Kona Village stay in individual thatched-roof bungalows. Call 800-367-5290 or go to

Margaret Backenheimer wrote this article for the Chicago Tribune.

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