Turtle Bay Resort
Situated on one of the world’s most scenic peninsulas, Turtle Bay Resort is the only resort on Oahu’s North Shore. Each of the resort’s 452 accommodations offers ocean views, ranging from its 42 newly-renovated beach cottages to an array of villas, guest rooms and suites. Turtle Bay also offers a recently renovated Nalu Kinetic Spa & Fitness Center, a collection of dining venues, two landscaped pools, championship golf courses by Fazio and Palmer, tennis courts, horseback riding, hiking, mountain bike trails and a pump track, a surfing school, and shopping. An off-the-beaten path discovery of the North Shore surrounded by blue waters, Turtle Bay Resort offers authentic Hawaiian experiences that are suitable for both romantic getaways and family travel.
The resort is about a 50-minute drive from Honolulu, between Kahuku, Hawaii to the east and Kawela Bay, Hawaii to the west. The resort owns 858 acres (3.47 km2) of land with five miles of ocean front at Turtle Bay, and features 410 hotel rooms and suites, including the Premier Rooms on the 6th Floor; 42 Beach Cottages that were refreshed in 2015; and manages numerous Ocean Villas, which are larger 2-BR to 4-BR units. The hotel recently unveiled a $45 million resort-wide, eco-sensitive renovation enhancing food and beverage operations, event staging and guest experiences. The hotel was built with three wings on a small peninsula which provides every room with an ocean view. The resort has a variety of restaurants, including Surfer The Bar, a partnership with Surfer Magazine, and The Point Sunset and Pool Bar. The resort also features The Guide Post, a new concept on the traditional hotel concierge, but more interactive and a key component of the Turtle Bay's positioning as an experiential resort. Turtle Bay Resort sits just north of the Kuilima Estates condominium complexes along both of its golf courses, at 21°42′19″N 157°59′55″W.
Turtle Bay Resort opened in May 1972 as Del Webb's Kuilima Resort Hotel and Country Club. In the Hawaiian language kui lima means "joining hands". It was built by casino developer Del Webb (1899–1974) to be the first casino on the island; a gaming initiative was on the ballot in the mid-1970s but it did not pass. Hyatt took over the property until August 1983 when Hilton Hotels & Resorts took over. It was renamed "Turtle Bay Golf and Tennis Resort"—early advertisements had to include a guide to pronunciation.
A potential development deal with Starwood Hotels fell through in July 2007. Although much expansion had been approved in 1985, local opposition had developed against the plans. Governor Linda Lingle suggested the state buy the property in 2008. The Trust for Public Land also tried to raise funds for the preservation effort. Two offers were made by the state in August and November 2008 that would have included surrounding open space, but they were not accepted.
After a threat of foreclosure of investor Oaktree Capital Management from Credit Suisse, a new consortium of investors took over the resort in February 2010. As of 2010[update] it was managed and operated by Benchmark Hospitality International. In December 2013, the management of the resort was turned over to Replay Resorts, based in Vancouver, British Columbia. After four years of court battles, the Hawaii Supreme Court ruled in July 2010 that a Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement must be filed for new development. The Resort, represented by Replay Resorts, released its Draft Supplemental Impact Statement on November 23, 2012 with the Public Comment Period extended until January 18, 2013.
The resort is several miles away from surf spots including Waimea Bay, the Banzai Pipeline, and Sunset Beach. The two golf coures are named after designers Arnold Palmer and George Fazio. The Palmer Course was the site of the Turtle Bay Championship, a PGA Champions Tour Event held from 2001 through 2008, and the Fazio Course has hosted the LPGA Tour's Hawaiian Open. The runways of the World War II era Kahuku Army Airfield have been absorbed into the fairways of the golf courses. The James Campbell National Wildlife Refuge preserves a small pond adjacent to a golf course.
Films and TV shows have been filmed on or near the Turtle Bay Resort. The hotel has been the setting for episodes of Hawaii 5-0, Magnum P.I., Full House, Cougar Town and the short-lived Fox TV series North Shore. The resort featured as the setting for the reunion-movie Baywatch: Hawaiian Wedding and for the 2008 film Forgetting Sarah Marshall. Preserving the undeveloped setting for film locations was one reason given by opponents to the expansion. The Hills cast have filmed at the Turtle Bay resort in Season 5.
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