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picklepeach Feb 17th, 2006 09:57 AM

Maui in May 2006

I picked up Maui Revealed, thanks to the posters here. Great resource and easier to get a handle on Maui than just cruising the net.

My DH and I will head to Maui, our first time, for our 10th year wedding anniversary in May '06 for 6 nights.

I've done TONS of internet research, especially on condos. My head is spinning, though the location, rates and availablities help narrow down the choices.

Our plan is to stay the first 3 nights in Kaanapali at the Whaler, corner unit condo for $350/night. This is when I imagine we will really get the sand in our toes, check out several beaches, sight see and the remaining time eat sashimi from our Lanai. hahaha

The last 3 nights, we plan on staying in Wailea for a pampering and quieter time. I am still deciding on which hotel ... the Fairmont Kea Lani, which I've read is top notch all the way and more for adults ($495 rack rate). OR The Grand Wailea, dazzling, louder, but on the Wailea Beach, which looks AWESOME.

The hotel rates are pretty daunting, but I guess it's worth $500+ a night?!?!

Your comments and suggestions are welcomed =)

sherrie Feb 17th, 2006 10:51 AM

We visited Maui for our 10th anniversary in 2001. We spent 5 nights at the Kea Lani and it was very nice. Adult pool is great and the beach is very good as well. The GW is very close and only a little walk down the beach walk from the Kea Lani. If I were to do it again, I'd stay at the Kea Lani again primarily because there are fewer children and the GW is more "family" oriented. If I were traveling with my family, I'd probably stay at the GW. We didn't stay in Kaanapali, however, we did visit and the Whaler has a great location, next to the shopping center and restaurants. Very convenient. Good luck with your decision. You won't be disappointed if you choose the Kea Lani IMHO.

crazy4Hawaii Feb 17th, 2006 11:46 AM

The Kea Lani is very popular for families because of the suites. The Grand Wailea is not "louder" and has very large, opulent grounds. Neither place will make you feel surrounded by children IMO. Of the three major resorts right together there, I would say the Four Seasons is the most "adult-oriented" however. I have never paid more than $400. per night for GW. I got a terrace room for $313. for early June this year using the Akamai rate, but booked back in December. The Kea Lani often offers five nights for the cost of four. You just have to keep your eyes open...

picklepeach Feb 17th, 2006 01:52 PM

Thank you guys for your insights on the Kea Lani.

I've just been thrown for a loop on our plans. After checking out Costco's website, I might have to scrap our condo at the Whaler. The prices on Costco's site look really good - prices come out to mid 200's per night for the Grand Wailea and Fairmont Kea Lani, BUT in terrace or garden level. We really wanted to stay in an oceanfront condo, but the prices might be too good to pass up.

If I would have booked on my own, a la carte, we would be looking at $2500 for 6 nights, without car and breakfasts.

Take a look at what Costco is offering ..

Fairmont Kea Lani
5 Nights from $1,240
Vacation includes:
Fresh flower lei greeting
Five-day Dollar midsize rental car
Accommodations in a Moderate Suite
Daily breakfast for two
Hotel tax

Grand Wailea (7 Nights from $1,682)
Vacation includes:
Fresh flower lei greeting
Seven-day Dollar midsize rental car
Accommodations in a Terrace-View King Room
Hotel tax

Do you think the enjoyment level would still be high if we stayed in a terrace or garden view room?

Back to being confused ... scratching head.

picklepeach Feb 17th, 2006 02:12 PM

Ok, I just called Costco and they don't have the Kea Lani available ...

Also, the prices that I listed above were per person ... So, I will go back to our original plan.

Whaler, corner condo unit facing Kaanapali Beach for $350/night

Kea Lani, terrace view $495/night

crazy4Hawaii Feb 17th, 2006 02:14 PM

The ocean views from the Grand Wailea are VERY distant. From our terrace room we had oblique views of the ocean and Haleakala - plus we spent almost NO time in the room. So for me, at that particular resort, the ocean view is not important. Now if I could afford one of those ocean front villas at the Kea Lani I would say, "Yea, baby!" Splitting your stay would be great but does not lend itself to getting good deals.

crazy4Hawaii Feb 17th, 2006 02:18 PM

Oops! I posted before your last post popped up. That seems like a lot for your room at the Kea Lani!
But, maybe that's what "the market will bear"?

sherrie Feb 17th, 2006 03:49 PM

When we visited the Kea Lani, I joined the President's Club (Fairmont's FF club) and received a free upgrade certificate. I'm not sure if they still offer that, but I'd call to find out. If so, you can book the terrace view and hopefully get upgraded to the next level. Of course, I expect it depends on availability, but if you tell them you are celebrating anniversary, they do try to treat you special. I think we booked POV and received an OV room at check in. It's worth a shot. I think the $495 rate sounds pretty good. You can always book and continue to look for better deals and rebook if you find one.

sandyca Feb 17th, 2006 04:02 PM

The four seasons and the Grand Wailea share the same beach. The GW is much too large to be romantic, more of a convention hotel. The four seasons is better, however all the rooms at both are not that close to the ocean. There are many condos that are much closer, however not as much luxury. The Kea Lani is very nice and a short walk to the others, more secluded. I would choose that of the 3. However I would never spend that much money to stay at any of them, because the beaches in Hawaii are all public and free. (I do usually go to the beach in front of the four seasons) I prefer a condo. The Wailea / Makena area is very nice. I will also be in Maui in May. The snorkeling should be great. Use your Maui Revealed book, I have been over 20 times to maui and that book is great!

sandyca Feb 17th, 2006 04:16 PM

consider booking resort class on Priceline you should be able to get something for arount 180 to $200 a night at that time.

picklepeach Feb 17th, 2006 05:03 PM

You all are GREAT! Thanks for the tips and for sharing your experiences.

Crazy4 ~ It definitely helps to know that the ocean views are distant in the Grand Wailea ... it doesn't make me feel like I'm "missing out" if we go with a garden/terrace view. Thank you!

Sherrie ~ I sign-uped for the Fairmont's "President's Club" just a few days ago. I may have read your post on another thread about the fantastic upgrade that you had received ... and then signed myself up. I will likely book and continue to look, just as you mentioned. Thanks for your comments on the locality of the Whaler and also for the reasons you would choose Kea Lani again =)

SandyCA ~ Your observations/experiences of the Grand W is exactly what I keep reading about (actually mixed reviews) ... that it's too big to be romantic and alot like Vegas or Disneyland in Maui. I hear, however, that the spa treatments are wonderful. I'm heading over to Priceline right now ... thanks for the tip.

Will keep you posted ;)

visormom Feb 18th, 2006 05:53 PM

PP...sounds like you have already recv'd some great info, so just adding my 2 cents. We stayed in an OV room at the Kea Lani last summer...OMG>>>simply breathtaking. Breakfast and nightcaps every day on the XLARGE terrace. The hotel is small enough that it feels almost boutiqueish. The beach there was also very nice...great service...albeit a jellyfish breakout while we were there :( Our room was just simply can't go wrong at the KL. Have a wonderful trip!

picklepeach Feb 21st, 2006 10:17 AM

Visormom ~ Sounds like your time at the Kea Lani was absolutely perfect! We hope to have that same experience ;) Thanks for your post.

Melissa5 Feb 22nd, 2006 11:17 AM

Happy anniversary. We enjoyed staying at the Maui Prince hotel just south of Wailea for our anniversary. It's more low-key than the other resorts, pool is too small, but who needs a pool when the Maui Prince has a great beach for swimming and snorkeling? (Snorkel in the morning as the wind picks up after noon on this coast.) Loved this beach, more private and less crowded than the looong over-built beach at Kaanapali.

We could hear the ocean from our room at the Maui Prince when we left the sliding glass door to the balcony open, and just closed the screen. We slept this way at night and didn't use the air conditioner. Maui Prince is also less expensive than many of the other resorts. Their hot tubs are also too small, if you are a big pool and hot tub fan, this is not the right resort for you.

Best-located hotel at Kaanapali is the Sheraton.

WE used Maui Revealed. Good book. If you use it for the road to Hana, keep in mind that you won't have time for more than 1 or 2 or those wonderful stops he mentions. We loved spending 2 nights at the Hotel Hana Maui in our searanch cottage, oh so romantic, with private jacuzzi. That was after 5 nights at the Maui Prince. I have some photos if you want to e-mail me and write "Maui anniversary" in the subject line as I pre-view all mail before deciding to open it. [email protected] I don't open unsolicited mail.

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