I booked this rental through TA and wasn't sure what we would actually experience when we arrived. My husband and I were in love with this beautiful property. W stayed in what was called "Moon Studio" which is the largest unit of the three, though I did get to see the other two units which are smaller, but also beautiful.
As we entered the studio, we were greeted by a large, semi-circular screened dining area overlooking the jungle and mountains of the North Shore; a breathtaking view complete with nighttime sounds of wildlife. We spent a lot of time here.
The bedroom and bathrooms are very comfortable and pleasantly decorated. The owner provides a large kitchen, and there are boogie boards, beach chairs, towels and sunscreen for guests to use, which is a bonus.
There were two other units being rented and we did hear movement and talking, along with some noise from neighborhood dogs at times. This didn't bother us much, and it was beautifully quiet when the other guests left. We did have some window slats missing in our bath which invited a few bugs in, and the shower drain was a little sluggish. I communicated this to the owner and hopefully they have been fixed. However, these are VERY minor glitches and the location, view, comfort and price of this property is highly worth it, in my opinion. Just a short drive to the many gorgeous beaches, hiking at Na Pali, and town of Hanalei. We would definitely book again!
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Unlike others, we had no problems booking our room. When we arrived, (it's fairly easy to find, if you go by Ray's directions) it looked quiet, peaceful and beautiful. Ray was very sweet and easy to talk to. Our room (the Lily Pad) was great! The views from the balcony were spectacular and we woke up to huge rainbows outside each morning. The only problems we had were that there was no A/C. I know what you're thinking, "Who needs A/C in Kauai?". Well being from Texas, I'm just accustomed to having it a nice 68 degrees in my house at all times LOL. Because there was no A/C, we couldn't shut any windows or doors, day or night. So at night, the roosters cocka-doodle-do at all hours and the giant bullfrogs at the pond literally sound like buffalo. Unfortunately, we had to leave a day early because my husband got called back to work, but if you love the sound of nature (very loud nature) at all times of the day or night, and can deal with no A/C, then this place is for you. Regardless of those things, Ray has a really great place there!
Our eight night reservation for the Dawn Studio at Rainbow Views (12/23/10 to 12/31/10) was canceled less than one week before we were to leave Virginia for our vacation in Hawaii. I was notified by Ray, the web master/property manager who, by the way, lives in New Zealand, that I should immediately seek new accommodations for my visit in Kauai the following week. I was advised that the property had to be shut down due to an emergency that would not be resolved by the time we were scheduled to arrive and that work was scheduled for December 28, 2010. I was further advised that the on site property hostess, Deborah, was unavailable as her computer had crashed.. I was told that because it is Christmas it would be difficult to find a place and improbable that I would find a place at a price like Rainbow Views offered. Lastly, I was advised that the situation was a bummer. Since I was never told what the nature of the emergency was that caused our reservation to be canceled, I drove to the property on December 29th and was advised that the property was being sprayed for bugs.
While I did receive a quick and full refund, I think the property owners should have refunded me the difference between what I paid them and what I had to pay to find last minute alternate lodgings during the very busy Christmas holiday. As it turns out, my family ended up staying on the south shore for one night and we had seven wonderful nights in Hanalei at a property I initially rejected due to the cost and my desire to stay in the Dawn Studio at Rainbow Views.
If you are considering staying here, think twice before you book. If you already have a reservation, I would look for alternate lodging. This property left my family hanging and made no attempt to find alternate lodging for us. Needless to say, it was a very stressful situation to be placed in. Shame on Rainbow Views.
My wife and I just stayed at the Lily Pad for our Honeymoon.
I highly recommend the Lily Pad if it is just for two! The views out of the studio are amazing, the windows look out on the mountains and there are no neighbors to be seen through any window.
One note, this is a very cool private residence. The owner lives in the main house and the two studios are on either side. There are no privacy issues and it feels like you are in a totally separate residence. The house is very cool. I will post a detailed review with photos.
We looked at some of the other places we had seen on VRBO. Each one was unique, but for the money, we will stay at the Lily Pad again... The price is right! The location is perfect, and the owner is great.
The Jacuzzi on the patio is amazing. It is a two person tub and you have an amazing view. Very handy after a long day of hiking the Na Pali Coast trail!
It is a SHORT drive to amazing snorkeling and hiking. Hanalei offers a nice selection of restaurants. Princeville is just down the road and the grocery store there is great. Sign up for their discount card! It will save you a lot of money.
You can tell a lot of thought and care went into building this amazing home, and the gardens surrounding the home can't be beat.
If you have any questions feel free to ask me any questions.
First the good stuff: After researching places to stay in Kauai on the beautiful north shore, we chose to stay away from condos and resorts. We wanted privacy, quiet, and a view that was close to good hiking and snorkeling. We found it online with Rainbow Views and its Lily Pond Studio. When we finally got there we were delighted with the almost whimsical but well thought out decor, the private balcony with jacuzzi, and the layout of the bedroom-sitting area, kitchenette, and bathroom (with an additional balcony). We also liked the fact that the owner makes his expectations clear (and fair) and emphasizes that this is a place to quietly get away and enjoy. (The only noise came from roosters--but that's Kauai--and the "brawl" down the road one night.) We were able to save money by buying food at the grocery store in Hanalei and fixing it in the kitchenette (which is adequately equipped). And we were very close to snorkeling at Tunnels and Ke'e and to hiking on the Kalalau Trail.
Now for the big bummer: The day we were to leave we got a phone call from the booking mgr, Deborah, informing us that the place was double booked and we would have to be relocated to a location yet to be determined. That pretty much ruined the mood for the first 36 hours because when we landed at Lihue airport we had a voice message telling us we have been "upgraded" to Hanalei Colony Resort to a room next to the parking lot, with no view, above which were the stomping feet of the guests on the second floor. The resort is very nice if you want folks around and were looking forward to free Mai Tais on Thursday evening (They do have a nice Mediterranean restaurant.), but given the fact that we were looking forward to quiet, privacy, a view, and a private jacuzzi, this was not an "upgrade" in our book. Fortunately, after we voiced our displeasure to Deborah (who DID try to find us something better...but it was like booking a room once you arrive) she went to work to get us in for the last three of the original five-night stay. That made all the difference in our visit to the north shore before moving to the south for a few days. And the owner Ray also made an offer after the fact that indicated he was concerned about the mix-up. (In fact, if this hadn't been worked out and we had not received an apology, Rainbow Views would have received a score of 1 for the overall rating--which is only in the "service" rating now and the reason for an overall score of 4 instead of 5.) Unfortunately, in a brief conversation with a guest in the other Rainbow Views suite we learned that those folks also had booking problems. BOTTOM LINE: When you book (and you should if you want the quiet, privacy, location, nice accommodation, and view), MAKE SURE your booking is solid. And don't assume, as we did, that just because you made the booking 10 weeks in advance, paid the deposit and the balance on time (weeks in advance) that your reservation is locked in. Triple check with the booking manager and owner and then don't answer the phone the day you are to leave.
I would go back in a heartbeat! It was centrally located on the north shore, between Kee'e Beach and Hanalei. It a beautiful location, no neighbors in sight. I would highly recommend Rainbow Views.