Kauai in late March, 2019

Old Sep 25th, 2018, 08:32 PM
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Kauai in late March, 2019

Hi all,
We are planning to go to Kauai for 7-10 days towards the end of March and have bunches of questions: should we stay in one place or two (north and south shores)...and where? The Hyatt in Poipu and the St Regis in Princeville both have appeal, but are way above our budget, which is $350ish a night, lovely to be less, could be a little more. We like hiking and snorkeling, spent 10 days on the island over 20 years ago around Thanksgiving--where we had a great time in an $88 cottage in a suburb of Poipu, traveled in an economy car through the island, flew with miles in economy, took a helicopter, hiked in both jungle and Na Pali coast, snorkeled a bit and ha--we're d a great dinner Thanksgiving Day in a fancy restaurant in shorts and flip flops on impulse (we asked if our "attire" was acceptable)
The thing is...we are older than that now and have been a bit spoiled by more upscale hotel experiences. We loved the Mauna Kea on the Big Island, Volcano Place bungalows near Volcano National Park, can do 3.5 * charm in a cottage, but love room service, would like a view of the ocean, but are most concerned with charm and value.
Can you help?
Mahalo.
.
The thing is
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Old Sep 25th, 2018, 08:34 PM
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p.s. And who should we fly with? I'd like to divorce United with whom we have had an ambivalent marriage for many years, but it has SO many flights out of SFO and we like to use miles to upgrade on long flights. Any comments on this topic would also be more than welcome.
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Old Sep 25th, 2018, 09:53 PM
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We visit family on Kauai regularly. A few years ago DH and I both got Hyatt Visa cards and were able to swing 4 free nights at the Grand Hyatt Kauai in Poipu (2 nights per card). It is definitely worth looking into and is my favorite of the resorts we have tried on Kauai. We once got a very good package from Pleasant Holidays that included a week at the Hyatt, car, breakfast and flights. If you can't swing a stay there do stop at the Seaview Terrace for a sunset drink as the views are amazing. We have also stayed at the Sheraton and Marriott Kauai Resort; both are ocean front and have amenities that you might wish for. Rooms at all 3 hotels were comfortable, Sheraton's pool is small if you are not an ocean swimmer and the latter 2 have limited dining options on property. Hyatt and Marriott have balconies or lanais but I can't remember if we had one at the Sheraton. Sheraton's bed was so good we bought one when we got home.

We fly from LAX and nonstops are usually limited to Delta or American. Both offer some type of seat upgrades with a little more room which is important for us (DH is tall). Alaska flies nonstop from San Diego but I don't know about SFO.

If you don't mind unpacking and packing again staying in both the north and south of the island has appeal. Another thought is to stay in Kapaa and be in the middle of both. I haven't done this but other family have. Waipouli Beach Resort is worth a look.
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Old Sep 25th, 2018, 11:07 PM
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We spend a month oh Kauai every winter. We own a timeshare at the Marriott Waiohai right on the beach at Poipu. I love that area - beautiful and lots of good restaurants. I wouldn't stay at the Marriott Kauai Resort - location near Lihue which I don't like. Check out the Sheraton. On the north shore, the St. Regis is closing for renovations.

Alaska does fly non-stop from SFO.
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 06:25 AM
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Thank you both for your responses. Kathie, I thought I remembered from somewhere that you went to Kauai every year--I'm glad to have heard from you and hope all is well. I looked quickly at the Sheraton and think we will reserve there, will look in more detail when I get home (I'm in Yosemite right now, visiting a friend who works here. I retired in April; DH is home at work). If you and Cheryl are ever in Bay Area, I/we would love to meet you for a glass of wine or a meal. I remember how very helpful your Japan advice was some years ago, also that you guys were in Paris about the same time we were a while back.
Scoottoir, I will check Pleasant Holidays.
I'm thinking of extending our vacation to 10 days, either 5 days in Poipu and 5 in the North or all 10 in Poipu--will discuss with DH who hates changing hotels. Do either of you have any nonSt Regis hotel suggestions in the North?
Thank you again.
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 07:56 AM
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Re airlines: we take Hawaiian from Oakland. I've heard Alaska is okay but Hawaiian makes you feel like Hawaii. Last time I upgraded to Economy Plus on a widebody and loved it.

United doesn't make me happy. I would want first class on United.

it's funny--I've never wanted room service! Although I can imagine situations I would want it. We are booked for condos in Princeville and Poipu in first half of December. Hmm, now I can imagine room service bringing breakfast to my lanai...
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 08:55 AM
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As far as I'm concerned, one airline is as good as the other, as long as they get you there safely. However, we often fly Alaska out of SFO tomorrow - we get a companion ticket with some credit card (B of A Visa I think) so we save $2-300. (I don't expect an airline to make me happy, I just don't want to be UNhappy about the experience)

We've also done the Hyatt credit card and also stayed 4 nights at the Grand Hyatt. I think the credit card deal has changed though - you get points now, not 2 free nights worldwide (loved that deal).

I also am not a fan of the Kauai Marriott - last I was there (admittedly some time) the hotel itself was just "tired", and it's on a lagoon, not on the ocean. But the Marriott Waiohai is in a great location, the interior grounds (within the horseshoe shape) are beautiful as long as you're facing "in" or toward the ocean (not "out" toward a lovely parking lot). The rooms are all 2 bdr condos, pretty nice. The hallways are functional - looks like a hospital - my only real complaint about the place. Nice pool, nice beach.

The Sheraton Poipu is in a great location on a great beach.
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 09:59 AM
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Congrats on your retirement!

We settle in for a month a our place, so you can tell how I'd vote on whether to change locations.

There are not many hotels on the North Shore, though there is a Westin. I'm sure it's lovely, but high above the beach. People who stay there mostly rent condos, often in Princeville. Princeville looks very suburban to my eye, but many people love it. I also don't like that it is on the cliffs above the beach, so no easy beach access.

Just a few comments about other options: While I'm not a fan of the Kauai Marriott in terms of location and in terms of much of the hotel, they have done a major remodel and I would describe the public areas as "glitzy." Lots of honeymooning couples. On the cliffs above that hotel are the Marriott Lagoons. The two and three bedroom units are very nice with a huge lanai and high end appliances (some of which I find annoying). It has the same disadvantages as the St Regis and Westin - no easy beach access, but great for golfers. We've been comped a couple of stays there and it's fine for a few days, but I wouldn't want that to be my vacation. Back in the Poipu area, there is a new (1-2 years old) place now owned by the Marriott, called Koloa Landing. It is part of the autograph collection, so should be lovely. It is, however, not on the beach, but perhaps a quarter of a mile away. Very close to lots of restaurants.

Thanks for the invitation to meet up in SF. It's been a while since we spent time there, so we need to get back.
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 12:46 PM
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Check out Hawaiian Airlines out of Oakland.
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Old Sep 26th, 2018, 12:54 PM
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In Princeville I would look at Hanalei Bay Resort, beautiful place, nice pools and an onsite bar. It is a vacation rental though, not a hotel although it has some hotel like amenities. I have only visited friends there and eaten there, in the past I stayed at Marriott Kauai Beach Club in Lihue.
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Old Sep 28th, 2018, 07:52 AM
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Update: We've decided to spend all 10 days in one place Poipu area, probably midMarch (we'd like to go before spring break). We will indeed fly Hawaiian Air -- are trying to wean ourselves from United and this Oakland-Lihue looks like a great way to do it (we live in East Bay).
Considering the Sheraton with ocean view (what is the dif between ocean front and ocean view), looking yearningly at Hyatt,
beginning to consider condos, where we would like to find ocean view (but wouldn't have to) and would again welcome suggestions. I guess Air B and B or VBRO are places to start?? Never gone this route before.
Mahalo.
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Old Sep 28th, 2018, 11:06 AM
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Ocean view means you can see the ocean from your room. Ocean front means the ocean is right outside your room.

Yes, you cn go the Air BnB or VBRO route, but there are also rental agencies in Koloa (the nearest town to Poipu) that specialize in renting condos in the area. You should be able to get a place with a view of the ocean, but you will have a closer view at the Sheraton. There are condos at the Kiahuna Plantation, located near the Sheraton, that are very nice, and the location is great. (Also an excellent restaurant on the grounds).. I looked it up and found that booking.com books there; you may also find owners renting out their units. My sister and her family have rented there before and really liked it.

Good luck!
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Old Sep 29th, 2018, 10:05 PM
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Hi all,
Deciding became much easier after DH said that we live in a condo at home, he didn't want to stay in a condo on vacation. Fair enough. So we are now reserved at the Sheraton from March 14-24 in a Luxury King with Ocean View (before it was written ocean front; I called hotel and tried to clarify, they sent me to main number. Everyone told me what Kathie said, but also maintained I was right on the ocean. I will try again on Monday. I would prefer a smaller room that you can walk right onto the beach. (Hotel staff not super cordial, telephone person not super sharp, but we did seem to get a good rate).

I reserved premium economy seats with Hawaiian Islands nonstop Oakland-Lihue, so thank you for that tip, local traveler and mmajm.

Mahalo.
`
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Old Sep 30th, 2018, 01:51 AM
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Great! It sounds like you are all set!
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Old Sep 30th, 2018, 09:05 AM
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I just started reading TripAdvisor and there is a considerable number of negative reviews (some mentioning construction, which should be done by March I'd think), so I made a backup reservation for a partial view at Koa Kea resort...and the search continues. Finalized plane reservations, got trip insurance, and reserved rental car.
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Old Sep 30th, 2018, 02:46 PM
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Now I am truly settled. We will spend first three nights at either the Sheraton or the Koa Kea or the Hyatt (which we can now afford), because I found us a bed-and-breakfast in the hills facing the next valley, where we will spend the last seven nights of our stay--in the smallest room, mostly because it's the only one available for all seven nights, partly because it's very charming. AND $225 a night, breakfast included. We were enchanted by all the beauty of theLawai (?) Valley--living in the SF Bay Area, we have much easier access to ocean than to the lush softness of greenery around us.

http://www.marjorieskauaiinn.comhttp...eskauaiinn.com

I promise to do a trip report. And again--mahalo.
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Old Oct 1st, 2018, 04:08 PM
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I finally got a chance to look at your B&B - it looks lovely.
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Old Oct 1st, 2018, 05:21 PM
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This is the correct link Marjories Kauai Inn - a Bed & Breakfast
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Old Oct 1st, 2018, 06:32 PM
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Mahalo
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Old Oct 3rd, 2018, 12:18 PM
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Your questions about March on Kauai prompted me to get off my duff and plan a return visit for us. We are now booked for the first week of March, splitting our time between Princeville and Poipu, two condos, one in the Princeville area and one at Kiahuna Plantation, where we stayed on our first visit to the island in 1989. Thinking of flying from Oakland on Hawaiian as well; non stop to Lihue, and right now the fares are much better than out of our home in Sacramento.

Mahalo.
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