What a find! Punahoa was our 'home' for five days on Maui, and we cut back on our sightseeing plans because we loved hanging around the property so much. My husband and two teenage daughters stayed in Room 305, a two-bedroom corner unit that looked out over the ocean from our lanai, and over Cove Beach to the right with a vista of upcountry Maui and the mountains.
It was roomy with comfortable furniture, a terrific flat screen TV, and internet access. The kitchen had everything you could want, including a coffeemaker, blender, and rice cooker, plus great knives for those who want to really cook. There are spices, coffee filters, cleaning supplies, coolers and ice packs, beach chairs, and fat plush towels for both the bath and the beach. (It's better stocked than any other rental unit or condo I've stayed at, and I've been in homes from Cape Cod, MA to Myrtle Beach, SC and the Hawai'ian Islands.)
Right in front of the property oceanside, a wide ground-floor lanai features plenty of tables and chairs, along with torches that the manager, Terry Lowder, makes sure to light at sunset for a couple of hours. On the grassy lawn, there's chaise lounges if you just want to sunbathe and not get wet.
But if swimming and snorkeling are of interest, just steps (and I mean no more than 50 steps) will take you to the oceanfront. Right off the property is a sandy cove sprinkled with large rock outcroppings that are fun to snorkel - it's protected from heavy surf and a blast to swim among the pitted lava rocks where some pools are deep (chest high) and some are shallow. Small fish dart in and out at your feet, and even skip out of the water. If you want wider sand with no rocks, there's a secluded small cove with a nice sand beach that's very private. And if you want even wider sand beach, there's Charley Young Beach just a three minute walk south across the green lawns.
Three minutes in the other direction is Cove Beach, where you'll see surfers and paddle surfers every morning at sunrise. It's one of the top places to catch breaking waves in Kihei. My husband and daughter took a surfing lesson in the cove and off the beach right to the right - I could have watched them from the lanai.
Everything is so convenient that you almost don't need a car. Great restaurants such as Sansei Sushi and Aroma D'Italia (a fantastic Italian restaurant and a relative bargain compared to some pricier places) are within walking distance, as is a Foodland grocery store. There's terrific shopping in the stalls of two open-air markets, and many small eateries that are busy in the morning and at lunchtime.
Possibly the best thing about Punahoa is the property manager, Terry Lowder. When I called trying to find accommodations for my husband and two teenage daughters, he was very specific in helping me to pick out the right unit to stay in with my family. As each one is individually owned, they all vary, and Terry was generous with advice and answers to my many questions.
Although his 'office' hours are 9am-4pm, he can be reached at any time and was always on property to see the sunset, light the torches on the lanai, and provide advice on dining out and places to snorkel and dive. His wife Lori was equally helpful and always friendly.
Everyone I met, from the manager to the cleaning staff, clearly love working here, and it shows in the upkeep and maintenance of this very special property. I can't imagine why anyone would stay anywhere else, and I promise you won't be disappointed.
- Also Known As:
- Punahoa Beach Apartments Hotel Kihei
- Punahoa Beach Apartments Hotel
- Punahoa Beach
- Punahoa Beach Apartments Maui/Kihei
- Punahoa Beach Apartment