I stayed at the Wailea Beach Resort a couple of times during the hotel’s remodel project and was excited to see how the dust had settled on my most recent return visit. The 547 room luxury resort did not disappoint; in fact, it seems that the only thing that didn’t get an upgrade was the ocean – it’s just as blue as ever.
The rooms and common areas are gorgeous, no doubt about it, but the reason to stay here is the ocean. This is not a bare bones Hawaii hotel. You’ll be paying for those gorgeous sunrises and sunsets over the ocean, for the infinity pool stretching out to the ocean, and, if you time it right, for glimpses of whales spouting off the coast.
Check in is outdoors, in a well-covered lobby area. During peak arrival times, about an hour and a half after flight arrivals at Kahului Airport, the line can be long. There’s a loyalty option for Marriott Rewards members, soon to be a part of the SPG program, but that’s often even longer than the regular line. Don’t stress the lines – you’re in paradise, after all – but it’s really a pain point that the hotel needs to work on even after the remodel. Fortunately, there’s a sitting area to the right of the front desk and you can send your traveling companions there to sit while you check in.
Rooms reflect Maui’s natural beauty, with colors and shapes evoking waves, sand, shells, and the island flowers. The rooms are large, with standards rooms starting at over 500 square feet. My king room reminded me of old Hawaii, a kinder and gentler (and less expensive) time, that was known for its tranquility and serenity. Room decor was mostly in sand and white, and furniture was a contemporary beach-style, rather than fussy. It felt comfortable in a way that felt beach-like, even in the room.
The rooms feature all the latest in technology, including speedy wi-fi (included with your resort fee) and plug-in panels that include USB devices. If I’m traveling alone, I rarely turn on the television, but I often travel with a television addict. He appreciates the upgraded television technology that allows us to access our personal Netflix account (also Hulu) so he can keep up with his favorite shows. Personal device mirror-casting and custom music streaming is also available.
You won’t want to stay in your room long, well, maybe long enough to appreciate the view, but then set out to explore the many parts of this extensive resort. Make a note, though, if you have a sweeping view of the ocean, bring a bottle of wine back to the room and watch the sun go down.
There are five outdoor pools, my favorite was the Maluhia Serenity Pool. Even at the busiest times, there were loungers to be found as well as peace and quiet. And the view of the ocean? Ah, bliss! If the hotel is fully booked, I’d probably choose to book a cabana here one day. You can book a cabana online (prices not quoted, you’ll be emailed the rate).The prices quoted varied significantly, with the most favorable priced I found to be one at the last minute with the pool area relatively empty. The law of supply and demand, I guess.
Other resort amenities include the Mandara Spa, a fitness center, a variety of Hawaiian cultural activities, children’s center, water sports, and wellness activities. As you’re exploring the resort, you’ll find plenty of public spaces for lounging.
There are numerous restaurants on property, many of which changed with the remodel. While I haven’t tried it yet, I’ve got Roy’s Yamaguchi’s new Humble Market Kitchin on my list to try on my next trip. I’ve always loved the food at his flagship Roy’s, and this menu looks delicious.
Just up the hill a couple blocks are the Shops at Wailea. You’ll find a number of other restaurants here, happy hour at Longhi’s delivers good value, as well as an upscale market, Island Gourmet. I try to stretch my food budget a bit by picking up some to-go items from Island Gourmet. A roasted chicken and glass of wine can make a reasonably priced dinner on your lanai.
Hawaiian luxury does not come cheap. Rates at the Wailea Beach Resort start around $400/night. Additionally, there is a $30 per day resort fee. (Do not get me started on why resort fees are a ridiculous fee – if it’s a mandatory charge it should be rolled into the daily room rate!) The resort fee includes wi-fi access, bottled water in your room, towels at the pool, and a variety of resort discounts.
Getting to the hotel needs to be budgeted for as well. The hotel does not offer an airport shuttle and a taxi will set you back around $65. Shared shuttle services are available, advance reservations are recommended.
If you rent a car parking is available for $25 per day, $35 for valet parking. If you know that you want to spend some time relaxing at the resort, I’d recommend only renting a car for the days you need it to avoid the expense of letting it sit in the hotel parking lot.
The Wailea Beach Resort is located at 3700 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea, on the island of Maui. You can make your reservations online with the hotel or compare rates and book with Travelocity or Priceline.
Pin this to your favorite Hawaii, beach, or luxury Pinterest board. You know you’re going to want to stay here.