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“Wonderful Pearl on the Kona coast - Unit 214”

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Castle Kona Bali Kai
Reviewed November 14, 2013

Unit 214 has been recently completely renovated & is very stylishly upgraded with granite counter tops, stainless appliances, tile flooring & lovely rattan furniture. The bathrooms are beautiful and it has all the amenities for a studio condo plus there is an available guest bedroom if you wish to rent it as well. There is a wall mounted TV as well as a sound dock for your iPod c/w CD player. The concierge, Wilbur, who is by the pool was very helpful & help arrange a wonderful helicopter tour of the island for us. Our host, Holly Cunningham was very friendly and helpful. We will definitely be coming back. This condo unit is beachfront and we were entranced to sleep every evening by the sound of the surf below our balcony. There were tidal pools below our feet with large sea turtles coming up to sleep on the rocks every afternoon around 4:30. This second floor unit is paradise.

Room Tip: Ensure you request an ocean front unit that has been recently renovated.
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank David A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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158 - 164 of 446 reviews

Reviewed November 10, 2013

Enjoy staying here when visiting Kailua Kona. It's not the King Kamehameha but nice on the beach property with no frills. Rooms are actually two bedroom condo units that are individually owned, so some rooms are upgraded and furnished better than others.

Room Tip: Ocean rooms are a must. Inquire as to availability of rooms as some are upgraded and better furnish...
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  • Stayed: November 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank DaPheonix
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed November 2, 2013

The room was nice, neat, and I enjoyed the coffee maker. It was a good two night stay. No real amenities, however there is enough to do in Kona. Would stay there again. I can not complain about anything.

  • Stayed: September 2013, traveled on business
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1  Thank 808travler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 30, 2013

Our five day stay began poorly. The first suite we were given was so grungy that after we walked in, set our bags down, and returned to the front desk. The front desk offered another room, two floors down, that was clean and had been significantly updated. That was the good news. All of the units in this complex lack air conditioning requiring that all the windows be left open since the day time high is in the upper eighties and night time lows in the mid seventies. The bad news for this unit was, that unlike their advertising showing the bedroom units in the front seaside location, this unit's master bedroom was in the back less than fifty feet from a very busy and noisy street. The first night I don't think we got fours hours of sleep due to constant noise of motorcycles, trucks, and cars.

The next morning I walk around the complex and discovered that "all" of their suits had the master bedroom on the front seaside of the unit away from the busy street except for about six units at each end of the building. When I approached the front desk and enquired as to why we were given one of the obvious worst rooms in the place, the answer was we're busy and their is a Surfing Convention going on. I had booked this stay nine months in advance and the suite provided to us did not meet their claimed advertisement specifications. The Front desk answer to our excessive noise problem, "Sorry there is nothing we can do"

Night two, I fired up a noise machine simulator on the iPhone and connected that to a Jambox to increase the volume to drown out the street noise, so we could get some sleep. I also fired off an email to Castle's management outlining our total dissatisfaction.

Castle's Kona Bali Hai manager called early the next morning offering apologies and that they would move us to one of their better suites. This suite was one of their normal units with the master bedroom in the front (i.e. Seaside). My wife and I are very grateful for his assistance.

Prior to our last move I would have rated Kona Bali Hai as a one. Had we been placed initially in the suite similar to the one we finally ended up with I would have rated them at a four or possibly five.

Condominiums such as the Castle Kona Bali Hai are individually owned with the maintenance upkeep for each unit dependent upon a particular owner. Therefore what you ultimately received could be very good or awful.

But to spend two days of your precious Hawaiian time fighting for a decent and reasonably quiet room is not the way I like to spend our vacations.

Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
1  Thank Ron D
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed October 28, 2013

I enjoy staying at hotels like this one where it feels like an apartment so you can make yourself right at home. My significant other and I were able to run to the local market and grab some food to cook instead of spending a ton of money eating out. I requested a partial ocean view but the hotel upgraded us to a full ocean view so that made the trip even more amazing. The hotel furniture is island theme so we felt quite immerse.

However, the location of the hotel is pretty bad for playing on the beach as there were rocks everywhere. You can take a nice hike along the shore among the rocks (we found a turtle eating in a tide pool!!) but unless you're planning on swimming out about 75+ yards or relaxing on the rocks, you have to drive elsewhere. Also, the hotel faces the beach and the wind blows behind it thus blocking most of the wind (i.e. it can get hot and humid). We didn't notice cockroaches in the room like some other people but they were definitely on the beach at night. This is also one noisy beach as there are so many rocks that the waves are constantly breaking at different points as they come in. Also for you wifi nuts, they only offer that in the lobby.

  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank hlecouture
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CRHHNL, General Manager at Castle Kona Bali Kai, responded to this reviewResponded October 30, 2013

Aloha

Mahalo for letting us know that you enjoyed your recent stay. Ocean access at our property is limited, but there are some great tide pools to view the turtles on their daily visits. The area near this resort is one of the most popular surf spot on the Kona coast so there is plenty of opportunity to relax and enjoy the Hawaiian experience. There is also a small sandy beach area and some very comfortable lounge chairs set up to enjoy the view. We have almost completed our Wi-Fi installation in all of our units. Looking forward to seeing you on your next visit.

Mahalo,

Stephen Hicks

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Reviewed October 22, 2013

We only stayed here one night after arriving in Kona late at night. What a pleasant surprise when we found the suite very accommodating and comfortable. It was decorated in traditional Hawaiian style and the bed was very comfortable.

Room Tip: Most units have free Wi-fi so be sure to ask for the pass code.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled with friends
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1  Thank Sherry B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CRHHNL, General Manager at Castle Kona Bali Kai, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Aloha,

Meeting your expectations is our goal. Great to hear you enjoyed your stay. visit us a bit longer on your next trip to the Island of Hawaii. Tip we are just finishing up our project of installing Free secure Wi-Fi in all of our units.

Mahalo,
Stephen Hicks

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Reviewed October 1, 2013

Book at your own risk. I booked 1 night while in Kona for business. I was given a real key and told to drive across the road to building 3, room 233. Not sure what that was about as I was in the hotel lobby. She said that's where my room is, I didn't question her. I opened the door and I was in a condo, time share, or something from the past. I checked in at 4, and was gone by 5. Roaches runnng on the kitchen counter, lamp at nightstand did not work even though I switched out the light bulbs, iron without ironing board, wi fi did not work even though I had the code and the front desk couldn't help. Tube TV from the 80's. Paint cans in the closet. Sliding glass door did not slide. The bath towel in the bathroom had holes in it and was months past its lifespan.I sat at the end of the bed determined to make this work since I had already unpacked for the evening. I was sinking as the bed formed a "V". The damn bed was broken! I called the front desk to help with the internet. She said only maintenance can help and they'll be in tomorrow. It was 4:45 and they were gone. I was pissed. I requested a refund. I asked her why I was not informed when I booked, via their website, or when I checked in that this was a condo. Her answer, "did you book it through Castle or our website". I booked it through their website but what does that have to do with anything? This is an example of local properties taking advantage of guests because there is no "chain hotel" competition in the area. If this town had reasonable chain competition, this bait and switch stuff would not go on. I travel six times/year to the Islands for business and the accomodations are the worst of any region in the US. Trying to find a decent room for a night without putting my company under is very difficult. Shame on Castle, Bali Kai, or whatever name they're using for major neglect to their property and their guests. The front desk lady did give me a refund with a receipt on my credit card. She was not to blame for this terrible experience. I was just glad I did not have to go back and forth for a refund.

Room Tip: If you want a good room, look elsewhere.
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  • Stayed: October 2013, traveled on business
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5  Thank dcjw700
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
CRHHNL, General Manager at Castle Kona Bali Kai, responded to this reviewResponded October 28, 2013

Aloha,

It is disappointing that our property did not meet your expectation. Our property is clearly listed as a “Condo Resort” in multiple locations so there is nothing misleading that justifies a bait and switch implication. As to going across the street our Condo Resort consists of seven buildings, two on the ocean side of Alii Drive and five on the mountain side. Our owners are continuously upgrading their units; although some items may be dated we maintain them in proper working order. I inspected the unit after your departure and found the Wi-Fi to be working properly and the light working when the wall switch is turned on. I have addressed your other concerns with my maintenance department. We stand behind the quality of our product and want to ensure that all of our guests are able to enjoy their stay at Kona Bali Kai.

Mahalo

Stephen Hicks

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Additional Information about Castle Kona Bali Kai

Address: 76-6246 Alii Dr, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96740-4614
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Kailua-Kona
Amenities:
Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Kitchenette Restaurant Suites Swimming Pool
Hotel Style:
Ranked #33 of 36 Specialty Lodging in Kailua-Kona
Price Range: $120 - $358 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:3 star — Castle Kona Bali Kai 3*
Number of rooms: 154
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Kona Bali Kai is a condominium resort located on the ocean's edge, displaying an uninterrupted vista of magnificent Kona sunsets. Choose from studios, one-, two-, and three-bedroom suites with full-kitchens, private lanai, and ocean or mountainside views. Amenities include a swimming pool, barbecue areas throughout the resort, and a laundry facility. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Kona Bali Kai Hotel Kailua-Kona
Castle Kona Bali Kai Kailua
Castle Kona Bali Kai Hotel
Castle Kona Bali Kai Hawaii/Kailua-Kona

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