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“So Much More Then I Expected.”

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Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Hilo
Bowen, Australia
Level Contributor
15 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“So Much More Then I Expected.”
Reviewed January 23, 2014

With the guidance from trip advisor a group of 8 Aussies decided this was probably the best accommodation in Hilo for us. We decided on the Deluxe Ocean View room simply because these rooms have a fridge. The reviews didn't paint this place to be anymore than a 3 star hotel, but Management had been on to say they were upgrading all the rooms. When we arrived I definitely thought we were in the wrong Hotel. It was so nice, yes you can tell it was once an old hotel, but our room was Excellent, our view from our balcony was stunning, the restaurant had an awesome view as well, it was in walking distance to parks and other restaurants. I will definitely be recommending this grand hotel to all my fellow travellers. One thing that they could do for us Aussies that don't drink percolated Coffee is have a few kettles on hand for us tea drinkers. There's nothing like a cuppa in the morning while sitting watching that great view. What I loved is that there are ice machines for your afternoon drinks on each floor.Would come back to Hilo any day, Black Sand Beach, Volcano national park, waterfalls, chopper flights and ziplining all at your fingertips. This is truly Hawaii. Thanks For a great stay.

Room Tip: Deluxe Ocean View, would be my choice.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank Danie M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Cranbury, New Jersey
Level Contributor
37 reviews
20 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed January 23, 2014

The reception of 'Kay' is very pleasant and helpful. It was our first time to Hilo and all our questions and concerns were answered - Kay even checked dinner restaurants for us and gave us good directions and recommendation.
The hotel location is very convenient - the Japanese garden across is a pleasant walk early morning and at night. The town is safe and peaceful. Too bad we could only stay for one night.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank emmadeguzman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Kailua-Kona, Hawaii
Level Contributor
91 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed January 23, 2014

Been a Big Island resident for 14 years now, and love our little stay-cations! This time we had family in from the midwest and we did the whole Volcano tour with them.
We usually stay at this resort when visiting Hilo, but this time I was pleasantly surprised, the hotel had been recently remodeled, and we were very pleased. It was always a "fair" choice of hotels, but now, for Hilo, it sits at, or near the top of our list (Palm Cliffs House sits at the VERY top).
Buffett was awesome, crab, oysters, shrimp, Ahi, prime rib.........., and I had no idea that the beer was a bottomless glass, they walked around with pitchers of beer, keeping you topped off all the time.
I will follow up with our new find for a great breakfast place in Hilo.

Room Tip: I think the even numbered rooms are ocean front, or actually bayfront.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank KonaLance
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Honolulu, Hawaii
Level Contributor
273 reviews
63 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 568 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2014

It's well known that Hilo hotels are somewhat rundown but I was pleasantly surprised with the Hilo Hawaiian. I booked an ocean view room for 5 nights for an internet special rate of $129 .The price seems about right for Hilo The condition of the room and the hotel in general was actually quite good and the view of Hilo Bay from the lanai was lovely. The Queen's Court restaurant serves an excellent stir-fry from the dinner menu and great french toast from the breakfast menu. The breakfast buffet was so so & not worth the price, even with the $5 coupons provided at check-in. The scrambled eggs were cold & runny and the beautiful fresh tropical fruit was covered with fruit flies. The restaurant is "buffet only "on Fri-Sat-Sun nights .Trust me, order directly from the menu & you'll be much happier. Other than the buffet problems, we had a great stay. The room was very clean, AC was very noisy. The front desk is slow at best, at check in "Toni" was not very friendly, actually seemed mad or dis interested . Check out staff was much better Britney actually took interest in our stay. Overall the staff was somewhat friendly & courteous , the door staff confused us, rarely smiled or greeted us. Not much Hawaiian hospitality exhibited here. But the location is ideal. Overall considering the choices in Hilo this is the best you will find. I'd stay there again.

Room Tip: Ask for an even numbered room these rooms face the bay. Be sure to get your $5 off coupon for break...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
1 Thank F5993GMericd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Level Contributor
151 reviews
24 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 83 helpful votes
Reviewed January 22, 2014

Our stay was part of an organized trip. Our room faced the park rather than the bay. So no great view. The room had been remodeled and was adequately large, but the bathroom remodeling seemed superficial. The tour had plated dinners and the breakfast buffet. The dinners were not good and lacked variety. By the third day, only half the tour guests came to dinner even though it was The breakfast buffet was OK, but was more limited than some.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Edam231
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Stockholm, Sweden
Level Contributor
5 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed January 20, 2014

We opted to visit Hilo on our three-island Hawaiian adventure, but we're surprised there were limited hotel options. Traveling with a five-year old we felt Castle would be our best option. It is nothing like a castle. Actually the owners could turn this place into a gem worthy a spot in a crown, but it needs a visionary one.
Let's start with the positives; room was large, clean, and decor in the photos were accurate. We got a two queen-bed room on the fourth floor, with ocean view.
Clean and practical, but dated, bathroom. Beds, sheets, and comforter were comfortable. I am sensitive to hard beds, and get back aches easily, I slept well here.
The location is nice, with two gorgeous parks next to the crescent shaped hotel.

Then over to the less than great features; bed light is missing. Only one oversized bedside lamp with a huge white shade, is available, which meant that no one can sleep if one in the room desire to read. We prefer to stay up longer than our five year old, but we couldn't due to the lamps there.
View over the little island (coconut Island?), is gorgeous -- till dusk. Why don't the hotel inquire to have the big spotlight by the open communal area, on the island, be directed lower? It shines as a flash light right at you, completely disturbing the evening mood. Can't be impossible.
Then there's the huge roof, of the restaurant, which is another sore spot you can't avoid looking at from your balcony. Why not plant some low greenery there, and turn it into something attractive?
The pool area is completely neglected, and pool freezing cold. What a missed opportunity!

We dined in the restaurant and it was chockingly bad. How can you keep serving such poorly cooked food? The owner and chef, should visit the nearby restaurant to get a taste of today's modern cuisine, because they themselves are stuck in the 80's. A bad version of it.
We ended up eating all the other meals at that place; Hilo Bay Cafe, which held international class. Walking distance.
Breakfast was nothing great either, thankfully there were fresh fruit and known brand cereals. I can't stand margarine instead of butter, low quality cream cheese and low fat yoghurt.

There are several things that feels dated here, but the most irritating is how complicated getting access to wifi is! While in your room, you have to purchase access online thru a portal. Which means you keep having to log in, and several times, it wouldn't work. And, the speed was slow and THAT they made me pay for! Get down with the program, hotel! This is like barring guests from washing their hands.

No complaints about the staff.

Hilo itself is genuine and well worth a visit. I can recommend the massage service in the hotel's building. Professional, clean, and really awesome! International standard that is way better than this hotel.

We stayed here in the beginning of Dec., 2013.

  • Stayed December 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
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Helpful?
Thank Stina49
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Brooks, Georgia, United States
Level Contributor
18 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
Reviewed January 19, 2014

Enjoyed every inch of the hotel.............it is an older hotel but recently renovated. We were on the bay side so our view was wonderful............worth the price just for the view. You are walking distance to Coconut Island and a botanical garden. Very convenient to shopping and restaurants.The staff was wonderful if you had any issue what so ever. We were on town for The Delbert McClinton concert at the Palace Theater. All the employees were super nice especially Toni at the front desk.............we really enjoyed her sweet spirit.

Room Tip: Ask for a renovated room........on the Bay side...........you will not be disappointed.
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  • Stayed December 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
Thank Janet G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel

Property: Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel
Address: 71 Banyan Drive, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720-4693
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Hilo
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 8 Hotels in Hilo
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel 3.5*
Number of rooms: 286
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hilo Hawaiian Hotel, Hilo's best full-service hotel, offers outstanding views of the ocean or quaint Hilo Town framed by the backdrop of Mauna Kea. Located on Hilo Bay, and approximately two miles from Hilo Airport, Hilo Hawaiian Hotel is the perfect headquarters for exploring the Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. Enjoy incredible views of Mauna Kea, Hilo Town, and beautiful and historic Coconut Island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilo Hawaiian Hotel
Castle Hilo Hawaiian Hotel Hawaii

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