If you’re going to the Big Island of Hawai’i this is definitely a resort to check out! It’s a little ways from Kona and was actually our second choice. The Hilton was of course our first choice but during the week of Christmas, and with nine people, they just didn’t have the accommodations we were looking for. We were mainly in Hawai’i for my parents’ vow renewal and they wanted a relaxing and laid back vacation but at a resort that offered a ton of activities for the rest of us and the Mauna Lani definitely delivered!
The front entrance is of course gorgeous. At night they would have live music and hula dancing on the blue platform. Swimming in that pond were three baby sea turtles! The hotel advertises that they work on animal conservation and these baby turtles spend their early days here and once they are old enough they get released into the ocean. The pond overfills into a river that goes throughout the hotel and includes all kinds of tropical fish and even a stingray.
The normal rooms are okay but my parents’ two room suite was amazing. They were given fresh plates of local fruit in the morning and had two balcony areas. We all had ocean facing rooms, which is totally the way to go, and had beautiful views of the beach below us and the ocean. Imagine sleeping with your sliding glass doors open and listening to the waves crash on the beach! Somehow I managed to take a lot more Snap Chat pictures than actual pictures. Oops, follow my Snap Chat!
Every morning we enjoyed the buffet out on the hotel’s patio and this was the view from the table! The river in the hotel that I mentioned earlier loops outside and early in the morning you can see the fish jumping out of the water to catch bugs. Really freaked me out the first time I saw the fish do that. I was thinking, what in the world is wrong with these fish?!
The buffet featured local food plus your everyday items but my favorite part of each breakfast were these little things! They might not look like much but O M G I could live off of these! I remembered them from when I lived on the Big Island. They’re called Malasadas and they’re actually Portuguese donuts. Little balls of bliss more like!
With each room you get one free cabana right on the beach. Make sure to grab them early in the morning because as soon as breakfast time is over they get snatched up quickly. Off to the right of where we were sitting is the Beach Shack. From there you can rent paddle boards, snorkeling gear, kayaks, and boogie boards.
We checked in on December 20th and checked out on December 24th to make our way to the other side of the island. One of the women working at the check in desk told us that during the week of Christmas the hotel is at 80% capacity and that it will increase as whale season progresses. Rooms during this time are probably slightly more and it’s a bit harder finding the type of room you want with the view you want. Book as early as you can! Paul and I are considering coming back to Hawai’i in February and I’m having a difficult time finding the type of room I want.
I can’t say enough good things about the Mauna Lani and without a doubt would recommend this hotel to anyone looking to go to the Big Island! Check out the hotel on their website for more pictures and details.