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“A great honeymoon” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Four Seasons Resort Lana'i at Manele Bay

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Four Seasons Resort Lana'i at Manele Bay
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   One Manele Bay Road, Lanai City, Lanai, HI 96763   |  
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Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Lanai City
GreenLeadersBronze level
NJ, originally from HI
1 review
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“A great honeymoon”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 19, 2007

My husband and I stayed at this hotel in early June as a part of our honeymoon. We are generally budget travelers, so this was a treat for us. To address the mixed reviews on this website - it is all about expectations. We were expecting a stay far better than we've ever experienced, and we definitely got it. Of course, we've never stayed at a Four Seasons before.

We arrived by ferry to the dock, which was under construction. It was pretty obvious to us who to drop our bags off with, which is fortunate since the construction made it difficult to get around. Getting onto the shuttle and checking into the hotel was very smooth, included the guided walk to our room. We definitely needed it, we would have gotten completely lost trying to find it on our own the first time.

Our room was the very last room in the Starfish wing on the first floor (2722, I think?). We had made reservations for a garden view, but our room did have some view of the ocean from the lanai. But it's not like we really needed that view, since I really enjoyed our private plumeria tree, bougainvillea, and view of the trees outside the property. Others may not like the long walk to some of the rooms, but my husband and I loved it! We felt so private, being way on the end, and it really let us enjoy the grounds, including our shortcut through the Hawaiian garden. I felt sorry for the people whose rooms were right on the gardens - no privacy at all.

Both my husband and I really enjoyed the service at the pool (otter pops in addition to the usual stuff!) and at the beach. Again, we're not used to this kind of service, so we had no expectations going in. But we did enjoy it very much! The free use of snorkel gear was definitely a plus.

We also took the shuttle to enjoy the Lodge at Koele - horseback riding (his first time, and my first in about 15 years), lunch, and exploring the grounds. He didn't like it as much, he didn't think it was "Hawaii" enough (Brooklyn boy), but I loved it. From growing up on Oahu, I have great memories of camping in the mountains, so I love that whole "upcountry" feel.

The other shuttle stop was Lana`i City, where we stopped by for lunch one day. I really wanted to see what it was like in the town, since I'm so used to the busy city life of Honolulu. I wasn't sure how the food would be, not sure if it would all be haole-style, run by mainland transplants for the tourist crowd. Not that that's a bad thing, it just wasn't what I was looking for as a former local girl missing her local food. Well, I was pleasantly surprised! We had some yummy Filipino plate lunch at Cafe 565, with strawberry Icees (strawberry flavor is impossible for me to find where I live now, but it's all over Hawaii). We also planned on having a local-style breakfast at one of the other plate lunch places on our last morning, but decided against it because of our limited time. That was my only regret of the trip, should have gotten some portuguese sausage, eggs, and rice!

Overall, we had a wonderful time on Lana`i. We got exactly what we wanted out of it - a relaxing, laid back honeymoon at a hotel with facilities and service better than we've ever experienced before.

  • Disliked — snobby management
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    5 of 5 stars
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4 reviews 4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed June 15, 2007

I actually feel bad writing this review because the people who work at the resort were very nice and I felt they were genuinely trying to learn the hotel business and the Four Season Way. However, I was very dissappointed with the hotel and island. I don't want to hurt the business that is coming in to the island, but I also understand that guests are using their hard earned money/vacation time to stay at this property

I'll try to set the scene...

Arrival- Dusty harbor undergoing major construction although there didn't seem to be many people available to get the job done. No one clearly stated that our bags would be transferred, so we were all attempting to lug our bags up the gangway.

Check-in- People were unsure what to do/what room we should get.

Room/Property- OK. Pay $50 more and get 10x the room at the Four Season's Maui. We were upgraded to a nicer room but the first room was really bad. I enjoy everything from a Hampton Inn to 5-star resorts, but this was possibly the biggest disappointment I have ever had. Long outdoor walk to everything. There are gardens throughout.

Pool/Beach- Pool was quiet, otherwise unremarkable. One of the pool attendants went above and beyond to get us a pack-and-play for the pool area (standard at the Four Seasons Maui). The Beach was a long walk away. Loud music playing in the beach cabana.

Restaurants- Forget it. Duck quesadilla was good. If you don't like that, I would survive on chocolate covered macademia nuts. One exception- the breakfast buffet was great.

Island- I guess some people love it. I don't get it. Nothing there. I'm not talking about shops and restaurants. I mean trees and waterfalls...Hawaii!!! We felt very isolated. The lack of any real pull to the island is probably why somepeople have commented on the spotty service.

Check out- Fine. However, they did not tell us that we would be standing at the dock for 45 minutes waiting for the ferry. I am not exaggerating. You are dropped off and the people arriving are picked up. The entire boat is unloaded and refueled while you wait in line. YOu cannot wait on the boat. There is a little snack shop but no one left the line. We are not snobby or used to be waited on. I don't know what "those" people must have been feeling/thinking.

Misc.- Corporate retreats everywhere. I felt bad for the honeymooners looking for a "private island." If my travel agent suggested I go to Lanai for a private island honeymoon I would be really upset. Maybe the corporate retreats are how the hotel drums up guests. I wish I could saw how magical the island was but I can say I will not go back. I was not enchanted.

Four Seasons Maui- Great!!!

  • Liked — genuine staff, staff proud of island
  • Disliked — isolation
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 2 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
10 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
73 helpful votes 73 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 12, 2007

Have you ever had a vacation where it started off great, and continued to get better day by day....that is how I would have to describe our stay at the Four Seasons Manele Bay and Lodge at Koele on the Island of Lanai. This was without a doubt the most incredible trip my family has ever taken, which is amazing considering this was our 10th trip to the Hawaiian Islands in the last nine years. In addition to my review of the resort, I have included details of our trip that I thought might be interesting. The following are the highlights of our trip to Lanai:

- Service at the Resorts
- Swimming at Hulopoe Bay
- Dinner at the Dining Room (Koele)
- Managers Reception
- Lanai City
- Golf at Manele Bay and Koele
- Shooting Range with my Son
- Snorkeling amidst Dolphins
- View from Room 2907
- Kitchen Tour at Dining Room with Chef Oliver

Our vacation to Lanai (myself, wife, children 6 and 10) was from June 1st through June 9th. Our trip began with an early morning nonstop flight from San Jose, CA to Honolulu on Hawaiian Airlines, followed by a trip on Island Air to Lanai. The whole Island Air experience was a little fun and unique. The Island Air gates are located in the far reaches of the same terminal used by Hawaiian and Aloha Airlines. When we arrived at the Island Air gate, there were not any representatives, just a phone with a note to call for assistance. Upon calling the number, an Island Air representative came and picked us up and took us to another section of the terminal where Island Air, Go, and Pacific Wings gates were located. Upon being seating on the plane (twin-prop plane that holds about 34 people), the stewardess announced that the plane was a little on the heavy side, and asked my son and wife to move from row 2 to row 5 to help distribute the weight more evenly. Needless to say, that made the 25 minute flight over to Lanai very quite as people wondered whether they should shift their weight in the own seat or if that might impact the success of the flight (hello sharks).

Upon arrival at the Lanai Airport, we took a small shuttle (20 people or so) down to the Four Seasons Manele Bay Resort, about a 30 minute ride that passes through the outskirts of Lanai City. The ride takes you from an elevation of roughly 1,800 feet near Lanai City down to sea level. As we approached the resort, we were treated to fantastic views of the islands of Kahoolawe and Maui to the south and southeast. We were warmly greeted at the resort by Patrick Loo, who provided us with a nice tour of the hotel grounds and facilities.

The Room: We stayed six (6) nights in Room 2907 of the Dolphin Wing in a ground-floor ocean-front room. The view from our room was the most beautiful view I have ever had in hotel room, with expansive views of Hulopoe Bay, the island of Kahoolawe, and the Pacific Ocean. The room itself was well decorated and spacious at almost 600 square feet. The marble-tiled bathroom was quite large, and included a separate tub and shower. A nice piece of asian artwork was framed above the tub and provided a classy touch. As is the case at other four season’s resorts, our children’s names were spelled out in sponge letters and placed on the tub. Our children really enjoyed this and thought is was the coolest thing. We had two beds that were very comfortable and also had a neat pineapple design in the frame itself. We had a private lanai outside the room which included a comfy sofa, two chairs, and a table. We spent countless hours out on the lanai starring out into the bay and the ocean. We also enjoyed a room service dinner and breakfast on the lanai as well.

Water fun: We spent countless hours using the beach at Hulopoe Bay and the swimming pool facilities at the resort. The beach was a short 3-5 minute walk from our room in the Dolphin Wing, probably a 5-10 minute walk for other wings within the resort. The crescent shaped beach had the most perfect sand, shaped on the edges by rock outcroppings and tide pools. The resort had a shack at the beach that provided complimentary snorkel gear, beach toys, sunscreen, and water/lemonade. The shack was typically staffed by two employees who would set up beach chairs and umbrellas for you. The ocean temperature was comfortable somewhere between 76-78 degrees. My children and I built countless sand castles, only to have them knocked down over and over again. My son and I bodysurfed as well which was fun. One note of caution, the beach has a very steep slope so the waves crash almost directly onto the beach, and there is also a strong surge of water back out as well. For the younger children (under 7) I would recommend a floatation device just as a precaution. I spent a good deal of time snorkeling in the bay, the best area for snorkeling is along the rocks on the left side of the beach. Many people who snorkeled in the bay went straight out to see the dolphins. I did have an opportunity to see the dolphins while snorkeling one day, it was the most unbelievable experience to have fifty to sixty dolphins swim past while snorkeling, something I will never forget. For those who like tide pooling, there is a set of stairs along the west side Hulopoe Bay that takes you right down onto the rocks depending on the tide. I was able to walk all the way out to the promontory one morning and view incredible tide pools with lots of sea life. Be sure to take a ratty pair of tennis shoes because the rocks and be sharp and very slippery.

The resort has a picturesque swimming pool over looking Hulopoe Bay. We spent time winding down from the beach at the pool almost every day. The pool has two hot tubs located within the pool itself. I never found the pool too crowded or impacted in a negative way by children. In fact, I would say that half of the people lounging around the pool never actually got into the water. If you spend time at the pool, be sure to take time to introduce yourself to Tony (one of the attendants), Tony is a native of Lanai and one of the nicest people I met at the resort.

Hiking and Exercise: For those of you trying to stay fit while on vacation, there are two really fun hikes that you can take directly from the resort. One morning I took a hike along Fisherman’s Trail which takes you from the resort east along the water towards the Manele Bay Golf Clubhouse. This winding trail takes you up and down to the ocean and beautiful tide pools. The second walk/hike I took was along the ocean to the west up to Sweetheart Rock, this walk gives great views back towards the resort and also a close up look at Sweetheart Rock.. For those who are more regimented, there is a beautiful indoor exercise room that has windows that look directly out onto the ocean. I will admit I never utilized these facilities but my wife did a couple of times.

Dining: We had the opportunity to try every one of the restaurants at the Four Seasons Manele Bay resorts and were generally pleased with the food and the service at each one. We had breakfast at Hulopoe Court on numerous occasions (only restaurant open for breakfast) and dinner one night. My children thought the breakfast buffet at Hulopoe Court was awesome. We had dinner at the Ocean Grill on two occasions. I enjoyed the fact that the Ocean Grill was located outside and provided a nice ambiance. The food and presentation at the Ocean Grill was good and the service was probably a little better than that of Hulopoe Court. We tried the clubhouse at the Challenge at Manele for lunch and really enjoyed the setting overlooking the bay, fantastic views. I would also say that the food was very good and this was our favorite place for lunch at the resort. Our favorite place for dinner was Ihilani restaurant which has an Italian theme. The Ihilani in my opinion provided the best quality food, ambiance, and service for dinner of any of the restaurants at Manele Bay. We also had the pleasure of attending a manager’s reception on evening in the upstairs lounge. At the reception I had the opportunity to meet Chef Oliver, who is responsible for operation of all of the Four Seasons restaurants on the island, a truly nice gentleman.

Golf: As an avid golfer I must say that the two golf courses (Challenge at Manele, and Experience at Koele) are two of the best courses I have played. In all, I was able to play 36 holes at Manele and 63 holes at Koele. One of the nice things about the courses is that they are not very crowded, thus the pace of play was fantastic. On one day I was able to play 36 holes in less than six hours, allowing me to get back to my family by 1:00 in the afternoon. The Challenge is probably the most scenic course I have ever played with outstanding views of the ocean on each hole. In particular, holes 12 and 17 were my favorite because you were required to hit your ball over the cliffs and the ocean. The Experience at Koele was also a beautiful course, but totally different than Manele. Koele was a mixture of a tropical course and a mountain course. The front nine at Koele was a more tropical setting with varied trees, lakes, and waterfalls. The back nine at Koele is at a slightly higher elevation thus there were more pine trees and mountain views. Manele was a slightly more difficult course than Koele, but both were enjoyable to play.

Children’s Program: As a parent of two children, the program provided fun activities for our kids and a much needed break for mom and dad. The kids program had a friendly staff of four young women and one young man. The first few days our kids were in the program there were the only children there. My daughter (Age 6) did a variety of art projects, built sand castles at the beach, and hunted for geckos with nets. On our last day, we went back three times to pick her up and she said she would rather stay and do activities with the teachers. The most memorable moment was when my wife, son, and I were swimming in the pool and we saw my daughter walk by with a net searching for geckos followed by four teachers with nets in either hand, priceless. My son enjoyed the teen center, which is a separate location from the Children’s program, especially the pool table and the video game section. My son and I also enjoyed the games in the lounge area including a type of shuffleboard, foos-ball, and darts.

Lanai City: Our family fell in love with the little town of Lanai City and its residents. On one Saturday morning, we attended the Farmer’s Market in Dole Park and had the chance to meet local residents and view all the interesting items they were selling. Our favorite stores were Dis N Dat, the Mike Carroll Gallery, and the Blue Ginger Café. Dis N Dat is the cutest, smallest, store I have been in. We had the chance to meet Mike Carroll, great little gallery. Blue Ginger provided a nice break from eating at the resort every day, really enjoy their Chicken Katsu lunch and their burgers.

Service at the Four Seasons Manele Bay: After reading many trip advisor reviews and comments regarding service at the Four Seasons Manele Bay resort I thought I would offer up my opinion on this topic. As a preface to this, my family has stayed at a variety of resorts in the Hawaiian Islands including the Four Seasons Maui, Mauna Kea Hotel, Mauna Lani Resort, Fairmont Orchid, Outrigger Waikiki, Turtle Bay Resort, and the Grand Wailea. One of the primary reasons we enjoyed our trip to Lanai so much was the incredible level of service we received throughout our stay at both resorts. Individuals such as Patrick Loo, Alastair McAlpine, Mark Hellrung, Tony at the Pool, Jay at Koele, and Chef Oliver exhibited a level of professionalism and friendliness that the Four Seasons has become known for.

The Four Seasons Maui has traditionally been the gold standard for which other Hawaiian resorts are compared with regard to service. The Four Seasons Maui has the advantage of having been established for a substantial period of time, and also the advantage of being able to draw talented individuals to work there from all over the world. The Four Seasons at Manele Bay the Four Seasons Lodge at Koele will never attract the number and type of service employees who might work at the Four Seasons Maui, nor should they be expected to.

The Four Seasons at Manele Bay and Koele are able to offer a level and type of service that perhaps you might not receive at a larger resort such as the Four Seasons Maui. For instance, many of the employees who are longtime residents of Lanai City (such as Tony/Manele and Jay/Koele), shared their knowledge and spirit of the islands with us on our visit. On many of our shuttle rides I had incredible conversations with the driver about the history of Lanai and its people. This type of service is unique to the residents of Lanai, not something that can be taught in a school, or in a training program. When you combine this unique talent of Lanai residents, with the expertise and experience of the management team at both the resorts, I think the result will be an incredible visitor experience and a place people will enjoy going back to over and over again. Is the service the same as at the Four Seasons Maui- No. Is the service excellent and unique in a special way- Yes.

Our trip to Lanai was a special and memorable trip that we will never forget. It is a special island, with two outstanding resorts, and many special people to help you share the experience. We look forward to our next visit.

  • Liked — Location, Service, People
  • Stayed June 2007, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 28
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Birmingham, AL
1 review
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 3, 2007

My husband and I stayed at Lana'i for 6 nights in May. I usually don't find time to comment on these web sites, but felt it necessary after reviewing the previous comments from guests. We have stayed at several other FS resorts (ie Great Exuma, Nevis) and found this one to be just as wonderful as the others. The service was impeccable and the grounds and rooms were amazing! I'm not sure where the weeds were? The previous reviewer must have had to look really hard to find them. The ground keepers were working hard from dawn to dusk even raking flowers that had fallen! The porch/balcony was one of the most comfortable and relaxing of all resorts we have stayed. It even had a sofa! We had an ocean view room and you could hear the waves while you slept! The beds were just as comfortable as all other FS resorts. We were also there during what was called by the previous reviewer as a "tire convention". Just to clear things up the event that was being held was not a convention. It was a group of corporate tire distribution owners from Europe, Canada and the US. We did not have any problems with dinner reservations because this group had private functions that were not held in any of the restaurants. The most we waited for breakfast was approximately 3 minutes and how could anyone complain considering the breath taking view. I believe the resort was at high occupancy, but it still seemed very quiet and secluded and the staff were also more than accommodating during our entire stay. Lastly, I would like to stay that the golf courses were spectacular!

I hate to say it, but some people can never be happy. They should just stay at home! You can't go wrong with this Four Seasons Resort!

  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
    • 5 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
Was this review helpful? Yes 20
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 22, 2007

The hotel and grounds are among our favorites. We visited several years ago when it was a Starwood property and were pleased that FS has maintained the property as we remembered it.

BUT, this is a small island with limited facilities. After our arrival, a legion of sales reps from a national tire company arrived and pretty much took over the place. To FS credit, they did try to minimize the collateral damage to other guests but what started out as a nice quiet get away turned into a frat party.

We hear FS is trying to cater to the convention business and bring the masses to Lanai. Unless you are happy with crowds, competition for dinner reservations, wait lines for breakfast, a staff that at times seems totally overwhelmed and pre-occupied with the hoard, then I highly recommend inquiring about conventions before booking reservations.

Stayed May 2007
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
SF Bay Area
1 review
12 helpful votes 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed May 18, 2007

When we began to plan our family vacation to Hawaii this year, we entertained many resort destinations, as well as the best in hotel brands. As we considered our options, we decided to stay at a Four Seasons resort. Doing so, we thought, would guarantee the comfort and luxury we desired. We have stayed at the Four Seasons in the past, for both business and for pleasure, and not once have we ever been disappointed.

With the Four Seasons in mind, we were drawn to the Resort at Manele Bay in Lana’i. It seemed like a choice destination, offering both seclusion and luxury. We traveled there from May 7 to 12, 2007 and stayed in a Prime Ocean Front Room.


Lana’i proved to be a special place, with much charm and lots to offer by way of activities. We loved the open door policy between the Resort at Manele Bay and the Lodge at Koele. It afforded us the ability to sample the best of both worlds of Lana’i.

We were utterly pleased with the Kids for All Seasons on site. We have never seen a better or well equipped Kids Club. In particular, Sally at KFAS was a joy to our two young children, and they loved spending time there each day.

The empty mini bar fridge and being able to fill it withi whatever you wish is a brilliant idea. Particularly for those with young children, the family snack packages make total sense are reasonably priced. You can leave room in your suitcase for more bathing suits.

The breakfast was up to par with other Four Seasons' breakfast buffets. Food in general was delicious. Kids 5 and under eat free, and that is a wonderful plus.

We saw dolphins swimming in the bay on our last day!

The service was not as polished as the FS Maui (or any other FS, for that matter), but seems to jive with the whole laid back culture of the island, which is part of its charm. In general, we found the staff to be very kind and attentive.

Lana'i on the whole, is unspoilt, uncommercialized and charming. It's everything Maui is not. If you want to visit paradise, with no Walmarts or McDonald's, this is the place.

Unfortunately, there were certain areas of the resort that truly disappointed us. Key areas of dissatisfaction that clearly did not live up to the Four Season brand were:

- Roaches in our guest room.
- Weeds growing through the shabby lanai/patio, as well as throughout the resort gardens.
- Landscape maintenance was lacking throughout the property.
- Run down patio furniture.
- Very thin walls; you can clearly hear your neighbors next door as well as on the floor above.
- Broken sand toys for the children at the beach (my husband actually cut his foot on one of these broken toys). It would be better to offer no toys at all, rather than toys that potentially could cause injury to children.
- In general, our room reflected more of a “Marriott” level guest room than one at the Four Seasons.
- The bed seemed old, spring-y, and unlike mattresses at a Four Seasons.
- Clean up of poolside service trash was deficient. Towards late afternoon, the staff seemed to stop cleaning up garbage.
- Being made to feel as though we were bothering the attendant at the beach for a few lounge chairs.

The Resort at Manele Bay is a relatively recent Four Seasons acquisition and is likely a work in progress. The renovations to the lobby and restaurants do reflect the Four Seasons style; however, the other wings of the property seem to have been greatly overlooked. With the exception of the guest suites in the main building and the lobby, the rest of the resort appeared more to be a Marriot or lower level hotel than a Four Seasons.

Overall, our negative experiences did not completely detract from how much we enjoyed our trip, but it was rather frustrating to spend over $1000 a night only to feel disappointed in our immediate surroundings. We did have a wonderful time, and it was hard to leave Lana'i. We also received a prompt response from Four Seasons Corporate when we submitted our comments via email and really felt as though they took our experience at their property to heart.

As much as we love Lana’i, we are reluctant to return until proper renovations and improvements have been made in all areas of the resort. The Resort at Manele Bay, is, sadly, not up to Four Seasons standards.

  • Liked — The location, lack of commercialism of Lana', a true secluded getaway
  • Disliked — This resort is not up to Four Seasons standards.
  • Stayed May 2007, traveled with family
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 30, 2007

My husband and I stayed at FS Manele Bay for a week in mid-April. The resort was very nice, but did not entirely live up to our expectations compared to the FS properties we have stayed at overseas.

ROOMS: We were initially assigned to a room in the Starfish wing, which is a very long and not-so-attractive walk from everything. Plus, the wing is located close to construction that's currently going on for the conference center. When I asked the employee who was checking us in whether the construction would be noisy, she replied (with no hint of being apologetic), "Uh, yeah, maybe during the day but not after 3 pm." I emphasized that one of our main priorities in coming to Lanai was peace and quiet. We asked for a different assignment and got a much better room at the end of the Angelfish wing (even though the resort was almost completely full because of a corporate rewards conference--more on that below). The rooms are excellent, except I echo other posters' comments about the strange lack of artwork. The bed was extremely comfortable. The tv was great. Comfy daybed on the lanai. Loved that the fridge was empty and we could put our own stuff in it (we stocked up in town at the beginning of our stay).

SERVICE: Really uneven and awkward at times. The resort needs a LOT of work in this area even though I have been reading on this forum for over a year that they're "working on it." They need to work harder--or they need a fresh management perspective because t's just not up to FS standards. For example, it was clear that we did not have the same housekeeper during our entire stay because the service was better and different for the last half of our trip. I don't think I should be able to tell when a different person is cleaning our room. The first day we were there, we were gone from early morning until 2 pm and when we returned to the room, it still had not been made up yet (I believe they were overtaxed due to being fully booked, and you could tell!) We did not receive a daily newspaper in our room until 4 days into the stay. Sometimes newspapers were available in the restaurant at breakfast, sometimes they had already "run out." (Contrast that with the Lodge at Koele, where newspapers were plentiful in the lobby.) Sometimes our breakfast server was attentive, sometimes not. On weekdays, the pool service was noticeably better than it was on the weekend days. I could go on, but suffice it to say the service needs work in many aspects--at the front desk, in the restaurants, at the pool, with housekeeping.

GROUNDS: Beautiful! We saw dolphins in the bay several days (and swam with them two days) and even a couple of whales. The gardens are extremely nice and well-tended.

FOOD: The breakfast buffet was included in our package and it was great. We ate dinner once at Hulopoe Court--it was very good, and romantic. (Eat at 7:30 pm or later and it will be very quiet and peaceful in the restaurant.) We ate dinner twice at Hale Ahe Ahe Lounge and found out the last night that you can order off the other restaurants' menus in the lounge. If we had known that, we probably would've eaten dinner there most nights. The staff in the lounge were really nice and fun and so was the band.

MISC.: As mentioned above, there were two corporate rewards conferences taking place during our stay. The guests affiliated with the first conference were pretty obnoxious and failed to control their children at the pool. I made some offhand sort-of-joking comment about the endless "Marco Polo" games at the pool to one of the pool attendants and he just shrugged, so clearly the hotel isn't making any sort of effort to maintain a peaceful atmosphere at the pool. Word to the wise: bring your iPod to the pool.
There was a noticeable difference when the first conference ended and the second conference began. Like other forum posters, I felt that the hotel catered to the conference guests to the detriment of those of us who were actually paying for our own stays. (The conferences co-opted the Library as well as one of the restaurants during our stay.) The hotel doesn't have the staff or the service level to be able to handle things properly when fully booked.

One day we rented a jeep from Adventure Lanai Ecocenter, and I would recommend that. Michelle was very nice to deal with (although a little hard to get a hold of--we played phone tag a bit). Went to Shipwreck Beach (good beachcombing), Garden of the Gods, Polihua Beach, and drove some of the Munro Trail. Also watched the sun set from the harbor.

The ice cream store in town, Sweetest Days, is awesome--try the banana macadamia nut and the mud pie.

Spotting wildlife on island is fun. Watch for pheasants and owls along the road to town.

We did not play golf, but we visited both courses' clubhouses and thought that they had an excellent selection of merchandise (Koele's is slightly better).

Lanai is really cool and I would be willing to stay at FS Manele Bay again, because it really was a relaxing and fun trip, but only if the hotel improves its service.

  • Stayed April 2007, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Check in / front desk
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
    • 3 of 5 stars Business service (e.g., internet access)
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Additional Information about Four Seasons Resort Lana'i at Manele Bay

Address: One Manele Bay Road, Lanai City, Lanai, HI 96763
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Lanai > Lanai City
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 3 hotels in Lanai City
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Four Seasons Resort Lana'i at Manele Bay 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Four Seasons Resort Lana'i at Manele Bay is the quintessential Hawaiian beach resort. Overlooking a protected marine preserve, Manele Bay is a romantic retreat with championship golf and some of the finest offerings of water sports in the world. Al fresco dining options abound, from Pacific Rim to Italian cuisine, while spinner dolphins and whale watching are sights to behold. Pampering spa treatments and pool and beach side amenities make for a perfect day under the sun. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Four Seasons Resort Lana`i At Manele Bay Hotel Lanai City
4 Seasons Resort Lana`i At Manele Bay
Four Seasons Manele Bay
Four Seasons Lanai City
Lanai City Four Seasons
Four Seasons Resort Lana'i At Manele Bay Lanai, Hawaii

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