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Isles scoop up fair share of TravelAge awards

By Erika Engle

POSTED:
LAST UPDATED: 03:19 p.m. HST, Jun 20, 2010



Hawaii visitor industry players and the state itself garnered numerous awards from TravelAge West magazine during its 2010 WAVE Awards program, including one awarded to Oahu as being the Destination with the Highest Client Satisfaction in the United States. Las Vegas; Orlando, Fla.; and San Francisco were the other contenders.

Bruce and Yaling Fisher and their Honolulu-based Hawaii Aloha Travel agency were at the Beverly Hills gala, as he had been nominated for an award as Travel Agent -- Sales Superstar.

The award went to another, but "so honored we did great, even tho we didn't win very proud moment," he said via a post on Twitter.com from the ballroom Thursday evening.

As a runner-up, Fisher did win a "Mexican cruise, not too shabby," he tweeted.

Fisher provided a play-by-play with color commentary from the event and noted how well Hawaii was represented.

The award for Best New Resort or Major Renovation in Hawaii went to Outrigger Reef on the Beach.

Halekulani was named Hawaii's Best Luxury Resort, while Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort and Spa was named Hawaii's Best Resort for a Romance Vacation.

Hawaii itself lost out to Tahiti as Best Destination for a Honeymoon/Romance Vacation. Jamaica and Mexico also had been in the running.

Fisher tweeted disbelief when San Francisco was awarded Best of the West: Best City for a Foodie Vacation.

"What's up with that," he bemoaned online. The city by the bay beat Honolulu, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and Portland, Ore., for its foodie finery.

Pleasant Holidays, formerly known as Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays for its focus on Hawaii travel, raked 'em in, winning awards as the Tour Operator Offering the Best Travel Agent Support, Best Tour Operator -- Hawaii, and Best Tour Operator -- Mexico.

Diane Fraser of Aston Hotels & Resorts reprised her 2009 award as Favorite Individual Hotel Sales Representative, and Fisher congratulated her online in real time.

The full winners list will be posted online June 21, according to the TravelAge West website.

They really like us

The Wall Street Journal seems fascinated by Hawaii's luxe real estate -- and really, why shouldn't it be?

WSJ led its Private Properties real estate section Friday with a report that property owned by the estate of late author Michael Crichton in Hanalei on Kauai is on the block, listed at $12 million. An adjacent home owned by his trust was sold in December for $10.1 million, WSJ reported.

The new listing is for a 1.2-acre parcel with an estate comprising two homes on three lots, built for a doctor in 1926 and renovated in 2002. The main house, 3,000 square feet, has two bedrooms, two baths, a yoga studio and detached three-car garage. The guest quarters have two more bedrooms.

There are tangerine trees and botanical gardens on the property, listed with Bali Hai Realty Inc.

Crichton wrote "The Andromeda Strain," "Congo" and "Jurassic Park," which were made in to movies, that last one on Kauai. Crichton also created TV's long-running medical drama "E.R." He died in 2008 at age 66.

Erika Engle is a reporter with the Star-Advertiser. Reach her by e-mail at erika@staradvertiser.com.






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