Waianuhea, Honokaa, Big Island, Hawaii $$$$
Concierge.com's insider take:
Located in the rolling green hills above Honokaa, on the Hamakua Coast, Waianuhea has just five luxurious rooms and feels like a stylish artists' retreat. Finding this solar-powered hideaway can be a challenge; it's best to arrive in daylight, and even then, there are no real landmarks to help you along except that you will turn and drive up toward the mountain when you see Tex Drive In. But once you're here, the extensive grounds and modern ranch-style building decorated with contemporary art, Philippe Starck chairs, and Thai daybeds are incredibly seductive. The rooms vary in size—the Kaulana Akea suite is the largest, with a private courtyard and a separate living/dining room—but all have wood-burning stoves (it gets chilly at night), Wi-Fi, and satellite TV. While breakfast and a sunset wine tasting are included in the room rate, there's no restaurant on the premises, so you have to make the 20-minute drive to Honokaa town for lunch and dinner. (Frozen Amy's organic dinners and a microwave are on hand as a backup.) Aside from that one drawback, this is an excellent home base if you plan to spend a full day, or more, exploring the Waipio Valley.—Cathay Che
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