Many people, after sitting down to watch HBO’s new Comedy Drama, White Lotus will begin to wonder where the show is supposed to be set, and where it is actually filmed. The show is set in a Tropical Paradise, but never actually reveals the location, instead simply relying on strong hints as to the setting.
It is clearly a high-end Luxury Resort set in a stunning Tropical Paradise and gives the impression of a remote exclusive hideaway. But as the show progresses and the characters are added it becomes increasingly obvious, although never confirmed that the Hotel is located in Hawaii. The Hotel Complex and Surrounding location are utterly stunning so naturally, people start to wander the exact Filming Locations of White Lotus. Well for us it was no mystery, so we are here to tell you exactly where White Lotus was filmed and show you how you can go about visiting paradise for yourself.
Warning – We will try our best to avoid any spoilers, but it’s possible we will let a few little things slip as we reveal different filming locations.
Where is White Lotus Filmed?
When we first watched the Program we knew little about it, only it was a fun Comedy Drama, with a Paradise setting and a cast we knew we quite liked. It did not take long for us to clock the Location, The first scene, about 4 Seconds in, Kate Turned to me and Said…”That’s Kahului Airport!”
Sure Enough, we had stumbled upon a TV Show set in our favorite Home Away from Home: Maui, Hawaii. As the Opening Scenes rolled on, the familiar Valleys and Coastal Vistas poured forth from our TV and we knew we had to write this article.
The Show never fully discloses it is in Hawaii. There are STRONG clues, apart from the visuals, that it is Hawaii, but the show never actually openly States it is set in Hawaii. Guests are routinely greeted with the Hawaiian Greeting Aloha, The Flight out of Kahului Airport is headed to Honolulu, and is on Hawaiian Airlines, and the Luau Show is very clearly Hawaiian, but they do just about shy away from 100% confirming the Show is SET in Hawaii.
It is without a doubt, Shot in Hawaii though, as we will clearly show.
We are not going to Review the Show, that is not our job as Travel Writers, we will leave that to the TV Critics but we can definitely lift the lid on the Locations used to shoot this quirky little Drama Series. For what it is worth we thoroughly enjoyed the show and are really happy a Season 2 has been Green-lit, But let’s get on with the Job in Hand.
Where is the White Lotus Hotel?
There are several other locations in the show but the majority of the filming takes place in a very swanky upmarket luxury Hotel. The Shows Vacationing Cast Members arrive at the Hotel Via a small Ferry, giving the impression this is a very Exclusive Hotel situated on its own private Island.
In Reality, this is not the case. The Hotel in Question is the Four Seasons Resort at Maui Wailea. The Hotel is definitely Swanky, and with the prices, they charge it’s a pretty exclusive Retreat. However, it is set right in the heart of Wailea, one of Maui’s busiest Tourist Resorts so far from a remote island retreat.
Prices start at around $500 a night at the lowest of low seasons and easily top $1000 a night when it’s busier. To book one of the suites featured in the show will run well into the sort of money where if you have to ask you can’t afford it! We priced up a short stay during a quiet period and prices around $30,000 a night came back…nice if you can afford it!
There are several on-site Restaurants including a branch of Wolgang Pucks Spago, along with a Steak and Seafood restaurant and an upmarket Italian. Naturally, there is an On-site Spa and several pools along with access to the beach. Overall the hotel is pretty much as featured in the Show, only maybe without some of the “goings-on” featured…Maybe…
Where is the Lotus Hotel Beach?
The Four Seasons/White Lotus is Oceanfront, and the Show gives the impression of a Private Beach. The Beach in Question is Wailea Beach, a fairly upmarket haunt, but ALL beaches in Hawaii are public and you will have no problem getting a spot on the sand of this wonderful stretch of sand.
It is one of our favorites in the area and has excellent Snorkelling. The Father and Son of the Show have a try at Snorkelling and report back fairly disappointing Sucess, This is further reinforced by the Hotel Manager, but in fact, as you explore the rocky edges of the Beach there is a host of stunning marine life. There are regular Turtles that swim here and as you swim around the headland to the Left/South of the Beach there is a maze of boulders and Lava Rocks filled with fish.
We really like the beach and there is definitely a chance of Celeb Spotting as the Four Seasons is on one of several high-end hotels that line the beach and these are the go-to haunts of Celebrities who head to Maui, and the Beach is where they flock to grab that perfect Hawaiian Paradise Selfie for their Social Channels!
White Lotus Pineapple Suite
*** Tiny Spoiler ***
Very early on the Hotel make a large error and double book the Hotels most prestigious suite, the Pineapple Suite. This is a long-running theme of the Show as the Honeymoon Couple’s husband fights with Armand the Hotel manager to get the room they booked. Eventually, the couple gets their room and the three of them (the husband’s mom is along for the ride now) Get into the Room. The room used for this is the stunning 3 Bedroom Lokelani Presidential Suite.
During the endless arguments with the manager, one of the features of the Room is the on-Deck Plunge Pool. When the Couple and Mother, inspect the outside deck they discuss the pool with the mom stating it’s smaller than she imagined. Handily the pool is never actually shown in shot for us to admire. That is because it’s not real and the Suite in Question has no such pool. It has a stunning outdoor Garden Deck…but no plunge pool. It does have the round Spa Bath, on a very odd position, that ends up being the… well that would be a big Spoiler.
As we mentioned above, expect to pay $30,000 a night as an absolute minimum if you want to stay here!
White Lotus Palm Suite
The Original Room the Honeymoon Couple was given was the Palm Suite, which is an “ELITE” TWO-BEDROOM SUITE which is really quite a downgrade, these only cost £18,000 a night, so a $12,000 difference!
White Lotus Trade Winds Suite
The Mossbacher Family is situated in the incredible “MAILE” PRESIDENTIAL THREE-BEDROOM SUITE which is called the Trade Winds Suite in the Program. This leads to a bit of a goof as the Family struggle for space, with the girls sleeping on a Sofa bed, forcing the Brother to sleep in the Kitchen and subsequently the Beach…However the suite is 3 Bedroomed, more than enough space for all of them, but that would not make good TV Right.
Lile the Pineapple/Lokelani Suite this little beauty is going to set you back a cool $30,000 a night!
White Lotus Arrival Scene
As the guests arrive on the Island, they make their way to shore aboard a charming Wooden Yacht, we reveal more about this boat below. The Hotel Staff assemble on a shore landing ready to welcome the guest in. The Arrival Greeting then takes place on a charming lawned area with towering Palm Trees and Ocean Views.
This is all situated at the Olowalu Landing. As the Guests are greeted they are shown to golf buggies that will shuttle them the short 5 minute trip to their rooms. Ahh… Olowalu is located nearly 25 miles away from the Four Seasons, a good 35 min drive in good traffic, and a lot longer in a Golf Buggy. The Landing is also really poorly suited as a landing for boats this size and is largely disused.
Dring the Arrival Scene and a few other times during the Show the Guests take to the water. We have already mentioned the geographical issues with the arrival, and these continue almost every time a boat trip is taken. We imagine the boat was hired for few days and all filming aboard done in one go. As such all the ocean scenes are over on the West Maui Coastline with the landings in and out of Olowalu Landing. It’s not hard to see why when you look at the stunning Coastal Vistas provided by the West Maui Mountains.
The Same Boat is used for the majority of the ocean filming and the particular Boat in question is the Luxury Yacht, The Vida Mia. This is a wonderful Vintage Steamer that is available for charter or simply for day cruises and snorkeling tours, at fairly reasonable prices. There is just one BIG issue. The Boat operates out of Honolulu…
The Show must have leased the boat and had it sailed over the Maui for shooting. We guess you could do this too but it would be fairly expensive! We are quite surprised they didn’t just use one of the many boats available from Lahaina Harbour. Still, these TV Location managers sneed everything just perfect!
We tried very hard to pinpoint the exact location of the Diving Scenes but were unable to, at least the underwater shots. They look like Lanai and probably are but we just could not pinpoint the EXACT Dice Site, sorry. They do give a really good taste of what diving in Maui is really like, although the intense Purple Filter is a bit much.
The Above water Dive Shots are in the middle of Maalaea Bay, a terrible place to Dive. The bottom would be far too deep, and there is nothing to see there anyway. But it offers several stunning backdrops as the family discusses matters on the boat.
The Boat is used is the Lani Kai II, owned by Maui Snorkelling. This is not really used as a Dive Boat but instead offers fun Snorkelling Trips. For Dive Operators on Maui See our Dive Operators Post.
Overall, We hoped to see more excursions on the Island and hoped the show would showcase the beauty of Maui just a little bit more. Instead, we were limited to mostly Hotel Scenes with a few ocean excursions. There is SO much more to see on the wonderful Tropical Paradise.
Have Your Say
Spotted a location we have not listed and wondering where it is? Just fire away in the comments and we will look into it for you. Think we have got something wrong? Again just let us know below. If you have anything at all to say about This Article, The Program or even the Four Seasons just fire away.