27 May 2024 World leisure: news, training & property
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Spa Business
2024 issue 1

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Leisure Management - Kilolani Spa

New opening

Kilolani Spa

The famous Hawaiian spa has been transformed with a US$55m revamp

Sound healing created by Kalei Uwēko’olani includes native chants of wisdom photo: Grand Wailea, a waldorf astoria resort
The Portal is a multisensorial decompression space photo: Grand Wailea, a waldorf astoria resort
Indoor/outdoor design is a key feature photo: Grand Wailea, a waldorf astoria resort
The spa is a revamp of the famous facility created by Sylvia Sepielli in 1990 photo: Grand Wailea, a waldorf astoria resort

Hilton’s Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria Resort, in Maui, has unveiled its meticulously reimagined spa.

Inspired by the Kilolani – stargazers of ancient Hawaii – the 50,000sq ft sanctuary’s concept centres on the Hawaiian moon calendar and is aligned with the natural currents of the world.

Kilolani Spa’s transformation is the culmination of a US$55 million (€50.8 million, £43.5 million) investment and more than two years of work.

Formerly The Spa Grande, the facility opened in its first guise in 1990 among 40 acres of lush tropical gardens, with design by renowned spa consultant Sylvia Sepielli.

Elevating an icon
The overhaul was led by Tracy Lee, president and founder of TLEE Spas + Wellness, in collaboration with designers from Tihany Design and Rachael McCrory, Hilton’s regional director of spa and wellness.

“We wanted to create more than just a spa; we aimed to craft a sanctuary where guests can reconnect with nature, immerse themselves in authentic Hawaiian healing arts and emerge revitalised,” explains Michael Lahm, vice president and COO of TLEE Spas.

The project involved reframing the spa’s Roman bathing concept to a quintessentially Hawaiian wellness space featuring authentic cultural touch points, a blended indoor/outdoor design and abundant mixed-gender experiences.

It now offers a contrast bathing circuit with DIY scrub stations, a steamroom, a sauna, a vitality pool, waterfall showers and a reflection garden. Each of these amenities is available as gender-specific experiences which then connect to an expansive co-ed environment featuring the island’s first hammam and saltwater flotation pool – along with halotherapy/infrared saunas and a wet lounge.

Noteworthy additions
Kilolani boasts 40 reconfigured treatment rooms, including four for couples and self-contained suites overlooking the Wailea coastline, as well as four scrub rooms in the hammam.

Other noteworthy additions include The Portal, a multisensorial decompression space that integrates key cultural elements of the Hawaiian moon calendar, sound healing and plant medicine.

Tracy Lee, TLEE Spas president and founder, says: “Kilolani harnesses the pioneering vision and lasting heritage of the island’s original wellness destination, delivering experiences that reflect a deep reverence for nature, active lifestyles and authentic healing practices steeped in the soul and spirit of Maui.”

Hawaiian healing
The spa’s programming continuously evolves in tandem with the current anahulu (10-day moon cycle) and features hand-selected native botanicals, holistic bodywork treatments and mindfulness practices enhanced by modern innovations such as the Mynd-Sync vibroacoustic, zero-gravity lounger from LEC.

The menu ranges from Hawaiian cleansing ceremonies, breathwork and astrology readings to a new type of sound healing incorporating oli – native chants for wisdom. The latter has been developed by the property’s cultural programme manager Kalei Uwēko’olani.

Programming was overseen by Jessica Shea, Hilton’s VP of wellness, retail and leisure operations in the Americas and David Erlich, the hotel’s spa director.

In addition, there’s a separate medical wellness clinic operated by Florida-based practice, the Biostation. Here, guests undergo advanced testing on more than 100 biomarkers and in-depth personal consultations with a medical provider who then tailors treatment plans incorporating things such as bioidentical hormone therapy, nutrient therapy, sexual health programmes, medical aesthetics, weight loss and more.

A wellness café, a meditation lounge, a relaxation space, a 2,500sq m fitness centre and a full-service salon complete the offer.

• Dale Hipsh says his involvement in the original Grand Wailea led to his lifelong ‘love affair with spas’. Read more at www.spabusiness.com/dalehipsh

Kilolani Spa suppliers

• Spa consultant: TLEE Spas + Wellness

• Hydrothermal consultant: Bradford Wellness

• Interior design: Tihany Design

• Equipment: Living Earth Crafts and Lemi

• Fitness: Peloton, Tonal and Technogym

• Medical wellness: The Biostation,Future Cosmetics and Haute Beauty

• Body and skincare: Ala Lani, Cause + Medic, Botanika Life, Cryo T-Shock, HydraFacial, Jetpeel, Kauai Pharmacy, Lokelani, Malie, Ola Tropical Apothecary, Pure Noni and U’a

• Salon: Oribe, Dazzle Dry, Shellac and Alana Hair Care

photo: Tracy Lee

"Kilolani Spa harnesses the lasting heritage of the island’s original wellness destination" – Tracy Lee

Originally published in Spa Business 2024 issue 1

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