In March of 2011, we finally made our first trip to Hawaii. We chose Maui because we loved all the animal adventures available there, and we found the lovely Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas and couldn’t resist. I will share plenty of tips about what to do around the area in a few other posts, but this post is just about the resort.
Upon arrival to one of the most beautiful Maui family resorts in the area, we were super excited! This is a vacation ownership resort, but it is open to non-owners as well for a great nightly rate. The property is impeccably groomed, has fantastic amenities and is right on the beach! For us, perfection!!
The main lobby is modern with an ancient tribal feel to it, and is completely open to capture the ocean breezes and display amazing views! The front desk and concierge staff were super-friendly and helpful the few times we needed them.
Right off the main lobby they have a huge, beautiful pond stocked with coloful Koi fish. Each day at the same time, the kids staying at the property are invited to come and feed the fish. My son loved this!
The rooms are spacious and well appointed. Being villas, they are essentially condos, and have full kitchens, a separate bedroom, and a spa-like bathroom. The kitchens are a life-saver, or should I say wallet-saver. We drove to the nearby grocery store and stocked up on breakfast and lunch fixings and snacks. There are two grocery stores on site that are surprisingly well-stocked, but high priced. The rooms all have balconies or patios to enjoy the fresh ocean breezes. And do I need to mention how nice the extra bedroom is to be able to put the kids to bed at a decent time and still have a couple hours to enjoy a glass of wine with my hubby on the balcony?
When we weren’t in the pool, we spent a lot of time exploring the resort grounds and nearby areas. The resort sits on 26 acres of lush tropical paradise. There are 6 different pools, including one designated just for adults, and one pirate-ship pool that the kids just LOVE! One cool thing was that the people were so amazingly nice! On our first day, so many people came up to us and gave us their pool and beach toys because they were leaving and didn’t want to take them on the plane. So, when we left, we found a family who had just arrived and gave them all our stuff. Pay it forward, right?
My son’s favorite part of exploring the grounds was to look for local wildlife. In this case, geckos, birds and bugs.
One of the restaurants on the property was my favorite restaurant in all of Maui. The Ocean Pool Bar and Grill was casually suggested as a place where we could get some good pizza. And the pizza was good, however, my husband and I ordered the tuna and avocado appetizer and still salivate over the memory of that delightful dish! So good!!
There are a handful of restaurants on the property, and all have a bit of a specialty, but most have a children’s menu. The children’s menus are called Keiki Menus, (keiki is Hawaiin for kid or kids), and have the standard chicken strips and pizza, but also sometimes offer some nice fish dishes, too. Many of them will also teach some Hawaiian words. My 6-yr old boy’s favorite Hawaiian words: pepe (pronounced pee pee)(=beef), pupu (pronounced poo poo)(= appetizer), and humu-humu-nuku-nuku-apua’a (= the state fish). Boys.
The resort has a complimentary shuttle service that will take you to nearby Whaler’s Village for shopping, dining and shows. Otherwise, you can walk the boardwalk to nearby resorts and restaurants. The boardwalk went on for seemingly miles and is between the resort and the beach. From the beach we could see humpback whales teaching their babies to breach, along with tons of colorful tropical fish among the lava right off the beach. Stay tuned for a post about the beach and boardwalk in more detail.
Read more reviews of the Westin Ka’anapali Ocean Resort Villas or find more Maui family resorts on our booking engine.
In January, the surf is on the north shore, so that means the Turtle Bay Resort. It is the hotel that was used in the recent film Leaving Sarah Marshall . There is not much night life on the north shore thugoh. You might need to break up your vacation spend a few nights at Turtle Bay a few nights in Waikiki. But any novice surfers need to be very cautious about surfing on the north shore in January. They might be better off in Waikiki.