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“Local Gem. Nice stay!” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Dolphin Bay

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Dolphin Bay
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Hilo
Certificate of Excellence
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
37 reviews
19 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
“Local Gem. Nice stay!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 26 February 2014

We stayed at the Dolphin Bay Hotel in Hilo for two nights in in February 2014. We were on the first floor, room #8.

The staffs are extremely friendly and helpful. At check in, the lady walked with us all the way to our room, and thoroughly explained everything: where the breakfast is (coffee, banana bread, fresh fruits at the hallway) how to access the wifi internet (which worked well from our room), how to use the kitchen.

The hotel is walking distance to the Hilo downtown, which is a plus. The room has one twin bed and one queen bed. The kitchen is small but has everything! It is fully equipped with stove, oven, microwave, refrigerator, and all of the necessary cookware.

Few pointers:
1) The parking lot is right in front of the room, so all of the car/truck noises can be annoying. Maybe the second floor will be better?
2) There are tons of Coqui Frogs in the area. Be ready for an all-night symphony of "Coqui Frog Choir" performance - or depends how you interpret the sound (noise?) The hotel does provide ear plugs in the room :-)
3) The room has no AC. Just two fans. We didn't need it in February.. I can see this might be an issue during hotter season.
4) If you need conditioner for your hair, bring your own.

We will definitely come back to Dolphin Bay next time we visit Hilo!

Room Tip: Rooms on first floor can by noisy due to vicinity to the parking lot.
See more room tips
  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
4 Thank SFNL1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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654 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (124)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Traditional) first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Spanish first
  • Any
English first
Bellevue, Idaho
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 16 February 2014 via mobile

My husband and I had the joy of staying at Dolphin Bay while on the Big Island. From the moment we arrived, everyone on staff was super friendly and accommodating. (Even the hotel cat was sweet!) Loved the rainforest and listening to the frogs every night. Great little hide-away, will definitely come back if in Hilo again.

Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
Helpful?
2 Thank HHayward
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cranbrook, Canada
Level Contributor
56 reviews
21 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 February 2014

We stayed ten days at this wonderful small hotel, close to downtown Hilo. It's in a pleasant residential area and it is very clean and comfortable. The cinder block construction, painted cream, is an excellent choice in a country where wooden buildings are either under termite attack or drenched in insecticide. We stayed in an upgraded suite (#14) on the second floor, facing the lush gardens behind the property. Our unit had a great shower/tub combo and big screened windows. The overhead fan provided all the cooling we needed. Every morning, there is fresh coffee and banana bread with papaya and bananas available all day long. Many thanks to John and staff for providing affordable and excellent accomodation. The only possible downside at this hotel is the singing of the frogs at night, although I actually enjoyed this feature!

  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 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?
4 Thank lori181788
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Diego, California
Level Contributor
28 reviews
10 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 February 2014

Hilo, as a town, doesn't have much to offer, so comparatively the Dolphin Bay Hotel could be awesome. The staff is wonderful, helpful, and interesting. The home grown bananas are a treat in the morning. It's walking distance to town, but there's not much to walk to so that's not a big advantage. The parking lot is horrible. Very tiny with very tiny spaces. Be sure to back in, because it could take you a while to back out of space without hitting cars beside and behind you. The room is very basic - cinderblock walls. We were there in January so didn't need air conditioning, but I don't think the place offers anything but fans (at least in our room #5). If this were anywhere else, I'd give it a worse rating, but for Hilo, it's probably just fine.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Mark S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
111 reviews
22 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 3 February 2014

It always makes me a bit nervous going to a hotel for the first time even if the hotel receives excellent reviews. However the Dolphin Bay was even better than my expectations allowed. We rented a 'superior studio' (Room 14) and found a very good sized L-shaped room with a small kitchen complete with a gas stove, standard size refrigerator, sink, cupboards with plenty of dishes and pans; also here was a table and two chairs (where we sat and used our laptops). In the main part of the room was a double bed, good sized desk with drawers, TV monitor, night tables and a large armoire. The bathroom had lots of space for toiletries and a Japanese style tub/shower arrangement--nice hot shower. The grounds are immaculate with a banana "plantation" in the back...lovely trees and flowers, many of these labeled, which was nice. There is a washer and dryer available for a small fee across the street. Now for the best part! The staff are super helpful and friendly. Coffee and tea and homemade banana bread are available very early in the morning and there are always bananas and papayas freshly picked for guests to take. We loved it here and are going back in August.

Room Tip: Room 14 is large, on second floor -- very nice room
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • 5 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?
3 Thank Janlett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Tyler, Texas, United States
Level Contributor
5 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2014 via mobile

We stayed here a week ago. The staff was friendly and very helpful. They shared great ideas about things to see on our drive to Kona. The price was great and restaurant they recommended was perfect. They have a great garden behind the hotel where they grow bananas that they serve for free. It was great fun seeing the bananas growing and large ferns.

Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
Helpful?
2 Thank Brenda M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
28 reviews
16 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 30 January 2014

The room was very comfortable and the staff was quite helpful. We enjoyed the fresh fruit and coffee available early each morning. They gave us great tips at breakfast on where to hike, swim, eat, and shop. Furthermore, they provided beach towels and a cooler. We will definitely stay at Dolphin Bay next time we are in Hilo.

Room Tip: Avoid the room closet to the office. Breakfast is available very early which we enjoyed but would no...
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  • Stayed December 2013, travelled with family
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Value
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Location
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 bubbles
      Rooms
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 bubbles
      Service
Helpful?
1 Thank NJDCO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Dolphin Bay

Property: Dolphin Bay
Address: 333 Iliahi St, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720-2399
Region: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Hilo
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 8 Hotels in Hilo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Dolphin Bay 2.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Seasoned guidance for a wide range of Big Island adventures. Walking distance to downtown Hilo. Clean quiet & reasonable. All rooms with kitchens. Free WiFi Internet available. Rated nicest small hotel in Hilo. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Dolphin Bay Hilo, Hawaii
Dolphin Bay Hotel Hilo

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