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“Ho Hum”

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Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui
Ranked #3 of 8 Hotels in Wailea
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersBronze level
Reviewed June 6, 2004

After much reserach, I set up my 5 night honeymoon at the Fairmont and was underwhelmed by the Fairmont as a honeymoon destination. While the grounds are beautiful, the resort is oriented towards kids and conferences, and the spa is only average.

ROOM: Our room was on the north wing overlooked the kid's pool...which also has a bar serving lunch and drinks to the party crowd. Also, the rooms on that wing do not get a sunset view. To get that, we would have had to go to the middle or south wings next to the construction. It was nice room, though.

SPA: I went to the Fairmont spa to get a tandem oceanside massage, but they only had a tent set next to the adult pool....fine if you want to get a massage with your new wife and 100 of your best friends. We ended up going to the Four Seasons spa instead. They have beautiful private huts next to the ocean, so you can enjoy the sound of wind, birds, and the surf. The spa there is fantastic and beautiful. The waiting room there offers dried Hawaiian fruits, tea, water, etc. as you relax waiting for your treatment.

RESTAURANT: We also went to Nicks because we had heard so much about it. We ordered oysters on the half shell as an appetizer. I tasted a funky one. I mentioned it to my wife, and she said one of her oysters tasted bad, too. We didn't get too discouraged, laughed it off, hoping not to get sick. Then she found a bug in her dinner salad. At that point, we called the head waiter, who did nothing except keep asking us if our meal was ok through the rest of the night. Even average restaurants will offer a free desert or coffee to make up for bad quality, but they barely apologized, and I left a very substandard tip. The guy with the pepper mill did a nice job, though, and could really twirl it.

If you're looking for a honeymoon, stay at the Four Seasons. If you want a family vacation or a fun conference site, stay at the Fairmont.

8  Thank Rkyman
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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4,517 - 4,523 of 4,731 reviews

Reviewed June 4, 2004

We went to the Fairmont for our honeymoon from May 19-25. Months beforehand we debated on which hotel to stay at. We are extremely please with our decision. The first night we arrived we were placed in a supposed oceanview suite. As we looked out of the window, we saw the ocean beyond the parking lot and construction trucks. The bellhop immediately suggested to call the front desk for a better room. Although there were no better rooms available for that first night, we were upgraded the next day to a deluxe oceanview suite for a small fee. Our next room was beautiful with stunning views.

Our stay was perfect. All the restaurants in the resort were wonderful. The pools were not overcrowded and very relaxing. The beach was small but I was able to complete my scuba certification there. Very good spot for snorkeling and scuba. The staff was very helpful and gracious. The made us feel like royalty.

We also checked out the Grand Wailea and Four Seasons. Although they were beautiful as well, they were not as elegant and relaxing as the Fairmont. We are already planning to come back year after year.

  • Stayed: May 2004
    • Value
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
5  Thank Aniaset
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Boothwyn, PA
Reviewed June 2, 2004

This is a late entry, but I had to chime in. My husband and I spent 12 glorious nights at Kea Lani in November for our honeymoon and we've been planning our return trip since then. Although expensive, we got a good deal since it was not high season and got 2 free nights during our stay. When we got there, we were offered an upgrade for a fee, but it was late so we decided to sleep on it. Our first room was nice, but with absolutely no view. The next morning, we asked for the upgrade, packed up our bags and spent the day on the beach. We got to our new room with our bags there and with an absolutely gorgeous room - large living area, 2 lanais, huge bathroom and bedroom. Our room was above the restaurant and main pool (not kids pool) and we had a great view of the ocean every morning and night.

The staff was a delight - the concierges made all of our reservations at the restaurants we read about in review books. The beach was small, but beautiful and never crowded. The chair guy knew us by the second day and as soon as we'd walk up to the beach, he would set up chairs for us in our usual spot.

Food: Breakfast was included in our package so we had the buffet each morning. Very good! Nick's was awesome. We had one full dinner there, then one light dinner (the Maui Wowi salad and caramel souffle are unbeatable) at the bar during sunset. Also good are Spago (Four Seasons) - ate there 2x and had the whole fish both times - and Mama's Fish House (amazingly fresh fish caught that day and macadamia nut torte). Do go into Kihei and stock up on bread, hummus, lunch meats,etc for lunch so you can splurge on dinner!

We walked/ jogged the ocean trail (do this in the early morning when it's not crowded and not too hot - you'll love it!) and went to most of the hotels it was linked to. From what we could see, nothing could rival the Kea Lani. We went into the Four Seasons which we had also considered, and found it to be beautiful but somewhat too formal.

The lounge area at Kea Lani is also a nice open airy place to have a drink before dinner, and there is usually music being played. Very relaxing.

Spa was nice. I got a massage which was fine, but expensive.

ONLY complaint was the sometimes loud noise from the restaurant below at early early hours of the morning, but at least we'd wake up for the beautiful sunrise we could watch in bed!

3  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 31, 2004

Royalty? Well, at least that is how my family were treated during our recent 5 night stay at The Fairmont Kea Lani the week of May 20, 2004. I suggest renting a Villa if you are traveling with a family. We rented an Oceanview Villa and were upgraded to an Oceanfront Villa upon arriving. Call the concierge a few days before your arrival with a grocery list. For a $5.00 fee plus the price of the groceries everything will be waiting for you upon your arrival. This makes a nice feature for those arriving after a long flight and with a family. The kitchen as well as the ourdoor grill made it great for cooking our own meals or having The Fairmont Staff prepare them for us. Our Villa was very comfortable and the decor was beyond what you would expect from a beach resort. The private 3 foot pool was a nice feature that my family really used and enjoyed. The shops and restraunts are some of the finest as are the pools and the beach services. The service personnel were some of the friendliest we met on the islands. We did venture ot the Four Seasons for dinner and to look at the grounds. Although their grounds were a bit more extravagant we also found them not to be as comfortable and they didn't feel as they were family friendly. We a family of 5 voted The Fairmont Kea Lani #1 Resort in the Hawaiian Islands.

4  Thank Sunny A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
A TripAdvisor Member
Fredericton, NB
Reviewed May 29, 2004

Upon arriving at the hotel, it was very late. The reception staff were extremely friendly and courteous, despite the late hour. The bellhop brought our things to our room and was also very friendly and helpful. We were quite surprised, though, of the relatively average quality of the room. We had higher expectations having read web reviews and the Frommers Maui guide. The rooms were not that large and the carpets were worn out. For $600/night, I had expected a much more lavish room. I have stayed in rooms at less than half the price that were twice as nice. We could live with it given the fantastic ocean view and sunrise that greetest us every morning (stay in the south wing as high up as you can as it is quiet in the morning and has the best view of the ocean - the north wing has the kids pool outside the balcony and the kids start early in the morning!). Despite the average accomodations, the real problem was with bugs in the room. On entering the room, we saw numerous black beatles throughout the room. We called the front desk and asked to be moved but they were fully booked. They sent up someone to address the problem but he arrived with bugspray (how moronic - could he sleep in a room that had just been sprayed??) I asked him to use a vacuum instead, which he did. The next day, the front desk let us look at some other rooms, but they were not as well positioned as our room was (do NOT stay on the 7th floor in the North wing, the smoking floor. The rooms have not been updated for 20 years - how ugly!). We just learned to live with the harmless bugs, but they were annoying to see evey day. On our last day, we found out they were going to fumigate. When we complained again on check-out, expecting that they might give us a break on the rate, they just said, "I am sorry to hear that you had bugs." Not what I expected from a 5-star hotel.

We had dinner at Nick's Fishmarket and lucked out with an absolutely breathtaking sunset. The food was not bad (but expect to spend at least $200 with a bottle of wine). The buffet breakfast was the best meal available at the resort, but it's $25/person. Do yourself a favour and stop at Walmart or Costco when you leave the airport and stock up on snacks, water, supplies (alcohol at Costco!). Buying those things at the resort will really set you back. Alternatively, have the courtesy car at the front desk drive you over to the Shops at Wailea, about 2 minutes away and load up at the ABC store.

The hotel beach is quite small. If you have a car, drive about 3 minutes south to the Big Beach. Now THAT is a beach!

Make sure you rent a car before you arrive. The concierge did a good job of finding an affordable car for a day that we didn't have one and needed it (we needed to get to Lahaina and a cab was about $120 return - so we rented a car for the day instead at $45). We rented a Jeep for a couple of days, in advance, and paid $150. I saw that the rate at the counter was $120/day!

As an aside, take the Trilogy Lana'i excursion that leaves from Lahaina (it's called the Discover Lanai Sunset Sail). This was a fantastic day. The crew did a great job of making our day the best it could be. The snorkeling at the marine reserve at Lana'i was pretty cool - lots of amazing fish. Take an underwater camera as the (dead) coral is close to the surface and you can get some great shots without diving too far.

I know that I have complained a lot about the prices in this review. Overall, though, this hotel had great service, beautiful grounds with only average rooms. Although we had sticker shock at every turn here, and we had too many bugs in our room every day, we still left with memories of an amazing vacation.

7  Thank A TripAdvisor Member
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2004

In a previous review, a couple described the resort as paradise. They also mentioned that they were upgraded from an ocean view room to a villa with private plunge pool. We too thought the resort was very nice with wonderful service all the way down to housekeeping. However, we had also made a review for an ocean view room months in advance with a request for a newer room with a nice view. When we checked in, we were given an older room with a view of a construction site, complete with tractors and old pickups in the mud. It technically qualified as ocean view because you could see the ocean from your lanai. We were told there was nothing else available (our stay was the same time as the couple who got upgraded), then they said they could move us to a better room the next day. We then went to them the next afternoon to move into our improved ocean view room, but it was not the one promised. Finally, after move number 3, we got a rennovated room, but once again you had to go to your lanai to see the ocean. After the initial frustrations, we did have a good time there with our 5 year old daughter, but had we gotten the upgrade to a villa or simply the room we requested up front, we, too, would have been raving about the place.

3  Thank roncille
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed May 27, 2004

We stayed at the Fairmont from May 15-23 on our honeymoon. We were greeted in the lobby with fresh lei's and juice. I had requested the highest floor and we got the 2nd. When I asked them if they had anything higher, they said "no" and the earliest that they could move us to a higher floor would be 4 nights later. I guess that wasn't their fault!!
The property is beautiful. We stayed in their signature Kilohana Suite, which is a corner suite with a HUGE wrap around balcony!!! I mean you could have a party out there!! The view was great...wonderful sunsets!!! The housekeeping staff got to know us by name. They would come in and turn down our bed each night and leave a little flower with a card saying "Sweet Dreams" , also at night, they would replace any towles that you used during the day and leave you with clean, fresh ones. It was like having housekeeping done twice a day!! There were a few times where they even turned on our clock radio to soothing music at night when they came in!!!!
We did see a small roach in the bedroom closet when we first opened it...guess there's not too much they can do about that!! The bed was sooooo comfortable. I agree with another poster in that the pillows are the best you will ever lay your head on!!!! They brought us a nice picture frame with a card on our 2nd night, congratulating us on our recent marriage!!! The valet was good and so was the front desk. The pools are wonderful..not too overcrowded, but it's a good idea to claim your chairs early!!! Nick's Fishmarket, of course, was our best choice on the island. Expensive, but it's worth it, for sure!!!! Breakfast buffet is very tasty, with TONS of choices from tortillas filled with rice, sour cream, salsa, to pancakes, sausage, hash browns, salmon, made-to-order omletts, all kinds of desserts, cereal, muffins...you name it, they had it. Beware of the birds!!!!!! They will come and eat any remaider of your food when you go back for seconds!!!!!
This was a wonderful resort for our honeymoon. The Grand Wailea looked too big...The four seasons looked nice!!! We would definitly stay here again!!!

3  Thank kerewi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui

Address: 4100 Wailea Alanui Dr, Wailea, Maui, HI 96753-8449
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Maui > Wailea
Bar / Lounge Beach Beverage Selection Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Shuttle Bus service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Family Hotel in Wailea
#2 Spa Hotel in Wailea
#2 Business Hotel in Wailea
#2 On the Beach Hotel in Wailea
#3 Green Hotel in Wailea
#3 Luxury Hotel in Wailea
#3 Romantic Hotel in Wailea
Price Range: $491 - $2,088 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Hotel Class:4.5 star — Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui 4.5*
Number of rooms: 450
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Discover the essence of Maui at Fairmont Kea Lani, Hawaii's only all-suite and villa luxury resort. Nestled on the golden sands of Wailea's Polo Beach, this award-winning oceanfront paradise redefines luxury with a state-of-the-art spa, island inspired cuisine and authentic cultural experiences. Fairmont Kea Lani is the ideal island getaway with four unique restaurants, three swimming pools including an adult-only pool, a comprehensive fitness and wellness program and unrivaled access to the best adventures across the island. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Fairmont Kea Lani Maui Hotel Wailea
Fairmont Hotel Wailea
Fairmont Maui
Fairmont Wailea
Wailea Fairmont
The Fairmont Kea Lani
Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui Wailea

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