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“best bar to watch the sunset in all of Hawaii”
4 of 5 bubbles Review of Royal Kona Resort

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Royal Kona Resort
Ranked #9 of 14 Hotels in Kailua-Kona
kitchener, Ontario, Canada
Level Contributor
22 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 21 helpful votes
“best bar to watch the sunset in all of Hawaii”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 March 2014

Upon first arriving at the hotel i was a little worried because on first glance its a little dated, But after seeing our room and taking a little walk around the grounds any apprehensions we had about the place quickly went away. The dated'ness of the resort adds to the charm and experience because it's kept up with such great care. it was really cool to experience the classic Hawaiian style of the hotel grounds and room. Having the sound of the crashing waves lull us to sleep was heavenly. The drinks at the bar were great, Misty is a master mixer, and i don't know if there is a chair in the place that isn't in view of what is one of the best sunsets in all of if the Hawaiian islands.
This is a good clean modest hotel in a great location to be in as a "home base" to explore the rest of the Big Island. The staff are very friendly and accommodating.

Not everything is perfect:
the only thing we didn't like was the experience we had with the Expedia travel rep that was selling excursions, we felt like she was giving us a one sided opinion about what to do and what company to do it with. for instance when we asked about going to the Sheraton to have a drink and watch the manta's we were told that we wouldn't be able to see mantas from there that the only way was to book a swim with or scuba with excursion.... well we went and we saw manta's. sure , we weren't in the water with them but we got to see them while listening to music and sitting under the stars....... If your going to book excursions shop around, you will find vendors easily on line and in the market place place across from and slightly down the street from the hotel.

Room Tip: we had a room that overlooked the pool, we could hear people noise from the bar and courtyard up unt...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank emover
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 10 March 2014
Aloha TA family, these guests nailed it! We truly have the best location in Kona, and out Don's MAi Tai Bar hosts the best location to view the sunsets, and the local spinner dolphins that frequent the bay. The staff works hard to provide excellent food and beverage, and I must say they get raves for pouring some great Mai Tai's and tropicals, not to mention the new 14 beer taps we recently installed! Glad they enjoyed, sorry the activity desk was a bit one sided, they normally do a fantastic job helping out guests book and plan some of the best excursions on the island. We'll hope to see these guests again soon! Mahalo
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
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Rochester, New Hampshire
Level Contributor
9 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 6 March 2014

My family of 4 stayed at the Royal Kona Resort for 9 days in February, 2014. The location is perfect - right on the ocean, and also within walking distance of many shops and restaurants. We had an ocean-view room and it was totally worth it! We saw whales breaching and dolphins jumping and spinning almost every time we looked outside! The hotel itself is a little dated, but it was clean and the service was great. We only had one 'complaint' during our visit...one of the beds in our room was really uncomfortable. I mentioned it to the staff at the front desk, and within 5 minutes, housekeeping was at our door. They removed the entire bed (frame and all) and brought us a brand new one! We had a great time at the Royal Kona and will definitely stay here again!

Room Tip: Ocean View rooms are totally worth the additional cost!
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank skd5150
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 10 March 2014
Aloha TA family, great to see these guests loved our location and staff! We're constantly working to improve in all areas, but having the best location in Kona is truly a plus for us. Although we're not the newest kid on the block, we strive to provide the best value for location as well. Our goal is 100% happy customers that return over and over, and it looks like we'll see these guests again too. Warmest Mahalo!
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Naramata, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 March 2014

We had our wedding at the RKR on Feb 28th, 2012. Everyone was so helpful and friendly, both the hotel staff and wedding coordinators, and truly made our wedding the best day we could have had! Our expectations were exceeded on all accounts - the wedding location, the set up, flowers, food (the best we had the entire time on the island!) and all the little behind the scenes stuff that the coordinators helped out with. From the time we checked in till our check out we felt like we were welcomed.

Only downside was the roof top air conditioner that was directly above our room was a bit noisy at night time but otherwise the room was wonderful and it over looked our wedding location which was beautiful.

We loved our stay there and definitely plan to go back again!

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
1 Thank Christina P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 5 March 2014
Aloha TA family, it's touching to know we played a special part in making their wedding such a memorable one. We as a team strive to provide excellent service for all of our guests, from check in to check out, and all the important interactions in between. I'm glad we exceeded their expectations and that they'll have fond memories of their special day. We'll definitely look forward to welcoming them back for their anniversary soon.Coming from Canada is not that long of a plane ride, and looking at the weather map, it's pretty darn cold, so sooner the better. So glad they shared, Mahalo!
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Rochester, New York
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 4 March 2014

When you arrive to your room you realize it looks like a good sized Holiday Inn type of room. Very decent, clean and certainly meets it's purpose. That's at first glance. But this place grows on you. You realize you have good access to much of the action in the area...and it's all within walking distance. You realize the pool and the lagoon are perfect for a quick swim or just relaxing. You leave your doors open all night to hear the crashing of the waves on the lava rocks below.

If you like day tripping, there is a parking lot for your rental vehicle. There is a cost for the space but it's worth the hassle free parking. If your adventurous, you can park in areas on the roads around the hotel, but they're not always available and is a little difficult to navigate. I thinking parking is like $10 a day which I personally think is worth the cash. Why trouble yourself?

There is a charge for wi-fi but at $10 a day, $40 for a week, it makes life, again, easier. If you need or want to pinch pennies, there is access in the bar area and at a few places within walking distance. Again, for me, worth the little bit of cash for convenience.

If you've never been to Hawaii and you do have a budget, be very aware that costs are very high for virtually everything on the islands. This is why, particularly here, a little extra for the parking and wi-fi is more than reasonable. If you went to another four or five star hotel in the area I guarantee you would pay double to triple for a similar room. If you are on a little tighter budget and not being on a sandy beach doesn't bother you much, this is the place.

With a car you've got some of the best snorkeling in very calm waters a couple miles south and, what many consider one of the top ten beaches in the world...Hapuna beach...somewhere around 25 miles to the north. With a car...south point, green sand beach, volcanos national park, Hilo or maybe just drive around and hit several of the nine climates available on the Big Island.

If you want to just have that laid back vacation, you don't even need a car. This hotels accommodations and location make this one of the few places to vacation that a car isn't required. Of course, if you want to sight see then a car is a plus.

Full disclosure: This is my second year in a row I vacationed here with my family. Because of this, being a return customer, I got a very nice upgrade and free parking. How cool was that? This is probably the best deal on the island and my family and I enjoyed it so much we plan on returning again in February 2015, making it our third year in a row.

The only "bad" thing is they are continually upgrading. I see the room prices going up eventually but I hope they continue to be the best value on the island as I really, really enjoy this hotel. The bar, the restaurant, the proximity to shops and dining, the lagoon, the pool, the rooms, the luau, the sounds of the ocean and the helpful and friendly staff all make the Royal Kona one heck of a value.

Room Tip: Personally, I enjoy a room overlooking the pool as you get a great ocean view as well. The luau end...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank TiberiusSpock
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 5 March 2014
Aloha TA family, It's great that these guest did their homework, as its very apparent they realize the Royal Kona is the best value for the best location in Kona. Have large, clean well maintained rooms at an affordable price is ideal, add a wonderful view and it perfect. they mention all of the great things the resort offers, as well as the convenience to Alii Drive's restaurants, bars, shops, galleries, farmers market etc. One thing they missed is we do NOT charge a mandatory "Resort Fee" that the majority of our competition is doing. Yes there are nominal fees for the convenience of parking and wifi, but mention the also available street parking and free hot spot for wifi in the Bar. Everything is relevant. We want all of our guests to realize what a great resort we are, come experience the wonderful service we provide as well. Warmest Mahalo!
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Toronto, Canada
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 March 2014

The Royal Kona Resort was a hit right from check in, Everything went smoothly. We reserved an Ocean View and was it ever worth it. Every morning we saw dolphins and whales right outside our room.

the room could use an upgrade, but for the cost and view the room was more than we could ask for.

Staff were friendly and very Helpful. Mattie in the activities department was so helpful. We started emailing prior to the trip. She had all of our trips all booked and gave us a package when we arrived laying out our trips.

I would recommend this hotel to anyone.

Room Tip: Book Ocean View. Worth every penny more.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Christine H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 5 March 2014
Aloha TA family, it's awesome to know these guests expectations were met and pretty much exceeded. You can tell they did their homework, by asking questions, working to arrange their tours and activities in advance. Knowing they loved the view from their room, watching the spinner dolphins in the bay is such an amazing site too. True, our rooms are not brand new, but we work hard to ensure they are clean, and well maintained. We are truly the best value for the best location in Kona, and we'll look forward to welcoming them back again soon! Mahalo!
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Omaha, Nebraska
Level Contributor
87 reviews
53 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 52 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 2 March 2014

This was my second stay at this resort in Kailua town. I returned for several reasons: (1) proximity to airport (roughly 20 minutes at the time I traveled); (2) adjacent to an approximately one-mile strip of restaurants and tourist-oriented shops; (3) view of ocean; (4) friendly, reliable service; (5) available in a convenient package including airfare and car rental; (6) onsite self-parking; (7) quality that seemed to me like a Hilton or Sheraton at a reasonable price; (8) dry side of island—little chance of rain.

Keep in mind that it took me roughly 2.5 hours to drive to the Volcanoes National Park. Hilo is much closer to the park. However, Hilo has much more rain and many fewer lodging options than Kailua. Hilo does have better proximity to the scenic Hamakua coast as well as more museums.

Also, the Waikola area has more upscale shopping and restaurants. Some lodging there may be closer to golf courses. However, Kailua has more inexpensive options: Target, Walmart, Costco, to name a few.

The hotel parking lot seemed nearly full all the time, but I was always able to find a space. Unlike other hotels, the parking spaces here were not overly narrow. Also, the parking lot attendants were consistently very friendly (as was the rest of the hotel staff). Parking was an additional charge on top of my room.

The Big Island of Hawaii has many lodging choices. My choice reflected my activity plans and my spending preferences.

Room Tip: Some rooms have much better views of the ocean.
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank MidwestBoomer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 5 March 2014
Aloha TA family, its great to see such a solid review from one of our return guests. I'm glad they not only enjoyed all of the wonderful things our resort has to offer, such as great location, views, staff etc. but they were able to enjoy the beautiful Big Island as well. We'll definitely look forward to welcoming them back again soon! Mahalo!
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Puyallup, Washington
Level Contributor
517 reviews
77 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 167 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 28 February 2014

The Royal Kona Resort, circa 1962, is a mid-range resort located on the waterfront in Kailua Kona, Hawaii. At fifty plus years, it is one of the older resorts on the island and although well maintained, the resort is showing its age. The grounds are full of mature colorful plants, nice palms, and water features with tropical fish.

Located on the shore, the resort includes a nice seawater lagoon pool, and a typical freshwater, although smaller, swimming pool which is close to the bar and restaurant. The resort also features tennis courts, and a small exercise facility. The hotel restaurant is a little expensive, but there are numerous restaurants within a short walk, plus more shopping than most people can endure (except of course those who love to shop).

The hotel rooms are located in three multistory towers; the rooms are spacious and comfortable, although somewhat noisy. Our room was located on the third floor above one of the entrances to the tower; each night our sleep was disrupted by other guests coming in late, and in particular, on the weekend after the bars closed at 2:00 AM with loud talking, laughing, etc. One night there was a very loud fight in one of the rooms below that went on for some time. The lanai doors do not provide much sound insulation so the parking lot noise, trash trucks, and people walking by are easily heard.

As is typical with a salt air environment, metal corrodes and the termites are constantly on the attack. Again, although well maintained, reasonably clean, and renovated, the rooms do show signs of age, the paint is a little blistered in places, metal doors somewhat corroded, and the air conditioning supply grill shows a little mildew. The atrium carpets are aged and warn, and the landscaping needs a little help. However, housekeeping service was very good.

The hotel offers a Luau on several nights each week, the hotel concierge, and on site Expedia service center will help arrange tours, and provide helpful information. Hotel internet is $10 per night per device; however, most of the local restaurants and coffee shops offer free wifi.

Room Tip: This hotel is noisy, stay away from the mountain view, pay a little extra for ocean or partial ocean...
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  • Stayed February 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank michael_smith56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
DofSales, General Manager at Royal Kona Resort, responded to this review, 1 March 2014
Aloha TA family, wow, what a through review! sounds like overall they enjoyed their stay. They offer some great tips, however they mention we do charge for wifi in the rooms, we have a complimentary hot spot at Dons Mai Tai Bar, enjoy the dolphins in the bay with a cup of coffee of Mai tai, (depending on time of course) and enjoy. We are the perfect mid range moderate resort for the average traveler looking for a great value for the best location. Glad they shared!
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Additional Information about Royal Kona Resort

Property: Royal Kona Resort
Address: 75-5852 Alii Drive, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96740-1310
Region: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Kailua-Kona
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Kailua-Kona
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Kailua-Kona
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££
Hotel Class:3 star — Royal Kona Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 436
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Royal Kona Hotel Kailua-Kona
Royal Kona Kailua
Royal Kona Resort Hawaii/Kailua-Kona

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