Hotel/Resort Review: Hotel Wailea – Wailea, Maui (Hawaii)

This is one in a series of seven reviews for seven hotels and resorts I stayed at during a recent trip to Hawaii (Maui and Oahu) in the month of May 2012. This is part of a continuing series of my impressions and experiences staying at various hotels and resorts while traveling to attend concerts worldwide. This review is for the Hotel Wailea in Wailea, Maui, Hawaii.

Property: Hotel Wailea
Location: Wailea, Maui (Hawaii)
Address: 555 Kaukahi Street, Wailea, Maui, HI 96753
Phone: (808) 874-0500
Website: www.hotelwailea.com
Room Type/Class: 1 Bedroom Partial Ocean View Suite (Room 193)
Date: May 15-16, 2012
TripAdvisor Page/Reviews: LINK
Booking Source: Hotwire
Overall Rating: 3.75/5 [Note: Score is totally subjective based on price, location, and comparison to "like" properties within same area and price range]

I choose this hotel for my first night stay after flying into Maui on a late flight, arriving after 10:00 PM.  I was looking for something relatively inexpensive in the Wailea area, as I was planning to check out early to change to the Four Seasons the following day, which is just a few minutes away via car.  As such, my experiences at this resort are severely limited – I was only here for about 8 hours.

I was able to determine this was a property offered at a reduced rate through Hotwire, via the BetterBidding website, based on the amenities and location (this was the type of Hotwire booking where they don’t reveal the name of the hotel until after you have paid, non refundable).  Having read favorable reviews on TripAdvisor and given the reduced price, it seemed to be a good option for a quick overnight stay.

I had quite a late arrival, and when I arrived, there was no one manning the valet station, and I could not find self park, so I left my car adjacent to the valet stand and made my way toward registration.  I was the last check-in of the day, and the gentleman who checked me in was waiting for me.  All was smooth and pleasant, and a few minutes after returning to my car, the valet arrived in a golf cart, took my luggage, and drove me to my room, which was great service.

All of the rooms are situated in independent small buildings, with upper and lower.

The first thing that struck me about the room was the size – very, very large.  The room featured a kitchen area with cook top, refrigerator, and sink.  There is also a full table that seats two for dining, and a dedicated family room with couch, coffee table, television, and walk out balcony with ocean view.

The bedroom is separate, and could be closed off as well, and feature its own television and electronic safe.

The tub and shower area shared space with the closet (which had mirrored doors, which is a little strange, unless you enjoy watching yourself shower!).  The sink area is in another space, and toilet is in closet (with controls and features I did not dare mess with).

I think the large living space would lend itself to people seeking an extended stay, and maybe those traveling as families.

The room is a bit dated, and to my own standards, it could have been cleaner (I would rate it maybe a 7/10 for cleanliness).

I did get up early, maybe 7 am, to explore the property, and walking around for 30 minutes only ever saw one other guest, so it is a very quiet place.

The pool and pool area, while not “grand” and over the top as some of the bigger chains showcase on the island, appeared to be very nice and comfortable, and the cabanas looked very comfortable and inviting.

The grounds overall were very beautiful and well manicured.  The lobby area and common areas were all very nice and authentic Hawaiian.

For me, the big drawback is that while it has awesome ocean views, it is removed off the beach, so you have to take an extra trip to sit out on the beach and enjoy the ocean directly.  Some vacationers travel to the beach anyway, so that might not be an issue, but when I visit Maui, I like to stay at resorts that are all inclusive so that you don’t have to get into your car or a shuttle to get to the beach, but walk to it.  Since I was only staying here pretty much just to sleep, it was irrelevant, but just thought I would point this out.  I think it is a different sort of resort that offers different benefits though, so may suit the needs of travelers, depending on what they were looking for in a stay.  I would definitely recommend it though, it is matches up with your needs and expectations.  Booking through Hotwire offers a great value, and it is very close to Wailea beach, which is my favorite on Maui, but it is not walking distance.  But given that rooms can be had here at a relatively lower cost, it may be worthwhile to drive or take transport to the beach.

As with the other Maui properties that I have reviewed, it assesses a resort fee as well, at $25/day.  I was not assessed any additional charge for valet parking.

Below are photos I took of the resort and the room I stayed in:

Jason DeBord

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