Lily pad has beautiful woodwork and is like living in the treetops. Great lanai overlooking a lily pond that has ducks and blooming lilies. The trees outside are blooming, and the birds flit between the trees and lanai. You can lay in bed and see the mountains beyond the bamboo, palms and blooming trees. The kitchen includes a two burner hot plate, on which we fixed breakfast most mornings, a fridge that froze our eggs, a small micro and other useful small appliances. It has everything you need as long as you aren't preparing elaborate meals. Great bathroom, but hot water can be a problem in the morning. The water heater is solar, switching only to electric heat when there is no sun. Every morning the water was warm, but not hot, so we showered at night. Neighbors have dogs in a kennel, and the barking can be annoying. Most of the time you can't hear them, but if you sleep lightly, bring ear plugs because the combo of free roaming Kauai chickens, barking dogs and croaking frogs can be too much. My husband thought it was too noisy and it didn't bother me at all. I think it will be hot in summer because of the western exposure, but it was lovely in winter! The ceilings are very high and there is a ceiling fan, as well as lots of jalousied windows to let in the breeze. No wifi or cellphone service, but free phone use and cable internet if you bring a computer that can hard wire to it. The owner is a little quirky, asking his guests to help clean up when they leave (wash dishes, take out trash,...), but there is no added cleanup charge so his requests were reasonable. Definitely a nice place, only five minutes from Hanalei and 10 minutes from ke'e beach and the limihuli botanical gardens. I would stay there again!
If you're looking for fun & frolic with lively entertainment, PLEASE, look elsewhere. You'll hate it, and your neighbors probably will be annoyed...
HOWEVER, if you've always wanted to experience living the beautiful sights and sounds of nature at tree level, this rental is just what you're looking for! This was my first "real" (more on that below) stop after traveling from the mainland and I just wanted to kick back. Of course if you want to dash in, drop off your stuff, change to your shorts & swim suit and hit the beach, you can do that too. Beaches are no more that 15 min. away. But, be warned--parking may take a while. Back to the accommodations. I was in "Dawn studio" which is a large space with a queen-size bed in a little alcove and a full-size futon. The space is filled with interesting furniture, paintings & sculptures, and many natural finishes. And the views from the deck are amazing--from the Lily Pond below you and the trees around you to the mountain ranges in the distance. The studio includes a full bathroom (beautiful large open tiled & marbled shower; bath linen; outside bathtub via door from bathroom) and a fully furnished kitchenette.
In addition to beaches (swimming, snorkeling) there are lots of other things to keep you busy within short driving distances. The trailhead for the Kalalau Trail is 15-20 min. away, depending on traffic. In my book, this is a "must"; but it is a pretty strenuous trail--especially if you go past the first half mile or so. The views are nothing short of spectacular!! I've hiked 4 miles (8 mi. roundtrip) only once. (This is as far as one is supposed to go without permission.) But I've gone half that distance at least a couple of times. There are wet and dry caves to explore along the road to the trailhead. Going in the other direction from the house there are more beaches and scenic areas, and of course the town/village of Hanalei. There are some nifty places to eat there, and the Bay is most picturesque. I can go on and on. (Did you guess?!) Point is, there is lots to do on the North Shore and Dawn Studio is the perfect place in the area to stay as a home base. It's also a place to just relax and read, or write, or simply enjoy the natural surroundings. The property has a small elevator, so you needn't worry about having access if you're unable to climb stairs. A washer & dryer are on the site. I didn't need them since I'd just arrived. A couple of notes: 1. You will be in an eco system and there are nocturnal animals. More that one person commented about the "bullfrogs". Yes, you will hear them. The first night I noticed them at first. But then they were no more bother than crickets. 2. There is no air conditioning. You don't need it! There are the natural trade winds and ceiling fans. You can even shed your clothes, no one will see you. Honest! 3. Although there is a small "general store" nearby, I'd suggest that you buy your food in Hanalei on your way in. I will next time. The store isn't very well stocked, IMO. This time I had to turn around and return to Hanalei for even the basics. 4. Especially if you are visiting for the first time, I'd suggest that you plan to arrive in Lihue (airport) in the early afternoon. The last several miles to Hanalei & beyond are a winding two lane road--with several one-lane bridges. You really don't want to experience the drive for the first time in dusk or dark. (It also will be most difficult to find the street you're looking for!) If you're coming from the mainland, just plan to spend the first night in Lihue or Kapaa. (I stayed in Kapaa.) You'll also be sure to find the stores in Hanalei open. 5. Last but not least, make sure to get detailed directions from the manager before you leave home, or at least the airport. Your mobile may not work once you pass Hanalei. If you're still reading--HAVE FUN!!
My girlfriend & I stayed in the "Moon" suite, and I highly recommend it. When we walked in, it was so large that my girlfriend asked where the receptionist was so we could check in. I replied..."This IS our place." and her jaw dropped; she was totally blown away! This vacation was the first where rental properties were used, and due to availability I was forced to secure 2 separate rentals for the 10 day trip. After visiting many other places and seeing other rentals, I really wish I had simply stayed here the whole time!
After staying there for a few days the genuine rest, tranquility and peace began to really soak into us. The spaciousness and being able to unpack into drawers and hang out clothes in the walk-in closet was very nice. Having breakfast on the lanai every morning was absolutely amazing. The kitchen was nicely stocked to be able to make whatever you can imagine; even had a griddle!
There was also really nice internet speeds, boogie boards, snorkel gear, a washer / dryer, and everything you'd need to have a great time!
The wildlife around the property was so fantastic. There were ducks, geese, frogs, and all kinds of birds that really set the tone to have a fantastic trip.
Being a little more remote than most places might deter some people from going, but everywhere we drove had beautiful drives. All the greatest north shore beaches were within 15 minutes max from the property, and the absolute peacefulness of the property made for excellent recharge and resting times.
Best vacation I've ever had!
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We stayed at Lily Pad Studio in mid-October 2013. The location is perfect -- nestled above a lily pond, away from the hubbub of the beach but still walking distance, and a few minutes away by car from Hanalei and Princeville. Views from our room and deck were wonderful, looking south at the lush mountain-scape or down to the lily pond with its blossoms, fish, ducks, turtles and frogs.
Lesley -- rental agent and property manager -- made booking and check-in quite easy, and provided helpful tips on the local restaurant scene, etc. Overall we were delighted with our stay. We're already planning a return visit.
One tip: the great virtue of Rainbow Views -- its natural setting and open air (with screens) rooms -- may be an annoyance for those who light sleepers. If the sounds of nature might keep you awake (i.e., roosters or bullfrogs ), bring earplugs.
What a wonderful find! We were amazed by the views, the accommodations, the architecture and details were phenomenal. I felt as though I were in Jurassic Park, and came to find out later, that the movie was largely filmed in the same valley. This place is in the Hawaiian image I imagined and looked for during the long process of research and inquiries I made before deciding on this one. The booking process was seamless. Fast response, easy booking, great directions, it could not have been better. I felt I had made the right decision for a very big vacation, and long over due. I have to say, the pictures on their website do not do the place justice. But, it made it all the more awe inspiring when we got there. We had everything we needed too. Thank you Ray, for being such a gracious host as well. We would love to return to Kauai someday, and hope to stay at your place again. Jane & Carl Morris