We will be in the Kona area for several days, while my wife attends a conference, and then have 2 "free" nights before one last night in another part of Kona for our late morning flight to Portland. We'll likely leave Kona about mid-day the last day of the conference and thought of spending the first night in Hilo and the second in Volcano area (Kilauea Lodge), but I'm having a hard time finding someplace in Hilo less than $200 that doesn't have "dump" in at least a few Tripadvisor reviews. Thought of the Shipman House, but it costs over $220, plus tax.
Dolphin Bay looks so-so, even though it gets the best reviews on TA (which doesn't always indicate quality). Castle Hilo Hawaiian gets mixed reviews, though we could get a good price through the American Airlines Web site. Ocean view room (looks like in a newer part of the hotel) wold be $168 incl. tax, but it appears they charge for both Internet and porterage (with the latter added automatically). Plus it looks close to the airport. Hilo Seaside rate good through the Hawaiian Ailrines Web site, but it looks even more so-so, and even closer to the airport. Naniloa Volcanoes looked good on its Web site, especially with a renovated room such as ocean view, but the reviews are worse than for the Hilo Hawaiian.
Overall, the selection seems more limited and the prices higher than in Kona. We'd drive to Volcano that day but don't know what time we'll get to Hilo and don't want to rush and/or end up having to drive up in the dark. Suggestins?Edited: 10:37 am, October 30, 2012