This Marriott sits approximate 10 miles north of the Kona airport in the Waikoloa Beach community located on the west (sunset) side of the Big Island (Hawaii). This north and west location is the 'dry side' of the Big Island and may appear a bit stark with all the lava. Until you reach the Waikoloa Beach road, you see nothing but lava flow on either side of the highway. However, once you enter the Waikoloa area, an oasis of green and lush tropical trees and plants appears. The benefit to this arid location is that it may be raining hard on other parts of the island and even a few mile up from the resort on Mauna Kea but sunny at the Marriott. Lets face it, who wants to spend there whole Hawaiian vacation in the rain.
The Marriott sits seaside with a large beach and open water area. The hotel consists of several buildings and the main lobby and conference center that houses shops, restaurant/bar, spa and is adjacent to the pool area. The lobby and massive and all open air to allow guests to relax if waiting for a room to be readied or just meeting someone for a drink. This is a small coffee bar (ala, Starbucks) in the lobby area for your early morning fix if you are headed out for adventure.
Hotel Staff: Cannot say enough about the staff here. Without fail, everyone we encountered from the bellman, to housekeeping staff went out of there way to greet us and smile. The staff is very friendly and has a wealth of knowledge about the island. They are a great resource for answering questions, particularly if you are venturing out with a rental car and need some advice as to the best route and locations to go to. Special mention for concierge staff (Asia specifically) who booked all 5 of our activities in short order. This would have taken us at least half a day without her knowledge and help. The Marriott staff also offers an island orientation for free at the hotel in the morning (we did not attend) but heard from those that did it was very informative and worth the half hour or so.
Grounds: The grounds on the ocean side of the hotel are massive, very impressive and well laid out so as to minimize walking distance from the hotel (a bit further if you are in a cabana). Under the lobby area with cover sits the Hawaii Calls Restaurant & Lounge at pool/ocean elevation. The fitness center is also located on this level under the lobby area. Beyond the pools (infinity and sand beach entry pools) rests the natural setting of the Anaehoomalu Bay, Beach and tidal lava pools. There was obviously a conscious effort to preserve the natural lava pools and create a larger pool between the beach and the lava flow area. There are several paths with informative information on the natural resources being protected as well as historical native Hawaiian cultural information. The beach is very expansive and plenty of room to swim and spread out. Additionally, the Ocean Sports 'hut' is located on the beach where you can rent kayaks, paddle boards and book activities like diving, snorkeling, and evening cruises. Just down the beach (south) is another 'on the beach' dining option at the Lava Lava Beach Club. I ate there 4 time and they have live music.
Activities: 'Abound' in a word. Whether you just want to kick back on the beach, shop or do a different outdoor adventure everyday, you can do it from here. Several tours leave from the beach area and others will provide a pickup/drop off at the lobby. Just beyond the hotel grounds and within walking distance are two shopping area (King and Queen) offering medium to high end shops and additional restaurants. The Luau at the Marriott is Wednesdays and Saturdays (as of September 2013) and very well done.
Rooms: The resort has gone through a remodeling and all common areas, pools and grounds are very impressive. The resort is well laid out to maximize ocean views from nearly all rooms with a west or north west facing balcony. If not, you can simply walk to the level and enjoy and great view (read tips for selecting best room). I stayed in an ocean front room for a week which had great views. The bedding and furniture in the rooms was nice but not high end as were the fixtures and building materials in the bathroom. It is nice and in good shape but not the Four Seasons if you need that and want to pay the difference. The focus of the resort was obviously on the great views. I cannot speak for the cabanas so they may have gone high end with these (as they should have for the price per night).
Overall Rating: Even though the room I stayed at was a little less than high end, I have given this resort a 5 star rating based on the location, staff, grounds and incredible views from the balcony. I plan to go back here again and for the value, this is a great hotel and you cannot beat the location and amenities on property. Kid friendly although the adjacent Hilton seems to attract more families.
- Also Known As:
- Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort And Spa
- Waikoloa Beach Marriott Hotel Waikoloa
- Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort
- Waikoloa Beach Marriott Hotel
- Marriott Waikoloa
- Waikoloa Beach Marriott
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Guests seeking relaxation and rejuvenation will find it all at the luxurious Waikoloa Beach Marriott Resort & Spa, located on a sandy, swimmable beach along the sunny Kohala Coast of Hawaii’s Big Island. This beachfront resort offers contemporary elegant guestrooms featuring private lanais, oceanview dining, heated infinity pool, two children’s pools, waterslide, ocean activities, Mandara Spa, world class golf and is within walking distance of shopping and dining at the Kings' Shops & Queens’ MarketPlace. ... more less
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