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“Already booked a return stay” 4 of 5 stars
Review of Pono Kai Resort

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Pono Kai Resort
2.5 of 5 Resort   |   4-1250 Kuhio Highway, Kapaa, Kauai, HI 96746   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #9 of 12 Hotels in Kapaa
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
“Already booked a return stay”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 31, 2013

We stayed at the Pono Kai in January this year, and absolutely loved it! We had a 1 bedroom suite in the G building, facing the ocean. The suite was very large with a good kitchen and a nice bathroom. The whole building had been recently renovated, and it was a very nice place to stay. There is an 11 KM walking/biking path that runs alongside the ocean, just steps from the Pono Kai. Be careful swimming there in the winter, as the currents can be strong. It's safer to swim on the south shore, and fortunatley, Kauai is small enought to drive anywhere you need to be and get there in an hour or less. Definitely rent a car when visiting Kauai. If it's raining on the east shore, it's probably sunny on the south and the west side, and it's a short drive to all the beaches.

Room Tip: Ask for the G building if you want to see the ocean. There are other buildings that actually are ri...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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470 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (138)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Fair Lawn, New Jersey
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
13 helpful votes 13 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 29, 2013

This resort might have been top of the line 20 years ago but now it is a bit run-down. The kindness of the front desk staff is still there, though. They are lovely and will allow for early check-in and late check-out if available. There is also a hospitality room for you to take a shower or store your food in the fridge until your flight even after your check-out. The apartments are spacious; the master bedroom must be 35 sq meters. We had 5 people in our party and it was big enough for us with one sleeping on the pull-out couch in the living room.

The weather is not the greatest on the east coast in March so we did not get to use the pool or swim in the ocean as much as we would have liked to but there were plenty of opportunities in walking distance to pass the time shopping. There are also supermarkets so one can save a lot of money cooking in the apartment's full kitchen.

The concierge pushes their expensive tourist excursions. The cultural activities to do can be found for free at the Coconut Marketplace Cultural Center where the owners arrange free shows throughout the island. During the celebration festivities of their prince bw March 16 and 30, they have grandiose events at the Hyatt and other resorts for donations. You can also get the free community newspaper or the Sunday paper for information. There is also a flyer for music events and concerts. I was upset that the concierge guy did not even mention it. It is understandable: his job is to make his commission and not to serve the costumers. Ask him if you go to this resort about these things. He does know that they exist.

Also, do a luau without the buffet dinner at the Smith family's estate for $15. With the buffet they are easily $80 and over. The one the concierge recommends is over a hundred with tax. I think that most activities you can arrange for yourself on the internet or over the phone. Do not be afraid to bargain. Shop around before you commit.

Also, be aware that traffic is horrible in Kaua'i since there is only a single road and since 2010 they have not been able to finish construction on it.

Room Tip: Try to stay away from apartments/rooms close to the road as there is a considerable level of noise a...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 3 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 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CondoRentalsHI, Condo Rental Agency at Pono Kai Resort, responded to this review, April 1, 2013
Thank you for your review of the Pono Kai Resort. I am not sure if you stayed in one of the condos we manage there, but I am glad you found the rooms to be large and comfortable. The one bedroom units are 740 square feet and the two bedrooms are over 1400 square feet! It sounds like you also have some great tips on things to see and do while on Kauai. We hope to see you again at the Pono Kai in the future.

Mahalo,
Keith
Condominium Rentals Hawaii
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Jersey
Contributor
17 reviews 17 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed March 21, 2013

Bathroom dated and pull out couch torture to sleep on. Hey is near the closed beach! Lots of stuff in waking distance.
Staff has a chip on their shoulders if your NOT Hawiian. Like I was there to steal their land! Staff needs customer relation seminar. Grounds were nice as was pool.

Room Tip: K201. no kitchen. coffee maker and microwave. Close enough to lobby for free internet and view of Ko...
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  • Stayed March 2013, traveled with friends
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ohio
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
14 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
31 helpful votes 31 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2013

This was my first experience at a time share, and I was very happy with the resort. The apartment was a one-bedroom on the bottom floor that overlooked the pool area. It was extremely clean with new and updated everything! The staff was very friendly and took care of a shower drainage problem right away. You can get pool towels for free with deposit and beach chairs for a fee, but get the chairs early because they can all be gone. My husband liked the jacuzzi, and I liked sipping our coffee on the lanai while watching the chickens. The beach out front is not that great, but I believe erosion is the culprit. The path along the ocean goes for miles and would be great to explore with bikes. The best part of the trip was going to bed early and rising for the sunrise at a different beach every morning with our coffee. I enYou can't beat that!

Room Tip: Get a travel book about day trips to find out the best beaches to find.
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  • Stayed January 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.
Tulsa
Top Contributor
87 reviews 87 reviews
16 hotel reviews
Reviews in 37 cities Reviews in 37 cities
39 helpful votes 39 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 20, 2013

Kapa'a is located on the eastern side of Kauai. It's a great location for exploring the island, and Pono Kai is right on the ocean in Kapa'a!

the resort is older, but well maintained. Our unit J107 is at the street side of the resort, so there was some traffic noise, but it wasn't bad. A brief walk through the resort brings you to a beautiful half moon beach, and it's also the start of a walkway/bicycle path that extends several miles north. Great place for walking/jogging/bike riding.

Our unit was quite large. The kitchen was well equipped, and we cooked several times while there. There was a TV in the main living area and the master bedroom.

the staff we dealt with were very pleasant. They do a orientation presentation on Mondays and Thursdays. It's really a sales opportunity for the on site consierge service, but they do offer deals at the presentation, so if you're lucky (I wasn't) it's worth attending. Especially if you're not familiar with the island. It was also fairly entertaining.

We enjoyed the resort. If you're not worried about the latest and greatest in accomodations, and you're out to relax and have a good time, Pono Kai is worth a look.

We'd managed to get a great price through our membership with Global Connections, so it was a fantastic deal. I wouldn't hesitate to go back.

Stayed March 2013, traveled with family
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Walled Lake, Michigan
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
Reviews in 10 cities Reviews in 10 cities
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 17, 2013

We've stayed at the Pono Kai on 4 separate occations & find it offers everything we need in a vacation resort. If new is what you need, it's not that. If you want a clean, well maintained resort then you've come to the right spot. The staff is friendly & don't miss the Island Orientation which give you a good overview of the activities available to you. Pool towels are available & all linens can be exchanged on a daily basis.
Our favorite day trips include the Lighthouse, North & South shores, Waimea Canyon which are all easy 1/2+ trips. If you want to hike, Sleeping Giant Mtn is about 2 miles to the top & the view along the way & at the top is great.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 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 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Sonoma
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed March 14, 2013

This was a time share rental and apparently the couple that we went with are used to better but I thought that it was great. We were lucky to have an oceanside room. I am not sure that I would be as enthusiastic if we were facing the parking lot or the tennis court. The room was 2 bedroom and 2 bathrooms so we had plenty of room. Could have used more than 1 lounge chair on the patio.
The people upstairs were smokers and nocturnal. Also sounded like they were playing Video Games a lot, loudly. They would go outside to smoke and it would come down to our room which was very annoying.
The great thing was that it was on the bike/walking path. We could also walk to town and bars and restaurants. Just about every place has a happy hour. The traffic in Kapaa is horrible so it was nice to walk to dinner or the grocery store. Plus they have so many cute shops that you can purchase locally made items at.Glass Blowers,Soap,Bamboo,coffee etc.
Went to Big Wave Daves for cocktails. Kind of divey but I like that. Full of locals. Then went to the Eastside for dinner. Excellent! Cooked in a lot and the grocery stores are very close by. They could use a few more Barbeques. We had one right next to us but if someone is barbequing ribs for 2 hours it is a long haul to the next barbeque. All in all the location rocks. Love being able to drink and not drive.

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 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 Pono Kai Resort

Address: 4-1250 Kuhio Highway, Kapaa, Kauai, HI 96746
Location: United States > Hawaii > Kauai > Kapaa
Amenities:
Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free Parking Kitchenette Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#5 Top resorts Hotel in Kapaa
#5 Family Hotel in Kapaa
#9 On the Beach Hotel in Kapaa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Pono Kai Resort 2.5*
Number of rooms: 217
Reservation Options:
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Also Known As:
Pono Kai Hotel Kapaa
Pono Kai Kapaa
Pono Kai Resort Kauai/Kapaa

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