It was perfect timing — just as the temperatures started to drop in New Zealand the Carters Advantage Barefoot group were packing their swimsuits and getting ready for the sun, sand and surf on the island of Oahu, Hawaii.
The group was welcomed with perfect weather and a traditional flower lei, then transported to the magnificent Hilton Hawaiian Village Beach Resort and Spa, located right on Waikiki Beach.
Monday arrived and the fun started with an outdoor Welcome Cocktail Party. Participants learned how to dance the Hula, create their own flower lei, have a tattoo or try the traditional art of “poi pounding”, all while enjoying tropical cocktails as the sun set.
Being in Hawaii set the perfect theme for the Barefoot Beach Party, held at the famous Pink Palace. The event caused many a hotel guest to turn their head as the group arrived in costume and some unusual hula creations were seen! A great band had everyone kicking up their heels.
A trip to Hawaii wouldn’t be complete without sampling a traditional l’uau. Everyone had the opportunity to taste this unique style of food preparation, and enjoyed a Pacific extravaganza of dance from seven Pacific Island nations after dinner.
An island such as Hawaii, with its colourful history and culture, is the perfect destination for optional activities, and many took the opportunity of participating in a tour of Pearl Harbour or circumnavigating the island. For some, the call of the outlet shopping mall was too great and many a great bargain was purchased.
Carters ensured the week in paradise finished on a high note with its farewell function held on board the famous Battleship Missouri, the location of the signing of the Japanese surrender, signalling the end of World War II.
The Barefoot group enjoyed entertainment from the Liberty Belles, as well as the opportunity to look around this historic vessel.
The evening was made all the more special as Alan Bones from Carter Holt Harvey Woodproducts performed the ceremonial flag lowering at sunset, and was presented with the American flag that was flown on the 60th anniversary of the signing of the peace treaty.
It wasn’t long before the sun was setting and the week in Hawaii came to an end. If you were one of the lucky ones to walk Barefoot along Waikiki Beach then we hope you had a great time.
To those who were not able to join Carters, there is always next year. Carters Advantage is excited to announce that Barefoot 2008 will take off to the captivating country of Vietnam.
This gracious and graceful location teeming with natural beauty and culture will be a unique and interesting destination for all who attend.
So start saving those Advantage points — Carters Barefoot Vietnam 2008 awaits . . .