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“bring your $ and your walking shoes!”

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Hilton Waikoloa Village
Ranked #4 of 6 Hotels in Waikoloa
GreenLeadersSilver level
San Francisco, California
Level Contributor
8 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“bring your $ and your walking shoes!”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

When we tell our friends that we are going to the Hilton, they say "isn't that pretty tame for you?" We are typically doing something like swimming with whale sharks or photo safari in Africa. But this was our 2nd time back to scuba, snorkel and relax, and we love it... we always request a room in the Lagoon Tower overlooking the Dolphin lagoon. It's great to relax on the Lanai and watch the dolphins work with the trainers. One reviewer compared it to "Disneyland Hawaii", and I found that somewhat accurate. But I like Disneyland, so it's a good thing! Beautiful grounds, and lots to see on the grounds, so bring your walking shoes. Yes, they have a tram and a boat but I'm impatient and you see more by walking. And yes, it is expensive; but it's a resort so of course it's expensive... they have a captive audience. And besides, it's Hawaii. There is a grocery store in the Queen's Market, so we buy breakfast, drinks, and snack food there and stock the small fridge in the room. Hilton service was great both last time and this time. There was a coffee maker in the room; but for some reason they did not provide coffee. We simply called, and they were happy to bring coffee, cream, sugar, spoons, etc, to the room. We don't have kids, but it seems to be a good place for families. We were there in mid-January 3 years ago, and mid-November this time... both times very uncrowded and relaxed (just the way we like it!). Weather was perfect, not too hot, not too cold. Although the wind does seem to pick up most afternoons. Another thing to be aware of if you plan to spend any time in Kailua-Kona is that it is about a 45 minute drive in to town, and more during the morning / evening commute hours; so plan accordingly. Oh, and yes, they do have loud birds at the Lagoon Tower that seem to start chirping right around dark and sort of go on and off all nite. Earplugs not a bad idea, although we sort of got adjusted... it was worth it for the great room.

Room Tip: It is a HUGE property, so proximity to certain features can be important. Room choice depends on wh...
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
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Thank 44CalifGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
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    4 of 5 bubbles
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    4 of 5 bubbles
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    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4 of 5 bubbles
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English first
Indianapolis, Indiana
Level Contributor
4 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
3 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

Huge place and very pretty. Like Disney world though. All fake. I am in great shape and very active and this place just wore me out. I really didnt want to go anywhere due to the 1.25 mile walk from the room to the car. That's probably the point to keep you on the property. Trams were never close. Crazy expensive for tiny drinks and $30 for breakfast.

  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
1 Thank Ryan R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
4 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

Stayed here last week. Room was in Ocean Tower, ground floor. Golf course behind us. Pools are very nice for adults and children. Snorkel with sea turtles in the salt water pool. It is a resort so know you will pay extra. Well north of the city and traffic is moderate but 45mph most of the way, one lane per direction. The resort is huge, and requires a bit of walking. Tram service is available but the wait between trams is too long. Boat transport is available as well. Room was spacious and clean. We will go back.

  • Stayed November 2012
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Jim S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Laguna Beach, California
Level Contributor
12 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 18, 2012

My wife & I just stayed 6 nights at the Hilton Waikaloa. This was our 2nd stay there, about twice as long as the first. Both were business trips, most recently a franchise convention for a national restaurant chain. Here are the high and low points:

High Points

1. 64 Acre complex is beautifully landscaped. The best part of all is the ocean-fed saltwater lagoon and beach in the middle, for snorkeling, paddle boarding, or sunbathing on sand (a rarity on the lava rock dominated coast of the big island). There are 2 distinct sets of pools/ waterfeatures/ slides for the kids serving the 3 separate tower complexes. If you or your young kids are into the over-the-top resort pool thing, w/ waterfalls and rope bridges, etc, you want the "Lagoon Tower". However if you stay there, on the south end of the grounds and very close to the main entrance lobby, you will likely never have any reason to see the other 2/3 of the grounds, or use the tram. Staying in the Palace Tower (recently remodeled) or the Ocean Tower (where we just stayed, room finishes appear about 8-9 years old), both on the north end of the complex, will force you to use & enjoy the whole resort. especially if you are staying for more than a few days, this is a good thing. If you are only staying a few nights you can't see it all anyways, go for the convenience of the Lagoon Towers.

2. Conference Facility. Excellent location for a business conference! Kings Shop's shopping (Macy's, Starbucks, Rolex, Tiffany's) a 1/2 mile away and 2 golf courses the same distance complete the list of conveniences, even if you don't have a rental car.

Drawbacks:

1. Prices. With a campus this big they expect you to eat at one of their restaurants each night, and unless you have a rental car (> $20 per night extra to park, and not much to see off campus). Alcoholic drinks average $10 (Beer is less but wine and mixed drinks typically $12 and up. The kitchens all close at 9:30 pm, so the night we arrived we were too late and had to order room service. We shared a small pork quesadilla with two tap waters, but with room service charge, separate delivery fee, hotel taxes and 10% gratuity it was > $27! This is the quesadilla you pay $4 for at most QSR places in So Cal...so be forewarned not to use room service!! The only real place for breakfast is the "Big Island Buffet" in the center of the resort, with a gorgeous view of the Lagoon & waterfall. While the buffet food selection is as nice as anything you will see on a cruise ship or at a Vegas resort, complete with omelette bar, the cost is $30 per person + taxes & gratuity. If you try to order off the menu a la carte, a small omelette is > $20, so with juice or coffee you may as well have the buffet.

When we were checked out after our stay & were waiting for our shuttle I saw a guy checking in with his wife, 2 kids and another couple w/ kids. He had several grocery bags full of snacks, breakfast cereal, and a 30-pack case of Coor's light cans. As the rooms have small refrigerators and ice is the only thing free at the resort, I realized I was looking at a very, very smart man!!!

2. The birds. If you stay at the Ocean Tower - which I recommend BTW - you shuld be prepared to be awakened at 5:30 - 6AM by the birds. This is louder than the Alfred Hitchcock movie, seriously! Also, the room furniture/ finishes are more dated than the nicer resorts in Mexico, etc., but it's not a big deal. We had a nice balcony w/ ocean view, and weren't in the room much anyways...like on a cruise ship.

We rented a car for one day on the hotel grounds to drive to Volcano National Park. Plan to take the "Saddle Road" either there or back to shorten the drive one-way to just under 2 hours. The more scenic north coast route on Highway 19 is interesting, but it makes for a long day, and much of your drive will likely be in rain, on the Hilo side of the island. On our last full day my wife & I took a helicopter tour of the whole island to see whatever we missed, and with hindsight we saw much more without all the driving and time away from the sun & beach lagoon. If I had it to do over I would do just the helicopter tour and spend the rest of the time at the resort (unless I had kids in which case the car would be MUCH more economical.

I am not a fan of timeshares or their marketing pitches, but in this case we did it for only the 2nd time ever to get $100 discount on each helicopter tour seat (from $485 to $385 each), plus $100 Hilton dollars to spend anywhere at the resort. The latter almost paid for a beautiful outdoor dinner at "KPC" on the terrace overlooking the ocean (our favorite restaurant, where we dined twice). So for $300 in cash incentives for a 2 hour pitch, we made about $75/ hour each. We didn't buy a timeshare, and I still believe (being an analytical finance guy) it would be a much better deal to buy a Hilton time share resale on e-bay (as low as $7,000 up front + ~ $1,200 ann. maint fee, for ~ 5,000 ann. Hilton points. They essentially wanted us to pay $30,000 for the same program, and would give us a one-time bonus of ~ 30,000 points. I would much rather have $23,000 more in cash and 30,000 fewer restricted points!)

  • Stayed November 2012, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Matt M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
New Orleans, Louisiana
Level Contributor
23 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 17, 2012

First of all if you have never been to the Big Island of Hawaii then scale back your typical idea of Hawaii. It is not an island full of beautiful beaches like the rest of the chain. It has so much to offer though so do not be disappointed. When you arrive it is all black volcanic rock. Has you make it to the resort, it is located in a lush tropical oaisis that is surrounded by some Vacation homes, malls and another resort. Hiltion is the gem in the middle.

The Resort:
Get a map and keep it handy because, yes it is a huge resort. There are many modes of transportation to get you around but my wife and I found it easiest to just walk, because the grounds are so beautiful. There is no ocean beach, though there are walking trails to the ocean front, but it is all sharp volcanic rock down there. We did some exploring down there and it was pretty fun but no where you could go swimming without cutting your feet. However the lagoon beach area is awesome. You can snorkle in it and everyday the sea turtles come in and out from a natural cove that the resort sits on. They are huge and so beautiful. Also many tropical fish and other wildlife to see too. Also if you want a normal beach, there is a beach state park about 5 miles down the road. I do not remember what it is called but there is a shower facility there and picnic tables and crystal clear water. Also the other resort has a beach and Hilton offers a shuttle to the public beach there if you do not want to rent a car.

Resturants:
Never had a bad meal at the resort. That says a lot because I am from New Orleans and know good food. The breakfast buffet is killer. However do be warned that just like everything else in Hawaii the food is expensive. Check prices before you go to a resturant if you do not want any suprises. There are some affordable choices like at the pizza resturant located downstairs from the Chineese resturant. If you do your homework you can make out all right. There is a grocery store at the mall down the street as well and some cheaper chain resturants there too. The resort offers a free shuttle to the mall all day.

Room:
We stayed in the Lagoon Tower and it was extremely nice. Clean and fresh but the only thing was the birds. The tower is in a horseshoe design and in the middle is a large tropical garden with trees. When the sun starts to go down there are about a million birds that nest in those trees and the noise is deafening. The rooms are well insulated so it is not a huge deal and the birds settle down the later it gets but boy they cause a rucous between 8 and 10 pm. I have no frame of reference for the other two towers.

DOLPHIN QUEST AND LEGENDS LUAU!!!
These are a must. They were the highlights of our trip!! They are also expensive, but if you can spend the money then do it. We did the Dolphin quest and where we got to swim with them and touch them and hold them. One of them was preggo and we got to feel the baby dolphin kick in her tummy!! When else in life will you have a chance like that?!?! The luau was by far the best meal I had on our trip. I could live the rest of my life and only eat the Kahlui (sp) pork. The show they do is first class and so incredible.

Experience:
The staff is very friendly and go out of there way to make sure you enjoy your stay. The trip is what you make of it. We rented a convertable mustang and drove up the moutain and down the coast to Hilo for a day which was awesome. Not so much Hilo, but the drive and views were incredible. We were fortunate, since this was the second leg of our honeymoon we had a lot of wedding money to blow. If I had to take this trip on a budget I think it would be managable but we certainly would have to be much more careful and make a plan and stick to it. The only reasons I did not got five stars are the money aspect number one. Second, we found there was little for adults to do at night. The resort is mostly families which is cool but I thought they could have had something to appeal to adults like a sports bar or night club that stayed open past midnight. Third and this is completly out of their control, but the water in the lagoon and in the pools is ice cold. I am serious the water temp had to be around 40 to 50 degrees farenhiet and it plagued us the whole time. I guess that is being a little picky but hey we are warm water type people. Oh and those pesky birds at night. Overall though it was a tremendous trip. We will be back one day!!

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Kirk F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 17, 2012 via mobile

First of all, YES the hotel is big! I can not believe that people are complaining about this. Look up things like this before you stay somewhere and complain about it. I loved the size of this hotel.

The birds - yep there are birds. We stayed in the ocean view tower and our room was literally right where they chirp at sunset, but guess what, if you close the door, you can barely hear them. Again, I can't believe people are complaining about something like this. Even if there was something the hotel could do about it, I hope they don't! It's nice to see an abundance of wildlife. If this really bothers you, we'll quite frankly, harden up. Birds chirping is not the end of the world. We are from Australia and had just come from La and Vegas where there are no birds. It was so eery not hearing any birds at sunset or in the morning. It was refreshing to come here and hear them, happily chirping. Waking up and hearing birds singing is a wonderful thing to wake up to, not that they woke us, but days where we had tours and were up, it was nice to listen too.

I didn't find the food overpriced and ate at 5 restaurants there, no complaints about any of the food, I loved the breakfast buffet!

Nice to see the turtles have somewhat of a sanctuary where they can come and go as they please, clearly they choose to stay.

It was also very nice to see that the cats seem to be taken care of. They are desexed and I'm pretty sure I saw feeding stations for them behind the hotel? That is SO nice to see! It's not they're fault they are stray so I'm glad they are being cared for.

This hotel was paradise and we will definitely be coming back!

  • Stayed November 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Chelseaja
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
33 reviews
17 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 32 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed November 16, 2012

If you are looking for a resort with lots to do for the family, then I would highly suggest the Hilton. The property is very nice, but huge, so be prepared to walk, take the tram or boat. We stayed in the Lagoon Tower, where the rooms had been recently renovated. The room had everything I would have expected, to include a comfy bed. I would suggest dinner at sunset at the KPC (Kona Provision Company) on site. Great food, good service and wonderful views.

Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
Helpful?
Thank Karla S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton Waikoloa Village

Property: Hilton Waikoloa Village
Address: 69-425 Waikoloa Beach Drive, Waikoloa, Island of Hawaii, HI 96738
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Kohala Coast > Waikoloa
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 6 Hotels in Waikoloa
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton Waikoloa Village 4*
Number of rooms: 1240
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Let the aloha spirit wash over you in one of the world's largest and most beautiful resorts: Hilton Waikoloa Village. Experience the magic of Hawaii at our hotel, an oasis dotted with lagoons, pools, water slides, a wide variety of restaurants and bars, and staffed by a team of accommodating hospitality professionals who are here to make sure you're enjoying your island time. Settle into your well-appointed guest room, explore all that we have to offer, and soak up the Hawaiian sun. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton Waikoloa Village Hotel Waikoloa
Hawaii Hilton Waikoloa Village
Hilton Village Hotel Waikoloa
Hilton Village Waikoloa
Waikoloa Hilton
Hilton Waikoloa Village Resort

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