First time on Maui, and we wanted a reasonably priced place with kitchen/laundry, etc. for our 10-night stay. We were a family of 5 - husband, wife and three early-20 year olds. Mind you, since we haven't stayed elsewhere on the island it's a bit hard to compare, but I'll share some pros and cons from our perspective.
Kai, from the management company (Ali'i), checked us in and he was absolutely wonderful! Very helpful and informative. Kamaole Nalu was great in that you do not have to cross a road to get to the beach! And it is an easy walk to many shops and eateries.
The exterior of this older building looks a bit drab and run down. It's wedged in between two nicer looking properties, so the drabness stands out.
We stayed in 105 and very much liked the fact that we were on the ground floor and able to walk straight out to the lawn, pool, and beach. At times it did seem as though we were a little TOO close to the pool - I suppose that might sound strange, but the pool was literally right out our door and when it was being used, sometimes it felt like we were in a fishbowl. Our unit was close to the ocean side rather than the road side and we never saw or heard any traffic from busy South Kihei Rd.
Right out your door there is a nice lawn area which is looking out over the ocean - beautiful! Saw turtles our very first day from this spot of lawn. Plenty of lounge chairs available. A short little side path leads down to the beach. Nice beach, not crowded. BBQ's on lawn were cleaned daily and great for your grilling needs.
The layout of the unit was pretty good - main room, VERY small kitchen, two bedrooms, each with their own bathroom. Very small washer and very slow-to-dry dryer, but they got the job done. This unit, 105, could use some upgrading. The cushions on the couch in the main room and lanai chairs look old and questionably clean. They should really be replaced. Tasteful decorating is lacking (but I suppose that's getting really picky). Not that we were there for the T.V., but the one in the main area is super small (I first thought I was looking at a computer monitor!).
Kitchen could use an upgrade. Some appliances (dishwasher) are older, and rather than a whole wall of mirror, having cabinets in that space would be MUCH more useful. There are no drawers in the kitchen at all - silverware was placed in a funky silverware holder of some sort on the counter. All the many utility knives were extremely dull and flimsy. Definitely need new knives. OK assortment of dishes.
Bedrooms are good sized, the linens were very nice, and the beds were very comfortable. Plenty of closet space and drawers in the bedrooms. The tub/shower in the master bath is old and has a yucky plastic shower curtain liner - I believe that was mold I saw at the hem line. Upgrades there would be welcome. Same goes for the shower unit in the other bathroom. And the fan in there is a noise maker.
Well stocked with GREAT towels!
It was nice to have a couple of games, decks of cards, books, and DVD's available for some of those quiet evenings.
Also appreciated were the couple of inflatable air mattresses, air pump, and small cooler.
Something we did not appreciate was the on-site manager. On our first day there, two of our boys (young men) were in the pool on the air mattresses with a can of beer in their hands enjoying the sun and balmy breezes. A man BARKED down to them from an upper balcony saying no floaties were allowed in the pool and no alcohol. He said something about being the manager. Now, I should say that one of the questions that came up when we initially checked-in with the management company was "Can you drink alcohol while at the pool?" the answer was "Yes, just not in glass containers." Hmmmm... this on-site manager apparently had a different view. Later, when I was talking with someone from Ali'i and asked for clarification, I was told to stick with plastic cups, but alcohol was OK. As for the floaties, well, we did read all the pool rules after the fact and it does state "No floatation devices....". (I should say it also states "No food allowed." , but does NOT say no drinks are allowed.) But back to the floaties... we did find it interesting that later in our stay we saw some women using 'noodles' in the pool, and they were not reprimanded. Turns out they were owners of one of the condos, knew the on-site manager and evidently the same rules don't apply to them. Unless 'noodles' are somehow not considered floatation devices??? Perhaps if the on-site manager had been friendly and nice about his explaining of the rules, we would have a totally different impression. He just did not appear welcoming and hospitable.
Also, one night when we were about to use the BBQ grills there was a sign that said "Out of order." on the grills. OK, we'll have to switch to Plan B, we thought and proceeded with that. Twenty minutes into our Plan B, we discovered that people were using the grills! Talking with them, we were told that the manager had put the "Out of order." sign out because of the wind. Now, really? Could not the sign have said something more like "Temporarily out of order due to high wind." At least then people could think, "Well, we can wait a bit to see if the wind dies down." "Out of order" implies there's something wrong with the grills and who knows how long before they might be fixed - days even. My husband suspiciously had the thought that the sign had been put out to HOLD the grills for people that the manager knew. Can't be sure about that, though. But, interesting that, even though it was just as windy on other days, if not more so, the sign never appeared again during our stay. Hmmmm... Little things, I suppose, but they can make a big difference in the overall impression one is left with.
If you are looking for luxury, this is not it. Of course, luxury will probably cost you a lot more money. We found the experience to be a mixed-bag. But that's not to say I would not recommend or stay at Kamaole Nalu again. It does have its plusses. I'd probably give another place a try and then decide if I'd rather be back at Kamaole Nalu. All this aside, we had an absolutely fabulous time in Maui!!!
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- Also Known As:
- Kamaole Nalu Hotel Kihei
- Kamaole Nalu Kihei
- Kamaole Nalu Resort Maui/Kihei