I’ve been a Hilton Honors member for 25+ years and this was a new Hilton experience for me.
Overall, this property is in need of maintenance and updating and a new attitude.
Everything is really spread out. Like, a lot. There is a monorail to shuttle guests though it’s often faster to walk. Sometimes there are boats. Sometimes not. It’s not a problem but not really a feature, either. I imagine this could present challenges for guests with mobility issues (like uneven flagstone walkways).
There isn’t a real beach here but a saltwater lagoon. A nice option but limited seating (both paid cabanas and regular).
Our room was in the Palace tower. It was spacious but also oddly sparse. Bathrooms are small. Mattresses sag and aren’t super comfortable. Fridge in room froze and ruined our food.
Keys - digital and plastic - work intermittently. One key might open a door but it won’t open the towel dispenser!
WiFi is so-so and quickly kicks you off.
The food is not great and is very expensive. To pre-empt the snotty response from the manager on another comment — yes, I did see the prices online! Here’s the thing - I expect resort prices like this but I also expect a level of quality that did not come through. Two exceptions - Waikoloa coffee stand and Nui restaurant. Otherwise the better option is to walk down your the Marriott for better food and slightly lower prices. Conference food service is not great. Who wants Shepard pie in Hawaii at a work conference?? yeah
Some staff are helpful. Some are not. Ernette and the spa staff deserve a shout out for great service.
The fitness room is gross. No water, hot and so dirty. I don’t get how these 3 rooms are so neglected. Dirtiest treadmill I have ever seen.
No recycling which is weird in Hawaii.
Hawaii is a beautiful place that should be enjoyed. Direct your money, points, conference travel elsewhere.
Overall, this property requires effort that a vacation should not. Effort to get around. Effort to get keys to work. Effort to find good food options.
Pros Outweighed the Cons
Feb 18, 2024
Pleasantly surprised. We had a great week of weather and stayed in the Palace Tower which may be the best location for 2 adults with no kids. Kids? They were all over the place as this is clearly a family resort but we didn't mind. We enjoyed the long walks to the lobby and never used the tram. Nor did we use the on-site amenities (did I say kids?) except for breakfast buffet which was good. We had a rental car that we used daily. The valet service was on-point and unfailingly quick and courteous. 5 Stars ladies and gentlemen!
Room was very comfortable and clean and featured a great balcony with sunset views. Being close to the Kings and Queens markets which can be reached by a lovely walk was a big plus. Also as a coffee drinker I appreciated the fact that the Waikoloa Coffee Company outlet was only a couple of minutes from the room. This is a reasonably priced resort compared to the others in the area and we never intended to spend much time in the hotel. As a pleasant if somewhat hectic point of departure to see the rest of the island it serves its purpose well.
Run down needs renovation.
Feb 16, 2024
Currently staying at the hotel. We have been here multiple times over the last 25 years. The hotel is severely run down. The room is in desperate need of a complete renovation. Old dated furnishings that look best up. Dark and gloomy with sagging uncomfortable bed. Bathroom looks original and very dated.
Used to be full of beautiful florals around the hotel not any more.
Ate at check in at the tapa room and service was slow and food was just awful. Nothing special.
So disappointed in the sad look of the hotel. It used to be spectacular. Just sad now.
Curated Hawaiian Experience
Feb 15, 2024
This is a nice place to stay if you like the all inclusive, insulated from the locals kind of vacation. The staff was friendly and polite and helpful. The room was nice and the grounds were immaculate. It did feel a bit like staying in a The Truman Show in that there was a certain amount of artficiality in the whole village.
Feb 14, 2024
Stayed here for 3 nights over Christmas time using Hilton Honors points. Check-in was fast and we were upgraded to a room in Makai Tower. Room was OK with not much of a view but comfortable beds and clean bathroom with plenty of hot water. We enjoyed walking around and exploring the property and checking out all the art/sculpture installations. Also took the leisurely boat ride around the property. Since we booked with points we did not have to pay the daily resort fee, which was a very welcome surprise. Did do valet parking (55/day) as it was convenient. Also liked that there was a Kona Brewing Company outlet on the property and was able to sample their beers along with some basic pub food. Being Hilton Gold, received $36 daily F&B credit for two registered adults, which we utilized to grab coffee/snacks/beer on the property. Restaurants are overpriced and we ate out for most part., except for Christmas day dinner at Nui Italian, which was a good experience. Kings/Queens shops are a 15 minute walk away and have some dining options/Starbucks that we utilized.
Overall, we had a good stay but frankly wouldnt have done it, if not for Hilton Points.