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Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows
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Reviews (2,185)
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All reviewscanoe housebay terracemauna lanifishhonu barocean frontthe big islandfree bikesfour seasonsocean grilldaily activitiesbeach clubsea turtlesfresh juiceresort feefitness centerbreakfast buffet
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Reviewed 17 June 2014

The Mauna Lani isn't for people looking for Vegas-y style or honky-tonk Hawaii. We found it to be the peaceful and beautiful place we had hoped for. Great pool area includes salt and fresh hot spa pools. Lively poolside bar run by some friendly characters attracted some interesting locals too. The close-in beach is pretty but has lost a bit of sand, so fortunately another choice is a short walk away at the Beach Club. It is so enjoyable to stroll in the extensive tropical gardens and view the various inhabitants of the numerous fishponds, and to be treated to daily live (un-amplified-thankyou!) performances of Hawaiian music and dance in the hotel atrium. Great outdoor massage area at the spa, and for us the best of all was the golf…gorgeous, well-run courses were positively stellar! Good experiences in all restaurants and all staff we encountered were genuinely welcoming and helpful. Can't wait to return here.

  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled as a couple
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Thank nanm00
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 15 June 2014

We've just spent four nights at the Mauna Lani and has been our best hotel experience in Hawaii so far. Lovely laid back feel, and gorgeous indoor/outdoor setting. Great views, great beach and fabulous service. We even saw turtles on the beach! A quiet area so if you're after action and lots to do then try closer to the Kona resorts. Otherwise highly recommend especially for couples on romantic breaks.

Room Tip: Ocean view rooms are worth it!
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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1  Thank LRees
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 June 2014

A great location is spoilt by a tired hotel in need of a facelift. Serve friendly and helpful, rooms nice size, but the decor is tired and outdated. Very expensive for what you get really. And its very quiet, no one around after 8.30pm!

Room Tip: an Ocean front
  • Stayed: May 2014, travelled solo
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1  Thank Drew M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 9 June 2014

We recently spent a full week at the Mauna Lani and my wife and I were thoroughly impressed with almost everything. I tried to do some extensive research when debating which resort to stay with (as we knew we wanted to be on the Big Island) so here's more info than you could ever need on this place. Ultimately I felt that if I was going to be paying the price tag that these resorts were charging I wanted what I thought was the best - and after staying here I'd go back in a second.

They are offering a 4th night free plus breakfast promotion currently however booking a non-refundable rate is a cheaper deal still, especially considering you should be going out onto the island for breakfast and not using their restaurant every day. We booked this and decided to upgrade to the ocean front view. It was worth every cent extra. There are a fair number of rooms that directly face the ocean on floors 1 - 4 (whereas 5 and 6 are reserved for Ocean Suite or something like that). We were on floor three and our room was steps away from the ocean. The other rooms would have a very small partial view or face the parking lot. Normally I have no preference and would never pay extra for a view but here it's worth it - as you can close the shutters on your balcony but keep the glass doors open allowing you to hear the ocean all night. Also there are two mini sides to their beach that these rooms faced (the resort front is like the tip of an arrow) - we were put on the more wavy ocean side which was great since no one uses that side of the beach which made for no noise from people - so perhaps request to be placed on the right hand side of the ocean front rooms as there are less people on the beach near your room then.

The room is great - dark wood everywhere. Shutters and screens for the balcony. A big ceiling fan or ac. A huge bathroom with double vanity, a separate toilet room, and a good clean shower with bath. The beds are all King sized I believe, and there's a good sized sitting area and then a large ish balcony that faces the ocean and seals you off from your neighbors. The room never felt cramped while being there for 7 nights. Also they give you rain umbrellas, a mini fridge, and a current iPhone docking station. A tip - coffee in their coffee bar is 5 dollars a cup since it's Kona coffee - we brought filters and sugar packets from home, bought some milk for the fridge, and then just bought Kona ground coffee in town and made our own everyday in the room. A big cost saver. The mini fridge is also great as you can stock up on snacks for the week.

The main lobby of the hotel, and it's multiple areas are expansive. There are minimal walls and the walking areas within the main building are very open and filled with tons of fish ponds - we even saw a hammerhead shark and turtles in the one. They actually greet you with necklaces and a cold towel and juice at check in which was awesome. The grounds are fun to walk and on property they have 3 hot tubs, a beautiful pool area that's lit up at night and always open (plus minimal kids), free cruiser style bicycles to take out, a coffee bar that serves sandwiches and drinks at night with pool tables, free wifi and free laundry - all great perks. Also - free valet which is great but we never used it for some reason. There are also some small shops, a full golf course, and a petroglyph park which was interesting and a good hike. When looking at the property my one trepidation was how dated it looks from the outside architecturally, however this doesn't affect anything else on property. I also found their staff extremely attentive and just flat out nice to talk to.

The beach area is also good - as I said before the one area is very wavy and rocky, whereas the other part is like a mini lagoon with rocks forming a natural break wall to allow for good swimming. Extremely clear water, beautiful sand, huge hammocks hanging, great large free beach chairs with fold over awnings and large towels, and free snorkel gear. They also have for rent tons of kayaks and boards although you can't leave their area too far into the ocean. I'm pretty sure there's a bar by the pool but we didn't visit this. So overall excellent beach that would allow you to simply stay there all day if you're not interested in seeing other beaches.

The property has a few other cottages and such on site so you can take a beautiful walk along mini paths on the ocean to their second mini beach (not as nice) which is more geared to the cottages. They also have a great little walk if you head towards the Fairmont Orchid along the beach which takes you past some cuts in the rock and a great little trail. And of course - the big island is known for sea turtles and they will beach themselves along their beach and sleep for the day which makes for great pics. They are good about keeping guests away from bothering the turtles too much also. Also the resort has a weekly schedule of events taking place - some free some not - of things like basket weaving class, yoga on the beach, hula lessons - things like that which was great to have available.

This didn't bother me - but their resort is very far from a lot of the towns. That's great in terms of isolation however it's a good 30min drive down towards Kona which might bother some. Also the resort size is great in that it never felt crowded once. Maybe that's because it was early June, but this was a nice perk.

My one complaint about the resort is the lack of food options, and what I considered their slight unwillingness to tell me about restaurants in the area. There is the Canoe House which looks incredibly expensive, their coffee bar which had $15.00 sandwiches, and a third restaurant which also seemed expensive. Yet when I'd ask the concierge their main recommendations were the restaurants in their own shops, and failed to tell me about the numerous non chair restaurants in the nearby cities. So my main advice would be to do some research before you go and avoid their Ruth Chris steakhouse, Tommy Bahamma's and such - and go to local restaurants vs any chains if possible. Another issue, but I knew this was coming, was a $25.00 tacked on resort fee per day. I was aware of this but I could see this sneaking up on someone on checkout.

Besides this one issue - the resort is flawless and you'll have a great time staying on their property.

Room Tip: Splurge for the ocean front instead of just ocean view as it's a significantly better view and you can hear the waves crashing at night. Also ask for as high up of a room as possible.
  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled as a couple
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17  Thank ark18
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 7 June 2014

The Mauna Lani Bay hotel is a cut above - we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. The staff was lovely, the rooms spacious, and the grounds and views were gorgeous. Everything had a pleasant, laid-back atmosphere, nothing was rushed or crowded. Everything you could ask for in a resort of this quality. Note they have an odd method for numbering their floors. The 6th floor is not as high up as you might expect. Also, the Canoe House restaurant was very expensive and the staff was not particularly friendly. I think we'll eat elsewhere next time.

  • Stayed: June 2014, travelled with family
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1  Thank Military_Traveler11
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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