Hawaii

Ala Moana Hotel
Review by Libby, 8/5/2014

The hotel was very nice and centrally located. Next time we would prefer to stay closer to Schoffield Barricks. Although it is only 17 miles from the hotel that was an hour to an hour and a half each trip due to traffic. We really spent the bulk of our time at different beaches and visiting with friends. We did a college visits to Hawaii University Manoa and Hawaii Pacific University. Hawaii University Manoa has a more traditional campus and would be our pick of the two. We did see the Dole Plantation which is beautiful. We will contact you with more advance notice for our second trip and look forward to seeing Pearl Harbor along with some other sites we missed out on.
Thanks Again.

Aston Mahana

Review by Nina, 3/25/2015

Hi, we are back from Maui and wanted to give you feedback so you might use it for future travelers

We loved the Aston Mahana.  As long as you aren’t expecting a resort with restaurants and fancy pools, you won’t be disappointed.  That we got to sit on our balcony and watch whales leaping and playing right in front of the condo was amazing.  The beach is a 2 minute walk away and if you want a restaurant, Dukes is a 3 minute walk.  There is a grocery store right across the street.   The condo itself was beautiful and the expedia lady in the lobby helped us book a stand up paddle board lesson which was great.  The hot tub and shuffle board were good too.  There were 4 new gas grills that we often used to cook dinner.

My mother in law’s only complaint was there was no tv in her bedroom.

For us the trade off to being right on the water was worth giving up the fancy resort next door we had originally looked at. Another recommendation is we used this company not only for stand up paddle board lessons, but he did a family photo shoot for us as his main job is as a photographer.  The Expedia lady hooked us up with him and couldn’t recommend him enough.  We loved him  http://www.sup2u-maui.com/  For our portraits he charged $150 and we get 40 pictures.  He took us around the Hyatt so we had waterfall, ocean and flowers as backdrops, it was great.

The whales were totally amazing.  I am hooked!  I actually miss them.

Thanks for all your help, we had a great vacation!

Aqua Waikiki Wave/Waipouli Beach Resort

Review by Paula & John, 12/15/2015

Dave,

We had a fantastic time! 

Yes, we were on the 3rd floor and had a King bed.

The attachment shows our view (Bld E, 306).

Can’t think of anything that could have improved the service.

Accommodations were great and the airline and car reservations worked well.

We look forward to our next trip.

 

Thanks for all your help!

Paula and John

Honua Kai Resort

Review by John, 10/18/2015

Hello – Sorry it’s taken so long to reply to this email.  The vacation was great.  We loved every moment.  The accommodations were perfect for us and everyone had the vacation of a lifetime.  I found that a very necessary reference to have is the Maui Revealed book and application.

Our favorite things were the sunrise at Haleakala summit and the road to Hana trip.  We also did surfing lessons and two of the three of us that did it really liked it.  The Old Lahaina Lua was fantastic and we would recommend that to anyone above all others.

Your service and planning was fantastic and we will definitely use you again if/when we want to plan a trip like this again.

Best regards,

John

Royal Lahaina Resort

Review by Christina, 3/24/2016

I’m so glad you contacted me!  I have been meaning to either call or email you and tell you thank you for everything that you guys did for us, our trip was fantastic!!

We had a great time in Maui!  The resort was beautiful, the pool was great, the beach was great.  Our only issue was that our one-bedroom suite at the Honua Kai resort did not have the bathroom that was depicted on their website.  Their website indicated a large bathroom with a tub, shower and two sinks.  The bathroom we received in our one-bedroom suite had a tub/shower combo with one sink and it was very small.  Other than that small issue (that wouldn’t of even been an issue if there wasn’t four of us in the room) we love the resort and the room was great.  

We did take a day trip to Oahu to go to Pearl Harbor.  It was a long day and we did have a small issue at Pearl Harbor itself.  Due to high winds the boats out to the actual memorial were not running.  Obviously not anything anyone could foresee.  We probably could’ve taken an earlier flight back.   We actually tried to do that however the cost made the change prohibitive.

Our kids did go snuba’ing at the Sheraton at Black rock.  There was a company that offered free short snuba trials at the hotel pool and then we talk to them about doing a longer excursion.  So the kids ended up doing a 35 minute dive while we were there.  They LOVED it!!  The company info and pics are below!

We also did a half-day whale watching trip with Pacific whale foundation.   It was fantastic but not for people that get motion sickness!  Dramamine wasn’t quite strong enough for the side-to-side listing.  There was an adolescent whale that kept going from one side of the boat to the other so they could not move the boat.  As a result, we were in a very aggressive side-to-side listing situation for about half an hour to 45 minutes.  Several people were seeking ginger ale and buckets!   The whale going from one side of the boat to the other gave us fantastic opportunities to see him and take amazing pictures.  Pics are below

The last activity we did was a luau at the Royal Lahina hotel it was also a lot of fun.

Review by Nicholas & Rachel, 10/22/2015

Kim and Dave, we apologize for not getting back to you earlier. After we returned from Maui, we had several appointments and our wedding reception.

Everything in Maui was incredible! This was hands-down the best vacation experience we’ve ever had in our lives. Maui is so beautiful. Honestly, Rachel and I thought about looking for jobs while we were there because we didn’t want to come home.

The flights going and coming back were perfect for us, thanks so much for making it as easy as possible! Also, the rental car was a huge success and we were really glad to have it even though it cost $10 per day to park it. I cannot imagine us not having one when we go back next time. Excellent recommendation by Kim!

Royal Lahaina was fantastic. We loved staying there! We can’t imagine staying anywhere else next time. Everything is really updated and the room was super nice. When we checked in, the resort manager spoke with us about the Wedding/Honeymoon option and they upgraded our room from a standard tower room, to a deluxe tower room with a much better view of the ocean. It was great! They also invited Rachel and I to a Manager’s Cocktail Party with several other couples that were staying at the resort while we were there. It was basically a meet and greet with the customer relations staff (who is all incredible nice) accompanied by drinks and food. We were blown away at their excellent customer service at the resort. Their customer relations manager, Gilbert, greeted us every time he saw us around the resort and asked how everything was with our stay. Little things like that are great and made us feel very welcome at the resort. We love the layout of the resort and ease of getting around and finding things. Their breakfast buffet was just what we needed after we got there since the flight was so long and the drive from the airport took extra time. There is apparently an annual marathon that starts at the airport and ends on the resort area we were staying at going on the day we arrived. The daily resort transport bus was super nice to take around the resort area. The drivers were very friendly and had excellent suggestions for things to do and places to see. Rachel got her hair and nails done at the Fairway Shoppes just up the street from the resort, which worked out perfectly for our wedding. The Whaler’s Shoppes were also very nice. And of course, the beach! It was the first time I had ever seen an ocean, much less get to swim in one. Loved it! Beach access was very easy and the showers were handy for rinsing off the sand.

The wedding coordinator that Kim found for us worked out so well! Sandra from Just Mauied was super nice, flexible, and very informative. Our beach wedding was gorgeous! We got married on the Kapalua Bay beach, just North of where we were staying. Sandra lived very close to airport, so she contacted us right after we got off the plane to meet and she sized my tuxedo at her home.

Sandra recommended us a few places to eat on the night of our wedding (sunset wedding). We ended up getting reservations at Meriman’s since it was right off the beach we were married on. The food was outstanding! We plan on eating there again when we go back next time.

We also stopped by the Maui Brewing Company, which was just North of the resort area as well. Great beer and food! Their Imperial Coconut Porter was phenomenal. Boulevard and craft beer lovers (like me) will love stopping here.

One day we took a drive down to Wailea to sight-see and the houses and scenery were really nice.

Road to Hana was very cool too. We didn’t end up driving the entire route because we wanted to get back to the resort and go swimming before it got dark.

The luau at Royal Lahaina was a lot of fun. It is a bit pricey, but the food and the show are well worth it! Not to mention, it was only 50 feet away from the resort lobby.

We also ate at Mama’s Fish House and it was extremely good too.

Rachel and I want to thank you so much for helping us coordinate everything for our wedding and trip. It was perfect! And thanks so much for the Hawaiian Host candies when we arrived. Those are addicting!

Thanks again, and we look forward to setting up future vacations with you in the future!

Nicholas & Rachel

Review by Mick, 7/30/2014

Hi Kim,
My wife and I had a wonderful time. Our observations relate to our impressions as I am sure the others will get back with you.

Regarding the Royal Lahaina Resort:
We were treated extremely well by their staff who were very considerate and courteous.
Our room, which was the second story suite, was on the end of the property and had just been renovated. It was private, roomy and well appointed. They are gradually restoring all of them I think, and as they do that I would not hesitate to recommend this resort.
Being so close to the beach and the sounds of the ocean was a nice feature for us rather than riding an elevator to and from upper floors in a high-rise hotel.
The beach is clean and relatively private. Even though Kaanapali Beach stretches through several resorts, ours has a natural block on the south end (a point) that keeps beach traffic limited.
The restaurant has a neat view, and the food and drinks were well made.
Overall we had no regrets on property.
Just so you’ll know, they only have one ice machine to service the non-hotel guests so it would have been a little more convenient had there been another one on the grounds.
Also, there is not laundry facility at the resort.
There are at least 2 golf courses that the various resorts share – Royal Lahaina was included in that arrangement.
We discovered a small restaurant tied to the resort just north of us and in walking distance called The Castaway. It is a good alternative.
The Road to Hana is probably a must-see, but it takes an entire day. There are many stops of note but the last set of falls coupled with reflective pools that are both within a state park – both require substantial hikes – are worth it.
Our Pearl Harbor trip required an island hop but should be visited – it took a total morning. The submarine on site and the USS Missouri are separate fees.
While on Oahu we liked the Dole Plantation
We weren’t as impressed with the north shore where we’d hoped to see sea turtles
Next time we would at least visit Diamond Head and Waikiki which were in the opposite direction
On Maui –
Mama’s Fish House is a must, reservations ahead of time is recommended – I made ours a month ahead. It s a beautiful setting, great food and service and carries a 5-star price tag.
There is another place to eat that serves breakfast and lunch only – called The Gazebo. You’ll wait 45 minutes but it is right on the ocean about 12 minutes north of the Royal Lahaina.
The Beach Walk is nice and runs through all of the resorts in Kaanapali.
The town Lahaina is south, it has a great shopping/restaurant area over several blocks on the ocean. It is a short drive there but there are many things to do and some history.
We discovered too late that the snorkeling trips are reasonably priced if you shop for them off the resorts. We did snorkel but did it off the beach. A place called Boss Frogs in Lahaina had a deal that took you out to snorkel in two different but scenic spots – and fed you lunch. It is only a half day and we heard that the morning was recommended (6:30-11:30). It ran $59.00 person before tax. I don’t know if the rental equipment is included in that – however we rented the equipment for about $15.00 a person.
The guys rented scooters for a day which was fun but probably not for everyone. Not very expensive.
Thanks

Sheraton Kauai

Review by Thea & Brad,

So sorry this took so long to get back to you, we have been so busy since getting home we are actually both in one place for a weekend since then!!

Oh my goodness!!! We had an absolutely AMAZING time!! We can not thank you all enough for helping us get to Hawaii AND get home!!! Thank you so much for helping us and making sure we were well taken care of!  

I would say that my favorite part was the absolute beauty of the island and it’s relaxed atmosphere- oh and the countless activities that we could do. The resort was the location in general and the staff was fabulous. They offered daily activities that we could have participated in, but we were just so busy and on the go.

The only thing that I can think of for future people going (more just words of advice)- IF they are able to sit in the front of the helicopter then I would ask for that to be where to sit.  Brad and I based on our weight should have been in the front of the helicopter, but there was a couple that paid a little extra so they could sit up front, this made for taking some pictures/videos or just seeing more difficult. Also, if people can’t sit up front then if they could sit on the right side of the helicopter at least- you get a much better viewing angle!!!

I will send the pictures in a separate email – I am not tech savvy so I can’t get them to upload to this email!!

Thanks so very much for everything

Thea & Brad

Hawaii Thea Sea Turtle in Hawaii Water Amazing view of Hawaii Hawaii from Helicopter Thea & Brad Hawaii on the water Hawaii Palm Trees Thea & Brad Hawaii Sunset Thea & Brad Hawaii Water Thea & Brad Hawaii Waterfall Rainbow in Hawaii Surfs up in Hawaii Brad Thea & Brad Hawaii Thea & Brad Hawaii Sunset WOW Hawaii Sunset

Sheraton Maui Resort
Review by Julie, 8/7/2014

Hi Kim,

Here are a few things about our Maui trip:

1. Sheraton Maui Resort at Black Rock – excellent experience all the way around, would highly recommend based on our stay. Absolutely beautiful & great location. Loved that it was walking distance to Whaler’s Village.
2. Goofy Foot Surf School – both kids took surfing lesson, both got up & loved it. Great experience – would recommend them. They’re in Lahaina which we thought was a very neat area.
3. Skyline Eco-Adventures – Zipline. All 4 of us did this & really enjoyed it. They had a brand new offering called Zip & Dip that we tried, 3 regular zip courses and then you finish with a zip line that goes across a fresh water lake so you drop into the water. They have a dock so you can do it as many times as you want, or you can just swim or paddle surf for about the last 30 mins. We thought their guides really made it fun also, they were great guys, very social & entertaining. Some people who are looking for extreme adventure might prefer a course that’s more challenging, but it was perfect for us.
4. Snorkeling at Black Rock – best we’ve ever seen. They have excursions, of course, but we decided to try this first since it was right there at our beach & the reviews were fabulous for Black Rock. It was incredible – absolutely gorgeous & only $8 per hour to rent the equipment vs. $400+ for an excursion (cheapest thing we did all week!). J
5. Road to Hana – highly recommend getting that book you suggested Maui Revealed & if you don’t mind climbing, hiking & a little adventure make several of the “hidden” stops that they mention along the way. We stopped at many of them, truly awesome experience.
6. Hertz Rental – the one & only bad thing about our trip & unfortunately it was right when we arrived in Maui. I’ve never seen such a disaster. Not exaggerating, we were at the rental car office for over 3 hours – the first 3 hours we were in Maui. The lines were enormous, out the door winding around the corner & as long as the length of their building. They only had 2 people working the counter, running out of cars, sending out cars that hadn’t been cleaned, customers yelling, people walking out to go elsewhere, etc. All the while the Hertz bus kept dropping off busloads of more customers from the airport terminal. After 3 hours in line I spotted one working kiosk in the corner, had Chris hold our spot in line & I gave it a try, it worked & we were out of there in 10 mins. Had we continued to wait in line for the counter we would have been there another hour! So, just a heads up, use caution if you use that one again. I swore I was going to call their corporate offices once we got back, but life is busy & haven’t taken the time to do it, but I should – it was unbelievable.
Overall, an absolutely wonderful trip! Thank you for suggesting Maui Revealed, we honestly used that book every single day & it was spot on. Thanks for your help Kim!