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Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

Seattle, WA
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Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

Aloha, all you BI Kohala experts, I need some additional input from you hardworking people. I know you answer these questions 24/7 ad nauseam, but I'd appreciate your opinions.

What: Mom's 80th b-day party. Mom loves the Big Island; she has many happy memories of her time there with us and Dad (now deceased). She is currently in good health, active and mobile.

When: late July/early August 2014. Yes, I know it's hot then, but that's the time frame. Looking at 10-14 days, preferably 14.

Who: approx. 10-12 family members (at this time. Given my past experience with my family, those numbers could change). 5-6 will be staying at King's Land at Waikoloa. Remainder staying with us, so looking for at least 3 bedrooms.

Where: Looking at Mauna Kea or Mauna Lani condo/villa rentals. Price no object, but we do appreciate good value for money. Proximity to ocean, pools, and the use of resort amenities are of paramount importance, as is good on-site management and concierge service.

I'm doing my own research, but I'm asking for additional help because I'm not as familiar with condo rentals on the BI. We've stayed in the past at B & Bs in Kona and Volcano, the Mauna Kea Beach hotel, the Mauna Lani Bay hotel, and Puakea Ranch in Hawi, and enjoyed our stays in all of them.

Mahalo for your help!

Northwest Nerd and family

Big Island, Hawaii
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1. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

I wouldn't put a lot of stock in access to resort amenities anywhere but the Four Seasons, as IMO that's the only resort worth caring about accessing the facilities because of the many pools, great spa, restaurants, and other activities. The Mauna Kea pool is nothing special. The Mauna Lani pool is undergoing renovation this year so may well be nicer but most of the condo complexes at the Mauna Lani have great pools. King's Land does too. The Terrace at the Mauna Lani is the only complex that offers use of the Mauna Lani facilities.

My first choice of condos aside from the Four Seasons (I know you said price is no object, but those are pretty astronomical with the resort add in, but if you can afford it, go for it), is always the Point at the Mauna Lani. Cliffside oceanfront and a short walk to the two best snorkel beaches on the island. If snorkeling isn't a huge priority and you want bigger beaches like Hapuna or Kauna'oa then the Mauna Kea condo options might be better although they aren't really a reasonable walking distance to the ocean (and are on a steep hill), I think most come with a golf cart that you can use.

Hayden Lake, ID
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2. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

The Palm Villas and Golf Villas 3/3's are very roomy and upscale. They have a first floor bedroom for anyone who doesn't want to climb stairs. The Fairways 3 bedroom also has a first floor bedroom. The Villages is also upscale and are 3 bedrooms.

They all have really nice pool areas and BBQs right out the door. Fun places to gather. The key to parking at the beach club is priceless.

Island of Hawaii...
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3. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

I think your level of snorkeling obsession would be good to know.

I do think the Mauna Keaʻs resort amenities are of value, in a different way than with the 4S. Certainly not for pool, although the pool area view could be a nice change from the more panoramic but farther up view from the condos.

Waiʻulaʻula condos have a quite nice pool and clubhouse that is on the website. Those are the 3 bedrooms. Of course there are also houses with private pools that are awesome, and there are private villas at Mauna Lani as well, if price really is no object.

The amenities are great if you really enjoy Kaunaʻoa Beach, which is quite spectacular, and very nice for just wading in. There is a lot more room across to wade in shallows than at Mauna Laniʻs Makaʻiwa Bay, which gets congested until you go farther out.

The cabanas and loungers at Mauna Lani are just OK. The beach umbrella and lounger service at Mauna Kea is really much better, more comfortable, and not as hot as it is in a stuffy cabana. As it is summer, that will matter.

I wouldnʻt rent at Mauna Kea without the amenities package, and give up being able to park at Mauna Kea BH. Also, you get privileges at the Hapuna, which has another larger (but shallow) pool with poolside bar.

I guess there are some other perks, but those are the ones that mattered to me. I didnʻt do golf, tennis, or spa. The Mauna Kea staff are a bit snobbish to non-guests, but in my experience they treat the "homeowners" as valued guests. (Those being the off-site renters with privileges.)

I can also say that itʻs a LOT cooler at the MK condo elevation. I stayed up there in July, and the breezes were so great I didnʻt need A/C, although it was available.

Seattle, WA
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4. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

LOL, well I made a rather sweeping statement when I mentioned that "price is no object". There is always a limit, and the Mauna Lani bungalows, at $4,000+ a night, are it! :-) The same goes for the Kauna'oa townhomes at the Mauna Kea Resort, a bargain at $1500++++ a night, whew! Although I think if I hunt long enough on VRBO, I might find one cheaper, ha.

After weighing all the pros and cons, I think we will go for the Villas at Wai'ula'ula (not the condos.The Villas are a little larger, and I see a couple that take 8 guests, in case more family members decide to join us) I like the idea of being up higher during the summer months, and I think the Villas deliver the best "bang for the buck". We will definitely get the resort amenity package.

Thank you to SheaG, KarenHaydenLake, and Kamaaina K for your kind responses. So many great choices!

Edited: 1:24 pm, July 28, 2013
Seattle, WA
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5. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

PS Hope Flossie decides to fizzle out at sea, and leaves y'all in peace!

Island of Hawaii...
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6. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

Thank you!

Right now she is sizzlin' not fizzlin'.

I'm not familiar with these Villas and would like to know more. Do you have a link you can share? There are a lot of options in that resort we don't hear much about, and so many homes being built here and there.

My son (the painter) has been working on custom homes in this new Kauna'oa gated single family home subdivision near the Hapuna Prince (on down the road, but to the north of the hotel), and until I went down to see his jobsite I had no idea there were homes down there.

Your choice sounds excellent for your group.

Seattle, WA
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7. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

maunakearesortrentals.com/waiulaula-luxury-v…

www.southkohala.com/waiulaula-mauna-kea

I've included the above links with some info about the Villas at Wai'ula'ula for you, KamaainaK. Hopefully, they "took", as I'm not a technical nerd, just a bookworm nerd. There's also additional info on specific villas at VRBO.

I hope Flossie behaves herself. I'll be monitoring from the safety of 3,000 miles away, and will be anxious to know how the Big Island fares.

Big Island, Hawaii
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8. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

Did you look at the Four Seasons? It looks to me to be similar pricing and I'd much rather have a condo there than at Wai'ula'ula.

Seattle, WA
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9. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

Oddly enough, Shea, the Four Seasons has never been on my radar, and I'm not sure why. I've just always enjoyed being further north on the Kohala coast. What do you like better about the Four Seasons?

Big Island, Hawaii
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10. Re: Lodging for family celebration of Mom's 80th in 2014

It's one of the best resorts in the world, is very Hawaiiana, has the best restaurants on the island, and is located on beautiful and historical grounds with a fantastic shoreline area. There's really no place better to stay in the state, IMO.

Edited: 3:21 am, July 29, 2013