Where to Watch the Sunset on Maui: Keawakapu Beach

Palm trees and prime real estate: Keawakapu Beach

There’s just something about tropical Hawaiian sunsets that makes you want to kick back and enjoy them while sipping a cocktail served in a coconut. Maui’s Keawakapu Beach, located on the Kihei shore, some of most stunning views.

Lava rocks in the sand make sunsets moody and interesting

It’s a bit of a drive from the stretch of high end resorts in Wailea, but that means it is has a low tourist-to-sandy beach ration, and the beach is open to the public.

The sunsets at Keawakapu beach inspire you to break out your camera

The Mana Kai Hotel has the best stretch of waterfront sand and views, making the restaurant on it’s ground floor, the 5 Palms Kihei, a popular spot to enjoy the sunset.

Great spot for sunset couples selfie

The 5 Palms Kihei serves half price pupus and sushi during it’s oceanfront happy hour from 3:00pm – 7:00pm daily.

Outrigger canoes paddle by at during sunset

I shot this panorama of Keawakapu Beach and the Mana Kai hotel on my iPhone 5s

Sunset waves GIF

If you’re in Wailea, I’d highly suggest heading to Keawakapu Beach around sunset to get your Aloha on.

5 Palms Kihei

2960 S Kihei Rd

Kihei Maui, HI 96753

(808) 879-2607

Oceanfront Happy Hour – Half Price Sushi & Pupus
3:00 pm – 7:00 pm and 9:00 pm – 11:00 pm Daily

Keawakapu Beach

S Kihei Rd,

Kihei, HI 96753



Where to Eat in Wailea: Morimoto Maui

Hamachi tacos at Morimoto Maui

If you’re looking for a great restaurant in Wailea, I highly recommend checking out Morimoto Maui located at the Andaz Maui Resort. This Hawaiian outpost of Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto’s eponymous restaurant is great for advanced foodies and sushi novices alike.

Left: Ishi Yaka Buri Bop Right: Ramen soup (Morimoto chicken soup)

Morimoto Maui’s menu had so many dishes that I wanted to try, that I ate at this restaurant four times during my recent trip. I also craved it as soon as I left.

Sushi and pickled ginger at Morimoto Maui

The menu focuses on a mix of Western and Japanese dishes, using the freshest local Hawaiian ingredients. The whole vibe is upscale yet casual, and the setting is modern, laid back and Aloha chic.

Patio at Morimoto Maui

The restaurant is has a small outdoor bar, a covered outdoor patio, sushi bar, and indoor seating options.

Tempura calamari salad served with quinoa and white miso dressing ($19)

Morimoto Maui is a great choice for foodies and beach bums alike– the vibe is mellow and you can totally cruise in for lunch in your cover-up and flip flops.

Ishi yaki buri bop: yellowtail on rice bowl prepared table side in a hot stone bowl ($30)

Open for both lunch and dinner, Morimoto Maui has innovative and classic dishes. I loved the hamachi tacos made with yellowtail, avocado, and creamy nuoc cham ($16) so much I ordered them every visit. Despite the hot and humid tropical environment, the ramen soup with chicken ($16) is also a standout and big enough to share. I noticed it on a lot of tables.

The yellowtail on rice after being prepared tableside

Sushi and sashimi is top notch. The Ishi Yaki Buri Bop ($39)– a rice bowl made with yellowtail cooked at your table in a hot stone bowl was inspired, delicious and satisfying. It’s also fun to order.

Sunset Yuzu Drop ($15) cocktail at Morimoto Maui

The restaurant has an inspired and witty cocktail list (Mai Chai or Sibiscus Hazerac, anyone?) as well as an extensive list of sakes and wines.

Morimoto Maui’s Aloha Chic Bar

The service is as impressive as the food. I’d suggest making a reservation if you’re planning on coming for dinner, particularly if you have a seating preference. Reservations can be booked through the restaurant or via Opentable.

Morimoto Maui

3550 Wailea Alanui Drive

Wailea, Hawaii 96753

808 573 1234


Lunch: 11:30 AM – 2:00 PM, daily

Dinner: 5:30 PM – 9:30 PM


Milo, the Paddle Boarding Dog of Maui: A Photo Essay

Milo pulling in his paddle board on Wailea Beach

On my trip to Maui earlier this month I was playing in the waves of the Pacific when I spotted a chocolate lab astride a paddle board with his owner. I swam a bit closer and chatted with the dog’s owner and was introduced to Milo, the paddle boarding dog of Maui.

Milo even brings in his paddle board to shore. Check it out in this short video clip I shot on my iPhone 5s:

Milo in action

Milo shakes it off

Like most labs, Milo works for tennis balls

Milo’s owner keeps two tennis balls tucked into her bikini bottoms for times when Milo falls off the board and decides to swim off. Labs are genetically engineers to retrieve tennis balls.

Milo’s face in action is one of fierce determination

Milo at work

Milo probably needs a Go Pro camera to capture his true awesomeness, but I thought I’d share these images with my blog readers just for fun.

Another day at the office for Milo

I met Milo on beach at the Andaz Maui. He made a lot of friends that day.

The Andaz Maui Beach Crew has paddle boards for humans too

Paddle boarding is good fun and a great core workout. Fortunately the beach crew at the Andaz Maui has paddle boards for human guests and stand up paddle board lessons along with other fun beach activities.

Is it Worth It To Go Watch the Sunrise at Haleakala on Maui?

First glimpse of the sun at Haleakala

If you’re visiting Maui for the first or 15th time and looking for things to do, someone is going to suggest going to see the sun rise at Haleakala. The concierge at the Andaz Maui suggested I leave at 2:30 am and “bundle up” because temperatures (and wind) up at the 10.000 foot crater summit can be very chilly before dawn.

Crater Coffee: your last chance for a cuppa before Haleakala

The drive from Wailea was 90 minutes and pretty easy. The road to Haleakala is not as well paved as the more heavily traffic tourist roads on the island, but the winding part (full of hairpin turns) was only after I entered the park.

Plan a pit stop at Crater Coffee (open from 3-7 am ) for your last chance for caffeine fix, pastries and bathrooms. The coffee is good and service friendly and convince you it was worth it to get up so early.

Clouds before sunrise

I arrived at the parking lot at the summit an hour before sunrise. The stargazing was incredibly. Watching the clouds shift before dawn was mesmerizing. I headed to the far side of glass visitor hut at the summit, so that the hut would buffer me from the wind. I shot this time lapse video of the sunrise on my iPhone 5s using the Sunrise and Sunset preset on the TimeLapse App.

Is it worth it go see the sunrise at Haleakala? Totally.

The changing colors and shifting clouds are all part of the Haleakala sunrise show

If getting up early doesn’t work for you, some people prefer to come to watch the sunset. You can check sunrise and sunset time for Haleakala here.

The parking lot at the summit after sunrise

There are also several tour companies that offer bikes for you to bike down the crater after sunrise.

I loved how this guy’s blanket makes him look like a superhero

My advice- don’t miss the sunrise. It’s unforgettable. It was well worth the effort. NOTE: mobile phone service is spotty once you enter the park.

The glass shelter at the summit of Haleakala

Haleakalā National Park

Address: Kula, HI, United States (Directions)

Open 24 hours

Phone: (808) 572-4400

You can check out the weather forecast for the crater summit here.

Daily passes are non-transferable and are valid for 3 days including the date of purchase:

Private Vehicle: $10.

Motorcycle: $5.

Per Person: $5.

Cinespia’s Purple Rain Screening at Hollywood Forever: a GIF and Photo Essay

Palm trees a DJ, and a Disco ball at Cinespia at Hollywood Forever

September’s weather in LA has been glorious and Friday night’s weather was perfect for Cinespia’s 30th Anniversary Screening of Purple Rain at Hollywood Forever Cemetery. A DJ got things got the party started.

Dance as if everyone is watching GIF

DJ Questlove (of The Roots, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and a zillion other projects) arrived late due to flight delays but was as charming as ever spinning tunes (including) Prince before the film started. Questlove’s twitter is worth following.

Questlove fist bump

DJ Questlove in action at Cinespia

I hadn’t seen this classic rock and roll film in quite some time. The combination of strange early MTV-era editing, overacting, and kick ass soundtrack made for a great time.

Purple Rain features an overabundance of Prince close ups

There is no denying the campy appeal of Purple Rain, but the film won Prince an Academy Award for Best Orginal Song Score. It’s worth watching Prince’s Oscar acceptance speech for oodles of 80s goodness.

Prince close up GIF

Prince has a new album  called ‘Plectrum Electrum’ that will be released on September, 30th 2014. You can pre-order it on iTunes USA, or  Amazon.

Morris Day

Until I re-watched the film, I did not realize that the Rev. Al Sharpton’s fashion muse was Morris Day, the villain in Purple Rain.

Port-a-Potty line up at Cinespia

Cinespia’s 14th season is coming to a close, but there are still two great films coming up: The Keanu Reeves classic The Matrix and Roman Polanski’s Rosemary’s Baby. The latter’s especially creepy score will pair nicely the groovy cemetery environs.

Cinespia at Hollywood Forever Cemetery

6000 Santa Monica Blvd.

Hollywood, CA 90038

Sat 9/13 – The Matrix

Sat 9/20 – Rosemary’s Baby

Buy Tickets

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