We just returned from Maui after staying a week at the Royal Lahaina Resort on Kaanapali Beach. I had read many reviews of this hotel before we left and had tried to change my reservations prior to leaving, but was unable to. We went there with dread in our hearts about the "dump" we would be staying in. However, the Royal Lahaina wasn't that bad.
Sure the Brad's and Jen's of the world could never have stayed in a place like this, but it was adequate for all us normal, middle-income people. Yes, it is in need of updating - the place is old and deteriorating, but our room was clean and roomy and the maid service was very good. We stayed in the Kia Towers because we had heard too many awful things about the Hale building. While we did not get a chance to check that building out, it did not look very inviting from the outside. Our problem with the Royal Lahaina was unfriendly service people. I think they must not like working under the management of this hotel because not many of them were very cordial. The housekeeping people were friendly and kind as was the parking attendants but everyone else gave us the impression they were tired of tourists. The woman in the Emporium absolutely ignored me even though I tried speaking with her several times. The other thing that bothered us was they charged $5 per hour for snorkel equipment but you can go anywhere on the island and get them for $1.50 per day! The equipment as well as parking should have been free to guests staying here. They also charge you $3.75 for a 4-cup pot of coffee in your room. Save your money and bring your own from home along with some filters. We paid the extra $13 per day fee for the parking, coffee and room safe but we felt all of this should have been included with the price of the room. The food in the Ocean Terrace Room was generally pretty good and the price was fair. There are so many places to eat on this island that you don't have to eat a single meal at the hotel if you don't want to. We had an excellent meal at the Italian restaurant adjacent to the hotel although it was very expensive. There are many, many hotels on this island that were newer and had nicer amenities but if you've never been there you don't find out until you're there. This hotel had 3 pools but they were just small square boxes in the ground - good only for cooling off from the heat. My kids were very disappointed after seeing all the really cool pools at the other hotels. The beach couldn't have been better though. I think they have one of the best beaches on the island and the grounds at the Royal Lahaina were beautiful as well. All in all, we had a good stay but I would not go back there nor would I recommend this resort to any of my friends. There are so many better hotels to choose from that offer clean, friendly service for the same price. The Royal Lahaina needs an entire building and staff facelift if they want to get any repeat visitors because they do not go out of their way to make you feel wanted! Most of the hawaiian staff made us feel that we were bothering them. The friendliest staff were asian or american. If you get a good deal on your room, go ahead and stay here but be ready to give up courtesy and friendliness from everyone but a few. Also, they have a Luau every night so if you face the Luau you have to hear it every night in your room and you have to deal with the lack of parking space until it's over. The owners of this resort should take a look at what reviewers are saying because if they don't make some changes soon, they will be filing for bankruptcy in the near future. There are too many other hotels in Maui that are willing to show vacationers the courtesy and friendliness that Hawaii is known for.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.