We recently stayed at the Andaz for a celebratory anniversary/birthday trip, taking in five nights at the gorgeous property. If you were looking for a beautiful place to stay, but are willing to walk/drive elsewhere for affordable food and souvenir shopping, consider this hotel.
The Andaz Maui has done a remarkable job in its design, creating pool spaces and environments where almost without fail you will find a spot that feels tranquil and uncrowded. There are multiple pools and levels, and you will definitely find a spot to suit your needs. The foliage and flowers are lovely and complement the exterior spaces, while the water features and fountains have lighting to bring out the best in them. The chairs were all adjustable and comfortable and the firetables were a great touch. You also had a fantastic view of the sunset from almost any tier of the pool! The lobby was likewise gorgeous and a design marvel, with a long open balcony to look out over the grounds to the water as well as a sandy seating area with skylight. At the Four Seasons in Wailea, pool seating was frequently a hard to find commodity, and forget getting a spot at the so-called adults only serenity pool. The Andaz got it right on this score.
This is a green hotel, so we had water bottles we could refill at water stations on every second level. This was an admirable effort on the part of the hotel but I imagine some might find it annoying to be made to serve themselves. The menus, hotel guide etc were all non-paper, and accessible only by television. Another good idea, but in practice a bit iffy if your significant other or family are tired and sleeping while you would like to browse for the hotels amenities. Imagine a flickering tv in your darkened room. Not such a good thing, but every idea tends to have pros and cons.
Service is excellent, the staff are all friendly and helpful and truly seem to enjoy their jobs. The beach crew were fun and helpful, but remember that they are the beach crew - they help you with water sports, set out your chairs and umbrellas, and keep an eye on people in the water... they are not your personal concierge - don't ask them to leave their posts to get you stuff you can do yourself - that's not their job. I saw someone do this and cringed.
For a hotel with its price range, you expect the Andaz to respect the guests and their choice. We have previously stayed twice at the four seasons, which per room is only slightly more expensive, but that hotel had a large variety of menu options for the light eater to the ravenous foodie. As a light eater, I felt my breakfast options at their restaurant were to either fork out $45 for the all you can eat buffet and pick out my tiny meal while seething at the price tag, or pick one of five menu options. Additionally there were no printed drink options like smoothies or juice, you instead had to ask what was available. I'm no smoothie chef, I don't know what goes in my drinks and I'd rather a tried and true option be present to pick. I honestly felt like they were trying to trap me into paying for the buffet and this rankled, as most of the five other menu options were generally not on the light or healthy side. The other option was to go to their tiny market, and pick something there. It just didn't feel well thought out, and if it was, then it seems worse as an obvious money-grab.
Cocktails were around 16 dollars poolside. A light lunch bill with one drink each came to $100 per couple. And I ordered an appetiser, which was oversized and priced accordingly.
As I said, we have stayed at the Four Seasons in Wailea and being cheap is not the issue. Its having the option to eat light, which is simply not present.
Shopping is likewise not the best. The spa has a small clothing and apparel shop, which is dimly lit and in the back. There is a 24 hour market that sells chips, snacks, muffins, sandals, sunglasses, some odd books and condiments etc, but there is nothing very souvenir or giftlike that I would have bought. We ended up walking to the shops at Wailea for our needs in that department. They could remove some of the meeting rooms and employ those spaces for more shops, because aside from hot sauce and the odd early morning coffee, I didn't use the store.
We also dined at Morimotos, the exquisite restaurant on the property. Very pricey, but worth it for the experience and the food. Don't expect it to be your nightly go to, although we DID choose the chef's dinner (omakase) which lasted three hours. It was a birthday and as a special occasion it was a wonderful treat. Your Hyatt card points however, do not apply to this third party vendor so don't expect to earn anything on your card for it! Not complaining about that, but its worth noting if you were hoping for it.
We almost never ate lunch at the hotel. Instead, we took the five to ten minute walk to the shops at Wailea for late breakfast at Longhi's (excellent) or to the Four Seasons for breakfast at Duo or lunch at Ferraros. We also did make a grocery trip to Kihei for alcohol and snacks, which I highly recommend you do if you're a nibbler.
Overall, we enjoyed our stay but the first couple of days got under our skin due to the food issue. Its such a tiny thing, but offering lighter food options with appropriate pricing on the menus (restaurant and poolside) would have us seriously considering this as the best option in Wailea. Its so beautiful and seems such a shame. As it is though, food is such a large part of many a tourist's trip, and it rankled that we had to either leave the property to dine and feel like we weren't ripped off, or stay and feel more the fool for forking out.
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- Also Known As:
- Andaz Maui At Wailea