A Maui Wedding to Remember

By Lacy Varner

In my opinion, the words Maui and wedding go together like ice cream and cake or peanut butter and jelly – a perfect match. And since there are approximately six times as many non-resident weddings performed on the Valley Isle each year as resident weddings, it seems that many visitors agree.

I recently found myself blessed enough to be having my own dream Maui wedding and thought I would share my experience for those who are still planning, dreaming, or even just browsing. Hopefully my musings will provide a bit of insight or at the very least, an entertaining read.

Ka Hale Olinda
Renna Singson/Contributed Photo

Upon getting engaged, I knew two things immediately – 1) the wedding would take place on Maui and 2) it would not be at the beach. The first thing was a no-brainer. I was born and raised on Maui, so my love for its unique beauty is unabashedly biased. The second thing, you may not have expected, I know, but hear me out.

Growing up in Hawaii, I’ve certainly attended my share of beach weddings. And while they are undoubtedly beautiful, I have three major grievances with them: sand, glare, and strangers passing by.

Ka Hale Olinda

Now everyone has their own deal breakers and if a beach wedding is what you want, a beach wedding is absolutely what you should have. It just wasn’t for me. I knew I wanted an outdoor venue on Haleakala where we could enjoy the view and the sunset.  But first things first, I needed a coordinator to help me pull this all together. Attempting to get things done from an island away (I live on Oahu) proved far more difficult than I anticipated.


Life became so much easier once I found Kim at Exclusive Island Weddings. She basically asked for my vision and my budget and took it from there. It was like magic. After a few phone meetings, my dream wedding was planned, designed, booked and the most absolutely perfect venue found.

Ka Hale Olinda

Ka Hale Olinda combines the exact look and feel that I wanted for our big day.  If you’re considering an alternative to a beach wedding, this is, without a doubt, the most beautiful and versatile venue available. Situated in the middle of a pasture, among rolling green hills and Eucalyptus and Pine trees, Ka Hale Olinda offers a stunning view of Central Maui and the West Maui Mountains. There’s also a house you can get ready in, a large yard where you can place your event tent, and plenty of parking.

Ka Hale Olinda

Before I knew it, the day had arrived and lucky for us, Maui decided it was a good day to show off. The weather was bright and sunny with a little breeze. We even got a gentle mist of rain when I walked down the aisle. But those were just warm ups for the big finale. After dinner, we were gifted with the most gorgeous sunset I’ve ever seen. Don’t believe me? Check out the pictures.

Ka Hale Olinda

So with this experience still fresh in my mind, I present to you my recommendations for making your Maui wedding epically amazing.

  • Hire a coordinator. Consider it an investment in your sanity. I started off trying to plan the wedding myself, but quickly realized it was going to make my life miserable. If that was my experience from an island away, I can’t imagine what it would be like from an ocean away.
  • Find the perfect location, ideally one with more than one pretty spot for pictures. It’s nice to have a variety of backdrops in your photos.
  • Hire a professional photographer. We live in an age where everyone’s got a friend or family member with an expensive camera and an interest in photography. It is not the same. In a few short hours, everything you planned and worked for will be over in a blur and all you’ll be left with are your photos (or video). Make sure they are good.

Vendor Information:
Ka Hale Olinda, www.KaHaleOlinda.com, 808-573-2612
Exclusive Island Weddings, www.ExclusiveIslandWeddings.com

Ka Hale Olinda

Visit www.hawaii.com/weddings for more ideas and information.

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