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“Amazing room in a pretty good spot”

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Kauhale Makai, Village by the Sea
Ranked #47 of 60 Specialty Lodging in Kihei
Reviewed January 5, 2012

Unit 429 is beyond what we had hoped for. Over $100,000 in renos and it showed. It was so great to come back to such luxury and still have an affordable vacation. The experience totally depends on your room, so don't judge by the complex. The complex was just okay, small pool, windy to sit at, but never busy. Right on the ocean. Our room overlooked a parking lot, to the grass and beach beyond, but the room itself was the highlight. So beautiful!

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  • Stayed: March 2011, traveled with family
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5  Thank canadianchris
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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120 - 126 of 261 reviews

Reviewed December 22, 2011

We had a wonderful time in this Unit. Great price, very clean, and very well situated for surfers. Very close to surf Hookipa or few minutes drive to the West side, Honolua Bay and all the surf breaks in between. We will stay there again.

  • Stayed: February 2011, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank Arnjensurfers10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 3, 2011

We got a pretty good deal through Orbitz for airfare and 10 night’s accommodation at Kauhale Makai November 13-23, 2011. We picked this accommodation over others offered because it was affordable, centrally located in Kihei and located directly beach front (e.g.: you don't have to cross a road to get to the ocean). If you book like we did it's really important to call ahead before you arrive. The Orbitz itinerary gives you a number to call for central reservations and they are extremely helpful. They will give you your room number, door entry code, parking stall #, office hours for your condo (ours was closed for lunch between 1 & 2pm, and closed all day Thanksgiving Day!), and after hour contact numbers. With this information our check-in was very smooth. We found the small lobby to be pleasant and clean with chairs to sit and free coffee. There was a large bookcase for trading novels, so important for those of us Kindle-less on a beach holiday. There was also a staffed kiosk where you could book day trips and other island events. There are two buildings and each has two central elevators and laundry on each of the 6 levels. Good value for wash and full hour of drying for $1 each. Each building has a pleasant, well maintained landscaped courtyard with stair wells at either end. We were assigned unit #331, one bedroom with ocean view), on the south side of the south building called Plumeria.
Unit #331 was plain but certainly clean and adequate for not overly fussy people as we are. The negative things I will point out are for information purposes not because they particularly bothered us or impacted our holiday. The lanai is long and accessed from sliding doors in both the living room and bedroom. It was wonderful to wake up in the morning and see the palm trees blowing in the breeze with the ocean behind. Both sliding glass doors had good quality black out curtains if that's important to you. Our room faced south (angled to the beach front) so from the lanai we were able to watch sunrises over Haleakala and sunsets over the ocean which was wonderful. As on budget we had most of our meals in so were pleased to find the kitchen was very well equipped. Our freezer had an ice maker which we made good use of for our mission to make the Mai Tai gods proud! The living room had standard tropical furniture, a standard TV but no stereo or even radio. Internet / wifi was not included (some other units do include) but we were able to purchase an internet connection from cable at a cost of $57 (they charged $8 or $10/day or $57/month so for our 10 day stay we bought the month). My husband found an intermittent, non-secured wifi signal from the very corner of the lanai and a much stronger signal from the parking lot! The bedroom had a very comfortable queen bed with only three pillows, and the sheets were a touch on the worn side but very soft and pleasant for sleeping. There was a closet with ample hangers and a dresser with good sized drawers. The vanity was separate from the small toilet and bath/shower area which makes it more usable. It was all quite dated but okay and the excellent pressure from the shower made up for '70s feel of the place. The bathroom towels were plentiful and pretty new but there was only one beach towel which was disappointing on a beach holiday. For guest use the hall closet had two small coolers, two beach chairs, a (broken) boogey board, and some snorkeling masks and flippers. The kitchen floor and into the bath had a nice large tile and the living room and bedroom was carpeted but clean. Some walls were pretty scuffed and marred and some 'art work' could be updated - the three old whale posters added to the dated feel. The folding door to the bedroom was broken and the screen doors didn't slide well making a loud screeching noise (not unique to this unit). The lanai had 4 comfortable folding type chairs and a small heavy side table. I would have enjoyed a small eating height table on the lanai – there certainly was room for one. We found the lanai to be fairly private and felt comfortable watching the sunrise at 7am in PJs. When sliding doors are shut, the unit was very soundproof. There was quiet and efficient aircon in the living areas and bedroom. We only used it when we really needed to, otherwise we just kept both sliding doors open and if we really wanted to create a breeze would additionally open the courtyard entry door.
Other things included in this condo that I can remember were 3 rolls TP, 2 small tubes shampoo, 1 bar soap, 1 box tissues, hair dryer, iron, small ironing board, small box laundry soap, several dishwasher tablets, dish washing soap, 2 rolls kitchen towel, and extra garbage bags - much more than we expected! I think the only spice was some mixed grilling pepper. Maui now has a fabulous ‘no plastic shopping bags policy’ so be sure to bring a few bags for those sandy beach shoes and wet bathing suits and also bring a few cloth bags for shopping as all you’ll get now is paper.
The south rooms of the south building (ours) and the north rooms of the north building do overlook respective parking lots so if you look down you will see some cars. From where we were on the 3rd floor and relatively close to the beach end we found this didn't really bother us and we had some fun guessing what people were up to as we voyeured their comings and goings. The higher the floor and the closer your unit is to the beach end the fewer cars you will see, and the less traffic noise you’ll get from South Kihei Road. If you are on the parking lot sides I would recommend a room on the 3rd floor or higher. There is no smoking allowed anywhere within the condos (which was great for us non-smokers) but when people did go for a smoke they would go to the parking lots so you occasionally would smell cigarette smoke. Also some people felt they had to hold their cell phone conversations in the parking lot; maybe the reception was better. In general we found the area to be quiet, and owners and other guests pleasant. Some units had construction noise but postings advised of this in advance.
As far as other common areas, my husband BBQed most evenings and there were 4 BBQs available in a well lighted area in between the two buildings. Although one didn't work well, people were good to share BBQs at busy times. There were also 2 picnic tables. There is a small putting green which I never saw in use. The fenced in pool area (keyed access only) was pleasant and equipped with nice loungers but no small side tables. There were also 2 round tables with chairs. The well maintained, medium sized and deep swimming pool was refreshing (no heat). The hot tub was nice for when the wind blew up in the late afternoon but was only a nice bathtub temperature not a real hot tub temperature. There was also a very shallow and easy to supervise kiddie’s pool. The pool area was well utilized but never over-crowded and people were courteous with the use of the loungers to not leave towels, etc on them to hold. The ebb and flow of users meant everyone had a place to sit when they were pool side. Between the pool and the beach was a large grassed area with a few loungers and a shuffle board. Then over a small sand dune you can access the beach. It’s a great beach for walking and you could easily swim here as well. We sat here on our chairs one morning and with binoculars could see hump back whales breaching in the direction of Ma’alaea.
I happened to be on crutches during our stay as before we left home I tore some knee ligaments. So I can comment from a handicapped point of view that the condo overall is easily accessible with the elevators and walkways. Also inside the unit was easy to get around on crutches. I could access the pool and hot tub using the hand rails (keeping in mind I had a strong left leg and good upper body strength).
In Kihei we found fresh local fish to cook ourselves at Eskimo Candy, Star Market (now Times) and Foodland, and gorgeous local fruits and vegetables at Yee’s market and the Farmer’s Market just before you get to Sugar Beach. The Saturday morning “Swap Meet” in Kahului is excellent for local produce. Upcountry there is Country Market on the way to Tedeschi Winery. Pacific Whale Watching (non-profit) out of Ma'alaea has a good trip from 12:30 - 2:30 daily for ~$28pp including tax – we saw several hump back whales as well as a large pod of spotted dolphins quite close. Aloha and enjoy!

  • Stayed: November 2011, traveled as a couple
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13  Thank Linda S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 10, 2011

My wife and i have stayed here every time we got to maui, with that said we have learned a bit, dont use a big name web site to book here you have no idea what you will get we use VRBO and we get excactly what we want for a room. the rumors are tru there is some road noise, but only if you are in a studio at the hwy side of the condo (we got one the first time we stayed there) we just kept the door closed and didnt hear a thing! if you like to see the sun rise and set from your room i suggest you book a room on the south facing side of the plumaria building, theres nothing like hearing the birds and watching the sun rise. ok building is a bit dated and offices are under staffed but most of the owners have updated there homes some to extreme! pool is nice and quiet in the off season and the prices are great... all rooms have a/c and some kind of a view (depending on wich side you stay on) it is in a great little town kihei that has everything and its very affordable its not the ritz and dont expect people to bow and kiss your feet its not that kind of place it is cetrally located so getting anywhere on the island is easy.... beaches there are many swimming beaches close by. it is ocean front and the beach is good for quiet walks and sunning yourself but the water is very shallow, wet yes swim no.
so if your self sufficent on a budget and dont mind a bit of traffic this place is for you

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  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with family
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9  Thank kyle a
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 7, 2011

I stayed with my husband on September 2010 for a week, but just now that we're planning another trip I realized that I forgot to review this one. The comdo has everything (and more) I have in my apartment: kitchen supplies (even oil, salt, and pepper to cook) and beach stuff (snorkels, chairs,...). It's a big apartment, and all the units have a balcony where you can see the sea... It's very pleasant start the day having breakfast at the balcony! People at the reception are very helpful, the girls gave us all the information we asked about restaurants and beaches to visit. There are some stores and supermarkets near the comdo, and the farmers market is near too. The beach in front of the building is not ok to swin beacause is too rocky, but the sunset there is incredible. It's also near the Kamaole Parks (5 minutes drive) and Makena Beach (not even 15 minutes driving). The building is on the road that goes to the beaches of the south of the island, but it's not noisy at night, since the apartments are turned to the sea side. I recommend and I would definitely return.

  • Stayed: September 2010, traveled with family
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1  Thank Poly_Rafa
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 29, 2011

We stayed in unit 422, which is part of the Royal Aloha Vacation Club, and so not available to everyone, but it is in one of two buidings that house many units that are available to others. The unit itself was fine inside, but what we want to warn everyone about is the NOISE. The buildings sit with the units at an angle to the road, rather than the style where the entrances are at the back, roadside, and the units all face full on the ocean. Our unit was the closest to Kihei Road, and this is really a highway. It is busy busy with traffic except at the wee hours, so it is not possible to sit on the deck/lanai for morning coffee or late afternoon or evening relaxing, or to have the option of having the doors to the deck open to the breezes because of the very relentless noise. It is really like sitting next to a busy freeway... and the motorcycles and mopeds that seem to change gears or ramp up out front are particularly bad. I think if you can find a unit further towards the oceanside, and at a lower elevation, you may be spared enough so it is OK. I even wrote the club after our return, in case they did not know about this situation, and the response was not helpful, but again if you are not a club member, this will not be an issue. Just get a floor plan map emailed to you, and check it out carefully before you rent. Rent towards the ocean and at a lower floor so the noise does not travel as far. I would never risk a trip all the way to Hawaii if this is what I would wind up with again. Definitely not worth it!

Stayed: June 2011, traveled as a couple
4  Thank lilyb0dge
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 26, 2011

We have several time shares and we were surprised that the Village by the sea is part of our time share. Your first impression of walking into the office is run down. They had us go to another section of the complex to register and walking though the complex didn't get any better. They actually had us checking into a coffin size room. I swear, no kidding! The room we stayed in was nothing special, but it has what is needed. Beware; the bathroom are SUPER TINY, I have seen broom closets bigger. lol... 1) Small pool and small hot tub. Hours it's open are only 9am-10pm. 2)We love to hot tub early in the morning, we were very disappointed to learn they do not turn on the hot tub until 430pm in the afternoon. 3) Be sure to buy ice, only three ice trays, no ice maker at the village by the sea. 4)This was our first time to Hawaii, so i was surprised the ocean front here was not the clear blue waters you see in pictures. This beach front was rocky, muggy, not clear blue at all. A few miles down the road the beaches are some clearer, but to really get the blue clear waters they show in the pictures be sure to go on a boat cruise, just beautiful. I'm sure you can tell the Village by the sea is not my number 1 choice to stay, but we made the best of it.

  • Stayed: June 2011, traveled with friends
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Thank sn2001
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Kauhale Makai, Village by the Sea

Address: 938 S Kihei Rd, Kihei, Maui, HI 96753-6102
Location: United States > Hawaii > Maui > Kihei
Amenities:
Beach Free Parking Kitchenette Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #47 of 60 Specialty Lodging in Kihei
Price Range: $172 - $315 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3.5 star — Kauhale Makai, Village by the Sea 3.5*
Number of rooms: 100
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Also Known As:
Kauhale Makai (Village By The Sea) Hotel Kihei
Maui Village By The Sea
Kauhale Makai Condo
Maui Kauhale Makai
Kauhale Makai, Village By The Sea Maui/Kihei

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