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“Love the Papakea. Will Return!!!”

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Aston at Papakea Resort
Ranked #26 of 32 Hotels in Lahaina
Reviewed 5 March 2007

My husband and I and our 3 year-old stayed here in January of this year. We loved the Papakea!!!

The check-in process was rough but this was not Papakea's fault. We were booked through a company called Vacations International who completely screwed up our reservation. But I am not giving a review of them but, rather, the resort itself. Suffice it to say, because of Vacations International's mess up, we had to be put in a "Resort Quest" room until a Vacation International (V.I.) room became available at the Papakea. However, because of this, we had an excellent opportunity to see how the resort is run by Resort Quest vs. V.I. How a room is furnished including the type of deck furniture that comes with it, the type of toiletries and bath towels, and whether or not you get maid service has everything to do with the company that owns the unit.

The Resort Quest unit was very nice. It had carpeting throughout the unit which was unusual but welcome. The furnishings were basic "beach decor". Kitchen appliances were a little outdated but no big deal. The toiletries were above average and the towels were thick and fluffy. It had daily maid service. And the unit was very spacious. Two T.V.s and one DVD player. Patio. A/C. Washer & Dryer. All in all, a lovely unit. The only complaint I had about this unit was that it was on the ground floor and in my opinion, any unit on the ground floor lacks privacy. The only other thing about Resort Quest rooms is that they charge a hefty fee to make any phone calls from the unit, even local calls! However, this wasn't a problem in our case, because we just used our cell phones. Also, if you are a Resort Quest guest, you can avail yourself of the concierge and he/she will make any reservations for you, so you don't ever need to make a local call.

When we were finally moved into our "real" room (a Vacation International-owned room), it, too, was nice but not as nice as the Resort Quest unit. We had an ocean view one bedroom so we had the privacy I require. The view was incredible and, frankly, I wouldn't want an ocean front room. It's a lot more interesting when you can see the ponds and palm trees with the ocean in the near distance. No carpeting in this unit. No daily maid service. The toiletries were very basic and I didn't use them. And the towels were rough and "scratchy" compared to the RQ towels. There is no A/C in any V.I. unit. Surprisingly, the appliances were better than the Resort Quest appliances but only marginally. There was a washer & dryer in this unit, too, so I assume every unit at the Papakea comes equipped with a washer & dryer which is very nice. It also had a DVD player and two T.V.s. Overall, the room was pretty decent and if I hadn't seen the Resort Quest room, I wouldn't have known there was anything better at the resort. The one plus of staying in a V.I. room is that local calls are free. But big deal. We had our cell phones. I don't believe, however, you can use the concierge if you are a V.I. guest. And any maintenance or maid issues must be dealt with via phone call to an off-site office. Basically, if your unit is owned by anyone other than Resort Quest, the management on-site at the Papakea wants nothing to do with you. (On-site management is Resort Quest only.)

The grounds themselves were superb. Two putting greens. Two swimming pools. Chaise lounges dot the lawn right by the ocean which offers a great view and they are never crowded. When I looked at other resorts in the area, they are all high-rise and the grounds are limited compared to the size of Papakea's grounds.

All in all, it's a very low-key resort that caters to families. My only complaint is that there is no restaurant on the premises. However, you can walk one or two resorts down and find restaurants. Besides that, we always go grocery shopping during the first day of any trip and stock our unit for the week so we are not "restaurant dependent."

Tiki torches are lit throughout the property each night. And there are huge koi ponds just loaded with fish. Very idyllic setting.

We definitely intend to return to the Papakea but will make sure we book a Resort Quest room next time. I was told during check out that oftentimes, V.I. guests who are staying for 3 weeks are made to switch their room two or three times. The whole point of staying in a condo. is to make it as much like home as possible including being able to unpack your stuff. Anyway, Resort Quest is on top of their game and since they own 70% of the units at the Papakea, you can't go wrong booking through them plus they offer a discount for staying multiple nights.

  • Stayed: January 2007, travelled with family
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10  Thank oceanjuli
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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958 - 964 of 1,103 reviews

Reviewed 5 March 2007

We stayed at the Papakea for a week in February, 2007 and just loved it. We had a 2br/2ba condo unit that opened with windows front and rear so the trade winds and surf lulled us to sleep every night. The layout was very nice and gave us all plenty of elbow space to do our own things. A very nice pool, hot tub, gas barbecues, putting green, and beach were steps from our ground floor lanai door. The beach had a nice coral reef 20 yards offshore for snorkeling but was not otherwise a swimming beach although it was great for sunning, wading, listening to the surf, sand castles, etc. There were also 3 nice tennis courts that we all used every morning as well as as a shuffleboard court with a million dollar view. Our kids who grew up with video games seemed fascinated by ...shuffleboard...and played it every minute we were not doing something else. Go figure. The Papakea was a very nice, quiet, friendly, low-rise homey place to stay and is an especially great place if you have kids. There were several nice restaurants, including two at neighboring high-rise resorts, as well as Star Market, shops, ABC store, etc all within easy walking distance.

  • Stayed: February 2007, travelled with family
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4  Thank jaybirds
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 March 2007

I booked my 7 night stay at the Papakea via Resort Quest central reseravtions in December of 06. I originally booked a Garden View Studio, using the Entertainment Book discout I got a very good rate (Get one, it rules!). Upon arrival we found out that we had been upgraded to a 1Bd. I asked the very kind Night Manager if there was any chance of an upgrade. The Front Office Manager just happened to be there, we chatted and he upgraded my wife and I to a Studio Ocean view but we couldn't move until the 2nd night of our stay. The first night we stayed in the 1Bd Garden View. It was not very nice but I could have survived. The 2nd night we moved into an awesome 1Bd Ocean View. We were upgraded again!
I should mention to all you travellers, people who work the front desk of a resort or hotel have to put up with a lot of crap from guests and they do it with a smile (most of the time). You will certainly get more flies with honey than you will with vinegar. A well placed bottle of wine or $20 tip can go a loooong way. Trust me on this, they keep records on who is naughty and who is nice!
Anyway, don't go expecting modern contemporary design in Maui. Everything is going to be bamboo and tiki tourch's unless you build it yourself. Get outside! Enjoy the beach. The Papakea is right across the road from Star's Market, the only full service grocery store. There's a dive shop in the same strip mall as the market. They have 2 pools and 2 putting greens. Concierge on staff. You also have access to the facilities at the ResortQuest resort next door. The beach and view is beautiful, you'll be more than content to sit on the lawn and watch the waves roll in. Everybody is happy, staff guests, taxi drivers. I love Maui!

  • Stayed: January 2007, travelled with family
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5  Thank ECTVancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2007

This "condotel" is the worst place I've ever stayed on Maui! They adverstised this terrific beach and water activities. The brochure was really slick and was FALSE advertising. When we arrived, we found the beach was completely gone! In order to find a beach we had to drive to Kannapali. It was our honeymoon and as soon as my wife saw the "view" and "beach," she wanted to find another hotel!

Management was extremely arrogant and refused to refund any of our money if we checked out. We made a BIG MISTAKE by paying for the place in advance through our travel agent. So, we were stuck in this dump for a week. I guess "rooms" are different depending on whom owns the place, but our room stank from the smokers. We complained about this to no avail. The owner's closet was unlocked and we could have walked off with a bunch of valuable stuff. Instead, we told the manager to come and lock the closet. He was rude in being put off to do even that!

We wish we had read TRIP ADVISOR and stayed at a much higher rated place. This lousy place should be #36 instead of #26! AVOID IT!

  • Stayed: April 2003, travelled as a couple
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6  Thank captaingary
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 16 February 2007

We just returned yesterday from 2 weeks in Maui at the Papakea. We stayed there in Sept 2004 and loved it so much we went back. The room we stayed in was renovated in late 2005 with a new bathroom and kitchen (unit E206). We booked through Harmony Airways (airfare, hotel, car package). The units are individually owned and do vary. Some are more modern than others. When you book through a package, you don't get your choice of rooms but we have not been dissapointed. The grounds are very well kept and there is some of the best snorkling a few feet of the beach in front of the property. There is a mix of retired folks and families with young kids. Highly recommend.

  • Stayed: February 2007, travelled with family
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1  Thank LeeFamilyVacations
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 11 January 2007

After extensive research I chose the papakea resort based on reviews, guidebook recommendations and the value:price. The resort was beautiful, gorgeous landscaping plenty of lounge chairs, two seperate bbq/cabana areas as well as two separate pool/hot tub areas. you could fit like 20 people into one of those hot tubs, we enjoyed a soak every night along with admiring the amazing view of the stars. The beach that fronts the reort is not the best, the sandy beach is not longer than 10 feet or so. there is a seawall which provides a nice place to lounge and enjoy the view and sounds of the ocean. there are plenty of fabulous beaches very close. Within walking distance there is a market and a few restaurants. The units at papakea are all privately owned, we ended up getting a better last minute deal through the management company listed in frommers than from any of the websites. we had a studio that was a little dated but really very comfortable and met all of our needs. a full kitchen, murphy bed, and a nice lanai with an ocean view. I was very happy with the resort and would stay there again.
FYI there are some units that have been updated beautifully and not much more expensive, they were not avaliable to us as we were last minute travelers.

  • Stayed: October 2006, travelled with friends
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7  Thank graciegirlie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 November 2006

I spent November 14th-20th at Papakea. I was a bridesmaid in my friend's wedding and I stayed at one of the ocean front 2br/2bath condos with the bride and two other bridesmaids. It was nicely furnished and even had a new washer/dryer for us to use and with 4 girls sharing the condo there was plenty of laundry to do. We enjoyed leaving the sliding door opened at night to let in the cool breeze and listened to the waves as we went to sleep. We didn't stay around the condo much seeing as we were busy with wedding plans, but when we did get to enjoy the pool and beach we were pleasantly pleased with the temperature of the pool and the access to the beach. We also liked the convinience of the ABC store just down the road and the short drive to other beaches and shops in Lahaina.

One find we were very excited about if you a bargain shopper is the flea market that sets up on the side of the main highway as you are coming down towards Lahaina. It was there Monday, Thursday, Friday. It had wonderful hand made jewlery that we took advantage of for great prices. Great for bringing back gifts. Also you have to go on Front Street - they have lots of wonderful shops and restaurants. Forget worrying about having a restaurant at the resort - get out and see the island and discover many different places. Overall we were pleased with our stay and would concider staying here again if the opportunity comes back around.

  • Stayed: November 2006, travelled with friends
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4  Thank SHBlack
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Aston at Papakea Resort

Address: 3543 Lower Honoapiilani Rd, Lahaina, Maui, HI 96761-9416 (Formerly ResortQuest at Papakea Resort)
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Hawaii > Maui > Lahaina
Amenities:
Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#22 On the Beach Hotel in Lahaina
Price Range: £143 - £362 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Aston at Papakea Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 364
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
A garden paradise on "The Magic Isle." This picturesque oceanfront resort is nestled amid 13 acres of lush tropical landscaping and expansive lawns bordered by flower-lined paths. The resort offers a variety of on-site amenities and activities - with restaurants, galleries and shops of Lahaina and Kaanapali Beach just moments away. Facilities Use and Cleaning Fee: A daily facilities use fee and a one-time housekeeping fee $89 (plus tax) will apply. Daily housekeeping is available for an additional fee. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Aston At Papakea Hotel Lahaina
Resortquest Papakea Resort
Papakea Resort Maui
Papakea Maui
Aston At Papakea Resort Maui/Lahaina

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