The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas Rating: 4.0 Pearls
Maui, Hawaii, United States

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

  • Large units with modern kitchens and whirlpool tubs
  • Calm, sandy beach with spectacular snorkeling
  • Two pool areas; kids pool has huge pirate ship
  • Solid fitness center
  • Spa with indoor and outdoor treatment areas
  • Poolside BBQ grills
  • Three on-site restaurants, including Pailolo Bar and Grill with daily Happy Hour
  • Two markets for groceries and other goods
  • Kids' Club
  • Free Wi-Fi

Cons

  • Lots of kids running around
  • Extra charge for activities that are free at other resorts
  • Limited attractions nearby
  • Some ocean-front views are obstructed by trees
  • Daily fee for parking
  • Some guests complain of over-priced, mediocre food at on-site restaurants

Bottom Line

Situated on 26 acres, the expansive Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas features a slew of amenities -- fitness center, kids' club, spa -- along with its two pool areas and beachfront access. All1,021 modern units are stylishly outfitted with a fully-equipped kitchen, private balcony and whirlpool tubs. The atmosphere is heavily geared toward families; couples or solo travelers looking for a quiet escape may want to consider Travaasa Hana or Makena Beach and Golf Resort.

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Oyster Hotel Review

 Scene

Huge resort geared toward families; earth-tone, island-inspired decor throughout

With 1,021 rooms spread over 26 acres, The Westin Ka'anapali Ocean Resort Villas is one of Maui's biggest properties. Sitting on a gorgeous stretch of beach in North Kaanapali, the grounds are beautifully landscaped with flowering plants and palm trees in abundance. Like its sister Starwood properties, the Sheraton Maui and the Westin Maui, there's no lack of amenities. In fact, guests no longer have to take the free shuttle to the other Westin to use the spa or to dine at a fancy restaurant. The hotel has its own spa, a luxurious, tropical-chic enclave that features a private tree house for couples, and its swanky Italian restaurant, Pulehu, is part of Maui's upscale dining scene.

A lot about this resort implies class and elegance, from the open-air lobby with a vaulted ceiling, silk throw pillows and shoji screens, to the massive one-bedroom suites with their wraparound windows and chic earth-tone furnishings. Despite its modern features and decor, the resort is largely geared toward families; expect to see kids running around and families gathered around the BBQ grill.

 Service

Decent number of services, but staff is sometimes slow and inattentive

Regular, non-time-share-owning guests are provided the same services as they would get at a midrange hotel, from porters to a dedicated concierge. In addition to the services that nearby condo and time-share properties like The Whaler and Marriott Maui Ocean Club offer, the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas also has a private chef that can be hired to prepare in-unit meals. Expect long lines when the resort is crowded, however.

  • Daily housekeeping-- guests can defer housekeeping for a continental breakfast as part of their green initiatives
  • Prompt and friendly bell service
  • Dedicated concierge
  • Room service is available from the Pu'ukoli'i general store
  • Guests can call in advance to request that certain groceries be stocked in their unit's fridge (with nominal delivery free).
  • A private chef can be hired to prepare in-unit meals for up to six people.

 Location

In the north part of Kaanapali beach -- Hawaii's first master-planned resort, built in the 1960s on former sugarcane fields on Maui's northwest coast

Located north of Black Rock, Kaanapali's landmark feature, this hotel enjoys a measure of solitude not possible in the rest of tourist-heavy Kaanapali Beach going south. The hotel does offer a complimentary shuttle to Whalers and Lahaina, but expect seats to fill quickly.

Kaanapali is centered around two golf courses and bookended by the massive Hyatt and Sheraton. Six hotels and a handful of condo rentals are squeezed cheek-to-cheek along four miles of uninterrupted beachfront; guests mingle on the sand, using the beaches (and even, at times, the pools and facilities) of neighboring properties. The mostly calm, white-sand beach incorporates Black Rock -- an eroded cinder cone sacred to ancient Hawaiians and the site of daily sunset cliff dives. Kaanapali is less crowded north of Black Rock, where the lodging is mostly comprised of small hotels and condo rentals like the Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort. The lively, historic village of Lahaina is about 15 minutes by car, and offers lots of shopping, dining, and Maui's best nightlife.

  • Four miles of uninterrupted sand between Canoe Beach and Black Rock with mostly calm, swimmable surf (though water currents vary in strength)
  • Paved beach walkway runs the entire length of the four-mile beach; often crowded, but a great place to meet locals.
  • Whalers Village, an open-air shopping mall with beachfront restaurants, curio shops, and upscale fashion boutiques, is a five-minute drive from the hotel
  • The free Whalers Village Museum, in the middle of Whalers Village, offers fascinating memorabilia from Lahaina's prominent whaling days.
  • About a 15-minute drive from the historic village of Lahaina, with tons of shopping, restaurants, and Maui's best nightlife
  • The Sugarcane Train Tour -- offering a history of Maui's sugar plantation days -- leaves from the station across the street.

 Beach

Directly on a beautiful, uncrowded stretch of North Kaanapali beach

The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort sits on a much more tranquil section of Kaanapali Beach -- north of the landmark Black Rock -- than do its neighbors to the south. It benefits from fewer beachgoers -- most of those who stay in the resorts to the south don't realize how beautiful this stretch is. Expect amazingly clear water, a long stretch of sand, gentle surf, and terrific snorkeling opportunities.

  • Quiet beach with calm water, no other mega-resorts nearby
  • Incredible visibility with an impressive table reef directly in front of the resort
  • Great snorkeling; gear can be rented from the Watersports Center
  • Daily sunset dive performances off Black Rock --a sacred spot for ancient Hawaiians-- a 20-minute walk away
  • No beach furniture on the sand; limited to resort lawns and pool deck -- have to rent from other vendors

 Rooms

Spacious rooms in earth tones with modern appliances in the fully-equipped kitchens

Rooms at The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas are all decked out in similar decor and furnishings. Neutral and earth tones dominate like the rest of the hotel; white crisp bedding against fabric headboards, green and brown black-out curtains and patterned carpeting evoke an outdoor, island setting. All have fully-equipped kitchens with modern appliances, including a full-size refrigerator, microwave, stovetop, dishwasher, and sink. Studios can sleep four people since they come with pullout sofas.

  • Comfortable Westin Heavenly Bed with down pillows and duvets, and a pillow-top mattress
  • Flat-screen TV with premium cable, but no HBO, a DVD player, and a Bose stereo; movies can be rented in the lobby
  • One-bedroom suites sleep four and have a kitchen, a dining table, a washer and dryer, living area and balcony
  • Bathrooms have a separate toilet room and a walk-in shower; suite bathrooms have dual vanities
  • Free Wi-Fi and wired Internet in all rooms
  • Views range from full ocean to not-so-scenic views of the resort parking lot; many of the ocean-view rooms are obstructed by palm trees and the pool area

 Features

Several amenities, particularly the two large pool areas and Heavenly Spa

The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas offers more resort features than typically found at a time-share property. And compared to the Marriott Maui Ocean Club, which has similar features, the Westin has newer and bigger facilities. Guests can also take the free shuttle to the Westin Maui and to the Sheraton, where they get signing privileges at the spas and the restaurants. Unfortunately, many of the guest activities at the Westin Ocean Villas carry an extra fee, which is surprising considering most other resorts don't charge at all for the same types of activities.

  • Two main pools with a waterslide and a basketball ring; one shallow pool with a pirate's ship, and one semi-secluded, small adults' pool
  • 10,000-square-foot Heavenly Spa by Westin has a private couples treatment room and unisex terraces
  • Two 24-hour fitness centers with a good range of cardio machines, strength-training equipment, and fitness classes, including Vinyasa Yoga, belly dancing, hula and beach boot camp
  • Two tennis courts equipped for night play
  • 24-hour business center with free Internet use, copying, printing, and faxing
  • Most guest activities and classes have additional fees; other resorts don't charge.
  • "Unwind" -- a cocktail event that's usually free at other Westins -- costs $20 to $30 here.
  • Kids' Club for five- to 12-year-olds
  • DVD rental machine in the lobby
  • Kai Ala Market sells convenience items, magazines, and souvenirs

 Golf

Two championship, designer courses; hotel guests get discounted rates.

The 36-hole Kaanapali Golf Resort stretches across 1,200 acres of land situated between the beachfront resorts of Kaanapali and the West Maui Mountains. Built in the '60s, these two championship courses have been home to the Champions Tour Kaanapali Classic and the LPGA Kemper Open. Wind and rain are less common than at the neaby Kapalua courses, though the South Maui courses (those in Wailea and Makena) are reputably the best in Maui.

Royal Course or North Course

  • Par-71, 6,700-yard
  • Designed by Robert Trent Jones Sr.; recently renovated by golf architect Robin Nelson.
  • Wide fairways extend from Kaanapali's main thoroughfare to the beach
  • Holes are never far away from traffic and resort structures.
  • More challenging of the two courses Kai Course or South Course
  • Par-70, 6,388-yard
  • Designed by Arthur Jack Synder
  • Suitable for all levels, less undulating than those of its sister course
  • Great views of neighboring islands

 Family

Excellent option for families with many kid-suited activities and play areas

Everything about this resort -- from the rooms to the pools -- was designed for families. A single traveler or a couple without kids may feel out of place here, since the grounds are overrun with little ones and the parents who run after them.

  • Enormous one-bedroom suites with full kitchens sleep four.
  • Kids' channels include Nickelodeon, The Disney Channel, and Cartoon Network; G-rated DVDs for rent in the .
  • Kid-friendly food in all of the resort's restaurants. Kids five and younger eat free with a paying adult at the Ocean Pool Bar & Grill
  • Kids Club for five- to 12-year-olds features a different activity every day -- daily morning sessions offered, plus night camp on Mondays through Thursdays
  • Calm, clear, uncrowded section of beach
  • Two main pools with a waterslide and a basketball ring; kids pool has a huge pirate ship, complete with sails and a mermaid on the prow of the ship

 Food

Three restaurants, one deli, and room service

A few solid on-site options, albeit pricey for quality, are provided, as well as plenty of alternatives a short drive away.

  • Ocean Pool Bar & Grill is the only restaurant open for all three meals. The breakfast buffet is quite good, with hot items including eggs Benedict and thick, crispy bacon.
  • The Pu'ukoli'i General Store serves fresh fruit, coffee, and deli sandwiches; room service also available during certain hours
  • The Pulehu Italian restaurant, open for dinner only, overlooks a koi pond and features wood-fire oven-baked pizzas and entrees prepared in an exhibition kitchen.
  • Pailolo Bar & Grill serves pupus (appetizers) and grilled entrees; there's also a daily happy hour
  • Grocery items are available from the Kai Ala Market, which carries fresh-cut meats and fish.
  • Private chefs are available for in-room gourmet dining.

 Bottom Line

Situated on 26 acres, the expansive Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas features a slew of amenities -- fitness center, kids' club, spa -- along with its two pool areas and beachfront access. All1,021 modern units are stylishly outfitted with a fully-equipped kitchen, private balcony and whirlpool tubs. The atmosphere is heavily geared toward families; couples or solo travelers looking for a quiet escape may want to consider Travaasa Hana or Makena Beach and Golf Resort.

Things You Should Know About The Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas

Address

  • 6 Kai Ala Drive, Lahaina, HI 96761

Hotel Is Also Known As...

  • Lahaina Westin
  • Westin Ka Anapali Ocean Hotel
  • Westin Kaanapali
  • Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villa
  • Westin Kaanapali Ocean Resort Villas
  • Westin Lahaina
  • Westin Maui Villas
  • Westin Villas Maui

Room Types

  • Island View One Bedroom
  • Island View Studio
  • Island View Two Bedroom
  • Island View Villa
  • Ocean Front Villa
  • Ocean View One Bedroom
  • Ocean View Studio
  • Ocean View Two Bedroom
  • Ocean View Villa

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Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 1021
Pool: N/A
Fitness Center: Yes
Spa: Yes
Cribs: Yes
Kids Club: Yes
Jacuzzi (in room): N/A
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Hotel Information

Location: Maui, Hawaii
Address: 6 Kai Ala Drive, Lahaina, HI 96761
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