Oahu and Maui cited on Disney destination docket
The Walt Disney Co.
has launched a new travel site at family.com/travel
and unveiled a list of "50 Best Family Vacations."
Talk about your integrated marketing.
Oahu placed at No. 11 on the list, which really goes up to 54. Maui is at No. 48.
The list was compiled with input from parents, travel experts and -- ta-da! --family.com editors, she said, suspiciously.
And yet, Disney's own opposite-coasted theme parks did not automatically nab first and second place. Yellowstone National Park in Wyoming and San Diego got those spots.
Walt Disney World in Florida is No. 3, while Disneyland, Calif., is No. 14.
The site suggests age-appropriate itineraries and places to stay. On Oahu, it is the Embassy Suites at Waikiki Beach Walk, and on Maui, the Grand Wailea Resort.
It would not seem unreasonable to surmise that the suggested Oahu accommodations will change in 2011, when Disney plans to open its 800-unit resort hotel and Disney Vacation Club on 21 oceanfront acres at Ko Olina Resort & Marina.
Plans for Disney's first stand-alone resort outside its world-famous theme parks were announced last October.
Voting has begun for "America's Favorite Cities," the second annual survey by Travel + Leisure magazine, Headline News and CNN.com.
The entities have nominated 25 cities, including Honolulu, for your voting pleasure. The survey compiles voting by residents and visitors separately, which provides for enlightening views of who thinks what about where -- but not why.
Last year, we did not rank our fair city No. 1 in any category.
We gave ourselves second place for weather, active or adventure vacations; third place for girlfriend getaways and relaxing retreats; No. 4 for diversity of people, family vacations and romantic escapes and fifth for ethnic food. Fifth? Really?
Visitors ranked us No. 10 for ethnic food. Then again, many have been led to believe that a hamburger or chicken breast slathered with (Japanese) teriyaki sauce and topped with a slab of pineapple is authentic Hawaiian cuisine. Please. Somebody stop the indignity.
To vote, you needn't rush to a school cafeteria after work and wait for hours in line for a scrap of paper on which to cast your ballot, or for a sketchy count of raised hands. The online survey takes less than five minutes.
"Morning Express" on Headline News will update the vote on select Fridays and the final tally will be revealed Sept. 10 on TV and online. T+L's October issue, which drops Sept. 23, also will report results.
is a reporter with the Star-Bulletin. Call 529-4747, fax 529-4750 or write to Erika Engle, Honolulu Star-Bulletin, 500 Ala Moana Blvd., No. 7-210, Honolulu, HI 96813. She can also be reached at: email@example.com