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“Tucked away and beyond expectations”

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Hale Makai Cottages
Rockford
2 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
“Tucked away and beyond expectations”
Reviewed February 16, 2013

We stayed in cottage 4 for 4 nights in Feb. The grounds, the cottage itself and the location on the beach were TOP NOTCH! If you are considering a place tucked away from the world on the north shore, this is the place. Stop searching and book it now! Couple tips to make your stay the best possible: plan ahead! The grocery store is a 20 minute (albeit beautiful) drive to Hanalei... we got in much later than expected and went the following morning, and it was a bit of a hike. Plus if you forget anything you have to go all the way back there for it, so make your list and check it twice! The place has salt and pepper and that is it. It did have a very cozy bed, great bedding, linens, and BEAUTIFUL spa bath!!! Its all the luxury of home in a small scale. I would say in regard to which cottage, they are all awesome! we had a great ocean view and heard the roar of the waves every night. Only take away was it was not totally easy to get in touch with the rental agent after booking, so be sure you are totally sure of your dates before you sign off. I liked the fact that you just show up and punch in your code, no check in- it makes you feel like you own the place. The beach walks, the sunrises, the digs, and fact that you are so secluded made it just what we wanted and we would reccommend it to anyone!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank christine l
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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80 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (13)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Boston, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
5 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed November 6, 2012

We recently stayed in Cottage #1 for a night, then moved over to Cottage #3 for 5 additional nights (because of availability over the duration of our stay, the move was simple and there was no additional cleaning fee). The Cottages were well appointed, and the proximity to the beach was fantastic (a few steps). The Hale Makai Cottages are located on the beautiful north shore if Kauai and close to both Hanalei and the popular Tunnels Beach. We saw a monk seal sunbathing on the beach right in front of our Cottage! The property is quiet, the other guests were keeping to themselves and respecting one anothers privacy, and the owners were a delight. Klaus and Rika were on site (understand this is a rare occurance) and chatted with us for a bit, asking for feedback and if anything was lacking during our stay. We are looking forward to our next trip back to Kauai and wouldn't dream of staying anywhere else!

Room Tip: All units are a stone throw to the private beach, so you really can't go wrong.
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  • Stayed October 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
6 Thank TatumSmig
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
49 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed August 24, 2012

Having fallen in love last year with both Hale Makai and Kauai's northwest coast, my wife and I returned for another 10-night stay this year. As we were with another couple last year, we chose Cottage #5 (a 2-bedroom). This year, I took my own advice (see prior review) and we stayed in Cottage #3. And my thoughts from last year were confirmed; of the five cottages at Hale Makai, Cottage #3 is situated the best (at least in my opinion). Only 30 - 40 steps from the deck to the beach, yet far enough away that surrounding vegetation deflects much of the frequently blowing tradewinds, reducing them to the simple task of keeping the cottage a pleasant temperature. Not once, either during the day or night, did we regret not having A/C.

Except for some rearranging of furniture, website photos accurately reflect the appearance and condition of the cottage and grounds. But we were pleasantly surprised to learn on arrival that the photos don't cover quite everything. They don't make it clear that there are two separate sinks in the bathroom, and they miss the large soaking tub altogether. Also, it's hard to see from the photos that the bedroom and bed are positioned such that after listening to the sounds of the surf all night, you wake up, open your eyes, and see it. Sigh..... I wanna go back.

Another thing I questioned last year, that I confirmed this year, was the quality of snorkeling off the beach in front of Hale Makai. Given how the reef configuration sometimes causes a fair amount of chop, the water may not look too inviting. But don't let that deter you. The snorkeling at Hale Makai is almost as good as at Tunnels and Ke'e beaches, and much more convenient. Not to mention you have a reserved parking spot.

So I don't know what more there is to be said. Last year some were commenting about what seemed to be a constant procession of touring helicopters along the coastline. This year, we hardly noticed them. Last year we were awakened every morning by roosters crowing. This year, to some disappointment, not once (a recently established No Crow Zone maybe?). Oh, and one more thing. There are usually so few people on the beach at Hale Makai, even in August, that some become less inhibited than they perhaps otherwise might be. In six trips to Hawaii, this was the first time I'd ever seen topless sunbathing there. (Thank God I didn't react/respond as when we first visited Moorea decades ago.)

Maybe the best testament to Hale Makai is to say that my wife has gotten so comfortable there that the next time we go, and there will be a next time, she's likely to bake a batch of cookies and get all neighborly. We learned this year exactly which house down the beach is Pierce Brosnan's. ;-)

  • Stayed August 2012, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
8 Thank thrumylens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington, Michigan
Level Contributor
79 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 72 helpful votes
Reviewed June 1, 2012

We stayed 5 nights in May and had a wonderful stay. The property is beautiful with lots of tropical flowers and plants. We stayed in cottage #1 with a nice view of the ocean. Very modern accommodations with all the amenities. The best cottages in order are #2, #3, #1, #4 and #5. #5 appeared to be the only one without an ocean view. The beach (Kepuhi) is nice, sometimes the surf is rough. We were able to snorkel at couple of days and the snorkeling right off the beach was good. I would not recommend this beach for families with small children due to the rough surf.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
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Helpful?
7 Thank Deertwo
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Arvada, Colorado, United States
Level Contributor
25 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 15 helpful votes
Reviewed January 10, 2012

If you love bumping into other tourists on the beach, eating in resort restaurants, and shopping all day, visit Princeville or Poipu. If you love falling asleep to the sound of ocean waves outside your cottage, exploring your own private beach, and taking a short drive to a cool little town with a variety of independent restaurants, then Hale Makai in Haena is the place to spend your vacation in Kauai. Every cottage is now remodeled with gorgeous decor. Kitchens are appointed with everything you need to make your own meals but there are darn yummy restaurants in Hanalei. The property is lush and directly on the beach, which isn't private but feels like it as everybody heads off to Tunnels & Kee (and you should too - amazing snorkeling!). Speaking of snorkeling, bring your gear as you can walk a couple hundred yards from your cottage to an amazing coral reef filled with fish and an occasional green sea turtle. To top off this piece of paradise you will find Klaus to be a congenial, helpful host.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
8 Thank LCHMLS
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Moraga, California
Level Contributor
20 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed November 27, 2011

We stayed 14 days in Cottage #4. The cottage was very modern, clean and perfect for a couple who are looking for a relaxing vacation away from the crowds. If you want to be close to shopping, people watching and have a night life then this is not the place for you to stay. This is the place to read books, play games, snorkle, look at the millions of stars in the evening, swim, hike and enjoy the ambiance of the Hale Makai.

Hale Makai Cottages is located in a very windy part of the Northern shore. We would walk on the sand to Tunnels Beach almost everyday. As soon as we rounded the bend to Tunnels Beach, the wind would die down immediately. Also, the current in front of Hale Makai was very strong. I consider myself a strong swimmer but I barely moved when I tried to swim against the current. Maybe these conditions are common only for this time of year (October).

We ate several time at the Mediterrean Gourmet. It was great to be able to walk to the restaurant and the food was delicious. We also bought fresh fish from the Fish Market in Hanelei and we cooked the fish in the well-appointed kitchen. The fish was expensive but very fresh and good.

We will definitely be back.

Room Tip: You can't go wrong with any of the Cottages. Each cottage has something unique that the other c...
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  • Stayed October 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank meekgreek
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Portland, Oregon
Level Contributor
49 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed October 15, 2011

We've never been much for resort hotels or condo developments, preferring instead to put ourselves close to the culture of the places we visit, while still having many of the creature comforts we older folks have become accustomed to. For us, Hale Makai Cottages proved to be the perfect blend of comfort and culture; simple, yet furnished to anticipate almost every need. And separate from Hanalei by five miles and seven one-lane bridges gives it the feeling of remoteness that we've come to love in other S. Pacific island visits.

We were in #5, the 2-bedroom plantation styled cottage set farthest back from the sand (50 yards?). The photos on Hale Makai's website accurately represent Cottage 5, so I won't go into descriptive details. But in response to another reviewer's comments, I will say that the bedrooms, while small, had ample closet/storage space. The beautifully remodeled bathrooms made us forget how old the cottages probably are (though the quirky hot-water heater will remind you). And the large wrap-around lanai/veranda really is as nice as it looks in the photos. It became our living and dining room for the 10-day stay. When the afternoon heat/humidity became uncomfortable, we just brought out the fan from inside. In our weaker moments, we might have wished for A/C, but overhead fans in bedrooms made night-time temps comfortable, sometimes downright cool.

Loving snorkeling, I thought Hale Makai's proximity to Tunnels Beach would be a bonus. It's about a 20-minute walk along the road; because the sand is so deep, 35-40 along the beach. Have to say I was disappointed the few times we went snorkeling at Tunnels though, and wished I'd heard before our last day that the snorkeling just off Hale Makai's beach is as good or better. Next year, I'll find out for myself.

As regards the helicopters, yes there was a non-stop parade of them flying by most days, some of them breaking the 1-mile-from-the-beach no-fly zone they're supposed to adhere to. So yes, we could hear them. But we certainly didn't let that spoil our time in paradise.

Room Tip: You can't (subliminal #3) choose a bad one (subliminal #3), but when it's just the two of us...
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  • Stayed September 2011, traveled with friends
    • Value
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Helpful?
8 Thank thrumylens
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hale Makai Cottages

Property: Hale Makai Cottages
Address: 4400 OneOne Road, Haena, Kauai, HI 96714
Location: United States > Hawaii > Kauai > Haena
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Specialty Lodging in Haena
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Number of rooms: 7
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Hale Makai Cottages are an exclusive Private Beach Front Estate, on approximately 2 acres with about 250 feet of actual beachfront at Kepuhi Point at the end of OneOne Road in Haena, North Shore Kauai. The Hale Makai Beachfront cottages are unique in their setting, location and privacy in comparison to most other Kauai Vacation Rentals. All five cottages have unobstructed ocean and garden views and direct access to the beach. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hale Makai Cottages Hotel Haena
Hale Makai Cottages Kauai/Haena, HI

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