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“Amazing” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Hale Ko'olau

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Hale Ko'olau
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54-223 Kamehameha Highway, PO Box 223, Hauula, Oahu, HI 96717   |  
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Hotel website
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Hotel amenities
Offers & Announcements
20% off room rate
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
“Amazing”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 4, 2014

This place was the best place to stay so clean nice friendly staff and close to every thing really happy with our choice defiantly be back to see all the friendly staff and the amazing beaches right on the doorstep of this
Place

  • Stayed July 2013
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, March 10, 2014
Aloha and mahalo for your generous review. We're happy that you enjoyed your stay and were able to accommodate your large group. 90% or more of our past guests indicate they would return or recommend us to their friends and family and that is very heartwarming for us.
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132 reviews from our community

Traveler rating
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (23)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Logandale, Nevada, United States
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed March 2, 2014

We had a large group coming to Hawaii for my daughters wedding. We rented the Kai lani, hale Mauka, and the ehu Kai hale for a week. We couldn't have asked for a more accommodating, perfect place to stay. Reservations were a breeze, questions were answered quickly. Everyone we dealt with from beginning to end, were wonderful. I couldn't have asked for more. The rooms were clean and had everything we needed. And that view! Sunrises were so beautiful. The sound of the waves sang me to sleep each night. We cooked on the grills, relaxed in the hot tub, rented kayaks and spent lots of time relaxing on the lawn chairs watching the ocean. I didn't want to leave. I will be back and won't hesitate to stay at Hale Ko'olau again. So much better than the madness of honolulu.

Room Tip: The ehu Kai hale is my favorite. Right by the water. If it rained, I could sit in the living room...
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 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
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hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, March 4, 2014
Aloha & mahalo for your very kind review. We're so happy that Hale Ko'olau was able to accommodate your large group and are especially happy to hear that you valued our guest services. We're a small business and work very hard to make each and every one of our guests feel welcomed on a level which is more sincere than that of a valet at a hotel. We're glad you noticed.
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Gig Harbor, Washington
1 review
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 23, 2014

We stayed in the Sunrise rental for 1 week.
Pros: We have stayed in several vacation rentals over the years and this was the cleanest rental we have ever stayed in. The staff are nice and the rental is in a good location to drive to several popular beaches and the PCC.
Cons: The parking situation was a pain and a bit dangerous at times. This is only true for our parking lot, and the fact that every night it had the maximum amount of cars in it. The road is very busy off of the lot and getting in and out was tricky, but doable. The beach infront of the rentals is rocky and you must walk to the sandy beach. The walk however took us about 60 seconds with a family of 5. Once you do get to the sandy beach, it is well protected from waves and fun for small children to play in. Our kids had fun wading through and looking at fish and crabs.

We enjoyed the hot tubs and used the laundry facility a few times. We haven't found too many rentals that have washers and dryers, so did not mind paying for laundry. I read a few reviews that had issues with privacy. It is true, you do have "neighbors" and they are close, however we found it quiet and comfortable. If your neighbor renters are walking by your rentals to go to the beach or the hot tub, they aren't standing infront of your window to peek on you. I wouldn't let it take away from the amazing views that you have! I think it was clear to see on the map when renting what the location was of all the rentals.

Room Tip: Pick a rental in the front, right on the beach. The back rentals have a blocked view.
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  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 4 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 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.
hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, February 24, 2014
Aloha & mahalo for your kind and thorough review. Yes, parking is tight and Kamehameha, the only road around the island, can be busy at times, however in 2 generations of running our business we've never had one accident. I think it is because we normally drive with "aloha" in Hawaii, meaning if you nudge out into the road someone will stop and let you out. We do this on North Shore because we only have one road and we all have to use it and respect each other.
I'd also like to address the beach in front of the rentals...we did lose a lot of sand this year with the big swells (the largest in more than a decade), however, like you said, there is plenty of child-friendly sandy beach a short walk. Also, as in past years when we've had erosion, the sand will eventually migrate back in front of our properties, it just takes some time.
Again, mahalo for your very honest and thorough review.
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cleveland, ohio
Top Contributor
80 reviews 80 reviews
31 hotel reviews
Reviews in 46 cities Reviews in 46 cities
37 helpful votes 37 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed February 22, 2014

We stayed three nights here in Hale Ali'i (House of the Chief). The shared deck was right up against the rocky seashore and we had a separate deck with a small eating table by the sea. The overall impression was of staying in someone's home. It was kind of quirky but comfortable. Kitchen was well appointed. Looking at the other rentals on the property this is the only one that we would choose because of the seaside deck and additional privacy. Cleanliness was pretty good. It was clean in the important ways, bathrooms, kitchen, refrigerator. There was a dust along the baseboards for example indicating that a thorough basic cleaning would be in order at some point. But please note this is not a five-star resort, this is sort of a cottage on the sea experience in more or less rural Oahu. Staff was not particularly organized or coordinated, but they got the job done. Location was excellent. As some other reviewers have noted, it was a bit challenging to back out onto the road, but we worked it out. We really enjoyed our stay here and would probably return for a longer visit in the future. Just important to note that it is a very homey atmosphere and not a five-star resort atmosphere. But that works for us. Gave us a small taste of real island life. Totally adequate grocery store up the road in Laie. Great fruit stand on the side of the road between the cottage and the grocery store. You can easily explore the whole East Coast and North Shore from this location. Great beach and beach walking at Malaekahana State Recreation Area up the road. It's the perfect spot for the right people.

Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, February 24, 2014
Aloha and mahalo for such a wonderful review. Although it wasn't entirely a glowing review (we do admit we're not perfect) it was spot on in terms of what travelers can expect from our lodging. We always try to make people aware that we are not a hotel or resort, but instead we're down-to-earth, family-friendly, direct beachfront at affordable prices...something that is becoming increasingly hard to find in Hawaii. Seeing that you are a "Senior Contributor" on Trip Advisor and well traveled makes your review all the more important, again Mahalo nui loa.
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Devils Tower, Wyoming
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
2 of 5 stars Reviewed February 19, 2014

We were very excited to book this property and based on the many excellent reviews we had high expectations. Upon arrival it was apparent that things were not quite as expected or in one case as advertised.

We booked through VRBO, there were many photos of the property, and one pic in particular of the building we were staying in that was taken from the beach area looking in. The photo showed a pretty sandy beach all the way up to the sea wall and directly in front of the lanai. (as listed: the beach is 20 feet from your door) That part is partially true but because the photo was obviously years old since the time that photo was taken there was no longer sand on the beach...just large rocks that had been washing up to the seawall for god knows how long. No beach...

Minor problem, we'll deal with it.

Upon arrival and before we could even get settled we were in the kitchen and asked to sign a number of papers, agreements, contracts or whatever they called them. Because we were late afternoon arrivals the person had to come back to met us and she was obviously in a hurry to go somewhere else. BTW if your plane is late they charge you a fee for a late check in. Having just experienced a long flight we initialed and signed the documents...one of which stated that we approved of the cleaning crews work (there were a few ladies names on the paper as the maids) Also there was another agreement that stated if we "stained" the sheets we were to pay for new ones and other little stipulations like that which we signed off on.

That was done and their person left. We started to get into the house and exploring the 3 bedrooms and the bathroom. The bathroom was an eye opener, the top of the tile hadn't been cleaned in possibly months or longer and there was a black sticky residue on it. I actually took a sponge to it to see if if could be removed and sure enough...with some elbow grease it started to come clean. The linen closet doors looked like a dust catching filter or device. There were other things like dried food on the half wall in the kitchen which my wife cleaned up later, stained and frayed curtains, windows that were broken, didn't lock our even close properly.

By now my wife is talking me into leaving, she calls the representative's cell phone who doesn't get back to her until the next afternoon. I explain to my wife that there are no cancellations as per their contract, in fact there are extra or penalty charges for just about everything. $4.00 Coin Laundry in your room, toilet paper $1.00 per roll, if you want to use one of the room safes they hit for something $5.00 per day. Oh the best one...remember that we signed an agreement stating that if we were to "stain" the sheets we would pay to have them replaced? Well upon inspection in the master bedroom we see...you guessed it. Stained sheets! How convenient...

Long story short; we did some cleaning to make the apartment comfortable for us, and we made the best of it. There is little to do on their property so we visited beaches and other areas during the day and returned back in the evening.

The day before leaving we get an email with instructions of our responsibilities which include CLEANING DISHES, GLASSES AND SILVERWARE! Now I know who their cleaning people are, it's their guests because those items were about the only things that were clean when we arrived.

Our trip continued on to Kaui where we rented a cliff house suite above the Marriott. The bi-level unit was modern, clean, completely equipped with everything we would need including a complete cabinet of sundries. Brand new clothes washer and drier (free or course with soap and dryer sheets) And the kitchen itself would have made Guy Fieri proud. We had two private balconies with incredible views and full access to the Marriott facilities and we spent a little less than we did for the Hale Ko'olau property.

Obviously we were not happy with the facility however, I would with a clear conscious recommend Hale Ko'olau if the prices were significantly lower and they stepped up and monitored their cleaning/maintenance program better. The location is ok if you don't want a beach.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 9
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, February 21, 2014
Aloha and thank you for your review. Yes, as previously noted, the beach in front of our property took a beating this year due to the highest surf in more than a decade to hit the islands and the subsequent erosion. Many beachfront homes lost a lot more than sand...some lost structures and swimming pools. We got lucky. Sorry, but there is nothing that can be done about mother nature.

I'm sorry you feel that recovering some of the costs of labor (overtime at time and a half) for late arrivals is a bad thing and that $2.99/day for a safe rental is bad or $4.00 for a load of laundry is bad. Things are very expensive in Hawaii and we have to recover the costs for those optional items in order to provide them and keep our rates affordable. Also, I want to point out that our rental agreement clearly states these homes are self catering and will come with 3 rolls of TP per bathroom. As a convenience we do have extra at our onsite office for an extra charge of $1.00. This is because we have to pay for someone to go into town, purchase, and bring back items for the rentals. There is a cost associated with that. In a 3 bathroom house that means you had 9 rolls of TP for a less than one week stay. Its none of my business, but if you need that much time in the bathroom perhaps you should see a doctor. At any rate, there are convenience stores and grocery stores which sell these items a short walk from our properties.

I also find it interesting that you objected to our Clean Guarantee and other arrival paperwork and then complain about the cleanliness of the rental. That was your opportunity to inspect and point out anything you were unsatisfied with and then request additional cleaning. To sign it without review and then later complain really shows the type of traveler you are.

Finally, we are direct level beachfront on O'ahu where you can go out and snorkel, swim, kayak right out front. O'ahu is arguably one of the most expensive of the Hawaiian islands and certainly the most visited. How you can possibly compare pricing to a cliff-side condo duplex on another island is beyond me. Our prices are extremely competitive in comparison with other direct beachfront properties in our market. I also noted that in your review you indicate you rented a "suite" yet at Hale Koolau you rented a stand-alone 3 bedroom home...that is quite a difference in facilities.

I've checked with our onsite manager, Otilani, about your claims and she said that you never bothered to contact her. Our PBX system has a voicemail feature which emails all voicemail to our management staff as well as myself and I also never received a voicemail from you. We also have an onsite office which is open 10am to 6pm daily and you could have stopped in. We can only respond/assist if you contact us.

I'm sorry you felt that our property was not up to your standards, however as our extremely high rantings show, we do meet or exceed the expectations of most of our guests.
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Fairbanks, Alaska
2 reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed February 11, 2014

We just got back a few days ago and this was not quite what we were hoping for. We have 3 kids and we thought this was right on the beach (while it is beach front) its literally a rocky shore and no place to play. The staff was REALLY nice and helpful but the place was dank, and run down a bit, NO PRIVACY!!! There were people walking through and around our place, I felt like we needed to keep the blinds closed for fear of someone peeking on us. We also thought the house was a free standing house but we had people above us, and it was loud, and trying to keep kids quiet was hard. While I liked Hauula I would not go back to this place and probably not recommend it.

  • Stayed February 2014, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 7
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, February 12, 2014
Mahalo for your review. We know Hale Ko'olau isn't for every traveler, however I am concerned about the claim that you didn't know this was a duplex home. We're very clear about that in our advertising and in the rental agreement. This is why a family of 5 can rent a direct beachfront 3 bedroom in Hawaii for under $250/night, the same price as a double occupancy hotel room (see other reviews). As for the beach, it is true that we suffered beach erosion this past few months and, considering we've had the largest swells to hit the state in more than a decade that is understandable. Some beach houses have almost been washed into the ocean, so we fared very well at Hale Koolau. For those reading this review & response, please be aware that beach erosion is something that can happen at anytime and anywhere...whether it be in Waikiki, Kailua, or North Shore. The big difference is that unlike Waikiki the City won't bring in dump trucks of new sand if ours gets washed out, LOL. Also, unlike Waikiki, we don't have high rises or traffic. This guest gave us a very low score on "location". Read our other reviews and see that our location is what most of our past guests love about us. When you consider where you want to stay on your Hawaii vacation don't just base your decision on price, consider if you want to be in the country (Hauula) or in more of a traditional resort setting. If you prefer the country I think you'll love what we have to offer.
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Hauula, Hawaii
2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed February 2, 2014

My husband and I came two years ago with friends and stayed in the big house on the end and had a great experience. We couldn't wait to come back and bring our 11 year old. (We are here as I write this). The staff was so helpful when booking from long distance, the emails back and forth were helpful and so friendly it felt like coming to visit a relative! (Did I mention a discount for repeat guests?) The accomodations this time are just as nice and being able to sit and watch the waves is totaly relaxing. What else can you say about being in paradise? Will definately stay here again.

  • Stayed February 2014
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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hale_koolau_llc, Owner at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this review, February 3, 2014
Aloha & mahalo for your wonderful review. We're so happy you enjoyed your first visit and decided to share the experience with your son this time. We try really hard to make Hale Koolau a family friendly destination and are glad to see its appreciated.
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Additional Information about Hale Ko'olau

Address: 54-223 Kamehameha Highway, PO Box 223, Hauula, Oahu, HI 96717
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Hauula
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Hauula
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $
Number of rooms: 34
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hale Ko’olau Hawaii Vacation Rentals on the North Shore of Oahu is a family owned & operated business rated "excellent" on TripAdvisor and ranked the #1 specialty lodging in our area. Our oceanfront & beachfront vacation rental homes are located next door to each other in Honolulu, Hawaii in the small fishing town of Hauula on Oahu's North Shore near the Polynesian Cultural Center, Turtle Bay, Sacred Falls, Sunset Beach, Pipeline, Kualoa Ranch and many other wonderful Oahu attractions. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hale Ko`Olau Hotel Hauula
Hale Ko'Olau Hauula, Hawaii - Oahu

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