We attended this luau on May 9, 2006 and had a terrific time! I've never been to a luau, so I'm not sure what to compare it to, but here's my impression.
When we got there, we found that we had been upgraded to Premier seating for free (I assume because not enough people paid for Premier seating and they had to put someone there). We stood in line at the gate in hot sun for about 10 minutes which was not enjoyable, but then they let us in. They greet you with a shell lei and then have you pose with the hula girls for a picture... I asked the girl if you had to pay for the pictures and she said no, but it turns out that you did have to pay for them at the end... I guess she meant you don't have to pay to HAVE the photo taken, but if you want the photo you have to buy it. The photos were nice but ours had water spilled on it, so we didn't bother to ask how much it was.
The luau is held in a covered pavilion. They have Mai Tais, Blue Hawaiians, beer, and non-alcoholic punch and the bar was open as soon as we walked in. They had plumeria leis for sale for $10, as well as other crafts and jewelry.
The imu ceremony is outside in a nice garden setting. There is no actual hole in the ground. They said the Health Department doesn't allow them to cook the pig in the ground, but I'm pretty sure that other luaus do that. They said that they cover the pig with plastic and cook it on the ground. The ceremony isn't really a ceremony, it's just a guy that explains how the pig is cooked and some of the history with a couple of jokes thrown in.
The food was very good... I thought the pig was excellent, but my mom and dad said it was dry. My dad said the teriyaki chicken was among the best he's ever had. The beef was bad. They also had fish, garden salad with a wonderful dressing, macaroni/potato salad, poi, pineapple, sweet potatoes and some other things. For dessert it was rice pudding (awesome!), brownies, and pineapple upside down cake.
The entertainment was excellent... the music was good, though I would have preferred it to be quieter during dinner so people could talk to each other. The dancers (male and female) were very beautiful. They did a lot of really high energy Tahitian dances, you could see them breathing hard when it was all over. They did the obligatory "teach the tourists how to dance" thing, and sufficiently embarrassed many of us, much to the delight of our photo-snapping relatives. The fire dancers were awesome at the end! All in all, it was VERY enjoyable and one of the highlights of the trip.
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