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“We had a great time!” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Wild Ginger Inn Hotel & Hostel

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Wild Ginger Inn Hotel & Hostel
2.0 of 5 Hostel   |   100 Pu'ueo St., Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #5 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Hilo
A TripAdvisor Member
“We had a great time!”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 5, 2006

My husband & I have stayed at this inn several times over the past 10 years. Yes, it's gone through ownership changes and is constantly getting work done... the new owners & their family are working hard. We enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere and good times "talking story" at the inn. We had no problems with dirt or bugs (altho we are from Hawaii so we know what to expect if something does show up!). My only disappointment was trying to get a hot shower in the middle of the day when (I guess?) laundry pulled the hot water away from the room... I had no problem getting a hot shower later. I would not give up the congeniality and affordability for a predictable,lonely and sterile hotel.

  • Stayed February 2006
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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87 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    3 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    3.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (9)
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English first
A TripAdvisor Member
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2006

This "hotel" needs to be demolished. Whilst the location is good the entire place is run down, full of bugs, beat up and has a "mouldy" air to it. I booked the room based on the recommendation in "Lonely Planet" and as a result will view all Lonely Planet recommendations with a jaded eye from now on.

Do yourself a favour and pay more to stay in a decent establishment. Wild Ginger is at the lowest end of the budget scale and will depress even the most tollerant traveller.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Canada
Contributor
20 reviews 20 reviews
17 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
152 helpful votes 152 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 15, 2006

I stayed at the Wild Ginger Inn with my mother in June of 2005. I heard of this place from my Lonely Planet guidebook and, after checking out their website (which isn't updated, by the way -- the peacock didn't stick around when the owners took over -- and I really don't blame it!) and looking at cautionary tales posted on this very website about the place, I decided to give the Wild Ginger Inn a try. I'm all about adventure & staying at places that are basic -- so long as they are still reasonably confortable and offer an unique experience. Well, my mother and I definitely got more than we bargained for! Here are our thoughts:

SOME POSITIVE THINGS ABOUT THE INN:
1) The garden is extraordinary! Mom really loved having her smoke & chilling out in the garden. Unfortunately, things have gotten a little overgrown and we didn't feel comfortable chilling out out there for a long period of time. The open air gathering room just off the office is also a funky hang-out spot. I recommend a nap in the hammock.
2) The new owners are very friendly, personable, and were more than willing to help us out when we decided to cut our stay short. (We had pre-paid for four nights and only stayed for one).
3) There is a certain charm about the Inn. It's in a great location (albeit a walk from the town centre)with Hilo Bay on one side and a lush ravine on the other. Unfortunately, the Inn has degraded so much that most of the charm is gone. The sound of the frogs at night is amazing but, if you need things a little more quiet, don't expect to be able to close your window!

WHY I WOULD NEVER STAY THERE AGAIN:
1) I feel like you definitely get what you pay for at the Wild Ginger, and thankfully we didn't pay much! Our room was quaint but damp because our widnows wouldn't close. The bathroom was very sub-standard, with grime in every corner, a floor desperately needing to be redone, and little bugs marching across the linoleum as I sat (reluctantly) on the toilet. On the more positive side, the fridge in our room worked well and the bedding was definitely clean (albeit damp).
2) The historic plantation that makes up the Inn is made out of wood. What do termites like to eat again? Oh yeah! Basically, my mother and I were run out of our room by a swarm of winged termites. They came in through the bathroom window, attracted apparently by the glow of our humble television screen. I left our room to go and speak with the manager (my mother was terrified at this point), and was greeted by an absolute swarm (I'm talking thousands of them) of termites flying around. The manager was very empathetic and agreed to let us stay in a different room for the night. We checked out another room, which was also inundated with termites. Finally, we found a room that was reasonable. I grabbed the keys, help my mother to our new room and we holed up for the night, fearful of the creepy-crawlies around us. Did I mention the spiders, crickets and humongous cockroaches yet?
3) We packed up all our stuff and left the Inn first thing the following morning. The owners were helpful & refunded us fully. I'm very annoyed, however, that they didn't tell us more about their termite problem. The Manager asked me if we had been warned, because, apparently, from 6 to 8pm we were supposed to have all our lights off to avoid attracting a swarm of termnites to our room. We were told nothing when we checked in and I felt that this was very poor service!

In conclusion, I would never stay at the Wild Ginger Inn again. I wish the owners luck with their renovations and upkeep and, hopefully they can deal with their facility issues and restore the romantic charm that once made this historic sugar plantation lodging a unique place to stay. Although a little grungy itself, we generally foiund Hilo to be a fun and interesting place to visit and would definitely return.

Whatever you decide, I hope that you have an awesome time visiting the amazing Big Island!

  • Stayed June 2005
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 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.
San Jose, CA
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed November 23, 2005

After reading the reviews on this site, I decided to give this place a try. There were some good things about the experience, and some not so great things. The continental breakfast was quaint and tasty. The fruit they serve is all grown on the property. The gardens are quite nice. I loved hearing the sounds of the insects at night when the storms came in and rained on the town.

On the other side of things, it wasn't so great. To be frank, the place is falling apart. Our pillows were covered in plastic, the rooms were quite dirty. The bathroom was ancient and had all these different patches of tile and linoleum to hide holes and cracks. I know the place had a change in ownership in spring 2005. If the owners spend a bit of money to remodel the rooms and make them nice, they will have a fantastic family style inn providing all the charms of non touristy Hawaii.

  • Stayed August 2005
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2005

if you don't like typical cookie-cutter lodgings, this place is for you, 1920s plantation style wooden building, tropical gardens and songs of birds and frogs. family-owned and very friendly atmosphere.

  • Stayed July 2005
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Francisco
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 11 cities Reviews in 11 cities
52 helpful votes 52 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 7, 2005

If there were a rating between one and two circles I would put this place there as in "Okay, with many problems." I just returned from a long trip to Hawaii. Six nights in Oahu and three in Hilo at the WG Inn.

Let's start with the good: The place is very quiet and away from the big city fluff. They have a sign on the door saying "quiet zone" after 9PM. Visitors aren't even allowed in after that time. It is relaxing and the women who run the place seem nice. I also liked the resident cat and peacock who hang around the lobby. It's soothing to hear the noises of the forest behind the inn at night with the window open. Also, downtown Hilo is a short walk away but you probably don't want to walk.

Now the bad: The place is extremely old and in horrible condition! Paint peeling off, ceilings falling apart, water stains, a parking lot that has little asphalt left, you name it. I couldn't find handles to close the windows so i just left them open. I was afraid they would break if I closed them. I stayed in a bamboo room which had a bathroom that was barely functional. I tried not to look at the water stains under the toilet. There were spider webs everywhere outside. Beware when you walk through the garden as it's hard to avoid running into one. I don't know the status of ownership but this place needs major work. Little things could be done like spider web removal and cleaning of the patio furniture. It's also located in a not so good neighborhood so renting a car is a requirement. I'd recommend this inn for campers or those who like hostels and want to be in a quiet place but I don't think others would want to stay here. I wouldn't come back here or to Hilo. Kona seems to be a much better place.

  • Stayed January 2005
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 1 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 21, 2004

I stayed here on my first visit to the island. I was completely blown away by the place, I felt like I had just been dropped into paradise in another land very far away. I hope to get back to Hawaii soon and for sure I will be staying at the Wild Ginger Inn. I have very good memories of a very peaceful environment.
Maholo a nui loa
Aloha

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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Additional Information about Wild Ginger Inn Hotel & Hostel

Address: 100 Pu'ueo St., Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Hilo
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking
Hotel Style:
Ranked #5 of 9 Specialty Lodging in Hilo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Hotel Class:2 star — Wild Ginger Inn Hotel & Hostel 2*
Number of rooms: 30
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Wild Ginger Inn is centrally located in Hilo, which is on the east side of the Big Island. One of the most affordable accommodations in town with free Wi-Fi and Hawaiian Style Continental Breakfast. We offer many different levels of comfort including regular hotel rooms, indoor and outdoor hostels (private and dorm), and tenting. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Wild Ginger Inn b&b
Wild Ginger Hotel Hilo
Wild Ginger Inn Hilo
Wild Ginger Inn Hotel & Hostel Hilo, Hawaii

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