Mad Bene (“bene” means “good” in Italian) opened to rave reviews in November 2019 in Kapolei Commons, about 10 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas.
They specialize in house-made pasta and pizzas with a distinct east-coast American Italian twist that’s hard to find on Oahu. Even the mozzarella is made fresh. Their menu goes beyond pasta and pizza with diverse offerings of appetizers, salads, entrees, sides, and daily specials. It’s one of those rare menus where you want to try everything.
Don’t forget to leave room for dessert. Their uniquely hand-crafted sorbets, gelatos, or tiramisu should not be missed.
For more information about their business hours and to view their menus, visit https://www.madbene.com/.
One of Hawaii’s signature dishes is poke. Tanioka’s Seafood and Catering, about 20 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas, is considered the best on the island. Specializing in fresh, locally-sourced ahi and aku, they are also known for their extensive pu pu platters. Tanioka’s fuses contemporary local flavors with the nostalgic dishes of Hawaii’s plantation era. Signature items include their famous limu poke, crisp and juicy fried chicken, Grandma Tanioka’s ahi patties, Grandma Sakuma’s maki sushi, Aunty Betty’s inari sushi, fresh sashimi, traditional Hawaiian dishes, and the best tasting spicy ahi and spam musubi in Hawaii!
They’re only open until 3:00 PM, so get there early. There may be a line (out the door sometimes), but Tanioka’s is known for their friendly and very efficient service.
For more information, visit http://taniokas.com/index.html.
Monkeypod Kitchen serves up one of the island’s top-rated comfort foods and is a 10-minute walk from Ko Olina Beach Villas. This unique chowder features locally-sourced ingredients with a Thai curry twist and can be found under the appetizer menu.
The soup highlights fresh Hawaiian foods, such as Maui sweet corn, coconut milk, kale, tomato, and lemongrass. The addition of Yukon gold potato and celery make this deceptively simple dish pack a complex combination of flavors. Subtle, yet hearty, it soothes the taste buds and the soul.
For more information, visit https://www.monkeypodkitchen.com/dine_ko_olina.
The Ko Olina Marina Activity Center is a 15-minute walk from Ko Olina Beach Villas and offers a multitude of ocean and island adventures. Guests can choose from various types of cruises, such as whale watching (seasonal), snorkeling with Hawaiian spinning dolphins and sea turtles, or a romantic sunset cruise. Each expedition is a truly breathtaking experience.
Some may prefer the intimacy of a private charter, including deep sea fishing. Both Ko Olina Ocean Adventures and Ocean Joy Cruises Hawaii are home ported at the Marina and feature all sorts of memorable cruises.
Visitors can also schedule island adventures from hiking, horseback riding, Pearl Harbor, North Shore, surfing lessons, and much more.
For more information, visit http://www.koolinamarina.com/activities/.
Semisub One is the only vessel of it’s type in the world launching daily cruises from Honolulu Harbor, about 40 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas. Oahu’s brand new semi-submersible, jet-powered catamaran offers guests a one-of-a-kind adventure from unique underwater viewing pods. Visitors can also admire the above surface views from the main or upper decks.
Semisub One offers daily Two-Hour Reef Cruises, as well as a Friday Night Fireworks Dinner Cruise.
During the two-hour reef cruise, guests take a short sail to a special reef location and are escorted into an underwater pod for approximately 20 minutes. Visitors are encouraged to take photos and videos of the beautiful reefs and marine life, including Hawaiian sea turtles and reef sharks. When not in one of the special viewing pods, guests can relax on deck in comfortable captain-style chairs and enjoy a delicious continental style meal.
For more information or to book a seat, visit https://www.semisub1.com/.
Savor one of Oahu’s best weekend brunch buffets at the Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina (a 15-minute walk from Ko Olina Beach Villas). La Hiki Kitchen’s Brunch for All Seasons (11:00 AM to 2:00 PM Saturday and Sunday) offers a spectacular selection of food stations that will delight every desire — build-your-own mini poke bowl station and fresh sashimi; grilling station with steak, chicken, and lobster tails; meat carving station; chilled seafood on ice (including oysters and shrimp); omelet bar; sought-after brunch staples like Eggs Benedict, bacon, tater tots, and croissants; and a generous dessert bar with assorted cookies, mini donuts, cheesecakes, and more.
The $75 price includes water, soft drinks, coffee/tea, and a Bloody Mary per adult. A glass of wine, beer, or cocktail can be substituted for the Bloody Mary. Children ages between 5 and 12 are $25 and ages 4 and under are $15. Don’t wait until the last minute to book your table at this weekend extravaganza, as it often books out three weeks in advance.
For more information or to book a table, visit https://www.fourseasons.com/oahu/dining/restaurants/la_hiki/ .
Relax and unwind with free family yoga about 15 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas. Families gather at Ka Makana Ali’i for Keiki Yoga on the lawn every Thursday from 10:00 AM to 11:00 AM in Center Court. Instructors will guide children through various focused activities such as learning yoga poses, holding poses, learning stillness, and working with props while going on a story telling adventure.
Yoga mats are provided and parents are welcome to join. Parental supervision is required at all times.
For more information, visit https://www.kamakanaalii.com/events/ .
Located in Kapolei (about 20 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas), Magnolia Ice Cream & Treats is serving up halo-halo, a popular Filipino cold dessert. The traditional treat places most of the ingredients (fruits, beans, and other sweets) at the bottom, followed by shaved ice. Then it is topped with either (or a combination of) leche flan, ube (mashed purple yam), or ube ice cream. Evaporated milk is poured into the mixture upon serving.
Magnolia may not have the most traditional halo-halo, but they offer a selection of variations and allow customers to tweak ingredients or build their own.
Those seeking simple delights can enjoy a cup or cone from their numerous, unique ice cream flavors or a refreshing Hawaiian shaved ice.
To view their full menu and locations, visit https://www.magnoliatreats.com/home.
The Honolulu Museum of Art and Spalding House, about 40 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas, contains over 60,000 works of art. The collection houses Asian, European, Hawaiian, American, and contemporary art. Visitors will find works by Claude Monet, Vincent Van Gogh, Paul Gauguin, and Georgia O’Keeffe, as well as thousands of ukiyo-e woodblock prints, including “The Great Wave Off Kanagawa” by Hokusai. The ceiling near the Doris Duke Theatre showcases Dale Chihuly’s blown-glass sculpture, “Reef.”
HoMA was founded by Anna Rice Cooke and the Honolulu Academy of Arts was built at the site of her former home on Beretania Street. In 2012, The Contemporary Museum at Spalding House, built by Cooke, merged with the academy to create the Honolulu Museum of Art.
Spalding House is tucked away on Makiki Heights. HoMA admission covers both locations and a free shuttle runs between the two every Tuesday. It has five galleries in addition to the Cades Pavilion and outdoor Surface Gallery. The Spalding House Café also offers a picnic-basket lunch and mats so you can eat on the lawn. The expansive garden has fantastical bridges and pathways, as well as moving outdoor sculptures.
For more information, visit http://honolulumuseum.org/.
The Farmers Market at Ka Makana Ali‘i is 15 minutes from Ko Olina Beach Villas. It features delectable local fruits and vegetables, tropical plants and flowers, and locally-made foods. Visitors can sample products and find distinctive handmade goods while enjoying live local Hawaiian music and entertainment.
Every Wednesday from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM
Every Sunday from 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM
For more information, visit https://www.kamakanaalii.com/news/farmers-market/2129998387/.