We all do it. It can happen at work or while washing dishes. You put down the phone or the sponge, close your eyes and envision yourself poolside in the tropics. You can see it all: the lounge chair, the sparkling water, palms swaying in the sunshine, fruity drink in hand. . .
Today, you are thrilled to actually find yourself in the tropics — at Koloa Landing on Kauai’s South Shore, to be exact — standing at the foot of one of the most spectacular pools you’ve ever seen. Recently unveiled, the resort’s new Main Pool has been exceeding daydreams regularly. The massive oasis is multi-terraced with waterfalls, a swim-through grotto, an infinity edge, wooden bridges, two water slides, three Jacuzzis and vast open swim spaces. It is 350,000 gallons of wetted bliss.
You pinch yourself. Yup, still here. Dropping your towel on the nearest lounge chair, you plunge into the center of all that twinkling turquoise and glide underwater — weightless, stressless. You hear the rumbling hush of the waterfalls and find the sound both invigorating and relaxing. Floating on your back, you drift, buoyant, gazing up at the towering palms. You wonder, How can there be this much blue sky? And then, How can I get myself a mai tai?
This is what you came for.
Later, friends and family converge on the poolside cabanas, proliferating the cushy couches and massaging coconut-scented sunscreen onto shoulders while praising the glorious day. More of the resort’s signature striped towels are unfurled, plates of papaya salad and tumblers of pineapple juice appear, and the kids start challenging each other to ride the water slides. You challenge the loudest, and the next thing you know — it’s on.
Time to get tubed!
After 37 fist-pumping splash landings into a waterfall-fed pool with high fives all around, you decide you’ve made your point and leave the kiddos to it.
You find your friends who have now gathered at the top terrace overlooking the infinity edge down to the deep blue Pacific. Someone hands you that mai tai and everyone toasts to the view and this time together. A pool staffer (and Kauai native), informs you that this new pool embodies the concept of “mauka makai” which in Hawaiian means it flows “from the mountains all the way down to the sea.”
As the afternoon sun mellows, dusting the clouds pink, you hear live island music drift up from the Holoholo Grill below. Someone in your party announces (rather proudly) that they stopped earlier at the Koloa Fish Market in town and bought fresh-caught ono — now marinating in their villa’s fridge — and they could be persuaded to share. Plans are hatched to grill dinner at the poolside barbecue, grab some ice cream from the lobby’s marketplace for the kids’ movie-time in the villa, and end the night with a tiki-lit soak in the Jacuzzi by the grotto. When someone suggests adding to the menu a platter of Holoholo’s obsessed-about sweet potato fries — everyone hoots their approval and toasts again.
By the following week you will have checked out of the resort and will be heading home. But the next time you’re working hard at your desk or wiping down the kitchen and you find yourself daydreaming about being poolside in the tropics, you’re pretty sure you’ll be envisioning this very day.
The Main Pool is open daily from 7:30 am to 10:30 pm
Post by Erica Karlin, Koloa Landing
Photos by Jennifer Hedayat and Erica Karlin