Grand Wailea Hotel Review

Grand Wailea entrance

Destination: Wailea, Hawai'i on Maui Island
Date: February 2017
Hotel: Grand Wailea
Address: 3850 Wailea Alanui Dr, Wailea, HI 96753
Brand: Hilton
Elite Status: diamond + booked through Visa Signature Hotels
# of travelers: 2
nights: 1

Making the Decision

Shortly after booking our Delta flights, I became aware of a deal on the Visa Signature Hotels website. They were offering a two-for-one special, a free $100 Visa gift card, free breakfast, a discount at the hotel's restaurant, and a free room upgrade for the price of one night at any Waldorf Astoria hotel. Knowing we were going to Hawai'i and that the rooms were refundable, I booked. I didn't know anything else about our time in Maui. And, as it turns out, this was a good idea. Within 48 hours of my booking, the deal was dead. I kept my room focusing instead on researching Maui, rather than hotels. And now? I can't wait to tell you about all of the perks we got from this stunner of a hotel!

** It should be noted that if you have status with a hotel chain, it is worth your while to make sure you connect your account to your Visa Signature Hotel booking. I don't know if this influenced my hotel stay at all, but I was glad to get the points and any extra benefits through my status.

Getting There

Coming from the airport (OGG), the drive should only take you about 30 minutes. My husband and I were coming from Kula, so it took us almost an hour. If you are considering coming from Hana (HNM) or Kapalua (JHM), it will probably take you longer.

* The drive from Hana (whether north or south) will be considerably harder than any other drive on the island. I do not recommend arriving at this airport unless you intend on making the Road to Hana tour or spending a few nights in Hana first. Roads are narrow with many hairpin turns between Hana and the rest of the island.


Grand Wailea checkin

Checking-In, Status, & Parking

As soon as you drive onto the property, you are magically transported into a place of mesmerizing beauty with waterfalls, flowers, and statues everywhere you turn. Having someone valet park your vehicle only adds to the illusion. Granted the $25 cost destroys any dreams you have of being rich, but it's nice while you have it?

leis at the Grand Wailea

Whisking you away from your vehicle, the staff meets you at the front door with a lei (flowers for women, nuts for men) and a baggage cart, then directs you to check-in. We only waited a few moments for check-in taking the opportunity to glance around the gorgeous indoor/outdoor lobby with pools of water everywhere. The woman at the front desk apologized for our wait then gave us a room upgrade to the Napua Tower, a private tower within the hotel. With the upgrade, we received free breakfast, free snakcs and appetizers throughout the day, free drinks (at certain times), and free dessert at night. We wouldn't even need to leave the hotel property with all of the amenities available to us! She also gave us a discount for a spa treatment, a discount for dinner, and two free drinks at the hotel bar. We were living the high life!

room view at the Grand Wailea

Bellhop, Room, View/Lanai, Bathroom

The bellhop handles getting your luggage to your room. I'm not ashamed to admit that I was shocked to be taken through the private gate of the Napua Tower. He showed us around our room, informed us of what services we had available to us, gave us a list of times food and drinks were available, made us aware of activities available at the Grand Wailea (including snorkling lessons, hula lessons, yoga and much more!) and then asked us if our room with a partial view of the ocean was acceptable? Umm… no. Not accpetable at all. 😉

Grand Wailea two doubles in the Napau Tower

Grand Wailea bathroom and soaps

Our room at the Grand Wailea was huge! They ended up placing us in a room with two queens. We had a lot of room to spread out with a desk in the middle of the room, a couch, a wide screen tv, a lanai you could walk out onto with a partial view of the ocean and hotel grounds, and a bathroom big enough to fit a bed! We definitely were able to make ourselves feel at home in this hotel!

Other amenities the hotel rooms offered included a iron and ironing board, a safe, a Keurig and coffee pods, and large bottles of shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. If you went out to the pool, they had fruit flavored water available for consumption as well as sunscreen and aloe vera lotion for sun burns. (You squeeze the sunscreen and aloe vera gel out of the large bottles located outside; you don't take it to your room.)

Here is what you can expect if you are staying in the Napua Tower:

Napau Tower amenities

Grand Wailea gardens

Grand Wailea Property

Not only were the rooms in top condition but the property was impecable as well. A walk revealed a wedding chapel as well as outdoor areas to be married, ponds, gazebos, multiple pools, fountains, sculptures, and gardens. You could spend a few hours or more just exploring the land. We even found multiple gift shops and a post office there!

There are so many experiences to be had through Grand Wailea including:
– free scuba lessons
– beach yoga daily (except Sunday)
– a botanical tour of the property (offered Thursdays at 10am)
– a cultural tour of the property (Wednesday between 10 and 11am)
– a canoe experience
– weekend luaus (at a cost)
– golf
– access to paddle boards, snorkel gear, and boogie boards (charged by the hour)

and so much more!

* Now, a note on sending mail to the mainland from Hawai'i: It's expensive. You are looking at (as of February 2017) $10 for 10 pounds from the hotel. There is no express saver shipping, because everything has to be shipped by plane, which takes extra time.

Of course, if you have time, the hotel also offers spa services including hair care, nail care, waxes, makeovers, spray tans, massages, body therapies, spa, and poolside services. Anything you need to relax in Maui!

And, best of all, if parents need some alone time? Check out the kid and teen lounges and day camps! For a price, the kids can learn to Hula dance or make leis (or play in the pool) while you enjoy a romantic dinner with your significant other (or go to a business meeting). It's a win-win!

Grand Wailea pool

Food Options

Obviously with the Napua Club, there is more than enough food available to keep you full the full day through without spending anything extra. BUT, if you need something extra, or you opt out of the Napua Tower experience, there are seven other options available to you for the ultimate stay-at-the-hotel vacation. My husband and I enjoyed Humuhumunkunukuapua'a (better know as Humuhumu, for good reason!), the Botereo Lounge, and Bistro Molokini while we were there.

drinks at the Botereo Lounge at the Grand Wailea in Maui

We began our first night at the hotel using our free drink passes on a sparkling rosé and a glass of beer. After a busy day of sightseeing, we were tired and enjoyed relaxing in the hotel lobby listening to fountains and "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" by Israel Kamakawiwoʻole for the millionth time since arriving on the island.

HumuHumu at Grand Wailea

food from the HumuHumu at the Grand Wailea

Then, it was on to Humuhumu where we enjoyed a shared steak dinner and more drinks. My husband ordered another Coedo beer and I ordered the Rekorderlig passion fruit cider mistakenly thinking it was also a local drink. (It's not. It's made in Sweden. It's also delicious!)

Bistro Molokini dinner at the Grand Wailea on Maui

Finally, our last night, after returning from a long drive on the road to Hana, we took advantage of our $20 coupon for the Bistrok Molokini where we ate a margherita pizza, and a tomato and mozzarella salad.

Napua Tower Food

For the most part our free food in the Napua Club helped appease our appetites, though.

For appetizer our first night on the Grand Wailea property, we snacked on various sushis, cheese,s breads, vegetables, fruits, and meats. It was a fun treat even though we laid low knowing we had a larger dinner ahead at Humuhumu. (Consider making reservations on OpenTable so you have less wait and earn points!)

dessert in the Napau Tower Lounge at the Grand Wailea

Following dinner, we took the chance to dessert it up with cake, truffles, chocolate dipped strawberries, port wine, and a chocolate martini. Yum! It was my first experience trying a chocolate martini and I had the bar tender go light on the vodka. I ended up loving it and went back on night two for a second one!

We took advantage of both breakfast options available to us during our time at Grand Wailea.

To Go breakfast information for the Grand Wailea

To Go breakfast boxes at the Grand Wailea

For day one, we ordered breakfast boxes to be delivered to our room for our drive on the road to Hana. The box came with a variety of food including a breakfast sandwich (on croissant), a yogurt parfait, coffee, and a pastry served in a special cooler that you can keep! How fun!

coffee in the Napau Tower at the Grand Wailea on Maui
Napau Tower breakfast at the Grand Wailea

On day two we visited the Napau Tower longe and ate from the continental breakfast. Cereals, warm foods (eggs, bacon, soup), cheese, fruit, pastries, meat, coffee, tea, water, and orange juice were all available for consumption.

One Last Note

As a Napau Tower visitor, you get free use of the concierge located in the Napau Tower. S/he can help you at almost any time of day with getting reservations for restaurants, planning activities, etc… We did not get the chance to use the concierge desk aside from asking for a copy of the breakfast bag menu.

Overall Review
★★★★★ (the best!)

The Grand Wailea was the perfect hotel to begin our Hawai'ian journey at! It was absolutely thrilling to be upgraded to a room with an ocean view and get all of the advantages of the Napau Tower without the Napau price. Would I consider this hotel without the upgrade? For the right price, certainly! I can only imagine what the "smaller" non Napau Tower rooms are like, but the property itself is gorgeous and worth exploration. The beds are comfortable and the hotel is clean – a good starting point for any hotel. The staff is kind and helpful. Beginning the stay with a lei is exciting. The only negative I have for this hotel is the price, which will definitely be offputting for many.

Obviously this hotel is not going to be the perfect fit for everyone; however, if you can find a way to afford it, it's certainly not a bad way to stay on Maui!

Your Turn

If you were to stay at this hotel, would you consider staying at the Napau Tower? Or do you think the amount of services this hotel provides is overkill? What service would you pay a little more to have if you could afford a hotel like this on every trip?

Grand Wailea view


a fountain in the lobby of the Grand Wailea


Grand Wailea fountain

Grand Wailea lobby statues

Grand Wailea lobby statues

Grand Wailea gardens

Grand Wailea gardens

Grand Wailea gardens



Grand Wailea waterfall

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It's day six in the A-Z blog challenge! This month I'll be sharing all about my five year anniversary in Hawai'i – providing insight into the places I went, reviewing the hotels I stayed at, and telling my story. Today's letter is F for the Fun, Fun, Fun that can be found at the Grand Waillea Resort on Maui Island in Hawai'i!


ABCD • E (pt 1, 2, 3)


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