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“Ok for budget travelers” 1 of 5 stars
Review of Royal Kona Resort

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Royal Kona Resort
3.0 of 5 Resort   |   75-5852 Alii Drive, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96740   |  
Hotel amenities
Ranked #8 of 14 Hotels in Kailua-Kona
Los Angeles
15 reviews 15 reviews
15 hotel reviews
Reviews in 15 cities Reviews in 15 cities
118 helpful votes 118 helpful votes
“Ok for budget travelers”
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2003

I stayed at the Royal Kona in July 2003. This property is run-down and has an outdated and weathered feel to it. It needs a paint job badly. I would hardly say that this hotel deserves 2 stars. The great location and views from the property are about all it has going for it. On the exterior, the hotel feels like 1971- there has been no noticeable renovation for several decades. There is chipped paint everywhere and cheap industrial stained carpets, often pieced together with duct tape, especially in the halls. Inside the rooms, you will again find cheap industrial carpet, extremely firm beds (I had a hard time sleeping every night), weak air-conditioning (one night I woke up in a sweat), small thin towels, peeling wallpaper, popcorn ceilings with yellow stains, rusted lighting fixtures, mold and dust in the vents, small holes in the walls, and rusted balcony doors (the one I had didnt even shut all the way, and came off its track). The balconies are designed so you can hop over to another rooms balcony (not very secure nor private). While the hotel claims it has renovated recently, the most it did was put in some new furniture, maybe a mirror or table. They also say on their website that they have irons and ironing boards- well, they dont, and it wasnt just the room I was in either. They also surprise you with a $7 charge per day to park your car in the parking lot. This is a low-budget hotel, which is fine if you are trying to save money. You can surely tell that it caters to the masses of tour companies such as Pleasant Hawaiian Holidays and the like. The staff is plain and boring, with hardly a smile. I would not stay at this hotel again, nor recommend it to anybody.

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1,808 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
    3.5 of 5 stars
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A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 3, 2003

I was also nervous after reading several of these reviews. However, my husband and I were pleasantly surprised. We received an upgrade to an oceanview room and it was absolutley gorgeous. We watched the sunset almost every night from our lanai. The room was a little on the small side but the view and location completely made up for that. We were able to walk everywhere, restaurants, bars, activities (we went parasailing and snuba-diving). This is not a five star resort, but it is an excellent place to stay if you are looking to enjoy the area and have a good time.

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A TripAdvisor Member
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2003

Well it is old, but the rooms vary greatly.

The first room they gave us was old and smelly. So we got another with a better view but still smelled damp.

Last room was much better nice clean fab views, although dated it was very nice. I guess you got to complain a little when you are not happy.
BTW we were nice the whole time and did not get nasty. Given the same rates (about 100 a night) i would stay there again.

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3 reviews 3 reviews
3 hotel reviews
Reviews in 3 cities Reviews in 3 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 20, 2003

The Royal Kona was not the worst place we've ever stayed. It is old and not renovated, but that's what gave it some of its charm. I have to admit I wasn't happy that the little boy in the room next to us was able to peer over the balcony division and look into our room, but since the three balcony doors extended across the whole room, we adjusted them so we could see the ocean, not the neighbors! It was too bad that they charged for coffee, so we had to wait until we went down to breakfast. We found the breakfast buffet varied and satisfactory.
And about the birds...when all windows are open to the beautiful breezes, what do you expect? They were not a problem. If you plan to spend all your time in the hotel, this is not the place for you, but we found it to be acceptable for our budget and plans to see the Big Island.

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A TripAdvisor Member
2 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2003

This property is 35 years old and it shows it. Stained carpeting in a $180 a night room. Torn carpeting in the hallways covered with duct tape which, itself, was torn off the floor. Metal finishings in the room and bathroom are rusting and should have been replaced a couple of years ago. Paint peeling from the balcony. AND they nickel and dime you to death: they charge for the usually complementary in room coffee ($3.50 for a two cup packet), they charge you for the safe, they charge you $7.00 per day for parking, they charge 15% gratuity and service for a TAKE OUT meal that YOU pick up! No room service. When Hilton owned this property it must have been something, but the current owners have neglected it badly. They even charge the staff for parking and meals.
If they don't do something soon it'll wind up as just another run down beach resort property.

  • Stayed July 2003
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 2 of 5 stars Service
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Los Angeles, CA
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
28 hotel reviews
Reviews in 30 cities Reviews in 30 cities
167 helpful votes 167 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2003

First off--We are not fussy travelers. In fact, just a month ago my boyfriend and I stayed at hte Sheraton Cancun for $60/night...we consider ourselves budget travelers--but the Royal Kona made my spine tingle.

The layout of the Hotel is generally fine. We weren't upgraded to anything, and stayed on the 2nd floor of the garden view room. From our Lanai (balcony) we had a tiny view of the ocean if we stretched our necks, but it generally overlooked the
garbage area and parking lot.

The rooms are old, musty, and brown. The decor is from the 1970s, which is actually not that bad, but the bed creaked when you sat down on it, the feel of the room made my skin itch, and our sliding door would not close properly.

The bathroom is nothing spectacular, they charge you $3.50 for coffee in the room, and $7/day for parking at the hotel. Although the location is good, that's the only plus.

I've been to Kona before, and stayed at Keahou in the Kanaloa at Kona condos. Those were lovely and the whole time I was in Kona wished wished I was back there.

Trust trust trust me---I am a budget traveler, with expectations. We paid $ 84/nite for this crappy room (off Expedia, including tax), which was a good deal, but if you're considering at any time to relax at your room, don't stay here.

Although we were never inside the room since we were busy exploring, the condition of the hotel did not beckon us back. Seeing the Waikoloa Side made us envious, and seeing Hilo's cheaper prices made us regretful. Do yourself a favor...shell out an extra 40 bucks a nite and stay in Waikoloa--you'll thank yourself when you're not itching in the morning from the bugs in your bed at nite!!!!!

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A TripAdvisor Member
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 11, 2003

Couldn't resist adding my 2 cents.

My husband, myself and my 2 kids stay at the Royal Kona last summer for 4 nights. The first night they were overbooked and sent us to the King Kam. They gave us free luau tickets for our trouble.

The room we checked into the next day was so dirty and noisy (from the restaurant downstairs) we requested another one and were moved immediately. It was so fast, I suspected they were expecting our complaint. Our second room was clean and in a quieter part of the property.

The property is old and run down. This is evident by the worn carpet around the pool, the broken fixtures here and there, peeling paint, etc. The service is spotty, hit or miss. The pool seem clean enough, and my kids enjoyed playing in it. The luau was great, but we did not eat in the restaurant.

So why am I giving it an above average rating. Well, it's a great location, right in the middle of Kailua-Kona. Also, it is so cheap. We paid under $90.00 a night for the four of us, including the $7.00 parking fee. Also, there are many activities available at the hotel, hula lessons, lei making, snorkeling in the manmade lagoon. If you keep in mind these are budget accomondations, it really is a great deal. If you are looking for something more upscale, there are many other choices in Kailua-Kona, but not at these prices.

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Additional Information about Royal Kona Resort

Address: 75-5852 Alii Drive, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96740
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Kailua-Kona
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Spa Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Kailua-Kona
#4 Top resorts Hotel in Kailua-Kona
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3 star — Royal Kona Resort 3*
Number of rooms: 436
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Also Known As:
Royal Kona Hotel Kailua-Kona
Royal Kona Kailua
Royal Kona Resort Hawaii/Kailua-Kona

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