Our family of four (which includes two adults and two children; ages 12 and 14) just returned from an eight-day stay at the Grand Wailea Resort. Although the grounds and pools were beautiful, our room was not. The carpeting was worn out and dirty, the bathroom doors (around the handles inside and out) were paint-chipped and coated with grime and looked like they have never been cleaned (such a simple chore to take care of, too!), the toilet room wallpaper had lots of stains on it, which I hope were not from bodily fluids, and our lanai was a sticky mess from spilled drinks of previous guests. I have included some photos for you to see.
The charge for this five-star deluxe ocean-view room was $790/night, plus taxes. Our ocean view was beautiful, but needless to say, the room was a huge disappointment, especially since we had read so many great reviews about this hotel. I just can’t explain what happened with this particular room, but we were unlucky enough to get it. We have never stayed in a five-star hotel room, which we do exclusively, that looked anything like this. I don’t know if it was just this floor (the 7th floor off the Napua Tower elevators), this wing, or what, but unfortunately the Grand Wailea has (this) some really awful rooms. If you should decide to stay at this hotel, just be aware that at the very least it is a crapshoot, because not all the rooms are five-star in quality or cleanliness. Maybe two or three stars, but not five.
I tried to check out other rooms for comparison, as we walked down the hallway of the 7th floor. I could tell that carpeting in some of the rooms has been replaced, so they have made some changes in carpeting in some of the rooms on the 7th floor. At check in, before we had even seen our room, we asked to be upgraded to a suite, but the woman at the front desk told us the hotel was operating at full capacity and there were no other rooms available. Maybe since they were operating at full capacity they opened up their “mature rooms” to accommodate a greater number of guests. She told us we could be added to a waiting list for a suite, but we declined, as we didn’t want to play musical chairs. I absolutely regret that decision now, although, even getting a suite (or another room) wasn’t guaranteed.
Our room was quiet the whole week until our final night, which was a Saturday night. It was noisy. There were guests, one or two floors down from us, who decided to have a drunken party which spilled out from their room onto their lanai. We could hear streams of foul conversations and foul words I would have liked my children to miss. That went on for about an hour before someone closed the party down.
The staff was mostly pleasant, but I did get a sense that some of the staff are burned out. My worst experience was at Café Kula. The employee’s behavior towards a couple being served in line ahead of me was horrific. The couple had asked a simple question, and as they turned to walk away, the staff member mimicked them in a whiney voice. This staff member was so blatantly rude that I couldn’t believe it.
On the positive side, the food in the restaurants at the Grand Wailea were good. Pricey, but good. We dined in all the restaurants at the hotel, sometimes multiple times. Dinner for our family of four cost about $300 per evening. That included fresh fish and/or tenderloin for the entrée, a salad or side dish, soda pop, and dessert. Our bill didn't include any alcoholic drinks. I heard one woman at the pool complain that alcoholic drinks cost $12. I don’t know if that was true for all drinks, but it was believable, as this hotel (and Maui in general) is expensive. The breakfast buffet at the Grand Wailea Grand Dining Room cost $27/person. The food was good and, as with all the restaurants in the hotel, it has an incredible view of the ocean. We ate our breakfasts there every morning.
As far as activities go, besides the multiple pools, the Grand Wailea has a scuba pool and they offer their guests free scuba diving lessons. We tried this activity (our children did, too!) and we had a great time. After an hour or two of lessons, they took us out in the ocean for an ocean dive. It was the hit of our trip. They also have kayak rentals (which we rented twice), surf board rentals, small boats, etc. Of course, the Grand Wailea pools, with their countless water slides and waterfalls, were a big hit, too. Even for us adults! The pools were the only thing that kept us from moving out of the hotel altogether, especially since these activities kept us busy outside of our dirty room. One tip, though. If you should decide to stay at this hotel, ask for a room that is somewhat close to the pool. It was a long hike for us to get to the pool, the water activities, restaurants, beach path, etc. It was another disappointment about our room.
Our room was in desperate need of cleaning and refurbishment and we were especially disappointed that the hotel management continues to pass this room off as a five-star room. Shame on them! Had the hotel not been operating at full capacity, we would have asked for another room. In the end, our final Grand Wailea bill (hotel, food, and activities only) for the week was about $10,000. Too much for a two-star room(!), but everything else was (mostly) grand.
After returning home, I emailed the hotel management about our disappointment in our stay, but so far (one week and counting), I’ve received no apology or explanation from upper management explaining why they continue using this room (especially at this price!) Another red flag and disappointment. I would love a refund commensurate to the type of room we were given.
You can bet that we won't be staying at this hotel again, nor recommend it, unless the entire hotel goes through refurbishment. We won’t take the chance again of getting another worn out Grand Wailea room. What is ironic is that we didn't stay at the Four Seasons Hotel (next door) because the rooms are currently under renovations (until June 2007). We just didn't know we would end up staying in a room that was in desperate need of renovation itself.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- Grand Wailea, A Waldorf Astoria Resort, is the ultimate destination for a fabulous Hawaii vacation, perfect for families, spa goers, honeymooners, golfers and active vacationers. Situated on 40 acres of lush, tropical Hawaiian gardens, Grand Wailea opens onto Maui's beautiful Wailea Beach, voted one of the best beaches in America, with elegant and newly-renovated accommodations, indulgent spa treatments, fine dining and thrilling recreational options. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Grand Wailea - a Waldorf Astoria Hotel Wailea
- Grand Wailea Maui
- Grand Wailea Resort Maui
- Grand Wailea Hawaii
- Grand Hotel Wailea
- Grand Resort Wailea
- Grand Wailea - A Waldorf Astoria Resort Maui