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Oyster Hotel Review
Entrance to the resort
Hands down, this is one of the best value hotels on the island. The 108-room Kauai Coast in Kapaa rates high on many points, from its highly regarded seafood restaurant and cheap pool bar, to its affordable time-share condo units with kitchens, free Wi-Fi, and flat-screen TVs.
While its location may not be the most scenic -- it's off the side of the highway, bordering an unswimmable stretch of the coast, and about a five minute's drive from the closest swimming beach (Lydgate) -- Kauai Coast's five manicured acres of plumeria gardens and coconut trees, bordering the east shore, make the most of its location.
And while the condos at Kauai Coast Resort aren’t as cheap as the rooms at the next-door Aston Islander, they’re much improved. Service is better too: daily housekeeping, 24-hour front-desk receptionists, porters, and a knowledgeable concierge.
Sure, you could get more features like a kid's club or direct beach access at the similarly priced Sheraton Kauai in Poipu or the Kauai Marriott in Lihue. But then you’re also looking at the several-hundred-room mega-resort vacation versus a more intimate experience at this 108-room hideaway.
Far better service than at most other condo-hotels
The front desk
At most condo-hotels, like Hanalei Colony and Whalers Cove, you're basically on your own. But the service at Kauai Coast Resort is closer to the level of service you'd find at a more conventional hotel or resort.
Less scenic locale, surrounded by affordable shopping and dining
Admittedly, Kauai Coast lacks the ruggedly scenic North Shore environs of the Hanalei Colony Resort, or the romantic rocky coastline of the south shore’s Whalers Cove or Castle Kiahuna Plantation. Instead, it's located right off the highway in Kapaa (a small town known for its shopping malls, hotels, and tourist-heavy traffic). Tucked right behind the convenient, but not too picturesque, Coconut Marketplace shopping village, it sits in between the Best Western and Aston Islander.
- Over 70 souvenir shops and affordable, midrange restaurants at Coconut Marketplace shopping village -- just across the street
- Kapaa has the worst traffic in Kauai; drive times vary and congestion builds near the city center (north of the hotel) and at the bridge over Wailua Bay (south of the hotel)
- Shoreline that fronts the hotel is narrow and rocky
- Wailua Municipal 18-hole public golf course is about a five- to 10-minute drive away (it's cheap, but Golf Digest named it one of Hawaii's top 15 golf courses)
- Waimea Canyon, the largest canyon in the Pacific, is about a 35-mile, 80-minute drive from the resort.
- Seven-mile, 20-minute drive from Lihue Airport
Shoreline isn't swimmable -- must drive to the beaches in Lihue or Lydgate
Kauai Coast's rocky shoreline
Kauai Coast fronts an unswimmable stretch of coastline -- rocks and choppy waves make for unpleasant wading. For the best beaches in Kauai, you'll have to drive at least 30 minutes to Kalapaki Beach outside the Kauai Marriott in Lihue, or 40 minutes to Poipu Beach (near the Sheraton Kauai, Outrigger Kiahuna Plantation, Castle Kiahuna Plantation, and the Waiohai Marriott).
- Choppy waves; not good for snorkeling or surfing
- Not much room for sand activities like volleyball
- 5-minute drive from good swimming beach at Lydgate Park, where a lava-rock-enclosed area blocks out big waves and young kids can swim and snorkel freely (plus, there are on-duty lifeguards)
- 30-minute drive from versatile Kalapaki Beach (good for little kids, snorkeling, surfing, and swimming) at the Kauai Marriott in Lihue
Big, time-share condos -- most with full kitchens -- but the charming island decor is standardized across units
All rooms are standardized.
All of the 108 units are actually time-share condos. But Kauai Coast ensures that each unit is kept to the same standard and furnished in the same charming -- slightly kitschy -- island decor: gold, red, and green curtains and bedspreads, four-poster beds, and dark-wood furniture.
- Studios -- the standard room with a king-size bed -- start at 364 square feet (smaller, even, than the average standard hotel room at the Sheraton Kauai, Hilton Kauai, or Kauai Marriott).
- One-bedroom condos (690 square feet) sleep four people on one king-size bed and a pullout sleeper sofa; two-bedroom condos (1025 square feet) sleep six people.
- Full kitchen in the one- and two-bedroom condo units: full-size fridge; dishwasher; stove; oven; full dining utensils; even a garbage disposal
- Studios have a mini-fridge, a coffeemaker, a microwave, and two plate settings; no stovetop or oven.
- Beds are comfy, but basic: three polyester pillows; cotton-poly-blend sheets; down duvet; no featherbed or pillowtop mattress, as found at the Sheraton Kauai.
- Bathrooms have harsh fluorescent lighting, but they have a granite countertop, a strong coconut smell to the bath products, and good shower pressure.
- Washers and dryers in most one- and two-bedroom units
- Air conditioning and ceiling fans in all rooms
- 32-inch LG flat-screen TV (78 channels of basic cable); Zenith DVD player
- Free Wi-Fi in all rooms
Not the features of a mega-resort, but still ample, including a small spa and fitness center
The small, but functional, fitness center
Kauai Coast Resort boasts just enough features to qualify it as true resort -- unlike other faux-resort condo complexes like Whalers Cove. Kauai Coast also has much more to offer than Castle Kaha Lani, and its unimpressive next-door neighbor, Aston Islander.
- Single small pool with Jacuzzi and separate kids' pool and the Beachboy pool bar
- Small but functional fitness center with a water cooler and a small tube TV in the corner
- Tennis court in very poor condition -- ripped net; cracked surface -- but it's free to use, and free to rent rackets
- Small, charming, and independently owned Spa Makaiwa in the lobby offers massage treatments, facials, and body treatments for reasonable rates. No waxing or nail services
- A few frequently used (and not always so well cleaned) Weber gas grills by the pool and tennis court
Fair for families: big condos with kitchens, but you can't swim on its beach
The on-site playground
While it can't touch the kiddie dream that is the Kauai Marriott in Lihue (26,000 square feet pool, shallow-water section of the beach, craft lessons), Kauai Coast does offer a few advantages for families.
- Small main pool and shallow toddler pool
- Coast in front of the resort is not safe for swimming; closest swimming beach with lifeguards is one mile away
- Sandy playground area
- Kids' menu at the Hukilau restaurant
- Full kitchens in one- and two-bedroom condo; some of which also have a washer and dryer
- One-bedroom condos sleep up to four with a king-size bed and queen sofa sleeper; two-bedroom condos sleep six with a king-size bed, two twins, and a queen sofa sleeper.
- Free futons and Pack-n-Play playpens (no rollaways or cribs though)
My dinner at Hukilau Lanai
While Kauai Coast's on-site (but independently owned) restaurant, the Hukilau Lanai, can be counted on for dinner, and the Beachboy pool bar serves a small menu of salads and sandwiches for lunch, there's no place open for breakfast -- guests will need to either cook in their kitchen or head across the street to the Coconut Marketplace shopping village, where you can find family-friendly restaurants like Eggberts that serve breakfast (mac-nut pancakes, eggs Benedict) into the afternoon.
- Hukilau Lanai, an on-site but independently owned seafood restaurant, focuses on island cuisine that's made with locally sourced ingredients. Entrees -- like filet mignon or fresh mahi mahi; far less than it would cost at a resort in Poipu or Princeville. (Open for dinner only)
- For lunch, Beachboy pool bar serves a few salads and sandwiches on fresh focaccia bread.
- Across the street from the resort, Coconut Marketplace has affordable options for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, including Eggberts.
This 108-unit time-share resort in Kapaa offers full kitchens (in most condos), free Wi-Fi, a popular seafood restaurant, proximity to good beaches and dining, and one of the cheapest resort pool bars around. You can't swim off its shore, but all told, it's one of the best deals in Kauai.
Things You Should Know About Kauai Coast Resort
- 520 Aleka Loop, Kauai, HI 96746
Hotel Is Also Known As...
- Beachboy Resort
- Kauai Beachboy
- Kauai Coast Hotel
- Kauai Coast Resort Beach Boy
- Kauai Coast Resort Beachboy
- Kauai Coast Resort at the Beachboy
- One Bedroom Garden View Condo
- One Bedroom OceanView Condo