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Big Island Hotels

The Palms Cliff House Inn


  • Stunning views
  • Terrific breakfast
  • Comfortable rooms with every amenity
  • All rooms have private entrances from the exterior


  • No pool
  • No lunch or dinner on site
  • Remote location means you have to drive to Hilo for dinner

Updated 01/06/2014

Fodor's Review

This handsome Victorian-style mansion, 15 minutes north of downtown Hilo and a few minutes from Akaka Falls, is perched on the sea cliffs 100 feet above the crashing surf of the tropical coast. You can pick fruit and macadamia nuts from the gardens of the 3½-acre estate. Individually decorated rooms have private lanai. Suites include oversize hot tubs (the one in Room 8 is by the window with a stunning view of the coast), and there's also a private hot tub in the garden.

A husband-and-wife team serves breakfast with pride on the lanai overlooking the cliffs; meals generally include fresh-baked muffins, locally grown fruit, a warm egg or meat dish (they always ask about food allergies or dietary restrictions ahead of time), and, of course, fantastic local coffee. They can help you plan activities, including hula lessons and massage.

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Hotel Information


28-3514 Mamalahoa Hwy., Honomu, Hawaii, 96728, USA

Map It


866-963–6076; 808-963–6076

Hotel Details:

  • Credit cards accepted
  • 4 rooms, 4 suites
  • Breakfast

Updated 01/06/2014

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Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating
  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

May 8, 2007

Don't Miss Out on this Place!

John and Michelle Gamble (the owners) know what great service is, and train their staff accordingly. The rooms and grounds are gorgeous. We loved the hot tub in a secluded part of the estate and the lantern provided in our closet to unobtrusively light the path. The breakfasts were fabulous and utlized local ingredients--We actually started to look forward to next morning's breakfast the night before! Bonnie (one of the breakfast staff) was so

delightful and gave us excellent tips each morning about the locations we were touring. The lanai that breakfast was served on was truly magnificent. We also appreciated the consideration we were shown on one morning when we had to leave before breakfast was served--the staff packed muffins for us. Warning: This is a serene place for people who like peace and quiet. Unfortunately, a couple moved in during our stay who chose to blast their TV every night (John had to ask them to quiet down and graciously offered to move us). So if you like noise, please do not stay here because you'll stick out like a sore thumb. The only suggestions we have to make are: Putting a couple of hammocks on the property so guests can relax on the grounds (it is full of trees and would be ideal). Making the sign for the property stand out more--we (and other guests we talked to) passed it several times without noticing it. We actually had to wake Michelle up in the middle of the night when we arrived (she was very gracious though). Overall, we hope people don't miss out on this place--while we also stayed on the Kona side of the island, no trip to the Big Isle is complete without a stay on the Hilo side as well where all the rainforests and waterfalls are.

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By Jim

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

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Jun 24, 2006

Paradise Found!

We stayed at The palms Cliff House for four days following my confrence at the Hilton Waikaloa. This is a terriffic place. Very private and quite, just what my wife wanted after my week of "working" in Hawaii. We were in the Tropical Dreams room. It was tops. Great value for your dollar. We had better views, better room, lots of free extras, and paid less than my confrence rate in Kona. The food was great too. This is a must if you come to the Hilo

side of the Big Island.

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By Grace

  • Service

  • Food

  • Décor

  • Value

Jun 8, 2006

You Have To Work Hard To Not Like This Place!

My husband and I stayed at The Palms Cliff House Inn right after Easter this year. We had arrived (without knowing it) just before the start of the biggist Hula compitition in Hawaii. Little did we know that Hilo was buldging at the seams with all the extra visitors. But the owners made sure we wnet to all the best (and little known) places to eat and sight see so we felt like we had Hilo all to ourselves. They even got us tickets to the hottest hula

compitition in the state. We had three nights of amazing hula and if that were not enough, they introduced us to well known Hula teachers (Kumu) and compitition participants. It is clear when you tell people in town that the Gambles are well liked. they have even had a song written about them and their inn! I found them to be very friendly and easy to talk to. We spent several nights talking late into the evening out on the main lanai. I am sure I must have gained 5 pounds from from the delicious food we ate. Things like: apple banana pancakes, ahi eggs bennidict, and my favorite was a mango dutch that Michele gladly gave me the receipe for. I have made it for friends who loved it too. The staff was very friendly and talkative. The rooms are so comfortable you hate to leave each day. It was sad to leave - like leaving family behind, but I am sure we will go back again next year. I think I'm hooked on the hula!

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By Paul

  • Service

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  • Décor

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Nov 3, 2004

One of a kind paradise, even for Hawaii

This is an incredible hotel/inn. Our room was beautifully furnished and the private balcony faced directly towards the bay with an incredible ocean view to watch the sun rise. This is one of the most romantic places I have ever seen. Only 8 rooms, so it is very private as well. Breakfast is included in the room rate and it is delicious. Only 20 minutes from Hilo, 45 minutes from Volcano National Park and 5 minutes from Akaka Falls. Staying here

is like escaping to a hidden paradise.

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