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Hilton Waikoloa Village

At a Glance

    Pros

  • family-friendly
  • lots of restaurant and activity options

    Cons

  • gigantic, crowded
  • lots of kids
  • restaurants are pricey

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  

Hilton Waikoloa Village Review

Dolphins swim in the lagoon; pint-size guests zoom down the 175-foot waterslide; a bride poses on the grand staircase; a fire-bearing runner lights the torches along the seaside path at sunset—these are some of the typical scenes at this 62-acre megaresort. Shaded pathways lined with a multimillion-dollar Pacific Island art collection connect the three tall buildings, while Swiss-made trams and canal boats shuttle those who want to bypass the long hallways and meandering paths. Though there's no ocean beach, there is a seaside trail to Anaehoomalu Bay, aka A-Bay, one of the island's larger beaches. An ocean-side saltwater lagoon is great for families. Modern rooms in neutral tones have private lanai and are large enough to accommodate the families that flock here. The stars of Dolphin Quest (800/248–3316 www.dolphinquest.org) are the resort's pride and joy; reserve in advance for an interactive learning session. Two friendly black-tip reef sharks can also be seen. Brides-to-be, take note: this is one-stop shopping, as the resort has a wedding planner, cakes, flowers, photography, and a "Just Married" boat ride.

    Hotel Details

  • 1,241 rooms, 58 suites
  • Rate includes no meals.
  • Credit cards accepted.
Updated: 01-06-2014

Fodorite Reviews

Average Rating:  
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    Good but could be much better.

    This place is big but I new that going in. My biggest beef is why you would block the ocean view from the lagoon pool with a row of thick hedges. I go to Hawaii to enjoy the ocean view not a row of bushes! Pretty crowded scene and definately not low key. Good for families with kids old enough to explore the place. Food was ok but not a good value for the $$.

    by johnycol, 11/30/06
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    HAPPY TIME HAD AT THE HILTON

    My husband and I stayed here for 4 nights during the first week of December. The hotel was empty - which was great. The best tower is the Lagoon Tower - it is near all of the action - however be warned that the property has some very noisy (read LOUD) birds that wake up in the morning screeching and do a repeat performance at sundown! The rooms are fine, clean and with very comfortable beds with down duvets. Housekeeping is unobtrusive, and the staff was overall accomodating. Only issue - Hawaii just passed a law that prevents any smoking in public areas - which is lovely for a non-smoker like myself - but the hotel staff was not at their best when it came to upholding the new law. I am sure that they will improve with time. I would recommend this hotel highly for families (tons of activities for kids, and most are free, including the tram around the property and the boat around the river that flows through the property too), but my husband and I enjoyed ourselves greatly and we have no kids! Only warning - other than noisy birds - I heard that during the busy season the hotel can be very VERY crowded...so go in the low season like we did! By the way, we stayed at the Four Seasons Hualalai last year - and we actually had more fun at the Hilton! Four Seasons was too expensive, the grounds are dark and somber, and the hotel guests are snotty! Stick with the Hilton - better prices and better atmosphere!

    by dawnstef, 12/26/06
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    Do Not Outsource Service to Red Sail Sports!

    This is a magnificent property--also, it has a gorgeous sandy beach A-Bay--but you have to take the on-demand hotel shuttle to it (they do not really tell the guests about this which prompts erroneous complaints that they only have a rocky beach.) Wild bird habitats are all over the resort--the only rooms that are noisy from the birds are in the lagoon tower, and the ocean tower is under construction. We loved the Palace Tower where we stayed. The restaurants are ALL wonderful (Kirin has the best dim sum and hot and sour soup I've ever had--and I lived in the Orient for 8 years). Dolphin Quest was AMAZING--you need to book it a couple of months before--so don't miss out! The salt water ocean fed lagoon was wonderful and the quantity of fish and other marine life in it was astounding (we saw 8 sea turtles!). The Kona pool and Kohala pool are huge and lovely as well. Now, the bad points: they have outsourced the service at the lagoon and pools i.e,. towel service, to Red Sail Sports (the company that does their water sports and tours)--big mistake! The Red Sail Sports employees are SO RUDE and abrupt. Also, the towel service stops at 5 p.m.--so even though the sun was out til 7, we could not make full use of the facilities. The only reason I did not give it lower than a 2 for service is the wonderful service we received at the restaurants and the housekeeping staff (actual Hilton employees). Also, for a resort this size (over 2000 rooms) the room service was surprisingly always on time with hot and delicious food.

    by Golnarsarge, 5/8/07
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    Good during the off season

    This is an excellent resort for families to visit... during the off season. We stayed from 4/17 thru 4/25 and it was at 50% capacity. While it is massive resort (really 3 resorts in one), I can imagine that when running 70% plus capacity, it could be tough to get around and access amenities. Great service and friendly people working there. KPC restaurant onsite was awesome when you dine there during sunset! Perfect for families with children as there is so much for the kids to do. Dolphin Quest was a once in a lifetime experience for the kids.

    by rmtan, 5/29/07
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    Just not Hawaii !!

    There are so many other "natural" places to stay. It's like a Disneyland. Really sorry we stayed here after seeing so many other wonderful hotels.

    by JerseySue, 9/3/08
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    Hilton Waikoloa Village Review

    We stayed at the Hilton for 7 days on vacation. The one thing that sticks out is the customer service. Everyone was helpful & kind: from the bellman, to the vallet, to housekeeping, to the concierge. The property is gorgeous! If you go to Hawaii, you want to feel like you're in paradise, & this resort accomplishes that. Tip: request either the lagoon tower or the palace tower. The ocean tower is very far away & people complained of 15 min walks to the lobby and 10 min tram rides. People also complained of noisy birds & lack of restaurants & pool activity. We stayed in the palace tower, which was great. Lagoon tower is the closest to everything. As far as the food: Go out to the nearby towns & get local cuisine. The hotel food is average & WAY overpriced. There is plenty to do & see on Ali'i Dr in Kailua-Kona. We ate on Ali'i Dr once per day. Hawaiian Style Cafe is also popular in Waimea. We enjoyed it. We NEVER ate breakfast at the hotel. Also, we never shopped at the Queens Market; etc. Waste of money. Well worth the 20 min drive to town. There are beaches nearby: one is 10-15 mins down the rd towards Waimea. One is 5 miles down the road towards Kona. It's a gorgeous hidden gem across from the memorial cemetary exit (there are no marked signs). There is also a small beach in Kailua-Kona that is pretty cool. We recommend that you take a volcano helicopter tour. We used Safari helicopters (drove to Hilo). There are plenty of things to sightsee on your way to Hilo. Ask the concierge to point them out.

    by items90, 10/2/11
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    The Hilton Waikoloa Village is actually a beautiful facility. We were very pleased with our stay here. The grounds are absolutely amazing. As you step past the front lobby you are instantly impressed with the views from every angle. We were with our two teenagers and were somewhat concerned about being all in one room, but the rooms are actually very spacious. The beds are only doubles and would have preferred queens but they were comfortable for their size. As most reviews for this hotel state, the one negative is the hotels massive size. If you were just staying on property and never going anywhere, then it would be wonderful. We wanted to see the entire island though and had plans each day and dinner reservations each evening. We were in the Palace building which was very nice but we had to tack on at least 20 minutes from leaving our room to get to our car each time we left. There is a tram and a boat which are fun, but you can walk it much faster. The Lagoon building would be closer to the lobby but it was closed during our stay for renovations. I had requested the lagoon building originally (verbally and in writing,) and was disappointed that we were not informed of this until I called 2 days before to request it again. The restaurants that we ate at in the hotel were all good. Prices for a quick bite by the pool were steep. The hotel does charge you for every little thing which is another negative. No ocean beach, but the entire property overlooks the ocean with beautiful pools and plenty of lounges with ocean views. There is a beach at the lagoon where you can snorkel and swim. The bellmen will give you towels but the front door if you are leaving for a day at the beach off property which is nice. Bell staff was very accommodating. Overall, we were very pleased with the quality, beautiful grounds, rooms and service.

    by Dixiemc, 9/24/12

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