Let's just start by saying that if you have read any of my other reviews you know what a perfectionist I am. That being said, this hotel is probably fine by most standards - it is "standard" - the beach reminds me of a smaller Waikiki - strips of sad looking cinderblock buildings from the 50's - badly in need of an update. The ocean is of course beautiful and black rock is good for snorkling but not any better than right in front of the hotel at the Four Seasons Maui (see that review next - THAT is paradise!). After staying at The Four Seasons Maui for a week it was hard to come here. But, I knew this ahead of time and tried to adjust my, er, expectations.
1)Let's start by saying that when we needed to change our reservation while we were at The Four Seasons, we couldn't even get a hold of the front desk here at the Sheraton. No one even answered - on multiple tries. What? This continued to happen while we stayed at the resort. Try to get the Concierge? Good luck - was never able to.
2) The Resort Charge - $30/day per room. Since we have 2 rooms (lots of kids!) we had to pay almost $60/day (a slight discount being SPG members) for the privilege of being able to park our own car and what else? slow to non-existent internet! WOW! You can't even get a chair (note crummy plastic-y CHAIR) on the beach without paying. We had to pay $40 for the use of 2 beach chairs with a little covering over it. At 4:30 they came over and said "just to let you know we will be collecting the chairs at 5pm" - my husband responded "Will you be draining the ocean too?". The sun doesn't even set til 5:45 which is when they have the cliff diving ceremony but you have to give up your chair before that! Ridiculous! Add that to charges for snorkel gear, etc can really add up.
3)Even the towels - you have to present a "towel card" every time you want a towel - when we checked in they gave us 10 cards telling us if we lost the towels or cards it was a $15 charge per towel/card. So I told my husband "they just gave us a $150 liability!" What are the chances all these cards come back in a week? Slim. Plus, do you really want to stay at a resort where the type of people who go there are the ones who steal stacks of cheap beach towels? I don't. And yes, the towels are like small dollar store bath size towels, not even big enough for my 7 year old.
4)The Food - $30 breakfast buffet? My husband took our youngest and even he was disappointed. For Lenders frozen bagels and some sad fruit? UGH – I hate to be unfair again but the Four Seasons breakfast buffet was $35 with tons of hot entrees, meats, lox, Belgium waffles, gorgeous fruit, yogurt parfaits, multitudes for fresh baked scones, croissants, muffins, cinnamon rolls, pecan rolls,..need I go on?? Don’t eat here unless you have to – mediocre food at 5star prices.
5) The pool – OMG – those floating little bean bag things?? How old are those?? Can you say “Bacteria”??? Everyone lounging on those floats and when are they cleaned? And COLD! This pool is COLD. Seriously, the ocean is warmer. We came here because we thought the kids would like the pool. Incorrect. They HATED the pool. It is freezing, boring and dirty. The Jacuzzi was also broken part of the time we were there and it wasn’t hot at all when it was fixed!!! Much too small and hidden in this darkish dirty area – I was afraid to go in there…The lazy river feature of the pool isn’t the type that propels you along like in some Beaches or other resorts. It is just a maze of waterways that make it near impossible to keep track of your kids! At one point I was just praying they were still alive because I couldn’t find them.
6) The Beach. It is nice but there are much nicer ones. The chairs are cheap and you have to pay a fortune and get up early just to get one. The sand isn’t raked or cleaned so I kept finding “souvenirs” from beach goers past that left them behind – You know food trash, band aids, glass etc. Great. I also saw trash all around the sub-standard chairs at the pool that wasn’t picked up all day. PILES of trash – they are seriously understaffed.
7)Stand Up Paddle board lesson: ON THE SAND – We arrived bright and early to learn how to SUP – a “complimentary” lesson from the resort – To only find out that they don’t actually let you try it on the water. NO. They explain to you how to get up etc while on the sand! If you actually want to try the paddleboard, that is $35!! Ridiculous!
8)The Gym – OMG! Could it be any farther?? By the time you find it, you will be too exhausted to work out! It is a maze of multiple elevators and stairwells to find this place. It literally took my 15 minutes just to get there and I am not old! Granted the facilities were nice enough and I got in my run but they don’t even provide water! Just a bubbler and some cups (yuk) – surprised I didn’t have to pay for those!
9) Black Rock is fun but snorkeling was good many other places as well – Plus there were so many obnoxious non-guests on the beach that my husband almost got into a fight with some ya-hoo who was trying to RIDE one of the Sea Turtles…The hotel doesn’t do a good job of patrolling the area to make sure that there aren’t any trouble makers on the beach..there were quite a few. And this isn’t really something I want to deal with on my vacation- seriously.
10)Resort and SPA??? SPA??? There wasn’t even a sauna or steam room there! SPA? Where was the SPA??? Please tell me..
The Good Things:
1) For the most part the staff was nice. We loved Grace the Hula lady – lovely, kind and sweet! CJ the Snuba guy was great with the kids and very helpful. Most other staff were helpful and pleasant. Thank G-d!
2) Whaler’s Village is convenient for a bite for the kids or supplies from ABC store – just another place to walk to. Coach store there too!
3) My youngest learned to surf with a company at a kiosk next to the Sheraton. The Sheraton didn’t refer us to them instead told us to go to the Marriott which is much more expensive! We found them(Surf School??) on one of our walks and for 2 hr lesson was $70 – best deal on Maui!
Overall, this hotel is average. I wouldn’t pay to stay here unless you can use points (like we did) or get some screaming deal. The resort fees, food, awful pool, rowdy non-guests and not that attractive landscaping/surroundings make it not worth it.
Maui is amazing and there and much nicer places to stay! If you want real service, good food and gorgeous surroundings, don’t stay here.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa, Ka'anapali Beach's Black Rock, is near Whalers Village and Kapalua-West Maui Airport. Our Hawaii hotel has a lagoon, a ballroom, and an Ocean Lawn for weddings and meetings ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Sheraton Maui Resort And Spa
- Sheraton Maui Hotel Lahaina
- Maui Sheraton
- Sheraton Lahaina
- Lahaina Sheraton
- Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa Lahaina