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“Hawaii as dreamt of” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Makaleha Mountain Retreat

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Makaleha Mountain Retreat
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7124a Kahuna Rd., Kapaa, Kauai, HI 96746   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 16 Kapaa B&B and Inns
Long Beach, NY
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
“Hawaii as dreamt of”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 29, 2009

Makaleha Retreat is as lovely as the island itself is. You feel like you're in a tropical
paradise surrounded by mountains and great views on all sides. Quiet and lovely, a great place to enjoy with partner, or family. Waking up in that lovely house each morning
started every day with peace and loveliness.

  • Stayed October 2008, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
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7 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Hamlin, NY
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 22, 2007

We spent our Honeymoon on Kauai at the Makaleha Retreat and just loved it. To get up in the morning and drink coffee looking at the beautiful mountain range with its waterfalls was so relaxing. The house is spotless, decorated perfectly for an island stay, yard has fruit tree's, wonderful flowers, rainbows and ofcourse - chickens. The whole island has chickens. The little gecko's are harmless and good to have around - once you get use to the fact that they get in the house it is fun to locate them, they are so cute. The house is in a perfect location, away from the hussle and bussle of town but not to far off - 10 minutes from Kapaa which has wonderful shopping, crafts, beaches, restraunts and grocery stores. It is nice to not have to eat out for every meal, there are two grills at the house, coffee maker/grinder, stove/oven and microwave. We loved grilling and eating on the deck. The house also has boogie boards, snorkling equipment, bikes, coolers, ect... for you to use which is very nice. There are many boomboxes and a Mp3 speaker system to hook up a I-pod or any mp3 player, 2 t.v's with cable and dvd/vcr. We did alot of sightseeing and the Makaleha House was a perfect "homebase". Lydgate Park has wonderful beaches. Two rocked in areas for those of us who like a slower pace with the waves and is great for kids. We snorkled within the walled off area and saw all kinds of fish - it was wonderful! We beached hopped alot, our favorites were Lydgate, Po'ipu ( South shore, great sunsets& swimming), Ke'e (North shore, furthest you can go) which is so beautiful, Salt Pond beach ( South shore) where we saw a monk seal sun bathing and Tunnel Beach (North shore). There are two waterfalls that are close to the house, Opoeka'a Falls up rt. 580 and Wailua Falls up rt. 583. The Keahua Arboretum is all the way at the end of rt. 580 past Opoeka'a falls and is very beautiful. The Kilauea lighthouse offers wonderful veiws and is also a bird sanctuary. There is lots of shopping in near by Kapaa, but we liked the Coconut Marketplace on Rt56 heading towards Lihu'e. There are lots of cool shops and if you get a chance and like
a great burger, eat at Tropical Burger in the coconut market place - best burgers we have ever had eating out. There is also one at Po'ipu
shopping villiage (south shore). Not far from the house( 15 - 20 min.) is Smith Tropical Paradise Luau and Fern Grotto boat tour. We did the boat tour, then the luau - we had a blast. The boat tour is relaxing - with hawaiian music and dancing on the boat, guided tour of the grotto and all the wonder plants. Then when you get back, there is a tour of the gardens, imu ceremony (unearthing of the pig),
dinner which is almost overwhelming because there is so much food, all you can drink, dessert, then you go over to watch the show - which was great. It was a great day! We did a day trip over to Oahu to see Pearl Harbor and go on a Atlantis submarine ride, we loved Pearl Harbor but relized how crowded and busy Oahu was - we could not wait to get back to "our" island and "our" house. We did a sunset
dinner cruise along the NaPali coast with Capt. Andy's out of Port Allen, that was fantastic - beautiful beaches, cliffs, waterfalls, rainbows, dolphins and ofcourse the most beautiful sunset. We plan on going back to Kauai and there is no where else we would rather stay than the Makaleha House, for us it was perfect. It was our Honeymoon so we wanted to be alone, not crammed into a small hotel room. There is room to roam, drink in the beauty of the landscape and relax. We will always cherish our memories of "our" Honeymoon house. Mahalo Charlotte!

  • Liked — The views
  • Disliked — The frogs at night
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
victoria, bc
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed August 1, 2006

My sister and I stayed here in May of 2006. We stayed at two b&b's and this one was disappointing to us. There is no breakfast served. There is no coffee served. Their website says fresh coffee and fresh bread but that wasn't the case. Our first morning, we waited for our coffee and then I finally called the hostess, Charlotte and she came down with a little baggie of ground coffee, (there was a coffee maker in our room). But cream and sugar were not supplied. Charlotte stayed right out of our way, which some people may like, but there was not a feeling of friendliness and helpfulness with her. If she happened to be outside when we drove up, she quickly disappeared. The cost was actually more than the other b&b we stayed at (The Strawberry Guava), which supplied us with delicious breakfasts each morning and did not charge us with the cleaning costs, as did Charlotte, at the Makaleha Mountain Retreat. On a positive note, the little garden studio we stayed at had little kitchenette with fridge and small appliances (microwave, toaster, coffeemaker, etc...) So, we made our own breakfasts. And the bed was comfortable enough.
Altogether, this place felt a tad unfriendly. We were pretty much ignored for the four days spent there. And I figure if you advertise breakfast, then that's what the guests should get! So, stay at the Strawberry Guava instead!!

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1 review
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 26, 2006

We stayed 10 days in the garden studio underneath the owner's house. It is a lovely little place up the valley to hide away from the tourist energy of the beach front. The river roars just 15 feet across the road. There is one queen bed (mattress slightly lumpy) & screened outside kitchen w/mini fridge, burner.
Fruit trees, a few outdoor cats, and a very hands off owner make this a very positive, happy vibe budget traveler's home away from home. Yes, the rooster's wake you up at 4,5am, the mossies bite, and the neighborhood has become residental, with a few local cars going by ~ but it still remains very serene.
We divided our trip by staying the last 7 nights (Wailua Bayview - lotsa traffic. wont' do again) a beach front condo & which made us realize how great Charlotte's quiet hideway really was.. we actually got depressed after leaving.....
The valley energy is very special. This place is for the person who does not mind looking out the side window to Cane spider webs (with beautiful residents). The drive is about 10 minutes inland, and the temperature drops, becomes more humid... rains come through and beat on the tin roof & is very romantic.
This is definetly for the adventure, nature, cat, and Spirit loving folk !!!!

  • Liked — The location
  • Disliked — chicken noise (all over the island).
  • Tips/Secrets — for the relaxed non fussy traveler!
  • Stayed November 2005, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Walla Walla, WA
1 review
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2005

The house is spacious, and has some very nice views - but there were also some significant problems:
1) There are now a number of other houses in the immediate area, including three within 50 yards - we could hear their voices and music the whole time. So it's not actually that secluded.
2) The hot tub is under the house, where it's inconvenient and totally unappealing.
3) There are roosters that live in and around the yard, which woke us up at 4:30 every morning. (Note that they're all over Kauai - but some areas are certainly worse than others.)
4) When we were there, the indoor shower *still* needed to be repaired! It leaked all over the bathroom every time we used it. The outdoor shower has also been moved under the house with the hot tub, so it's basically useless (and you can't use soap!).

There are *lots* of vacation rentals all over the island - this one just isn't worth it!

  • Stayed May 2005
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Central Illinois
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 hotel reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 1, 2004

Just read the other single review ("how green...) and had to comment. Everything was totally accurate and we apparently stayed there only a few weeks later. We freaked out the first few nights due to the indoor geckos, but after talking to locals learned they are a good thing to have around. The wonderful cat (Manard) that goes with the property presented a mouse and rat down by the carport and we saw spiders outdoors that were huge. However, this is an island after all, and so long as they are outside, we don't care. Nothing of the sort indoors! Awakening to the sound of banana leaves blowing in the breeze, hearing the stream at night and the geckos chirp is wonderful. Expect frequent downpours as mountain showers are common (and short during the day). They come from the Mt's. and move through Kapaa frequently. It rained over night almost the entire week, but that's what make it green and beautiful! Neighbors are friendly and the co-owner (?) is only a shout away and very available. The previous reviewer nailed it when he characterized this as living like an islander. We felt exactly that way, and in fact a good number of folks assumed we did live on the island! Because it is someone's private home 6 months of the year, it really "feels like" home, not a vacation. If you want total peace and serenity, you'll find it here! Only real critique is that some screens need repair to keep the outside...OUT, and indoor shower needs some repair. That is only pertinent if you want to shower at night, however. Can't shower outdoors at night or in the very early a.m. due to mosquitoes. They'll eat you alive outdoors at night, but again, you're on a tropical island; what do you expect? There is little so wonderful as showering outdoors and feeling completely comfortable with your privacy, while seeing mountains and waterfalls over the top of the stall door! Many months later I still imagine this when I shower each day at home. If you can deal with one lane roads and don't mind a little navigation, this is a PERFECT location. Kapaa is central to the north or the south island, and the retreat is far enough away from town to be residential vs. commerical, yet a short drive down to civilization! House has everything. Don't need to bring many clothes as there's a washer and dryer and all of the usual household things one needs. Besides, everything is "aloha wear," anyway! Makaleha Mt. Retreat is a well-kept secret!

  • Stayed November 2003
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed October 20, 2003

If you wonder what it would be like to live in Kauai from a resident's perspective, then give the Makaleha Mountain Retreat a shot. My wife, myself, & 18 month old son stayed here 10-03. You're staying in someone's house (occupied half the year) as opposed to a hotel room, condo, or timeshare. It's not the usual Kauai either: you're up-country 4-5 miles, inland/makau-side 5 miles W of Kapa'a, right up against the Makaleha mountains/ridges. Staying near/above Kapa'a was nice as you're pretty centrally located between the North Shore & the South Shore of Kauai as well as access to the Kapa'a amenities (grocery stores, shopping, restaurants--try Mermaids, really good chicken satay over rice & Ahi nori rolls--, & Lydgate park if you have small kids & want a safe place for them to go to the beach). At the house you really get a true appreciation of the various shades of green. You also get pretty close to absolute quiet, starry nights (when not raining), & waterfalls (when it does rain). You also get a hot tub, 2 bedrooms (1bed w/ full mosquito netting), 1 ba, a huge wraparound deck, a full kitchen/dining room, 2 TVs w/ cable hookup, 2 stereo systems, outdoor shower, lots of geckos, hen, roosters & chicks, geese (on the adjoining property), 1 really friendly grey cat, mosquitoes (at least during a rainy October--bring repellent), doves, frogs that don't croak & a very peaceful stream/river across the road from the 1-2-3 waterfalls that fall further up the ridge. The house is decorated in a funky-earthy-artiste way that is very complementary w/ the surroundings. All-in-all, a recommended stay for those who want a greater taste of the tropics than a Princeville or Poipu timeshare.
Couldn't have been more relaxed or sorry to leave after our stay.
Recommended highly to the more adventurous traveler.

Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Makaleha Mountain Retreat

Address: 7124a Kahuna Rd., Kapaa, Kauai, HI 96746
Location: United States > Hawaii > Kauai > Kapaa
Hotel Style:
Ranked #8 of 16 B&Bs / Inns in Kapaa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 2
Also Known As:
Makaleha Mountain Retreat Kauai/Kapaa

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