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April 8, 2009

Mauna Kea Beach Hotel Celebrates Grand Opening

By Pardhasaradhi Gonuguntla

The Mauna Kea Beach Hotel celebrated its full-fledged return to business as one of the world’s most revered resorts with its Grand Opening festivities this weekend. The iconic Mauna Kea celebrated with themed events featuring lavish dinners and concerts by Hawaii’s most beloved duo, Cecilio & Kapono, and the internationally acclaimed jazz-fusion artistry of Hiroshima.

Jon Gersonde, general manager of Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, noted that all the planning and hard work has paid off. “The resort has never looked better, we’ve had a full-house of guests this weekend, and our employees are energized about all the festivities. All systems are fully up-to-speed and our bookings are solid for the next several months.”

Gersonde noted that 85 percent of the hotel’s employees have returned to work at the hotel and are enjoying the reunion with many long-time Mauna Kea guests. Friday was themed as “Cuisines of the World” with chefs flown in from Japan to prepare a special selection of meals for the guests. A “Hawaiian Pa‘ina Party” was the theme for a Saturday evening party under the stars of the Big Island’s Kohala Coast.

Guests received special Grand Opening amenities throughout the weekend, including Nikon digital cameras, Plumeria Pendants, Hiroshima and Cecilio & Kapono music CDs, Big Island Candies, Mauna Kea Golf Club logo items, Mauna Kea Beach Hotel bags and Mauna Kea gift certificates.

Nightly turndown service included Port Wine and strawberries and fruit and cheese.

Special events for the Grand Opening included two golf tournaments, a special Wine Tasting at the newly opened Manta & Pavilion Wine Bar with its state-of-the-art Enomatic wine system, a Cooking Lesson and special luncheon with Executive Chef George Gomes, Ti Leaf Lei and Skirt Making and Hula Classes, a Hawaiian Trail Hike, Mauna Kea Art Tour and Hawaiian Storytelling.

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