Location: Unit F104 is a ground floor, corner unit at the very tip of the property. Thus, it affords extraordinary views both west and north. The sunsets were stunning! I'd say we are 50-100' feet from the water (not the beach). Snorkelers come every morning to explore right off the rocky point in front of us.. A small beach is located to our left and the bigger beach to the right. Our kids never made it to the big beach as they preferred the smaller beach since it was quiet, a bit closer, and had perfect waves for boogie boarding (as did the bigger beach). The waters around the rocky coast line on either side of the beach, and directly in front of us, provide for exceptional snorkeling -- the best I've experienced on Maui (after several visits over the years). I'd note that we are certainly farther from the beach access gates and the pool than most of the other units but our bright, airy, corner unit with the best views more than compensate and we are still only a 2 minute walk to either the pool (which we never got to though it looked fine) or beach. Because we are tucked away in the back corner on the point, it is also very quiet with little foot traffic passing by either in front or back. For our preferences, this is the single best-located unit in the complex. The only other unit that looked comparable is the unit next door (F105), which I don't think is on the rental market. Again, this location is our preference -- I have friends who prefer the units that face the bigger beach or even units that are at the back of the complex.
Unit: The complex is the typical beige, bland Maui style completely lacking in character and with fairly cheap construction (hollow doors, cheap hardware, etc.) So be it. The unit itself is quite nice. It's been updated recently and is both very comfortable and practical. The decor is tropical, colorful, and tasteful. The only weak spot is the second bedroom, which is darker than the rest of the unit with only one window facing the interior of the complex and is what I'd call "granny style Hawaiian". The third "bedroom" is a converted study with not much storage for clothes and shares a bathroom with the second bedroom. It is very nice though and we all preferred it to the second bedroom. The lanai is well-furnished with nine (!) chaise lounges and a comfortable dining table. The kitchen is thoroughly outfitted and functional. The unit, like all the units here I think, comes with all the standard technology amenities (i-Pod docking station, Wi-fi, DVD, flat screen TVs, etc.). Though this unit is, I believe, a bit more expensive than other 3B units at the complex due to its updated decor and prime oceanfront location, it is important to note that this unit is 1/3 the price of the Kea Lani "villas" which don't have nearly the view or location and are at a crowded hotel, albeit with the standard hotel services. We spent a day at the bustling, over-crowded, noisy Grand Wailea on this trip and were all so relieved to come back to our oasis at Makena Surf (though kudos go to housekeeping at Grand Wailea that located and returned my cell phone that I stupidly left in my robe at their spa!). My only suggested improvements to this unit beyond brightening up the second bedroom would be (1) an Apple TV or Roku unit so you could stream your own movies on their big screens, and (2) some cozy throws to snuggle up in during cooler evenings and mornings in the living room.
Makena: We've stayed several times in Wailea (Kea La) and rented houses in both Kaanapali, and Kapalua. We much prefer Makena. It is much, much more crowded down in the Wailea area now than it was about 6-8 years ago but it is still more peaceful than Kaanapali or Kapalua. Makena is quieter than Wailea given that is farther down a dead-end road. That also makes it a little farther from many restaurants, shopping, and activities but we loved that the snorkeling boats came from all over the island to snorkel in our waters. We were orginally drawn to Makena Surf because of the perfect white sandy beach combined with access to world-class snorkeling.
Though we still prefer Kauai for its beauty and relative solitude, if/when we return to Maui, we'll definitely come to Makena and most likely return to this same unit at Makena Surf.
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Aloha.......Thank you for taking the time to post your review of Makena Surf. It is an exquisite property just minutes away from all that Wailea has to offer. And as you mentioned, the snorkeling in front of the property is amazing.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.