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“My only compaint are the pillows”

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Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Kapolei
Certificate of Excellence
Los Angeles, California
1 review
“My only compaint are the pillows”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2012

My only complaint are the pillows . They feel like those pillows filled with synthetic material that has very little give. You put your head down on them and it feels like it pushes your head back up to an uncomfortable angle. I had to take the pillow case off and put it on the thinner decorative pillow. Beyond this the bed was great and the resort is clean and beautiful!

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank SMB1234
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Rating summary
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Location
    4 of 5 bubbles
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 bubbles
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 bubbles
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (1,362)
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San Diego
Level Contributor
21 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2012

Stayed for 2 nights during Spring Break with our 5 year old twins. Comfy beds, clean everywhere, all towers surround the pool/lazy river so nothing seemed far. Lots of lifeguards everywhere. Great, calm beach and low depth pool for the little ones.

Tips:
-Ask Aulani for the name of the designated taxi service (for $55 price) to the hotel. Otherwise, you will be charged ~$80-100 for the ride to the hotel.
-If you don't want to pay resort prices for food, then go across the street to the Island (ABC) market for fruit, pastries, pizza, paninis, sandwiches, drinks, etc. and stock up your fridge. Everyone does it.
-Check schedule for character greetings. In 2 days, we took pics and played in different activities with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. No line to be with them like at Dland and the kids LOVED it.
-Take advantage of Aunty's house for daycare and activities. Check out schedule and the "open house" before 10am to see if your kids like it. Nice break so that adults can go the spa or hang out on their own for dinner or laying out w/o the kids.
-Walk around the 2-3 mile strip on the coast. Not on the beach but it's a nice paved walk.
-Get the GPS for the different trails for the kids. They'll love seeing the different things inside and outside the resort buildings come to life.

At check-in, we were told that it was full capacity but the beach, pool, and lazy river didn't seem like it (only at the restaurants).

  • Stayed April 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
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    • Service
Helpful?
11 Thank mcsyto
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 18, 2012 via mobile

Nice place to stay if you have young kids, but terrible food quality and price. Very few things to do outside of the resort on this side of the island

  • Stayed May 2012
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank IH8Stupids
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Virginia
Level Contributor
46 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 17, 2012

What a vacation! No rain for 7 straight days, sunny to most sunny the entire time. Aulani is a fantastic resort. My review is lengthy so thhe summary up front - rent a car, eat at Highway Inn, Helena's, Ono's, and Max's. Poke is pretty much great at the restaurants and the groceries. Partial view Parlor suite is great, better than ocean view standard room. Use Aunties if you have small kids. Food is good and same price as Disney World. Gym is great but the ocean trail extends beyond the resort and provides a fantastic view.

We originally booked an ocean view standard room but had the opportunity to upgrade to a partial ocean view parlor suite. I am glad we did. With 2 little kids (4 and 6), the extra room gave my wife and I privacy and space to relax. The small 4 person table, fridge, sink, and microwave (available on request) allowed us to save a little on food and enjoy left overs from some of the local restaurants. The suite has 1.5 baths. So, the kids had their own room and bathroom at night. The master bath was great. The shower had a rain shower option. The tub had a whirlpool. The icing on the cake was the Toto "super loo" with heated seats, adjustable bidet with warm water and dryer. Our partial ocean view was great. We were in the Wai'anae tower, on the north side. True, we overlooked the parking garage, but from the 12th floor, it wasn't an issue. For us, it beat the pool view. Some of the ocean view rooms from this tower looked like they would have views obstructed by the Marriott next story. A note of caution for those that like quiet, we could hear traffic noise from our balcony, but not in the room. Also, be careful of the ocean view rooms in this tower, there is a garden at the end where they do events during the day and some evenings but they all end before 10pm.

The pools, hot tubs, lazy river, and slides are great. We slipped into a routine of the beach first thing in the morning and the pools, river, and slides in the early noon, followed by the kids play area and then off to Auntie's House by mid afternoon. The slides and river get "crowded" around 1130 to about 2 pm. Then they seemed to empty out. The only issue we had during this time frame was finding double tubs to take the kids down one of the slide with us. In between we'd visit the hot tub by the river and the 2 level infinity hot tub by the beach. Kids are allowed in the hot tubs which was awesome because it allowed the kids to warm up. It was a little windy, so they'd get cold. The tubs were very warm and comfortable (even hotter if you have sunburn) for us and the kids.

Aunties House was fantastic. You can check your kids in from 10 am to 10 pm. They can eat lunch/dinner there if you order/pay in advance. Except for a couple nights, our kids ate dinner there. They loved the place. After they had their fill of the water/beach they'd ask us if they could go to Aunties to play and eat supper. We were more than happy to oblige. We were kid free almost every day for 5-6 hours to enjoy ourselves by the water and at dinner.

The food at the resort is good, pricey, but not any more so than Disney restaurants. We had the catch of the day for dinner at Ama Ama. It was delicious. We did the buffet (can't remember the name) for dinner. It was good as well. We did the character breakfast at 7 am our second day. Since we were still on East coast time, waking up at 5-6am, it wasn't a problem for the kids. They loved it. It was less crowed than the ones at Disney world so they got more than enough time with Mickey, Minnie, and Goofy. Plus, Auntie was there and lead the typical sing along parade with the kids and character. The only dinning issue we had was at the pool side bar/restaurant Off the Hook. During the peak lunch and evening hours they were understaffed with only 2 waiters/waitresses for about 20 tables. The staff is excellent, but just not enough of them, so we had to be patient.

If you are staying long or like to do off resort activities rent a car. It's $55 flat for a cab ride outside the resort and about the same for shuttle service to/from the airport. I read that Alamo had cars available for $35/day. We should have tried to reserve before hand because they were out of cars on first full day. Also, we were looking at rate of ~$60/day. Since we had some off resort activities and dinning planned, we ended up renting a car from Advantage (Nissan Sentra - $325 for 7 days, gas, car seat, taxes) and sucking up the $35/day parking. In the end, the flexibility it added to our vacation and to our dinning options was well worth it.

We ate at some delicious local Hawaiian restaurants - Highway Inn in Waipahu and Helena's in Honolulu (Ono's in Waikiki is in the same league as these, but we didn't go there this trip) . We went during the mid afternoon, so there were no lines. If you like Filipino food, Waipahu has a large Filipino population. We went to Max's of Manila. They have some restaurants on the mainland but none in the DC area. I'm not a Filipino food expert, but my wife is Filipino and she loves Max's. So do I. Apparently, so do other folks. We got there 10 minutes after it was open and had to wait. There were other local Filipino restaurants but we didn't try them.

Tried to exercise off some of the food. The gym was great. 5-6 each of treadmills, bike machines, ellipticals. Some free weights and machines. What I didn't realize at first is there is about 1.25 of paved trail on the beach that extends past the resort. So, I ditched the treadmill and enjoyed the ocean view. If you start at the Marriott end and run the Marina and back and through a loop in of the resort area rode, you can get a good 5 mile circuit in.

Room Tip: Partial Ocean views on north side overlooking the garage are still excellent. Get a good view of th...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
6 Thank ptownsendj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Lyon, Michigan
Level Contributor
50 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 41 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 17, 2012

Ok, first of all, call ahead to Aulani if you need a taxi at the aiport. They provide one for you for a flat fee of $55.00. We made the mistake of grabbing the first cab. It smelled horrible of smoke, had 216,000 miles on it and the guy was around 100 years old. He charged us $85 one way to the hotel. Then he argued with my husband b/c he could not get his ccard machine to work. When we arrived, we were greeted by name and given Lei's along with water. It was so nice! They gave us a brief description of hotel (which was stunning) and sent our luggage up to our room. We are Disney Vacation Club members so we had the Emu tower. We had a one bedroom villa with a full kitchen, washer/dryer and a double balcony. Our room was absolutely amazing with granite, stainless steel appliances, a garden tub, plasma's, etc.. I did not enjoy our view much. It said garden view but it was more like, mountain, road and factory view. They were finishing the final wing of the resort right next to our room but the construction mess and noise was minimal. The grounds are absolutely breathtaking and spotless! Every employee was super friendly and always asking if we needed anything. Our favorite spot to grab chairs was near the hot tub in the middle of the lazy river. It was like having our own lagoon. Poolside service was great, a sandwich/fries will run you $10. Ama Ama was very good but very pricey. We decided to skip the other restaurants b/c of price and walked to the Market/ABC Store across the street from the resort and bought groceries/alcohol. Just Taco's across the street was pretty good to eat at. The Spa had some hiccups but nonetheless was beautiful and the manager took care of all my issues. The snorkel lagoon was really cool as was the stingray pool. The nightly entertainment was great for kids but we didn't bring ours so we skipped it. We rented a paddleboard ($30) and a kayak ($20) in the lagoon and that was pretty fun but small area to ride in. One night we even got to watch a free concert by Lifehouse right on the beach. The best viewing area was our spot in their infinity hot tub. This resort is extremely fancy and beautiful. We did have problems with our room keys several times and a cab back to the airport but the employees are very quick to remedy any situation. They were all very nice and polite. We were a little worried about going there with no kids but we had the best time and there is plenty of space away from kids if you need it!

Room Tip: The rooms facing the pools were the best rooms in my opinion but the rooms on the backside are very...
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  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
4 Thank Shannon B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Parrish, Florida
Level Contributor
449 reviews
57 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 382 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 17, 2012

We have been Disney Vacation Club Members since 2006 so we should state right up front that we are avid fans of the Disney Brand. We are also planners when it comes to traveling and we do our research. Whenever possible, we attempt to limit surprises and know what to expect! We were guests from May 1st through May 9th.

What we were expecting at Aulani Resort was a relaxing, fun trip and THANKS to their dedicated staff - We received PERFECTION. What a spot Disney chose for Aulani! It is located in the private community of Ko Olina in the Kapolei village on the island of Oahu. In order to enter Ko Olina, you will be passing by a 24/7 guarded gate house which adds to this exclusive address.

The area where Aulani was built receives the least rain of all Oahu which translates into plenty of outside fun at their pool and lagoons! We saw it sprinkle rain once in our 8 day visit while we were at Aulani and even that was magical since a double rainbow appeared immediately afterwards!

Disregard the “crybabies” who claim Aulani is too far from everything. We rented a lovely mid-size sedan (Alamo) from www.discounthawaiicarrental.com and they were $200 less than our Hertz #1 Club Status. We toured the North Shore twice, Waikiki, Diamond Head, the State Capitol/Iolani Palace and we went down 1 and 2 exits from Aulani to every store/restaurant you can imagine for take-out, sit-down dining and shopping on less than 2 tanks of gasoline over 8 days

Having the Disney Vacation Club one bedroom villa really saved us a great deal when it came to preparing breakfasts, snacks and cocktails by having the full kitchen and a dining area. Also, having a washer and dryer was extremely convenient, saved precious time and reduced the amount of clothes to pack. Instead of paying for rental equipment at Aulani’s beach, we rented beach chairs, beach towels, an umbrella and a huge cooler from www.paradisebabyco.com. The equipment is delivered to the bell captain’s station at Aulani and dropped off there when you leave. The rental items were top quality and seemed brand-new. The cooler was amazing. It was on wheels with a retractable handle. The equipment came in handy for our all day trips around Oahu.

We were fortunate to be assigned to Room 707 in the Waianae Tower. We had a pocket view of the ocean, an expansive view of Waianae Bay where the sun would sit plus we faced the lovely JW Marriott Property from both our balconies. It was exactly where we hoped we would be located! The One Bedroom Villas have to be the largest floor plan we have ever seen with DVC. Our villa was immaculate. In addition to being so new, it seems every detail has been provided for your comfort and pleasure. Not only did we utilize the full kitchen/laundry but there were also two separate bathroom sinks separated with a jetted tub and a luxury, rainfall shower stall. If desired, you can find a vacuum, broom, dust pan and mop to keep everything tidy during your stay. There is even a rechargeable flashlight in the closet in case of emergencies. Remember with DVC, you will have your trash removed and towels replenished on the 4th day of your 7+ day visit. There was a room just down the hallway that you could take your trash to every day if you wished. Leave it to Aulani to have that room smell like a Tropical Oasis instead of guests’ garbage. We noticed if you got room service and wanted to get rid of your tray, guests would drop them off there.

2 tips that we found helpful from previous Trip Advisor Reviews included bringing a couple clips (we brought clothes pins) to keep snacks shut and fresh plus a pair of scissors if you check your luggage. The scissors were handy for opening kitchen items plus each day, Aulani will issue a new colored wristband that identifies you as a guest if you use the pool/beach. You can wear them (and some kids did have 6 or 7 on their wrist to show how many days they visited), but we liked to take them off at the end of the evening. The scissors were handy for that bec’ those things are on to stay otherwise!

We made it a point to visit during a non-peak time. There weren’t any waits for chairs/chaises at the pool. We were able to access the lazy river plus the slide and the pools/Jacuzzi had space available. If you are able to travel during a less popular time of year, we think it will only enhance your experience at Aulani. It did appear to be busier on the weekends with some guests stopping by for weekend getaways. Who could blame them though?

We dined at Makahiki twice while we were there and we ordered cocktails from Off The Hook. We went back to Makahiki the second time bec’ we enjoyed our server, Sandi, so much plus we thought it was an impressive variety of delicious food for a fair price given you are in Hawaii. You could not top that setting of dining in the Aulani Courtyard with the live (but soft) Hawaiian music in the background, the dancing fountains and lighting of the pools/gardens. You can’t visit without trying the Papalua Shaved Ice either!

For perfect sunsets with your Sweetie, take your favorite beverage plus a towel or beach chair and walk past the JW Marriott beach pathway to the public beach. Don’t forget your camera too!

Before we knew it, our 8 day escape had come to an end. Aulani will make you feel welcome even after your 11:00 a.m. check-out. We were able to come in/out of the self-parking garage plus use all the facilities like their fantastic gym. The Luana Lounge on the 1st Floor near The Ewa Tower has been created for guests to shower, print boarding passes, watch tv or use their computers before flying home.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
8 Thank JeffnEdie
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Newcastle, Australia
Level Contributor
39 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 13 helpful votes
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed May 16, 2012

We have just come back from a 4 night stay at Aulani and I can honestly say it is a gorgeous place for a family to visit. Our children are fairly young - 6, 4 and 2 - so we chose a 2 bedroom apartment which was so spacious and lovely - it truly felt like home.

The grounds, pools and beach are all spectacular as are the staff. From the check in, receptionists, Aunty's house attendants, pool attendants, cleaning staff - they are all so friendly and welcoming.

We dined in all the restaurants with 'AMA 'AMA and "Off The Hook" being our favourites. The pools and beach are stunning and so safe for young children.

All in all it is a wonderful place and we will be back again - but next time will stay for at least a week.

  • Stayed May 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank hqsmumma
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa

Property: Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa
Address: 92-1185 Ali'inui Drive, Kapolei, Oahu, HI 96707-4434
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Kapolei
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
Ranked #4 of 4 Hotels in Kapolei
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa 4.5*
Number of rooms: 819
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Also Known As:
Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa In Hawai`i Hotel Kapolei
Aulani, a Disney Resort And Spa In Hawai`i
Aulani, a Disney Resort & Spa Hawaii/Oahu

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