What makes a hotel qualify as one of the best on Maui? At Oyster, we know that the “best hotel” is different for just about everyone. For some, the best hotel is the most luxurious, and for others, it’s the one that offers the most for kids. We compiled lists of the best value hotels, best luxury hotels, best kid-friendly hotels, most romantic hotels, and best hotel spas. Don’t have time to read all that? Not to fear. We selected one hotel from each list that bests its competitors (if only slightly). Below, we present the best hotels of Maui.
It's quieter and more subdued than Maui's more grandiose resorts, but a two-to-one staff-to-guest ratio means over-the-top pampering like nowhere else -- poolside Evian spritzes, beachside yoga classes, and they even have someone to unpack your bags for you. The best part? It's all free -- gym and spa access, beachside cabanas, outrigger canoe outings, and even the kids' club. No ugly "resort fee" surprises either, unlike at most Maui resorts.
Located in Kihei, the cluster of budget hotels, shops, and affordable restaurants that's 10 miles from Wailea's pricey resorts, the 265-room Maui Coast is the island's best value. The closest beach is a five-minute walk, and guests will likely want to head into town to dine. But the clean rooms have modern furnishings, flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and microwaves. The laundry facilities are free, and a fun poolside bar hosts live music at night.
An extraordinarily elaborate pool complex -- a veritable water park, in fact, with four waterslides, whitewater rapids, caves, a lazy-river pool, rope swings, and a "water elevator" inside a man-made volcano -- puts the Grand Wailea in a class by itself when it comes to keeping the kids stimulated. Add in the 20,000-square-foot kids' camp, complete with video arcade, Playstation room, and a small movie theater, and the only open question is whether your family will agree to return to ordinary life.
Situated along craggy coastal cliffs on the rainforest-like east coast, hours from other big resorts, the Hotel Hana-Maui offers ample chances to be alone. After hikes to nearby waterfalls or hunts for hidden beaches, couples can take a dip in the infinity pool or the lava-rock pool, dine at the excellent restaurant, and then retreat to spacious modern cottage suites (some with private hot tubs), where guests will find no phones, TVs, radios, or alarm clocks to spoil the mood.
The 50,000-square-foot neoclassical Spa Grande is the biggest in Hawaii -- and one of the top-rated in the U.S., thanks in large part to its extraordinary baths. They include five aromatic pools, a Japanese furo bath, cascading waterfall, Roman hot tub, and Swiss jet shower. The spa offers more than 100 treatments, including locally inspired signature therapies like the Pala'au Journey. Use of the facilities costs more than most spas charge for a whole day, but is free with a treatment.