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Papalani
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Reviews (36)
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Reviewed 17 March 2011

First I must say that Sybil, the owner, is incredibly gracious, friendly and generous. She not only engaged with her customers, but also offered to pick up anything when she was going to "town."
Hana is a lovely spot with the typical rain forest vegetation. Papalani is surrounded by banana, mango and papaya trees, as well as gorgeous flowers and landscaping. Our "condo" overlooked a creek that, when we arrived, was bone dry; but, like any typical rain forest, after a good downpour was absolutely roaring.
The condo itself was immaculately clean and beautifully decorated. It has an open floor plan that is so roomy and comfortable. The main bedroom and the living/eating area are surrounded by sliding glass doors, so one can step out onto the wrap-around balcony any time.
My husband and I really enjoyed the kitchen, as it was indoor/outdoor. You access the kitchen from the sliding glass door or the balcony screen door. It is surrounded by screens, so you have a wonderful breeze all the time. The grill is on the balcony, which my husband and I used quite often. We actually made our own meals while in Hana, so the kitchen got a lot of use! From the kitchen are stairs leading to the "Whale Watch," where one can go and get a beautiful view of the ocean.
There were beaches, but most were small and rocky. As we were there during the rainy season, we didn't get to use the beaches. Hana is not the place to go if you want a nightlife and lots of people around. It is a quiet spot with spectacular mountain views, lava caves, springs and national parks. It is the adventure/outdoor side of the island.
If you decide to go to Hana, I would strongly recommend Papalani as the place to stay for top-notch personalized service and hospitality. Thank you, Sybil, for a wonderful time!

  • Stayed: January 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank mentally_on_vacation
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 December 2010

What can you say when an experience so far exceeds your expectations you can hardly describe it? It would be impossible to overstate the lush, tranquil beauty of this property.
Located four driveways past mile marker 48 off the main highway on other side of Hana, this lodging has to be Maui’s best-kept secret. You turn into the driveway and the road barely disturbs the grass. You drive through a natural arch formed by the overgrown (but well-tended) shrubbery, and come into a wildly landscaped clearing filled with a neat forest of eye-popping tropical plants.

The Ohana cottage itself peeks modestly from behind a curtain of greenery. Inside is private, clean, spacious, filled with amenities, and completely surrounded by a tropical rainforest. The warm island décor and wall of palms visible through every window give it an air of sensuous luxury; the island breezes cooling you at night are unforgettable. We had the remarkable good luck and foresight to decide to spend three whole nights here at the beginning of our nine day trip to Maui. In hindsight, I would have stayed five.
With a full kitchen and laundry available, we fended for ourselves. The privacy and ability to settle in without housekeeping or room service annoying us was priceless. The kitchen is galley-style, but roomy. It isn’t air-conditioned, but we didn’t need it with the night breezes and overhead fans. There is no pool, but you won’t need one with the local beaches so close.

If you’ve never been to Hawaii, or to the tropics, please understand that humidity, insects, and critters are facts of life unless you’re in a sterile, ultra-air conditioned high end resort. If these things bother you, don’t stay here.
If you need to be waited on hand and foot, don’t stay here.
This place (meaning Hana and Papalani) is for people who appreciate simplicity, beauty, and nature. You can do nothing, or everything. It’s a short drive to town, and an easy drive to Oheo Gulch.

We had the good fortune to be in Hana during the Festivals of Aloha. We went to events at the Hana Ball Park, including the Lei and Floral Arrangement competition, and the local hula and Hawaiian gospel music at night. A beautiful evening with local families in small-town Hawaii, I will never forget it.

A word about privacy: Ohana seems exposed, but in reality, no one should be walking around out behind the cottage. And at night you would definitely hear it if someone was outside.
This is a perfect place for a romantic couple. Leave the keiki at home!

A few tips: Definitely stop at Kmart in Kahului when you first arrive in Maui. It’s right by the airport. Pick up a Styrofoam cooler and plenty of provisions; stuff at Hasegawa’s is expensive.
Try and arrive early enough in the day that you can make it to Hana by dark. The highway up was fun and beautiful. The highway around the other side was an adventure, to say the least, and NOT for fearful drivers or passengers. But I'm still glad we did it.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled as a couple
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8  Thank FallsGirl0709
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 November 2010

So everyone knows that Hana is hard to get to, exclusive, special, and expensive but worth it. Staying at the Papalani actually removes the last item of the list, as it is great value, but just as special, and maybe more private and with more personal service than the big, classic competitor up the road. The guest house my family and I stayed in was big, comfortable, fully appointed, classy and beautiful, and convenient. Sybil and her staff became quick friends, and made it tough to leave for our next Hawaiian destination. We didn't notice any bugs, but anyone who complains them shouldn't venture out of the cities anyway. This is Hana rain forest, after all. Papalani was a thoroughly outstanding experience in all aspects.

  • Stayed: July 2010, travelled with family
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2  Thank Caryanna
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 November 2010

Pros: 1) Great location, just walking distance from the Venus pool and a short drive from other sites in Hana and Kipahulu. 2) Clean, spacious room. 3) Friendly staff and residents. 4) Competitively priced.

Cons: 1) There were no drapes in the room or bathroom (except for those on the door). If one of your neighbours (there are a few units on the property) is wandering, they can look directly into your sleeping area and washroom. I'm not sure if the other units have the same problem. Similarly, while the outdoor shower is lovely, those walking on the upper deck of the building or in the upper unit can look directly down at you. Disconcerting! 2) Other minor issues - no towel rack in washroom, the air conditioning is not working (though it gets cool at night so it wasn't necessary). A ceiling fan would be nice, as the provided fan is a small floor unit - a bigger fan would be helpful for keeping away mosquitos which are an unavoidable nuisance in Hana. The room has some weird things lying around, like a guitar, a slow cooker, a massage table - it almost feels like you are staying in someone's spare room.

  • Stayed: October 2010, travelled solo
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4  Thank TO_Traveler155019
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 April 2010

yeah, there are a few bugs and cute geckos because the place is in the rainforest in rural hana. the reviewer who said anyone with no tolerance for a bit of "wildlife" should just not go to hana because they won't like it no matter where they stay hit the nail on the head. papalani is immaculately clean. every possible attempt to keep mosquitoes out has been made. the porch is screened in, repellent candles are provided. i've been bitten on all the hawaiian islands because i like to get out to the pristine, lush, tropical areas...where the bugs live. those inclined to be bitten who don't use repellent will be bitten outside, for sure. i got three bites, somewhere in hana...

this place IS very special. on the practical side: we paid the agreed upon price which was a bargain at around 160.00 per night and stayed the agreed upon nights. the place was so well equipped and big...we could easily live there full time. our "apartment" was "O'Hana. it had a full kitchen, washer and dryer, private grilling area, big porch. aesthetically: the grounds are beautiful. it was quiet, quiet, extra quiet. sooo private, i would pick it for a honeymoon (but i'm not a resort, spa, shopping person). we didn't really enjoy our stay on the resort side of maui very much.

papalani is a short drive outside of hana town, near homoa beach and the seven sacred pools, wai'anapanapa state park...the best of the road to hana. we had two of the best hikes ever at the pools and the state park. every step breathtakingly beautiful. each unique and short enough at around 4 miles, leaving plenty of energy for the beach later: excellent body surfing waves at homoa! exactly, what we came for! sybil was great. she left us alone because we indicated that this is what we wanted. we were 1000% satisfied.

  • Stayed: April 2010, travelled as a couple
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3  Thank Patricia L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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