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Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Wailea
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed 5 August 2012

I have been meaning to write since my last trip to the Kea Lani in march. I have tried staying at several of the Kea Lani's neighbors and find that this is still the best value in the area. ALL of the rooms are suites and most far the water. There are a few suites that are truly spectacular with wrap around decks. Next year we are staying at one of the ocean front villas and are very excited for that. Fevers staff person is gracious, the architecture of the building is beautiful and the beach is great. If you want a serious over the top lux experience you might want to try the four seasons, at twice the cost. And that's to start! Building is not as nice and it's harder to get ocean views. The grand Wailea is a huge resort with below average food and small rooms. Trust my, the Kea Lani has value and is still a lux experience.

  • Stayed: March 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank gregjmiller
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 4 August 2012

Our extended family stayed in villas 17 and 18. We had a total of 10 people and couldn't have had a better time. Villas come with a SUV and breakfast and are perfect for relaxing on the beach. Beach is right out the door and the plunge pools at each villa are a great way to get the sand off and cool down. We BBQ'd most nights which was a real treat, especially since the restaurants are very expensive.

The property is set up well and allowed the kids (12-15) to go off on their own without any concerns for their safety. Snorkeling off Polo Beach is really fun - best to walk up past the 4seasons and snorkel back as the current will help bring you back to Polo Beach. The SUV's made it easy to explore the island. Great day is Surf Safari followed by going up the coast to jump off Black Rock.

Although the villas go for about $2,000 per night, when you figure in all the extra amenities, it is worth the extra $.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled with family
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1  Thank Kimberly N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 August 2012

I went here trying to get away to a peaceful location in Maui and the place was a complete miss. The hotel was jammed with very large and loud families and it felt entirely beyond capacity.

The suite in which we stayed was old and musty and in need of a renovation. We would not ever return here and tried to leave early but everything in Maui was booked up.

There was great snorkeling down by the Four Seasons -- we saw a group of very large turtles several times when snorkeling around 6am.

The other part of our trip was at the Hana Maui -- we highly recommend it over the Fairmont.

  • Stayed: November 2011, travelled as a couple
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5  Thank Calif0rnia007
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TrudyPeterson, Public Relations Manager at Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui, responded to this reviewResponded 7 August 2012

We are very sorry to hear that your experience was such a negative one. While The Fairmont Kea Lani is a family-friendly resort, we do strive to make areas such as Kō Bar and the Adult Pool an ideal place for some peaceful “grown-up” time. We understand that many travelers visit in search of a quiet retreat and truly apologize that you didn’t find it with us during the traditionally busy Thanksgiving Holiday. We hope you will give us another opportunity in the future. Best wishes and a warm aloha.

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Reviewed 1 August 2012

To start off I am not saying Fairmont was a bad hotel in any regard.
If you at any point begin to think that my post is aimed at that then please stop reading.
I will however try to share my experience and the time in planning my trip and my thoughts.

Prior to booking:
Prior to booking our trip my fiance', at the time, and I spent countless hours researching websites and reviews in the hopes that the second leg of our honeymoon would be one that was unforgettable. With that said, I'd expect that for the cost of the Fairmont it would be.
We ended up leaning in the direction of the posts on Tripadvisor as I am a faithful and contributing fan that respects the opinions of others on here. We used a page that monitored changes on a website and were able to obtain lower rates as the date got closer. End of story we did our research and trusted we had booked a hotel that would be simply marvelous and unforgettable.

Upon arrival:
Upon arriving to the hotel no one really cared that we had arrived.
We got out of the convertible (keep in mind if your booking a convertible that the back of the car (the trunk) is going to be small and you will most likely have to drop the top and put your bags in the backseat.) Anyway back to the review... We got there and after a few seconds someone acknowledged our presence and took the car away. We were not greeted with flowers or with a drink or a towel as many have posted. We were not provided any upgrade despite it being our honeymoon... we were not given a bottle of champagne or anything.. we were not given a tour of the grounds.. we were simply pointed in the direction of our room and given a congratulations envelope that offered a free dessert and bottle of wine at Ko. Never the less we were optimistic about our stay.. after all we had booked 5 nights for nearly 4k.

The Grounds and Rooms:
The room was nice and large. Nothing can be said about the size of the room or upkeep in regards to janitorial/cleaner type activities. The room is as some mentioned dated though in regards to the feel of the room and the color tones. Nothing bad, nothing great... just so so but definitely a great plus if you have a family I guess as you can pull out the sofa close the door to your room and have some privacy if you have others with you. Now the view to the ocean was mediocre despite having an ocean-view room. It could have been better could have been worst.. it was just average... (average is not bad). The grounds however were not what we had expected... they were small and offered to me a boutique type feel. The area did include various pools but only one that was meant to be for adults only. Despite the claim we had days when the pool was flooded with children until someone would come by hours later and tell the parents to send their kids packing to another pool. The grounds are definitely well manicured but they are small. Warning.. if you are looking for a small area this is the place for you. The total area is honestly the size of two football fields and entirely closed in from other beaches and area unless you want to go for a nice walk.. then you can take the trail/path towards the Four Seasons. I am not saying that this hotel location makes it impossible to get to other hotels or beaches by foot.. I am saying it is closed in. It is closed in when you go down to the beach by stone/rock and is closed in like any other hotel separating itself from other hotels/resorts. The food price is crazy... This is to be expected when in Hawaii; especially Maui however the prices are crazy high for things you may not like or foods that are not really palatable. My suggestion is to go to the deli on premises and get yourself a cheaper lunch there as well as snacks and other things. Do not try eating at the beachside bar/grill the food is 'average' at best and is way over priced.

After expressing my concerns I think its important to take a break and express that again despite the cost of food, the rooms, non-wow factor for design of rooms, non-wow factor for our greeting.. that the hotel was still comfortable. I did not hate this hotel despite not really liking much about it. Okay on to some more complaints..

When we were in Hawaii we stood at another hotel and got a discount due to renovations going on. The hotel was clear in letting us know when booking that renovations would be going on and then as a reminder a week before our trip with a phone call. However the fairmont despite being about 4 times as expensive didnt care to extend this courtesy to us. We were there and as we sat by the adult's pool they decided that it would be a good time (throughout the entire day) to power-blast the flower baskets outside the guest rooms. This resulted in water/smut floating down on us (Not heavy) but film none the less and distracting noise for hours. Talk about a disappointing type of behavior by the hotel. They cold have at least let us known in advance but instead the hotel offered free beach chairs if you wanted them and umbrellas. That to me was an unfair trade off as we are not "sit under beach chair" people... Ultimately I am writing this comment in the hopes that it gets the attention of someone from management so that they can rebuttal what type of excuse they have for keeping the renovations a secret from guests when hotels that are rated 3 stars less have the common sense to let guests know.

What else can I tell you about this leg of our trip?
I would recommend that anyone going to Maui do their research and learn about the island. My fiance' and I at the time had misconceptions regarding what Maui would look like. We did not believe it was going to be as dry as it was despite doing our homework and buying maui books (tour books). We understood the South Shore to be dryer and that is the reason we stood there... but between the airport and Wailea there is nothing... nothing at all... dessert like grounds and sugar cane fields... I was very surprised to see that the area is barren of any development. Keep this in mind when you are traveling and have big plans to go out and do things in this area/maui ... there is very little to be done at night. We are not party animals but at the same time we like options. Food options were limited and the hotel offered no 'activities'. Ultimately we were surprised in Maui and the amount of things available to us... we really thought it was going to be more 'developed' and offer more amenities as a whole. Overall the trip was nice and the area was relaxing but nothing special. For those of you that are schedule to go to Maui and are disappointed in my review I suggest you do the following as a means to validate what I am saying as I am a man of fact and not opinion. If you want to confirm what I am saying about Maui being highly desolate and barren go to Google Maps and do a search for highway 31 in Maui.. you can just search Wailea and then find the major road leading to wailea from the airport (state highway 31)... drop the little yellow guy on the road so that you can see what the landscape is like. I know people are going to bash me for saying Maui is relatively barren and desolate ... and that I am missing the concept of Maui... and that is fine. My purpose is to share our experience and to let others, who may have the same interpretations, know what is out there. Just drop the guy (yellow) on really any part of the map of Maui and you should get an idea of whats available. The reason I indicate this is because it is important to know what is around you when on vacation and this vacation destination did not offer many options as far as dinning and activities. Many will tell you that its important that you enjoy nature and that Maui is unharmed... If you want that I suggest you got to Kauai.. we went there as well and enjoyed Nature as it is an island that offers true and beautiful natural landscapes.. not deserts.

Okay.. with that being said... Why did I give it a 3 out of 5 stars.. because its a nice hotel. The staff was nice enough. But honestly no one went beyond the care I've seen at Holiday Inns... yes the hotel was more lush than that.. but not nearly as nice as some of the competitors. In fact if anyone is considering other hotels I suggest you do so. The other hotels in the area offer very nice accommodations and may offer you something that better aligns with your expectations of a maui vacation. The Four Seasons down the road looked exceptionally nice and the Hyatt down the road in the other direction where we got dinner one night was beyond amazing in appearance.

Why did I write such a long review on this?
I am writing this long review because I want to put an end to the 'sell my trip to Maui' rage going on here at Tripadvisor. My wife now, fiance' at the time then, and I feel like these sites are bombarded with a group of people from the local government in Maui to get visitors to come out to the area. I occasionally post things like this and no one ever responds so I offer the invite to do so, privately or publicly on here. For those reading .. ask questions.. find out why this is so nice and why you should visit. Do not go on a trip that is filled with rumors and myths. This is not by a long shot the best hotel on the planet. This is by far not the nicest beach on the planet.. and this is by far not the best area for beautiful landscapes or options in regards to dining or activities (nightlife, etc..)

People there seemed to be having a good time..
No one gave us any 'great' stories while we were there like we read online... despite the various people we came into contact with and discussed our trip with and their thoughts.

This is an average hotel with a super high price tag in an area that is highly isolated from civilization as you may know it. Why everyone on here gives it the accolades that they do.. I may never know. You be the judge and do your homework.. my suggestion again is to really know where you are staying in Maui and what Maui has to offer... use the little guy in google maps....

Some other items:
-Safe in our room was broken as well and someone had to come in and reset it
-We did receive a chocolate or candy type "congratulations" gift in our room.. we tried eating it but it was not really edible and thought it may have been candy apple mix... but anyway ew left it there broken and near the door and it stood in our room for 3 days before the cleaners took it out. (we did tip daily as well so don't assume we did not)
-We didnt opt to use valet parking. The lot is super close and you dont have to wait for them then or worry about tipping and finding singles throughout your trip
-Canoe rides were booked out.. despite us being there for 5 days and us asking about it on the first day they said it wasnt available until the day after our trip. They did end up calling us the day before we left to offer us the canoe ride an hour before we had to check out. I share this to demonstrate that they were nice enough to keep us in mind when a seat became open but more so to let people know this activity (touted as free) is typically unavailable unless you book in advance.



Best of luck and travel safe everyone!
See my other reviews for the things we did like in Maui.

Room Tip: -Pay attention to their prices; prices are constantly changing -Join the "fairmont president c...
  • Stayed: June 2012, travelled as a couple
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20  Thank LoveNYCtravel4Real
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
TrudyPeterson, Public Relations Manager at Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui, responded to this reviewResponded 5 August 2012

Aloha and thank you for your very thorough and candid review. We’re so sorry to hear that you didn’t enjoy the island or the resort. We’re proud that Maui has been voted “Best Island” by readers of Condé Nast Traveler for seventeen years, but realize that it is not necessarily for everyone. Small towns are scattered across the island and when you drive from town to town, you will often drive through sugarcane fields, one of our major exports and a cornerstone to Hawaii’s history. The hotel is located in one of the dryer climates of the island which many of our guests enjoy because of the sunny days and very limited rainfall. As you have suggested, we would welcome the opportunity to speak directly with you regarding your recent experience at The Fairmont Kea Lani. Please feel free to contact our main line at 808-875-4100 and ask for our General Manager, Charles Head. Mahalo!

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Reviewed 1 August 2012

I recently had the pleasure of staying here for a week, and it is the friendliest, cleanest, nicest hotel I have ever known. The staff went out of there way to make us comfortable, were incredibly understanding, professional and helpful our entire stay. Helped us arrange all of our activities with vendors outside of the hotel group, gave us tons of options for all activities. Everyone here was always wearing a smile and were genuinely nice and concerned about you having a pleasant stay. The staff gave great recommendations to local restaurants, and the amenities are unbelievable. If you happen to be around on Saturday definitely make time for Star gazing on the lawn, yoga in the am and at dusk was another favorite. The pools were clean and fresh, and I loved that they were open 24 hours a day (a rarity), and they had large peaceful Adult pool to sneak away to. Only downside was that the hot tubs were not that hot, and kinda small. The beach was gorgeous, beautiful sand, and relatively calm shores... beware the rocks on snorkeling! Definitely try Nick's Fish Market for Dinner at least once, it is fantastic with great servers, pricey but worth it. Even the cheapest room had a gorgeous view of the volcanoes towards the hub, and were spacious!! The bathroom in of itself was larger than my bedroom at home. Rooms have a fridge, microwave, and come equipped with a bottle opener perfect for taking a bottle of wine down to the beach to watch the sunset. The beds were soft and large, and very quiet perfect place to rest for the next adventure. If you plan on doing the road to Hana the location is kinda sucks, apparently there was a road nearby that made the trip much shorter but years ago they tore it up to make a golf course... But Kihei is less than 10 min away with great restaurants, nightlife, shops, beach etc, but you seriously never need to leave the hotel except for excursions around the island.

  • Stayed: July 2012, travelled as a couple
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Thank Flip16
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2012

We visited Maui on the first leg of a trip that continued on to Tahiti. Although we had friends living on the island, we wanted a hotel as our home base. Knowing we would be out and about most of the time, we were looking something convenient and nice, but not neccessarily a "destination" style resort. The Farimont fit the bill and provided exactly what we expected. Our room was spacious, the view was nice, and the service was accomodating and efficient. The hotel lobby made it easy for our friends to drive in and pick us up and the staff was always there to greet us with a smile upon our return each evening. We appreciated the pools being open 24 hours so that we could enjoy a late night swim when we returned from the day's adventure. Wave jumping and snorkeling on the hotel's beachfront could be accomplished with a minimal amount of planning and fussing (which was nice since we didn't have a lot of time for that sort of thing on this trip). If we were planning on spending quality time at the hotel and the beach, we might have considered some other nearby locations; some of the neighboring properties seemed to have more going on and more options for guests. Overall, however, we were satisfied with our stay. It seemed other guests we talked to had a similar take on the hotel and their expereince.

Stayed: July 2012
1  Thank 2_of_us_ontheroad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 July 2012

We were lucky enough to have been able to take advantage of Fairmont's renovation special just before Christmas. That, combined with becoming a platinum member of the Fairmont Club by signing up as a "platinum 5" member through the platinum Amex card program, allowed us to be upgraded to a beautiful room overlooking the ocean.

Our boys (7 and 5) loved the pools and the beach. The room was perfect for having breakfast out on the lanai in the mornings, and having a glass of wine once the boys had settled in for the night. The hotel provided us with the basics (bowls, plates, spoons etc.) so that we could have morning cereal for the kids. The small fridge was big enough to keep our basic supplies cold. The staff were very friendly and helpful, making for a great experience all round.

The fitness room was very good and the restaurants that were open were perfect for a family outing. The one downside was that the kids club program was really non-existent. The hotel could certainly improve on that.

A highlight of the stay was the complimentary canoe voyages in the mornings. Be sure to sign up, this is an experience not to be missed!

All in all, a wonderful experience, highly recommended.

Room Tip: I highly recommend a higher room with a view of the ocean. Can't be beat.
  • Stayed: December 2011, travelled with family
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1  Thank islandcabin
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui

Address: 4100 Wailea Alanui Dr, Wailea, Maui, HI 96753-8449
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Hawaii > Maui > Wailea
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Wailea
#2 Business Hotel in Wailea
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Wailea
#2 Spa Hotel in Wailea
#3 Luxury Hotel in Wailea
#3 Romantic Hotel in Wailea
#3 Green Hotel in Wailea
Price Range: £333 - £1,142 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui 4.5*
Number of rooms: 450
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover the essence of Maui at Fairmont Kea Lani, Hawaii's only all-suite and villa luxury resort. Nestled on the golden sands of Wailea's Polo Beach, this award-winning oceanfront paradise redefines luxury with a state-of-the-art spa, island inspired cuisine and authentic cultural experiences. Fairmont Kea Lani is the ideal island getaway with four unique restaurants, three swimming pools including an adult-only pool, a comprehensive fitness and wellness program and unrivaled access to the best adventures across the island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fairmont Kea Lani Maui Hotel Wailea
Fairmont Hotel Wailea
Fairmont Maui
Fairmont Wailea
Wailea Fairmont
The Fairmont Kea Lani
Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui Wailea

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