Kaanapali Beach Hotel

2525 Kaanapali Pkwy., Kaanapali, Hawaii, 96761, USA

From the Hawaiian artifacts in the garden to the tropical interiors, this charming beachfront hotel is full of aloha—locals say it's one of the few resorts on the island where you can get a true Hawaiian experience. The entire staff take part in the hotel's ongoing Pookela program, which teaches guests about the history, traditions, and values of Hawaiian culture; you can participate by taking complimentary classes in Hawaiian cultural activities and touring the native garden. The basic rooms are decorated with Hawaiian motifs, wicker, and rattan; each has a lanai and faces either the beach beyond the lawn or the lush mountains. The Tiki Terrace restaurant serves delicious meals and one of the most bountiful Sunday brunches on the island.

YOU SHOULD KNOW There is no elevator on the three-story wings, only on the six-story wings.


The 425 square foot rooms come with either garden, pool, partial or full ocean view, or oceanfront. Rooms include either two double beds or one king and one twin daybed. Each room has a furnished lanai, air conditioning, mini-fridge, coffee maker, and free Wi-Fi. Decor in the rooms reflects a Hawaiian style that is somewhat old fashioned--that’s to say, it is a bit outdated but still authentic.

10% of the rooms allow smoking on the lanai. If you want to ensure that you are away from these rooms, be sure to request non-smoking during your booking. If not booking directly on the hotel’s website, you should call and follow up.


All bathrooms feature a tub and shower combo, except those in the Moloka’i wing--those bathrooms are smaller and simpler and feature a standing shower. The smaller rooms have more compact bathrooms, with large vanities, while the oceanfront rooms have a little more space in the bathrooms and smaller vanities.


The large lobby has lots of Hawaiiana throughout, including in the carpeting, lava rock walls, and plenty of photos. There is some seating, and the reception desk is also reminiscent of old school lodges.


The large, whale-shaped pool is certainly fun, surrounded by a law, sun deck, and some loungers. It is the only pool on a large property, however, so it can get a bit crowded.


Aloha Spa and Salon, located next to the hotel’s lobby, offers a variety of services to guests and to other island visitors, as well as to locals. Services include traditional Lomi Lomi massage, facials, and other pampering services, as well as salon services like mani/pedis and wedding services.


Tiki Terrace is the hotel’s open air dining option, serving up breakfast, dinner, and Sunday brunch. The locally-sourced menu features some delicious dishes, including a low fat option that reflects the makeup of the more traditional Hawaiian diet (and appeals to the healthy traveler). Dinner includes a show of hula and Hawaiian music from 6 to 9 p.m.

In addition to Tiki Terrace, there is a grab and go option for snacks, drinks, and light fare open from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. There is also a weekly luau, the Legends of Ka’anapali Luau, on Monday nights that features an exquisite banquet, local market, and even a fire walker!


Tiki Bar is the first outdoor beach bar to open on Maui, and features draft beer, craft cocktails, and island drinks. Their mai tais stand out and pupus and entertainment are also available to guests.


Getting Around

It’s easy (and preferable) to explore Maui’s smaller towns by foot, but to get to them and around the island, you’ll need to rent a car. If you plan on exploring the Road to Hana, get something with a little extra horsepower (but not too big as the road can get very narrow). This hotel charges $14 per day for self parking and $18 per day for valet (with in and out privileges).


Star Noodle (11-min drive) is a favorite among locals and visitors, a place where creative chefs integrate new ideas into old dishes. The family-style concept is applied to the tasty plates that illustrate a Maui twist on Asian classics. Fish, pork, and of course noodles dominate the menu, but there are definitely plenty of veggie options, along with vibrant cocktails and mocktails made with fresh-pressed juices.

Enjoy a great meal in a fun, relaxed atmosphere at Down the Hatch (13-min drive). This self-service restaurant is a favorite among locals and tourists, loved as much for its vibe as for its drinks and food. The southern aloha spirit runs strong with friendly staff and a menu that features heavily on fish and seafood, particularly in sandwich and taco form, but also includes specialties like chicken & waffles. Those looking for a plant-based option won’t be able to get enough of their sweet potato tacos. It’s one of two restaurants in Lahaina that stays open until midnight. Round your meal out with a refreshing treat from sister company (in the same courtyard) Hawaii Shave Ice Co.


Find a daily happy hour from 5 to 6 p.m., live music from 6 to 9 p.m. Saturday through Monday, and trivia nights on Wednesday at family-friendly Pour House (10-min drive) that features cocktails, beer, and an extensive wine list.

Monkeypod (6-min drive) has some really great food, with a focus on local products that create a variety of appetizers, pizzas, noodles, salads, and seafood dishes in a fun, family-friendly environment. Their newest location in Whaler’s Village has two daily happy hours from 3 to 5:30 p.m. and 9 to 11 p.m., as well as live music most days--performances start at 1, 4, and 7 p.m.


The old school Hawaiian vibe is the draw at Kaanapali, reminiscent of the 60s-era Hawaii that some visitors may have romanticized. Hawaiian culture is on full display at this hotel, from the decor in the rooms to the cultural activities and the staff singing for guests on Aloha Friday and the incredible luau on Mondays. There are no resort fees, plenty of activities to do on-site, and great dining options. A great staff and location (on the beach and near Whalers Village) are a big draw, too.


On the beach
Local Flavor


Phones: 800-262–8450;808-661–0011

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