We stayed in the Hale Lani cabin - and everything everyone says about the beauty, the privacy, the amentities...all true.
We were there for 5 nights of our honeymoon, after staying at a resort in Wailea (Maui) and two nights in Hana (Maui). It was a welcome change to be in a home, with a kitchen, laundry, etc. we were really pleased and would most likely recommend the place to any other honeymooning couples. a few things to note though:
- the trip down to Secret Beach is VERY long and VERY steep, although the website does not seem to suggest as such. It is not easily accessible and I highly recommend this only to people in good shape. There is a driveway that gets you closer - only when we did drive down there to avoid the climb, property management informed us that was 'not allowed' and made us move our car back to the cottage. This is completely contrary to the owner's early indication that we had full access to the 35 acre estate. Even after we told them that I had had two knee surgeries this past year and it was painful to get up and down the path, we were still told we had to move our car.
- the owners and property manager seem more interested in keeping their house damage and dirt free than in making sure their guests are informed and having a nice time. Even the instructions when we showed up seemed a bit harsh - telling us not to use our roller luggage on the floor or wear shoes in the house. The instructions did not let us know how to use the complicated appliances in the home or provide us with many suggestions for things to do in the area. The property manager was also not willing to help us book activities and sent us only a few suggestions before we came out there (one of which with an incorrect url). For $500/night, a bit more customer service would have been nice, especially since the website seems to suggest that there are all kinds of things to do at the cottage and with the help of the staff.
- the place is TINY. We were surprised at how unnecessarily small it was and it was as if the owners took great pains to ensure that it was as small as possible. I.e. you are unable to do some laundry and watch TV at the same time in this place, as a space saver.
I know this review sounds harsh, but there are some wonderful things to note.
- the animals around this place are amazing...we had birds, gheckos, toads all around us and it was wonderful
- i saw another review talk of an insect problem. we NEVER experienced that. Never saw a ghecko or ant in the place.
- the bed is the most comfortable we have ever slept on. Some of the best nights sleep in our lives were spent there...
- the jacuzzi is lovely and very private
- the appliances are top notch...although a bit complicated to use. Good luck trying to microwave or bake something!
But we really did have a lovely time, we just may have chosen differently if we had all of the information beforehand. This is clearly an expensive option for renting a cottage in Kauai so we had really high expectations - the house was lovely, but for that much money, there should have better customer service and closer proximity to the beach.
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After researching for something small, romantic and self contained on the island of Kauai for several weeks, I finally stumbled upon the Secret Beach Hideaway website. Wow! From the looks and the description it seemed to be perfect, however nothing could prepare us for the actual property!
We stayed for 5 nights in the Hale Lani villa and all I can say was that it is even more amazing in person then even this description or the one on their website can provide. If you are looking for total indulgence, peace and quiet, romance and basically to get away from everything. Hale Lani is the place to do it (this is coming from someone who doesn't relax very easily while on holiday!)
From the sound of the waves below waking us up in the morning, to the sunset cocktails on the front porch, everyday was fantastic. We leisurely explored the island (highly recommend a helicopter tour..we used Blue Hawaiian..fantastic), dined out, but mainly we took full advantage of the beautiful facilities and grounds of the Secret Beach Hideaway.
If you want the ultimate indulgence, be sure to book an 'onsite' massage with some of the providers listed in the in room guide. My wife had one with Ocean that was incredible.highly recommended.
Overall I would highly recommend this property for people looking to getaway from everything and spoil themselves. We left our young kids at home with their grandparents and totally recharged for 5 days. We will definitely be back when the bank balance returns to normal! :)
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This was fantastic. You expect places to be a little over advertised and hope that it lives up to its reputation. This place exceed all of our expectations. We have a very priviate, very quiet stay. Only sounds were from nature. We spent every evening on the lani watching the sunset. We bought the makings and cooked ourselves one night and did carry out a number of times. Breakfast was always fresh fruit and muffins. We did not want to go out to eat when we had such a wonderful place all of our own.
The outdoor shower got a lot of use. It really is outdoors on the side of house with a view of our lawn but very private.
There was a nicely maintained trail to Secret Beach. In fact they were working on it while we were there. It is a ways down and might take 10 or 15 minutes but not a problem if you are in reasonable shape. I'm 67 and my wife is also over 21.
The Hale Lani cottage is small but very much first class.
We stayed at the Hale Lani cottage for a week in October 2005 during our honeymoon. Upon our arrival at 10 PM, I was so excited when we drove through the property gates and toward the cottage. When we got out of the car I first noticed what I thought to be small lawn decorations that resembled frogs spread about the property surrounding the villa. I asked the manager who welcomed us if those were purchased from Smith and Hawkin and she said they were real toads. There must have been 50 of them. I was so disturbed by this, as most brides would have been. Every evening they would come out once it became dark and sit under the landscape lighting and beneath the villa porch door lighting. To enter and leave at these times, meant running out to make sure the toads would not jump inside. Often times the toads would jump at the glass sliding doors. On our first full day there, my husband went to remove the hot tub cover and there were about 20 frogs hiding underneath the cover around the perimeter of the tub itself. It was so disgusting to see. They could not be easily swayed to move either. As a result, I would not get into the tub that day or any days after that.
To add to this, there was a family of 3 geckos that lived in the villa. It was like clockwork - every night at 5:45 PM the 3 geckos would crawl out of the ledge located where the edge of ceiling meets the main villa wall in the living room (above the bedrm. door). For the next 12 hrs., the 3 of them would lurk about the villa. This really creeped me out. I asked one of the managers if she would have someone get rid of them, and she told us we were on an island and that it was normal. (In the letter we received from management, prior to arriving on the island, they indicated that we should keep doors closed so that geckos do not get into the villa. Little did I know that they already lived inside it.) When they were not resting on the slope of the cathedral ceiling they were hiding in the plant on the kitchen counter, running up and down the kitchen walls, or climbing along the bedroom ceiling. And of course, you have to watch out for gecko droppings that would appear on the floors. I was absolutely grossed out when one gecko decided to live behind my bath towel along the wall in the bathroom. It remained behind the towel for the last 3 days of our visit. As a result, I resorted to using a hand towel. That was the last straw for me, at least I thought.
We bought prepackaged food, like chips and crackers, for the week and put it in the drawers in the kitchen. I even went so far as to double wrap the items that we opened in plastic bags. That did not stop the ants. I had to throw away all of the food from the drawers since ants had infiltrated these areas. It looked like an entire colony had setup residence.
As for the beach, it was absolutely beautiful. However, do not expect to get there via a lush green pathway that they advertise on their website. Yes, there is a short stretch of greenway, but you will soon encounter a steep sloping hill with pieces of wood built into the landscape that are supposed to serve as steps. You have to walk sideways down this steep slope and need to take your time so as not to trip or lose balance on the uneven grounding. Once you have reached the bottom of the slop you will still need to cross a field of brush and branches and then proceed slightly uphill and over more land, and then down a very steep staircase to the beach. It was actually a workout getting to the beach. Also, beware of hissing creatures along the paths.
Aside from all that I have described, it is a beautiful property and the views are outstanding. Although, I wish I would have known about the downsides before I decided to book this property for my honeymoon.
My wife and I spent the last 5 days of our 10-ten Kauai vacation in Hale Nanea at Secret Beach Hideaway. In short, we were blown away. From the cottage, to the tropical garden and pathways that led to the beach, to Secret Beach itself, to the majestic views of Bali Hai, this enchanting place was truly a heaven on Earth.
The cottage, Hale Nanea, was incredible, and included a gourmet kitchen, a great double-headed shower, top-shelf appointments and decorations, and the most comfortable bed we've ever slept in. The beautiful lanai (with a great hot tub) overlooking a long bluff to the ocean was a great place to relax and take in the great scenery.
We were amazed when we took our first walk through the tropical garden to Secret Beach. The landscaping and the flora itself were beautiful and having our own pathway to the beach was great.
On our first arrival to Secret Beach the surf was relatively calm, but by our last two days the ocean was raging with 20-foot waves. It was an inspiring and humbling sight as we watched the pounding surf for hours. Pounding surf or not, Secret Beach was one of the most beautiful beaches we have ever visited.
Secret Beach Hideaway is truly an amazing place and well worth the steep prices. You really do feel as if you are alone in the paradise of Kauai's magical north shore. However, it seemed like a lot of building was ocurring in the area and we saw a real estate magazine that showed some of the parcels around Secret Beach's property to be for sale. Hopefully, it won't change the private atmosphere of Secret Beach Hideaways. This paradise should not be tampered with.