Travel: Des + Chris Hawaiian Honeymoon



If there is one thing you may know about me, it’s that I have always been a beach girl. Not sure how exactly that came about growing up in Indiana and Colorado but the love of the waves, beach and ocean runs through my blood. I lived in Southern California for about 10 years for that very reason prior to moving to Seattle to be with my love. At least Seattle still has water from the Puget Sound and a beauty of its’ own, but nothing can beat the sound of the waves and the sand in my toes.

Being a beach girl and all, it’s pretty surprising that I have never been to Hawaii! I know, I know. Weird, right? Well, there is no greater celebration to visit Hawaii than for a honeymoon! Chris has only been one other time, which doesn’t count, so let’s just say it was our first time in Hawaii as a married couple and it was truly the best trip ever!


We were in newlywed bliss as we boarded our Hawaiian Airlines flight from Los Angeles to Honolulu! The customer service was out of this world and the moment we stepped foot onto the plane, we were transported directly to the beaches of Hawaii and instantly in ‘vacation mode’. It was great!

Chris and I were handed their signature Na Pua cocktail which consisted of white wine and guava juice. It tasted exactly like a tropical escape and was SO good! Honolulu is only about a 4-5 hour flight from Los Angeles so we got to snuggle in our seats and watch movies together. It was quite the treat to just relax after a whirlwind wedding weekend.


Our first stop on our Hawaiian honeymoon adventure was Oahu and the beautiful beaches of Waikiki. We stayed at The Royal Hawaiian, an iconic landmark also known as the Pink Palace. I have so many great things to say about our stay that I could write a novel. First and foremost the hotel is situated perfectly on the soft sand beaches with lawn chairs, water activities, a bar, cabañas and pool to enjoy at any given time.

The suite that we stayed in was made for a king and queen.. or in our case, NEWLYWEDS! 😉 The view we had was phenomenal, made up by the ocean, sunsets, surfers, and stars. Perfectly romantic.


We enjoyed every second of our breakfast and dinners at the hotel’s restaurants, Surf Lanai and Azure. If you didn’t know about our love for breakfast already from my rehearsal brunch post last week then let me tell you… the white mushroom omelette I ordered practically every morning was so light, so fluffy and so delicious that I ate each breakfast as if it was my last.

Chris loved the pancakes and french toast so he ordered one of those almost every day. Sitting outside on the terrace area of the restaurant for dinner was exactly what I pictured a Hawaiian vacation to be. Facing the sunset, drink in hand, husband across from me, the warmth kissing our faces… It was paradise.

IMG_7263Exclusive... NO WEB - Desiree Hartsock and Chris Siegfried Enjoy Hawaiian Honeymoon: Day 2 - NO WEBIMG_7333

The one thing we never want to happen on any vacation is to get bored. We are both very adventurous and enjoy being active, so it’s important for us to take in all that a place has to offer. Oahu was a great first place to go on our Hawaiian honeymoon because of its atmosphere and liveliness. Chris and I loved getting out on the waves on paddle boards and getting close to the surfers that were bobbing in and out of the water patiently waiting for a wave.

Spending time with Chris is always a blast, but nothing else could compare to being together in a tropical place.


The most memorable thing that we did while in Oahu was go to a big luau! It was located out of the city up in the mountain area which gave us a different perspective and view of the island. The Big Kahuna luau was everything I ever dreamed a luau to be. Polynesian dancers with their fun costume changes, local foods, and a fire dancer to top the night off right! If you are ever in Oahu this luau is a MUST!

Watch a sneak peek of the dancers in this clip HERE.


One of the most relaxing things on our itinerary in Oahu was a couples massage at Moana Lani Spa inside the Moana Surfrider Westin Resort that was just a short skip down the beach from The Royal Hawaiian.  The one thing every newlywed couple has to do after a whirlwind of wedding planning is a couple’s massage. So relaxing, so tranquil… so perfect! The room we were in for our spa treatment, Na Mele, was pristine with doors and windows that opened up to the fresh salt air of the ocean and overlooked the vast beaches from all angles. The sounds of the waves were a natural soundtrack as Chris and I were transported to pure rejuvenation. We were blown away by the warm welcome of our massage therapists and the aloha spirit that floated around the room.

Exclusive... NO WEB - Desiree Hartsock and Chris Siegfried Enjoy Hawaiian Honeymoon: Day 2 - NO WEB

The carefree, loving spirit of Hawaii is truly something remarkable to experience and if you ever get the chance you must get a massage at the Moana Lani Spa! We left the spa in a state of euphoria and can both honestly say that was the best massage we have ever had.

On a high from tropical bliss, relaxation and fun, we headed to Kauai to spend the remainder of our trip. Since the Hawaiian islands are all very close to each other it’s easy to hop on a Hawaiian Airlines flight to go from one island to the next without missing a beat.


The moment we landed in Kauai we were in awe of its’ pure beauty and lush landscapes. There is no place on earth, that I know of, that embodies such dense greenery and untouched land. We were excited to explore the island and breathe in the life of Kauai.

As we walked into The St. Regis Princeville Resort we were silenced by the stunning space and incredible views that the location has to offer. We were even more excited when we stepped into our room and had the same panoramic view to wake up to each morning! Beyond beautiful!


The beauty of Kauai is exactly what I imagine an untouched Hawaii to look like and the passionate people of this island take it upon themselves to ensure that the land is preserved and loved. It’s a wonderful testament of life that creates a closeness with nature.

We were eager to explore Kauai, but since most of the land is not visible by foot we decided to board a helicopter to get a bird’s eye view of the beautiful sights. Boarding a helicopter on our honeymoon took us back to our first helicopter experience together in Madeira during the filming of ‘The Bachelorette’. The feelings and the memories of that time brought us full circle as we glided through rigid ‘Jurassic Park’ green mountains and the breathtaking Napoli Coast.


Kauai is known for its laid back, carefree vibe and we were ready to take full advantage of that!

We spent a lot of our time out by the beach or the pool in the glistening sun and enjoyed tropical slushies that went down fast. There is something about a Pina Colada or Mai Tai that can put anyone in total vacation bliss. The stunning gold beaches of The St. Regis Princeville flows effortlessly with the waters of Hanalei Bay to create a majestic postcard.  Without a filter, the incredible beauty of the view shines through!


We lounged out by the beach in one of the Trina Turk cabanas by The St. Regis Pool and it was everything we needed for an all day lounge fest. Not to mention that I couldn’t stop swooning over the beachy teal prints and cushioned day bed in the cabana. I matched perfectly!


Exploration was on our list for Kauai and exploration is what we did! There was a day that was overcast and rainy on our side of the island so we decided to rent a car and chase the sun. We drove about 2 hours south, stopping at any little road to see where it led. Often times those little roads led to a vacant beach or scenic spot that needed to be seen. It was a fun and memorable experience to have a mini road trip on our honeymoon to see these sights together as Mr. and Mrs.


The last day of our trip we enjoyed a beautiful Sunday brunch at the Makana Terrace in the St. Regis. The terrace has a sweeping view of the hillside and the ocean that made me want brunch to last forever. We were sad to say goodbye to such a picturesque place and to our Hawaiian honeymoon, but you can bet that we will be back to each place we visited. We even mentioned before we left how great it will be to bring our kids here one day.

Oahu and Kauai are both places I would highly recommend for a Hawaiian getaway that you will never forget!

Book your trip now with Starwood Resorts and you can thank me later. 😉  Cheers!



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