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4S Maui Garden View $372 vs Ritz Part Ocean View $356 but WITH full breakfast? Which would you pick?

4S Maui Garden View $372 vs Ritz Part Ocean View $356 but WITH full breakfast? Which would you pick?

Jul 5th, 2004, 07:07 PM
  #1  
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Join Date: Jul 2003
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4S Maui Garden View $372 vs Ritz Part Ocean View $356 but WITH full breakfast? Which would you pick?

We're going to Honolulu for a convention next Sept 1-4 2005(don't laugh- yes, we plan ahead!), then the Big Island (Hapuna Prince Beach Hotel) for 5 nights, then ending up in Maui for 5 nights. We've always wanted to stay at a Four Seasons but could never afford it. This could be our first shot at it, as the rates are actually lower than we thought! We thought they'd be $595 a night but we got their deal where the 5th night is free, and a garden view room is $465 a night. The average price over 5 nights would be $372 a night. Actually, the Mountain Side view room at the FS is $365 a night, but they said it's above a parking garage and we might hear noise from the garage now and then! Arggghh. That wouldn't be good!

This is all WAY more than we usually spend (under $300 typically), but what the heck. What's $72 a night more, averaged over the course of a lifetime to enjoy our first FS experience. I've read MANY of the previous posts on the FS and it seems like it's one of the best hotels in Maui.

We LOVED the Ritz we stayed at in Bali (though it was only $155 a night there with club level and 5 food presentations a day!) and looked into the Kapalua RC. The Kapalua Ritz Carlton has a partial Ocean View (vs the Garden View at the Four Seasons-we like the idea of a great view, who wouldn't!), full American Buffet Breakfast included (which makes dinner the only meal of the day we'd have to buy as we wouldn't need lunch after such a big start), stay 5 nights and get the fifth free at $445 a night - so it averages out to $356 a night(+ tx) - $16 a night LESS than the Four Seasons garden view and includes the Breakfast buffet vs NO breakfast at all at the FS. FS charges $30 p/p for breakfast, but we'd never do that as we could get by on cereal and fruit! We'd probably just eat breakfast in the room at the FS most of the time to save money and inches on our waistline.

I know the weather at the FS side is supposed to be more reliably sunny and less windy than the Kapalua area. I know it's supposed to be more beachy, relaxed and on the killer beach which we'd really like. The pics of both hotels look awesome. Is there any way to get a better deal than that at the FS? I'm guessing no, right? I called the FS people and asked if we booked the garden view for the 5 night thing, would there be any way we might get upgraded to partial oceanview or better? They said: "Depending on availability". That's cool. It IS our anniversary celebration (OK- so we celebrate it 3 months after the actual date .

Thoughts? Is this the way to go, staying at the FS because it's got it all (except the included breakfast)? I told my wife about all this and she said "That's ALOT of money for a hotel! Let's see if we can afford it next year."

We can afford it, unless something tragic happens or I lose my job. We stayed in Italy and Switzerland last month for 17 days and spend about $240-295 a night, so is another $100 a night that much more?

Then there's the thought that if we could get a place for closer to $225 a night and use the rest for food and shopping, that might be better. I'm starting to feel that staying at the killer hotel MAKES the trip for me. I'm sure she'd agree.

I know it's up to us in the end, but anyone been there recently - what do you think? FS? Ritz for less AND breakfast?

Steve
Maryland
http://www.fourseasons.com/maui/vaca...est_rooms.html
http://www.ritzcarlton.com/resorts/kapalua/
stever is offline  
Jul 5th, 2004, 07:18 PM
  #2  
 
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Over the years I have found that whenever I go and bust the budget to stay somewhere, I almost always end up disappointed. You start expecting that since you're spending (your) top dollar, it should be perfect. It rarely is.

I prefer to find a great deal within my budget (whatever it may be at that time) and put the difference into my shopping/eating/touring pot. Sort of 'not putting all my eggs in one basket.'

If I get there and the place is great or I get upgraded...it makes me incredibly happy.

If the service or room is not as expected, I don't resent it as much. I go have a killer spa treatment or eat at a splurge restaurant instead!
lcuy is offline  
Jul 5th, 2004, 08:01 PM
  #3  
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Icuy - wow, what a different perspective. Thanks alot. That's actually my normal, default perspective, but I thought for Maui we could go for the impressive, 5 star, tour de force splurge. On the other hand, there's nothing better than getting a great deal on a great hotel (so what if it's not 5 star when you save $150 a night...). There's probably great 4* spots on Maui for alot less. The only other time I went to Maui was my honeymoon with my 1st wife and we stayed at the Westin Kaanipali and LOVED it. The funny thing is that my second and current wife also stayed at the Westin with her ex!

I'll take your comments to heart. I'm sure my wife would agree with you on this one! She is nervous about spending too much money and usually would prefer to have it for shopping

Maybe it's from all those years of staying at cheap hotels as a single guy that I'm now swinging in the other direction and I want to stay at the best of the best.

To be continued...

Steve
Maryland
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Jul 5th, 2004, 08:37 PM
  #4  
j12
 
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Lcuy I agree, what about possibly staying 1 night at the 4S? We've done that before, stayed at a place w/in our budget but splurged on 1 night of luxury, just a thought!
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Jul 5th, 2004, 08:45 PM
  #5  
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J12 - Another great idea. Maybe we can do a much less expensive hotel for 3 nights on Maui and save the FS for the last 2, balancing out the high cost of the FS... Maybe Priceline could come up with a "cheap" 4* 3 night hotel deal.

I don't think the wife would have any interest in switching hotels for just one night, but she might go for the 2 night end of vacation deal.

Steve
Maryland
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Jul 5th, 2004, 08:52 PM
  #6  
 
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Just my opinionated opinion-

If the 4S is going to be your big splurge than I think the 4S Big Island would be the better place to indulge. Better pools, crowd, and more relaxing. The Hapuna is nice but has kind of a cold feeling to it. The 4S BI is one of my favorite hotels.

4S Maui- to me it is just a place for wannabees. I have heard it called the Las Vegas of Hawaii which I agree with. Lots of implants, people screaming into their cellphones talking about themselves and ill-behaved children. Probably the biggest hotel disappointment we've ever had. We checked out early (even though we were upgraded to a suite) and went to Lanai.

One way to get an upgrade with Four Seasons properties is to book with a virtuoso agent. Go to virtuoso.com and choose either a California or New York agency with a lot of clout.
travelinwifey is offline  
Jul 5th, 2004, 09:12 PM
  #7  
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travelinwifey: Thanks for chiming in. I just checked the Big Island's Four Season's rates and they are almost TWICE as much as the Maui FS. They start at $685 a night for partial ocean vs partial ocean at the FS Maui would be $436 a night. Our garden room FS Maui idea would even be less at $372 a night.

Thanks for the tip though about the travel agent booking the room instead of us but the reason we don't like to do this is that if there is a problem, we have a 3rd party issue as well. And, don't you have to kind of pay in advance to the travel company part of the room fee?

Anyone else?

Steve
Maryland
stever is offline  
Jul 5th, 2004, 10:05 PM
  #8  
 
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Yikes. Well, keep checking those prices, hopefully the will come down in the future. All 4S BI's rooms are ocean view, just the standard rooms have the golf course directly in fromt and the ocean behind. Also pleasantholidays.com is a good way to check competing rates. No, you don't have to pay the (virtuoso) travel agent a fee, they get their comission from 4S. But the virtuoso agent is what got me the upgrade at $S Maui. The virtuoso agent may use pleasantholidays.com or classiccustomvacations.com to book your trip.

But just check the above mentioned websites from time to time- in my case classiccustomvacations.com was about $3-400 less than 4S direct. Hope this helps.
travelinwifey is offline  
Jul 5th, 2004, 10:06 PM
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Sorry for they typos I hit the send button too quick. Good evening.
travelinwifey is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 03:19 AM
  #10  
 
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We splurged on the Maui 4S over Christmas and it made our trip! It is definately worth the price you are looking at! We have stayed at the Kapalua Bay, Rennassiance (Sp?)Wailea, Kauai Hyatt and Princeville but the 4S is by far the best of all the hotels we have stayed at in Hawaii. Treat yourself and go there! You won't regret it! In September you won't have the trouble with children, it won't be as crowded in general, and you will be more likely to get an upgrade. Your wife will love you for it! The hotel, beach, and property are lovely and the workers are so friendly. Even my husband who would usually prefer to stay at a cheaper hotel and spend the saved money on activities said that he really enjoyed the hotel and would stay again in a heartbeat!
Ashley24 is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 04:52 AM
  #11  
 
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I also vote for Four Seasons Maui.
We stayed at the hotel in September, a couple of years ago, and had a great time.
If you alaways wanted to stay there why not, just go for it!
You will not be disappointed.
european17 is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 05:25 AM
  #12  
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Thanks to european17 and ashley24:

I guess travelinwifey just had a real opposite experience at the FS Maui compared to yours. So, it was nicer than even the Princeville hotel in Kauai? WOW. I can't wait. I guess we'll leave our plans as is to try and do it the full 5 nights there. She hates switching hotels, particularly on the same island. You lose a good part of the day that way.

Has anyone done the FS Maui and stayed in the Garden View or Mountainview room? What was it like? Did you regret it? That description of the hotel that travelinwifey reported : "4S Maui- to me it is just a place for wannabees. I have heard it called the Las Vegas of Hawaii which I agree with. Lots of implants, people screaming into their cellphones talking about themselves and ill-behaved children. Probably the biggest hotel disappointment we've ever had." -has anyone else felt this way???

Lastly, when you book through a travel agent, and you don't like a hotel after a couple of days and want to switch, are you somewhat locked into the deal because you didn't book direct? Lastly, do you still get the FS points (if there are any) when going through a travel agent?

Thanks
Steve
Maryland
stever is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 05:34 AM
  #13  
 
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We did the Mountain View package last year ($375) and are doing it again this year ($395). With the rental car (do the Road to Hana!!) and the absolutely unbelievable breakfast, this rate is actually a "bargain". Seriously. We loved every minute of our stay at the 4S Maui last year. And the room was fine. Actually, the room was more than fine!! The staff is great and the consierge will help you out with anything (They packed a cooler of water and ice into our rental for our trip to Hana, no charge and I didn't even ask them to). They don't nickel and dime you (No $15 resort fees). The restaurants are expensive, but with the rental, you can hunt out off property restaurants. I recommend the 4S Maui highly.
Stevey is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 05:49 AM
  #14  
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To Stevey- Thanks for your response. Are you saying you got a deal WITH a free rental car AND breakfast for $395??? Is this from the 4S website or somewhere else?

The best I could get was the $365 rate for mountainview room, which after talking to my 4S employee friend she said NOT to book as it's further from the beach and on top of the parking garage. Other than that, it's $372 a night over 5 nights for the garden view which she said would be much better, but no breakfast included (

I just found out from her that 4S just bought the Manele Bay Hotel AND The Lodge in Lanai and have closed them both to remodel them up to 4S standards.

Steve
Maryland
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Jul 6th, 2004, 05:53 AM
  #15  
 
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See if this works. If not, go to 4S website, choose Maui, then go to Vacations/Getaways. On the left side, then choose rates and packages. Click on Mountainside Package.


http://www.fourseasons.com/maui/vaca...&force_v2=true
Stevey is offline  
Jul 6th, 2004, 06:32 AM
  #16  
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Stevey: Thanks for the info. I just checked out that deal for 2005 and it goes up to $425 a night for the Mountainside room, which looks alot better in the pics than my friend had said! With the rental car AND the killer breakfast buffet, that may be our best bet so far. My friend who works high up in 4S in their business sales dept said she could put a word in for us at the hotel so maybe we'd get upgraded room-wise.

Much appreciated,
Steve
Maryland
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Jul 9th, 2004, 09:18 AM
  #17  
 
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We did the Mountain Side room at the Four Seasons and it was a nightmare. The room was very dark and we were right over the parking garage, which, was very noisy. The also have a dumpster there and many times we heard the breaking of glass bottles. You can also hear all the traffic from the main road. We saw another couple also moving their room while we were there. We asked to be moved and they charged us $250 per day for the only room left, which, was an OV. The MV room was so dismal we felt we had to in order to save the last 4 days of our honeymoon. Had we known in advance how bad this room would be we never would have picked it.

We love the Ritz Carlton. It is elegant and peaceful. The staff is wonderful and are always smiling. September is the best time of year for Kapalua. It's always sunny and warm. Kapalua has many more dining choices too. We just got back a couple of months ago and are returning to the Ritz in September again! The pool is so big with three tiers that you can find just the right spot where you feel comfortable. Pool service is always there and very attentive. The staff seems genuinely happy. The beds are sooo comfortable and the bathrooms are very spacious with seperate shower and lots of marble. I love the tropical decor too. We always feel so relaxed and pampered when we are at the Ritz, whereas, we felt very uncomfortable at the Four Seasons.

Someone said it right when they said it is very Vegas. Tons of cells phones and laptops at the pool are the norm at the pool at the Four Seasons. We actually heard one man telling the waiter at lunch " this is my new wife and I will do all the ordering for our lunch, my wife will have.. blah , blah, blah." They proceeded to make out right there at the table. We found people to be ever so phony. It was who can outdo whom. You will spend a fortune on dining. Very much more than in Kapalua. For example, in Kapalua we will get a $50.00 bottle of wine for probably $80.00, but in Wailea it will cost you $125.00 for the same bottle. We went to Spago and the chardonnay list was sparse so we ordered a bottle of Flowers, which was $120.00. We normally pay $40.00 at home and $75.00-80.00 in Hawaii for this wine.

This is my most recent experience. I hope this helps with your decision. I guess it comes right down to remembering that you are in Hawaii and are there to relax and enjoy.
fivestar is offline  
Jul 10th, 2004, 09:10 PM
  #18  
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To fivestar: Your trip description of the 4S Maui Mountainside room has blown my mind! We certainly don't want to spend $425 a night (even if it does include breakfast and a car) and hear a noisy parking garage and trash dumpster noise outside our room. We honestly can't afford $500 plus a night for an ocean view room at the 4S so maybe we'll check into the Ritz instead. So many people said negative things about the Kapalua weather, the far away factor from the ocean, etc... We heard the same things about the Ritz in Bali but we stayed there anyway and we LOVED the place from top to bottom. We could have cared less that we weren't ON the beach in Bali as we had ocean views and the pools were perfect for us. The view of the ocean off in the distance from the Bali pool was fine for us. We'll have beach front 5 nights in a row on the Big Island anyway the previous 5 nights before Maui.

THANK you. My 4S friend said NOT to book the Ritz in Maui as it's "a cold climate there" and the people aren't that friendly. She went there and wasn't impressed. I think she's very biased towards the 4S as she's in sales for them. I think we'll book the Ritz instead of the 4S and I'll call her a month before and see if she can get us an oceanview room for cheap. If she can't, I guess we'll just do the Ritz instead.

Anyone choose the Ritz over the 4S and were really happy they did?

Steve
Maryland
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Jul 10th, 2004, 10:51 PM
  #19  
 
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Well, I have stayed at the Kapalua Bay hotel next to the RC and found it my favorite hotel on Maui (although Maui is not my favorite island but a probable must do for a 1st timer). Weather-wise we had perfect temps during our weeks stay. It is a little windy but that keeps you from getting too warm. The views from the Kapalua Bay are among the best on the island. You can seethe 2 neighboring islands if Lanai and Molokai from the hotel's shore. I have not stayed at the RC because hubby and I try to stick to smaller hotels, but we have visited several times and it is a beautiful, majestic, resort.

Just to throw another choice at you there is a weekly (sometimes twice) auction on luxurylink.com for the Kapalua Bay hotel. 6nights, oceanview, and breakfast for approximately 1600-1800. If you check this out do not overbid, some people end up paying too much because they are anxious. The auction has been there every week in 2+ years, it's not going anywhere.

Are you thoroughly confused yet?lol Good luck.
travelinwifey is offline  
Jul 11th, 2004, 06:16 PM
  #20  
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Thanks travelinwifey... To complicate matters more, I just found out we'll have 3-4 free nights coming to us soon w/ Starwood hotels (Sheraton, Kapalua Bay Hotel, etc...). We COULD use it for Maui and do the Kapalua for 3-4 nights and then the FS Maui or the Ritz the other 2 nights... OR we could use it for Oahu (Moana Surfrider new tower room). I checked out the Kapalua Bay Hotel pics and it does look nice, but I've heard the place needs upgrading, and that the Ritz or FS is much nicer. If the rooms are free, I guess that won't matter much. Free rooms come before ALL other considerations for us!

The other thing is, we'll already get reduced price rooms for our 4 nights on Oahu as we'll be at a convention, so the free night value won't stretch as far there...

Thoughts on where to use the 3-4 free nights?
Steve
Maryland
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