We landed in Kona on Monday June 23rd with our two teenage children, 19 and 15. Kona Airport is rought 30 minutes south of the resort, so easy to get to off Highway 19. Mauna Lani is a left off the highway heading north. When you turn left into Mauna Lani, its a long drive/about 1 mile down, but before you get there, there is a shopping market. Take advantage of it. There is a supermarket (the locals use and the prices are great, like back home) there is a coffee shop, we frequented, smoothie shop, and high end stores like Tommy Bahama's and its restaurant too, never knew Tommy Bahama had a restaurant, it was fantastic. You'll see these plaza as you go through the rotary on the right hand side.
We were immediately greeted at the carport by the valet, which we used the entire time we were there. Just tip them to and from. Nice perk!
Check in: Pleasant and not at a tall counter, at an individual desk where we were greeted by our names. Given guava juice and moist towels after our long flight. We had booked a standard room for 4 and she immediately upgraded us to an ocean view, didn't disappoint and didn't cost extra. We were in room 226. The main lobby is open air all around, nice décor and just pleasant. We walked down a flight of stairs that had waterfalls on either side of it, then across the walkway to our elevator to go up, but we took the stairs, we were on the 2nd floor and you could see the door to our room.
The property is huge, Had condo's off to one side, then another beach by those condo's and a restaurant (but you can't charge to your room there, bring a credit card). Food was excellent and the service was too. The water by the condo's is just as nice as the hotel and that is where you snorkel. Get your gear (free for 4 hours per person per day while at Mauna Lani) and snorkel, about a 15 min walk to get there, You can also snorkel off the beach in front of the hotel, but its better further over.
Room: Huge, 2 Queen beds, cabinet with a huge flat screen TV, that we never turned on once the entire time we were there, too much to see and do. A table with 2 chairs, proper lighting, a big comfy cushy chair as well, a huge closet with robes and slippers, to the left was where the coffee maker, fridge was and complimentary 2 bottles of water every day. We put those in the fridge and used them the next day to go touring with. There was 3 doors, sliding glass, then the louver door then the screened door, we slept with the sliders open and listened to the waterfalls outside our room and the view of the ocean. Had two patio chairs, wide and a round table, just perfect.
The bathroom, pocket doors to enter, a separate door for the toilet, a huge 7ft celiing for the shower bath tub, with a shower had that had tons of pressure, two sinks, and one had a lighted magnifying mirror for makeup with a stool, blow dryer and amenities shampoo etc, we never used and plenty of towels. They always turned down the bed with a Belgian chocolate on top of each pillow, yum and creamy! Hooks behind the bathroom door, a shower line in the shower to hang wet bathing suits a hook also outside between the shower and toilet area and racks on the left side by the vanity. Just very spacious and that is what you want in paradise and away from home.
The Bay Terrace is the main dining area for B/L/D, we ate dinner their only the night we got in as we didnt' want to get back in car. It didn't disappoint, great mahi mahi, my daughter had the pizza, which was huge, my son a steak and my husband had fish as well. We could charge everything to the room.
The pool is huge, upkeep was excellent, and warm, you didn't have to get use to it to get into it. The hot tubs were huge, warm and not crowded. In fact the whole week there, we didn't have to fight for a chair, cabanna or spot at the pool, place looked empty but it wasn't. Just a good time of year to go. Don't go at Xmas time a zoo!
We grabbed a 2 person cabanna every day and only once did I have to put the top up. Sunny, warm, calm low tide every morning then about 12 or 1pm or so, the clouds roll in but still warm, no rain and you can swim still. Beach is beautiful, rocks, and buoys so if you paddleboard you know the boundaries and you can go to open sea with them if you choose. Best paddle boarding in the morning rather in the afternoon when the winds pick up. Most stayed close to shore others who knew how to do it, went out to open sea. The hut by the beach has towels take as many as you want if they get wet etc, there is no wrist band or having to bring it back at a certain time etc. The girls working there were locals and very friendly, personable and helpful.
The bar is bewtween the hot tub and the pool. Great staff, great Mai Tai's. not cheap, $14 and $7 a beer. Happy hour is at 5-6 or 7pm I think, we took advantage of that a few times.
There is Thunder Mountain Coffee Café/Bar lounge on the first floor. If you don't want the buffet breakfast you can go there and get coffee's, tea, bagles, banana bread, croissants etc. Not cheap, bagel and cream cheese $6.95 and Chobani Yogurt with a 1/4lb container of fresh vanilla almond granola was $8.95. Very expensive. We found the Foodland Supermarket 1 mile up the road was cheap and the Kimobean Café cheap as well. Kimobean we had egg cheese bacon on an everything bagel for $6.95, Belgian Waffle with fruit $7.95, better for breakfast. The days we ventured out we hit Kimobean and the supermarket for snacks and then beers which my husband put in the fridge in our room then brought them to the beach in our collapsible cooler we brought, $8.00 6 pack compared to $7 a beer. and he bought the local beer at the supermarket made in Kona. Only twice did we eat at the hotel. The first morning and the last day we ate at the Buffet, it was excellent. Pricey but worth it.
The pool area was always spotless, the beach was too. Plenty of shade with palm tree's and trees on the beach plus the cabana's. There are hammocks on the property too, around the bend by the point, and a resident turtle that comes out and beaches itself for a few hours then scampers back to the ocean. When the tide is coming in you can see the turtles feasting off the rocks, don't touch, just take a photo, they are protected, but so cute!
It was a great time at Mauna Lani, only con on the entire trip, if you wanted ice for your room, had to call room service, they don't have ice machines, that was it.
Staff was courteous and kind, caring and made you felt welcome. They take customer service to the 10th level.
Around the corner from the lobby is a gift shop and a high end store also a business center with computers so that you can get your boarding passes before you leave on your next flight.
The hotel offers free bikes. You just sign a waiver. They have sanitizing wipes for the helmets but you don't have to wear one. My husband and I had a bike with no gears and the kids had ones that did. You didn't need the gears, the bikes were huge and the roads were flat. The afternoon we decided to tour the bikes out of the property by the golf course, was fine, till we hit a sea of bugs, we were the human windshields for them, rather gross, got 3/4 of the way there and had to turn around and flick off bugs, not fun. The landscape is all lava and rocks so cool, like your on the moon. Go when there is wind to keep the bugs away. Spray won't work, they didn't bite, just annoying in your face bugs.
The entrance has a coi pond with tons of fish. The waterfalls were outside our rooms and had a hammerhead shark in it, small but it was there. Also a turtle in the other pond as well. The grounds are great.
The Canoe House sits right on the ocean and its only opened for dinner. Was packed, and its the perfect spot to view the sunset. There is a bench there, little bridges and the beach so anyone can catch the sunset at the hotel.
Great hotel, would go back in a heartbeat. More info, email. We toured the north and south shores over Hilo and through the middle of the island, lots to do. Don't miss the green sand beach, only 4 in the world!
The hotel had a spa, separate but we never used it. I'm sure it was great. My son did use the gym and said it was great.
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- Also Known As:
- Mauna Lani Bay Hotel And Bungalows
- Mauna Lani Bay Resort
- Mauna Lani Resort