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“The Place to Stay in Hilo” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Shipman House Bed and Breakfast Inn

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Shipman House Bed and Breakfast Inn
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131 Kaiulani Street, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #4 of 18 Hilo B&B and Inns
New York
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“The Place to Stay in Hilo”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2013

My wife and I stayed here for three nights in October 2013, during our honeymoon, in Auntie Clara's Shell Room. Every morning we were greeted by a gorgeous view sunrise over the bay below through the two large windows opposite the bed, and by an equally beautiful breakfast spread out on the lanai, featuring local fruit grown on the property.

The house itself is full of incredible Asian and Hawaiian antiques and gorgeous koa furniture.

We didn't mind the frogs at all -- we found the sound rather soothing.

Barbara and Gary are gracious hosts and full of excellent recommendations for things to do in the area. This is the place to stay in Hilo.

  • Stayed October 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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206 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
    180
    17
    5
    2
    2
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14
118
10
11
Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (24)
Date | Rating
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English first
Kaufman Tex
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed October 2, 2013

I had been looking at this property for quite awhile. I finally decided to include Hilo as part of my travels and to stay at this place. Am I glad I did. This house has fantastic old world charm, bed was very comfortable, food was excellent. Would not hesitate to stay there again. I loved being serenaded to sleep by the tree frogs every night. Gary and Barbara were excellent hosts and helped us plan our days. The house has no air conditioning but we had no trouble staying cool.We stayed in the shell room and a fantastic view of Hilo Bay

Room Tip: The shell room has the best view
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  • Stayed September 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewer
4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 19, 2013

The moment we arrived at the Shipman House, we knew we were in for a unique experience. The home has been in one family for many, many years. The obvious, personal care of the property is apparent as soon as you step onto the wide planked porch and push the doorbell. The home itself is full of personal treasures of a bygone Hawaiian era with the hosts providing background information that permitted us a peek of old Hawaiian life. We stayed in Aunt Clara's Shell Room which was such a treat. Breakfast in the morning on the covered porch provided not only good fare but wonderful discussion with other guests and hosts. Our only regret is that we were not able to stay longer. We look forward to returning one day soon.

  • Stayed July 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Zurich, Switzerland
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2013

My husband and I were celebrating my 50th birthday in Hawaii. We stayed for two nights at the Shipman House in order to spend time at the Volcano Nat'l Park.
The Shipman House is a wonderful place; like living in a museum! The hosts were friendly and helpful. The breakfast buffet on the lanai was amazing! We would recommend this place to anyone who appreciates detail and a quiet mature atmosphere. A definate 10 out of 10!
Merci,
Kimara (Switzerland)

Room Tip: All rooms are nice at the Shipman House.
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
Kailua, Hawaii
Contributor
16 reviews 16 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 5, 2013

My husband and I recently stayed at the Shipman House to celebrate his birthday. It was an absolutely wonderful experience and exceeded my expectations! The house itself is gorgeous with its authentic decor and lovely views of Hilo Bay. The rooms are absolutely massive, well maintained, and beautifully decorated. Our hosts were gracious and very helpful with providing information on the local area and possible activities for the day. Breakfast was always delicious and filling (local fruits, bread, yogurt, granola, etc), my absolute favorites were Barbara's granola and her macadamia nut coffee cake. We enjoyed every aspect of our stay at this B&B and can't wait till we can come back for another stay!

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 23, 2013

A welcome change from the large could-be-anywhere hotels, our stay at Shipman House was a window into historic Hilo and a chance to experience the graciousness of our hosts and this house. Located off a quiet street not too far from old Hilo town, this house has nice views back to Hilo Bay, has beautiful lanais and living and dining rooms with impressively high ceilings and appointed with historic furniture and photos from the family's long history on this Island. Breakfast is a delight and delicious, featuring topical fruits -- many of which are grown on the property. This B and B offers an authentic, historical Hawaii experience and was a great base from which to explore Hilo, the Volcano area and the Hamakua Coast.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
Connecticut
Top Contributor
143 reviews 143 reviews
26 hotel reviews
Reviews in 38 cities Reviews in 38 cities
90 helpful votes 90 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 22, 2013

This property is a perfectly restored mansion with a water view from upstairs and a tropical garden view from the other rooms. It is a grand structure including walk through windows, curved glass in the turret, a grand piano, glorious staircase and copper roof. The decor is authentic to the era of the house from the opulent furnishings and fixtures down to the antique dolls in the high chairs off the kitchen. Our room, named Flossie's, had it's own porch which was also comfortably furnished in appropriate wicker. The screened shutters to the garden allowed the sound of the tree frogs and birds to come into our room which was delightful.

Barbara and Gary are extraordinary innkeepers. After a 14 hour trip from the east coast, we felt a warm and refreshing welcome. The generous continentinal breakfast included home made breads, muffins, granola, passionfruit butter and a dozen different fresh fruits. There were also cheeses, hard boiled eggs, fresh squeezed juice, a good selection of teas and terrific coffee. Both Barbara and Gary had very good recommendations on what to do and what to avoid on the island. They are very pleasant company and the Shipman House is a very comfortable inn. I hope to return soon.

  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 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.
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Additional Information about Shipman House Bed and Breakfast Inn

Address: 131 Kaiulani Street, 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 #4 of 18 B&Bs / Inns in Hilo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Number of rooms: 5
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
What to do in Hilo? Plenty! Get some of the best local advice from your hosts at Shipman House B&B, an historic home from Hawaii's monarchy period. Free Wi-Fi, free breakfast, free parking. Large guest rooms all have modern private baths. Amazing breakfast fruits. Special diets accommodated. Your part-Hawaiian host, a Shipman descendant, knows the best places to eat, shop, explore. Walk to restaurants, museums. Hula available. National Register. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Shipman House Hotel Hilo
Shipman House b&b Inn
Shipman House Bed And Breakfast Inn Hilo, Hawaii

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