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“First Time at Kona Kai and with No Reservation During Busy Season” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Kona Kai Motel

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Kona Kai Motel
3.0 of 5 Motel   |   1539 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, FL 33957   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #17 of 26 Hotels in Sanibel Island
Seminole
Level Contributor
7 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 6 helpful votes
“First Time at Kona Kai and with No Reservation During Busy Season”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 19, 2013

I read some of the negative reviews, and those people must not travel a lot, and your one week a year vacation does not count, Don't listen to them..........

My Daughter came to visit over Christmas Break, and after a short drive thru Senibel Island, I decided we would try and find a place to stay right on the Island rather than inland, which is where we were.......... So anyway, I found Kona Kai, by stopping at the chamber of commerce and thru them we were put in touch with a place that was in my price range........

We show up and are greeted by the most adorable looking Motel. Tiki torches, Totem poles, Log style, Just Adorable. ( i posted pictures).......Oh, and Remember I'm traveling with my 18 year old daughter, and we just came from Orlando, where we spent 3 nights in a Lowe's Universal Resort a 5 star joint.......
We went to see our room, a double bed room around the corner, As soon a Summer (my Daughter) sees it, she was in Love, She loved this place, She said it was better than the five star resort we came from....... but different!

I agree, This is Not a Five Star Resort and you shouldn't expect that.
<b>But it is a 5 star "Ma & Pa Motel"</b>

I don't know if all the rooms a renovated but ours was, and it was beautiful, basic two double beds, with double french doors, so we could practically open the entire wall out onto the porch....bathroom, fridge, microwave, coffee maker, plates, bowls, cups, spoons, forks, etc.........
Great Big Porch, that was awesome.... they had gas grills, charcoal grills, out side sinks, nice big pool, cute wooden walkways.......

Yes, this motel is not near the beach, but its an island, the beach is right around the corner......But Driving around Sanibel, plus the parking fees is just a road to insanity, So I recommend you rent the bikes, like everyone else does, we did..... We had a blast on bikes, we were on the beach in 9 minutes. And Billy's Bike Rental is right across the street, How great is that, right?

I read somewhere in the complaints that this motel has no amenities, Ok, so maybe it doesn't, get over yourself! Who doesn't travel with their own shampoos and soap? No phones in rooms.....Good!, plus who doesn't have a cell phone? Need Ice? There is a 7-Eleven next door, shut up go buy some..... Bring your own sugar, snacks, tea, drinks and what not....

This Motel is very quiet, peaceful, it really did at times feel like there was no one around. I personally liked that very much......
If anything maybe at times too quiet, I would suggest some outdoor speakers around the motel, quietly playing Hawaiian music? Or something like that..... Im on vacation in a Hawaiian themed Motel, why not have some music quietly playing, it would Very much add to the ambiance.

I hope this helps everyone and If I think of anything else, I will come back and add some more, otherwise thank you for a great time and I will Definitely return here, since I live in the area.

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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308 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (37)
Date | Rating
  • Dutch first
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Any
English first
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 9, 2013

A nice pool and a nice garden combined with clean and charming rooms and a wonderful management made us choose Kona Kai motel. We looked at several places before we chose Kona Kai and after three nights at the motel it definetely feels like the right decision.


Jon with family

  • Stayed January 2013
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Level Contributor
12 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 17, 2012

Kona Kai is a fun, quiet, small and unique motel. We were in Sanibel for 3 nights and were looking for clean, quiet comfortable place to rest after playing on the island from 7am-dark! We found it and more at the Kona Kai! The grounds are a wonderful surprise of HI in FL...you can tell that they are cont. working to improve and update the place/grounds to make it even better! It is not on the beach but within biking distance and is centerally located to shopping and restaurants and all the island has to offer. There is even a 7/11 next store for ice, etc..anything you need to grab quickly! Then in the back of the property there is a lush greenery and river..such a surprise. We spent one late night grilling in the community grills by the pool under the twinkle lights..so relaxing! The best thing about the Kona Kai is Brenda and Lenny...they are WONDERFUL and so helpful....if you need anything ask! they will provide is possible and even more! You can tell they are devoted to making your stay wonderful and love what they do! We will be back!

Room Tip: Rooms in back are more in the lush greens and rooms up front more by the pool....
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Columbia City, Indiana
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

My wife and i were looking for a nice quiet place for our anniversary and we found it at the Kona Kai.Beautiful setting,clean rooms,great pool,so much to see and do nearby.You will not find a friendlier and more helpful staff.Would recommend to anyone looking for quiet friendly place.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Denver, Colorado
Level Contributor
23 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed October 26, 2012 via mobile

Right on main street very noisy with road traffic poorly kept an old air conditioner was dumped next to the pool. My opinion is that this place is an overplaced tourist trap. Not a relaxing place on the beach.

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brenda C, Manager at Kona Kai Motel, responded to this review, November 1, 2012
Aloha from Sanibel,
I am so sorry that you seem not to have had the wonderful experience we wish for all our guests. Through the lack of pronuciation and jejune adjective in your title I waded, looking for the explanation of why you never contacted management about any of your concerns.
With all the beauty that the Kona Kai has to offer in meditation gardens, pond, gazebo lit with fairy lights, sparkling pool and majestic Sanibel River it's such a shame that the only photo you posted was of the garbage pile behind the pool waiting for next morning pick up.
The Kona Kai is located in the heart of the island, close to all the shops and restaurants and less than a mile to the beach. No where do we advertise that we are beachfront. I am praying you find exactly what you are looking for directly on the beach for the $100.00 a night you paid here.
Thank you for expressing your opinion as we always like to hear from guests. Mahalo
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
NORTH LIBERTY
Level Contributor
22 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2012

I discovered the Kona Kai through the Ding Darling national Wildlife Refuge website, as I was coming to spend a few days there. I wanted a nice, quiet place, not a big modern resort, and I found a gem! Brenda and Lenny are fabulous, and did everything they could to make my stay wonderful. They actually went out of their way- I had arrived in St. Petersburg on Thurs. night, with plans to stay there Thurs, and drive down Friday- check in time 2 PM. Had a miserable arrival in St. Pete- stood in line for an hour and a half waiting for the rental car (at midnight)- the airport hotel messed up my reservations, and put me in a room full of mold, so couldn't sleep, and decided to drive to Sanibel at about 5 AM, arriving at 9 AM. I stopped by the motel to see if I could just drop my stuff off, and go out to the refuge or something until check-in, but they went ahead and got me checked in early, in a lovely little room by the pool. (great, relaxing pool!) the grounds are great- they are redesigning everything, and it is in the style of tropical gardens. there is even a short walk back to the end of the property on the Sanibel river, with chairs for hanging out,where I got some great Osprey photos. The rooms and suites are arranged around wooden walkways and tropical gardens, with porches, covered seating, a central grill for guest use, etc. It is definitely an old-style "housekeeping" motel- this is not the Hilton (thank heavens!) Just a nice, comfortable old-style family vacation spot. If you are looking for a nice,quiet, "Old Florida style" friendly spot, close to everything on Sanibel, with both privacy and friendly help, this is the place! I hope to visit here again on my next trip the gulf side of Florida!

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled solo
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kentucky, United States
Level Contributor
20 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 11, 2012 via mobile

Decided at last minute to stay overnite, watched a beautiful sunset, but desperately wanted a shower! Aloha room for 3 was a good size , really nice bath room, tiled shower stall, lots of light, deck with chairs, pool was closed, but it was clean, the cottage garden walkway is so cozy,,,,, great value,

  • Stayed October 2012
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kona Kai Motel

Address: 1539 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel Island, FL 33957
Location: United States > Florida > Southwest Gulf Coast > Sanibel Island
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
#2 Best Value Hotel in Sanibel Island
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Kona Kai Motel 3*
Number of rooms: 12
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Our inn borders the Sanibel river for our guests who love to fish or kayak. We are located directly on the bike path and are close to shopping, restaurants and attractions. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kona Kai Hotel Sanibel Island
Kona Kai Sanibel Island

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