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All reviews private lagoon alii tower mai tai bar don the beachcomber corner king ocean front main tower the big island salt water lagoon an ocean view room shops and restaurants on the rocks an older hotel open air waves crashing parking fee our honeymoon
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2,980 - 2,985 of 3,363 reviews
Reviewed December 29, 2003

I was rather apprehensive about staying at the Royal Kona Resort after reading the reviews on here. It turned out to be a great deal in a perfect location. My family stayed in three rooms (main building) for a little over a week over Christmas, 2003. We reserved the rooms (ocean view) with a rental car and breakfast. The hotel is a little bit run down, but in a charming way. It was clearly a grand property when it was in its prime. The only bothersome aspect is the slightly humid smell that greets you in the hotel hallways once you are on your way to your room- but after a day, I didn't even notice it. The rooms we were given were large and comfortable. The bathroom was old, but functional - nothing very luxurious about it. The breakfast, which you can opt to include with your room, is a good deal (it will run you $14 or so if you don't!) It is buffet style and has lots of great things to eat.
Tons of fresh fruit, eggs, croissants, waffles, bacon, sausages, and a couple of days there were even omelette stations and sushi! As everything is open concept (outdoors are indoors) the birds do actually fly around in the dining room but they were never bothersome and never came too close by. The staff were always warm and friendly, though during busy times, it was easier to go to the front desk than to call down. The pool is very clean and perched just above the crashing waves of the ocean so you can swim in the pool and watch the ocean as you tan. There is also a saltwater lagoon with lots of marine life-- bring your goggles- or rent equipment from the stand next to the hotel. When we first started looking for a place to stay, the Hilton Waikoloa Village was the only place I would consider, but the location and price for this place outweighed the outrageous prices charged by the Hilton over the holidays. I even met several people who had been staying at the Hilton, which is an (expensive) village in itself but quite removed from the life and activities of Kona, they kept saying how wonderful it was to be close to the action, away from line-ups (they were explaining that you have to line up for nearly everything at the Hilton) and enjoying the good life at a lower price. The one thing that really struck me is that although the hotel was fully booked, it never felt crowded- in fact, it felt as though very few people were there.
Probably because it is perfectly situated to see the town and the rest of the island. The rental car we included in our hotel rate allowed us to visit the Big Island when we felt like it and the location of the hotel was wonderful for journeys on foot. Everything is nearby- I would recommend Rio's Restaurant for incredible seafood and the farmer's market just a few blocks away for great fruit and tacky-fabulous souvenirs. I wouldn't recommend this place to the squeamish or to crazily compulsive neat freaks (birds in the dining room) but I would definitely recommend this hotel for someone looking for a pied-à-terre on the Big Island. We will definitely be going back on our next visit to Hawaii.

9  Thank OttawaTravelGal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 15, 2003

This was a relatively inexpensive hotel that served us well as a home base to explore Kona. I agree that the rooms were small, had older furniture, and that the views were incredible. It is NOT a five star luxury hotel, but it doesn't claim to be. The food was okay, the birds were a problem at breakfast, but overall, it was a GREAT value and was an extremely affordable way to see Hawaii. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a nice place to stay with a smaller budget. If you are looking for luxury, spend the $$ and stay at the Four Seasons instead. Otherwise, this was a great place to stay for not a lot of $$.

  • Stayed: June 2005
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Relax36677
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed December 14, 2003

We stayed at the Royal Kona Resort this past weekend and found it to be a very nice place to stay. I did have some concerns prior to visiting due to some of the reviews that were posted here, but found it to be a wonderful experience. We were able to check in early as our room was available. The room had a beautiful view of the bay and pier in the middle of Kona town. The room was very clean and we were able to get an ironing board right away to ready our clothes for the evening. The bathroom was clean with two sinks. TV only had a few channels to watch, but you can watch the in room movies. The staff was very friendly, especially at the restaurants. One thing to watch for, if you are on the north side of the hotel, you can here the music from the nearby restaurants very clearly into the night up to about 11:00pm. Other than that we thoroughly enjoyed our visit and would definitely stay there again.

2  Thank dan2pat
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 27, 2003

We spent 3 nights in this hotel and were very pleased. This is a great value hotel in a very good location. It's just a short drive from the airport, located in an ideal part of town - close to plenty of shops, restaurants & bars.We stayed in the beach building - even though there was no beach, the ocean view was stunning. We were lucky to get a large twin room and the beds were massive (could have fit 3 people in them!).
The staff were helpful and the atmosphere was laid-back and relaxed, which was typical of the Big Island. To our surprise, we came across some lively night life! I think this is a very good 3* hotel -it's not luxurious and probably wouldn't recommend it for honeymooners - but it is comfortable, good value and well located.

3  Thank nimnag
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 20, 2003

We stayed there for 3 nights - November 7-9, 2003. I absolutely agree with the person who wrote on 11/9.....for the view and how much you are trully in your room this is the place. The rooms are worn down, beds are sort of springy and they could use an upgrade but we paid $89/night for an ocean view. The next 2 nights we stayed at the Hilton Waikola for $170/night and we wished we were closer to town for eating, etc.
The coffe place is called Java On The Rocks....definately a must!!! The coffee, food, and view can't be beat. Have fun!!

Thank Experience29988
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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