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“Not a great start but OK finish” 3 of 5 bubbles
Review of Honua Kai Resort & Spa

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Honua Kai Resort & Spa
Ranked #8 of 31 Hotels in Lahaina
Certificate of Excellence
Evansville, Indiana
Level Contributor
364 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 184 helpful votes
“Not a great start but OK finish”
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 April 2012

This was our fourth trip to Maui but our first to stay in this property. For our last trip we stayed at the Fairmont in Wailea (which was fabulous). This time we were less than impressed.

We booked our stay through our travel agent (who booked through Pleasant Vacations) in July -- that's important to note because upon our arrival was anything BUT pleasant. We live in Indiana, and the journey to Maui is a haul at best. After three flights ranging from 1 to 8 hours each, we finally arrived for this, our final spring break with the kids on the same schedule -- our daughter is graduating high school this May. Upon arrival to the hotel, we learned that our reservation, for which we had documentation and a locater number, was NOT in the system. In fact, our locater number was identical to one for a family that had just checked out! We were originally to be in tower 1 but because of the mistake (read further for what happened), were moved to the Konea tower. We were treated as though we should be glad for a room at all -- despite that we had the proper documentation -- and the fact that we had PREPAID months in advance for this experience. The lobby in the Konea tower is not nearly as nice and the villas are smaller. Our ocean view was terrible and despite our request to move there was nothing 'better' available. After several calls between us, 'Bobbie' at the Honua Kai, our travel agent, and Pleasant vacations, it was learned that THE HOTEL had not keyed in our reservation. Their less than genuine apology was noted. They offered a $200 courtesy refund and said they couldn't move us back to the orginal building, but could perhaps move us up a floor or two (but not over for a better view). We were NOT satisified, especially since 'Bobbie' never returned our call about moving. However, with this being our final family spring break, we gave up. But we won't forget the way we were shoved off, that's for sure.

The grounds of the property are lovely and well maintained. The pools are small and very crowded (it was spring break for many people)but there are three. Poolside service is severely lacking - -there are simply not enough waitstaff to handle the volume of guests. They try but again -- this is a management issue (or rather, a lack of management) We heard a lot of grumbling about it from other guests. Our kids ran to the Aina market for sandwiches and were happy. Dukes is nice but only so so -- the view makes the place, not the food. For a better Maui dining experience try Roy's at Kaanapali Golf Club for beautiful presentation and terrific fish. I'O and Pacific'O down Front street are outstanding and use the freshest ingredients - which is so well reflected in their presentation and flavors. Longhi's on Front Street was also very, very good. Leilani's at Whaler's Village is one that we always return to because of the view of the sunset from the restaurant -- but Roy's, I'O and Pacific'O are the ones we put at the top of the list - they are that good.

Our two bedroom villa was starting to show wear, despite being in the newer building. Kitchen is nice and well equipped, but carpeted living area had stains from sloppy previous guests -- the kind that just don't come out easily. Annabelle, our daily housekeeper, was lovely and kept us well stocked with Aveda products, laundry detergent, etc... She was certainly a bright spot -- we cannot say the same for the property's management.

I used the fitness center each morning and never saw an attendant. Guests are asked to wipe down machines after using them but that's just not enough to keep them clean -- and they are showing signs of wear. As for a spa -- there isn't one and nowhere did we see any sign that there will be one soon, so the name of the property is misleading at best.

Another note -- the 'daily resort fee' is ridiculous. Include it in the price and stop the nickel and diming! Everyone staying there will use the parking, pools, etc... so why tack on a fee for all those things? Who cares if the price of the room goes up $25 a day, after all? This really got to my husband. It's just nonsensical to tack on an additional fee. They're not the only ones to do it, but it's absolutely maddening.

We love Maui but frankly won't return to this property. It IS very windy -- just a few miles down on the same beach is significantly less so. There are many other properties on the island and based on our Seinfeld like experience (you can take a reservation but you can't KEEP a reservation) and the management's lacadasical approach to guest relations, we'll just go elsewhere next time.

  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
14 Thank kwagmeister
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Rochester, Minnesota
Level Contributor
3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 1 April 2012

We stayed at this resort in October 2011. We got to the hotel one day late due to highways being closed and the charges were waived without any trouble. We stayed in the one room unit. It ws very spacious with top of the line appliances and the bathroom was great....very spacious. The restaurant on the property is very good and the resort is very close to Lahaina. We would give this property the highest recommendation!

  • Stayed October 2011, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank ndshah0
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sultan, Washington
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2012

We stayed in the Hokulani Tower, on the North Side. I would not recommend at all staying on this side, because the view is dirt, more dirt, and all dirt, unless your on the upper floors and closer to oceanfront, real close. We stayed on this side for budget purposes. If you want ambiance and a nice lanai experience, skip this side. The pools are fantastic, and the poolside chairs fill up before 10am, due to a constant stream of 1 person with 8-9 towels coming down and setting one towel on one chair, until they had an entire row. I did a lot of sun bathing, and this was constant. There is a nice central rental area where everything you could want to snorkel, boogie board, rent chairs, learn to scuba, buy sun tan lotion, can be rented. The concierge service is excellent, and the resort staff are very friendly and helpful. The staff from Dukes restaurant comes around the pool, so you can get served while at the pool. The deli on the ground floor opens at 7 and stays open late, and has a great selection of coffees, teas, snacks, and some food. Not too bad on prices, but I did think $3 for a tea was a bit extreme. But it is a nice alternative to the evil empire that is Starbucks. Dukes restaurant has live entertainment until 8:30pm, but if you go without a reservation after 5pm expect at least an hour wait. The food was good, not great, but the waiter did get us the pupu for free after we said the rice was under cooked, in response to his polite inquiry on how the meal was. It wasn't bad, just a tad hard, and we were just critiquing, not really looking for a discount. So when we got it at the end it showed a care factor that many places don't have. Interestingly, I didn't know Duke's is owned by the same company that own's Lailani's. The fitness room has a free weight set, stationary bikes, treadmills, and is well stocked. The only real down side to the stay is the constant stench from the sewage plant virtually across the road. By constant I don't mean every minute every day. I mean if you go to the parking lot, you will smell it, at least once a day. From the room I smelled it a couple of times while on the Lanai, and even once by the Hokulani pool. Honestly, even though I give it 4 stars, because of the smell, I won't stay there again. There are too many options on Maui to chance it happening twice, even though it is probably a hit or miss thing as to when or if, or how much it will smell. I would spend the extra $5 over the $10 a day for parking to get valet parking. Even on a budget I wish I would have.

Room Tip: Stay away from lower rooms, and rooms closer to the road on the Hokulani side.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank mwhenry16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Christina Lake, Canada
Level Contributor
22 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 31 March 2012

Firstly I need to say we normally stay in south Maui and we found kaanapali to not be for us. That being said we would not return to the honua Kai. This is our fourth trip to Maui and we wanted to try the kaanapali area. We were disappointed with the amount of wind at this resort. It was almost always windy during our 11 day stay. Also the traffic noise from the street was very loud. Sitting out on the lanai was not a peaceful experience. We stayed on the fifth floor with a partial ocean view facing the Konea tower. Other reviewers commented on the sewage smell and this is a problem for the whole area not just the Honua Kai. The beach out front is great for snorkeling and the beach path is also great. The condo itself is very clean and has everything you need. The dryers do take longer to dry items but this is not an inconvenience. The resort has great pools that are wonderful for young children. Overall this is a beautiful complex but the noisy and windy location is just not for us.

  • Stayed March 2012
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank ajkri
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sevierville, Tennessee
Level Contributor
50 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 March 2012

I can't imagine how others had anything but a wonderful experience at this property. It's a beautiful place and everything was immaculate. The buildings are fairly new and the units are top-of-the-line. The kitchens will make you jealous and there is a sound system through the whole unit. We found the service to be great, the pools were wonderful and the view was incredible. The pool areas were great, with heated water and multiple hot tubs. Yes, kids like to play in both the tubs and the pools, heaven forbid! We didn't find it hindered our enjoyment of either.

I didn't read anything about this before our trip, but the beach in front of the resort is considered one of the best for snorkeling on Maui. Even if you aren't big in the activity (my wife is pretty timid about it) there are areas where you can have a smooth entry and the resort will rent you equipment, including boogie boards. If you've ever thought about trying snorkeling, you should definitely do it here. There are countless coral stands, exotic fish and other amazing things to see out there.

I can't think of a single complaint about the place; we loved it!

Room Tip: Of course the ocean view rooms are great, but even looking at the mountains is a beautiful view.
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  • Stayed March 2012, travelled with family
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank dofmars
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Honua Kai Resort & Spa

Property: Honua Kai Resort & Spa
Address: 130 Kai Malina Parkway, Lahaina, Maui, HI 96761-8413
Region: United States > Hawaii > Maui > Lahaina
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Kitchenette Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#2 Top resorts Hotel in Lahaina
#2 Family Hotel in Lahaina
#6 Spa Hotel in Lahaina
#7 Business Hotel in Lahaina
#8 Romantic Hotel in Lahaina
#8 On the Beach Hotel in Lahaina
Price range (per night): $468 - $2,597
Hotel Class:3 star — Honua Kai Resort & Spa 3*
Number of rooms: 628
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Situated on world-famous Kaanapali North Beach, Honua Kai provides an unparalleled level of service and all the amenities of a luxury resort with expansive one, two, and three bedroom suites. Perhaps the greatest luxury of all is simply the space to spread out. Inside, the feel is that of a luxury Maui vacation home, graciously furnished in exotic wood and polished granite, and tastefully equipped with top of the line appliances. The gourmet kitchens contain everything you need to make a fantastic meal. Or simply make reservations at one of our spectacular restaurants. This is the Hawaii vacation you have always imagined, exactly as you imagined it. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Honua Kai Hotel Lahaina
Honua Kai Resort And Spa
Honua Kai Resort & Spa Maui/Lahaina

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