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“A Good Base in Hilo”
Review of Dolphin Bay

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Dolphin Bay
Ranked #2 of 7 Hotels in Hilo
Certificate of Excellence
Reviewed February 17, 2013

My Wife and I spent 4 nights at the Dolphin Bay in Hilo. We were looking for a comfortable less expensive place to stay while we explored the Hilo side of the Big Island. Our experience pretty much matched the other reviews. An older, comfortable, and clean place to stay with a very friendly and helpful staff. We enjoyed eating our cheese, crackers, and wine on the front lanai. The lack of air conditioning was not a problem. We kept the door open and ran the fan on low. The wildlife noises were not an issue with us. With live in the country and what we heard were no louder than the summer night time sounds at our home. The parking in back is tight, but we were able to park on the street right in front of our room. We would certainly stay here again.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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4  Thank mtipton
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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322 - 328 of 682 reviews

Reviewed February 11, 2013

My wife and I were at Dolphin Bay exactly one year ago this past weekend. Ok, we're from Minnesota so anywhere there is nice, right? Not necessarily. But at Dolphin Bay, it was superb. Clean, very clean. And that staff? Awesome! Especially John who simply specializes in making you feel as though you're the most important guest he has. We cannot say enough. And, man, do we want to go back.

Room Tip: Ground floor rooms with walkout are really nice.
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  • Stayed: March 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank TomCaneff
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 6, 2013

Yes, this is a dated hotel. Here's what we love about it: extremely clean, friendly staff, an offering of delicious coffee, bananas and papaya PICKED ON THE GROUNDS! Located near downtown Hilo, so we walk to everything. Great launching spot for visiting the volcano. It's old fashioned motel/kitchenette style, but keep in mind that Hilo itself is reminiscent of the 50s.

Room Tip: Room #9 is near the garbage - not so good.
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  • Stayed: February 2013, traveled as a couple
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5  Thank Rlav
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 6, 2013

My husband and I stayed here for 2 nights in January 2012. We had a superior studio with a queen bed, a balcony, and a small kitchen. It was nice to have a bathroom with a high showerhead and good water pressure after a week at a condo that that fell short of our expectations in that area. Everything was clean and inviting. The grounds contain a large garden with walking paths and a stream. The staff was cheerful and helpful and gave us a map and then directions to the sites we should visit. They are happy to share their knowledge and give recommendations. We didn't miss the air condtioning because there were 2 fans and screens on the balcony and entry doors so there was good airflow. We had coffee, bananas, and baked goods provided by the hotel both mornings. All you have to do is take your mug down to the office to get your coffee. We noticed the noise of the frogs at night but it didn't bother us. We both enjoyed our stay and would definitely stay there again and recommend it to others.

  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank Minn T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 29, 2013

We stayed in this hotel for 2 nights in August 2012 and I have to say that this is without a doubt one of the nicest hotels I have stayed in. Do not get me wrong the place could probably do with a facelift but the place was basic, clean and comfortable and very friendly, what more could you want?. From reception to the cleaners everyone was helpful and greeted you with a smile.

The frogs were not really an issue for any of our party as if you shut the windows this cuts out the noise of the frogs if you wanted to get a good nights sleep but believe me the frogs make a beautiful noise. Even with the windows closed the rooms were plenty cool enough due to the provided desk fans.

I would highly recommend this hotel to anyone and I would definately stay there again if and when I return to beautiful Hawaii.

  • Stayed: August 2012, traveled with family
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1  Thank Andy R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 28, 2013

Our family of four enjoyed our stay at the Dolphin Bay Hotel. Sure it doesn't have airconditioning and it's a tad dated. We still loved it. Why? Firstly they have twin single beds which our two girls really appreciated after weeks of sleeping on uncomfortable sofa beds (even in expensive 5 star hotels). Secondly, the rooms are spacious with nice garden aspects. Thirdly, there's a full kitchen meaning you can self cater. We appreciate this flexibility. Fourthly the location is close to the old downtown area and there's a good Foodland supermarket to pick up provisions. Fifthly, it's in a quiet area so good for sleeping. We didn't have issues with the frogs. We found the noise they make interesting - nice to be close to nature. Sixthly, John and his team are amazing hosts. They made us feel so welcome. John was full of great ideas to maximise our enjoyment. His recommendation of a walk out to the active lava flows was absolutely spot on. Finally, the place is clean and beds are comfortable. Ticked more than enough boxes for us:)

Room Tip: For families the one bedroom apartments are great as they have two single beds instead of the dreade...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, traveled with family
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3  Thank Geoff K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 25, 2013 via mobile

We stayed at this Motel/Inn as we were heading in on a red eye from LA to Hilo. We were actually spending a week on the Kona side so we just needed a quick place to lay our heads. Since there was 5 of us we needed something inexpensive and that had enough beds to sleep us all. I choose this based on other reviews. It was an old Hotel/Motel/Inn and way past its prime. It was clean. There was nothing really bad about it except that it was extremely dated and old. The reviews make it better than it actually is. Yes, there was warm bread and coffee in the mornings and the hosts were kind. The location good to downtown Hilo. But aside from that, I can't really recommend this other than a place to lay your head for the night. The owners should take a clue from what other Motel/Inns are doing and gut and modernize the rooms and truly give it a more Inn appeal and market it as such. I would rather stay at a larger modern commercial Hotel for a nights rest than here.

  • Stayed: April 2012
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1  Thank tedandlisa90
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Dolphin Bay

Address: 333 Iliahi St, Hilo, Island of Hawaii, HI 96720-2399
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Hilo
Amenities:
Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #2 of 7 Hotels in Hilo
Price Range: $169 - $227 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:2.5 star — Dolphin Bay 2.5*
Number of rooms: 18
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Seasoned guidance for a wide range of Big Island adventures. Walking distance to downtown Hilo. Clean quiet & reasonable. All rooms with kitchens. Free WiFi Internet available. Rated nicest small hotel in Hilo. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Dolphin Bay Hilo, Hawaii
Dolphin Bay Hotel Hilo

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