Stunning oceanfront resort with breathtaking water views
Wailea Beach is a five-minute walk for snorkeling and swimming
Dedicated lounge chairs and umbrellas for guests on Wailea Beach
Contemporary rooms with outdoor patios or balconies
Four pools, including an adult-only infinity pool and a water park for kids
Roy Yamaguchi’s Humble Market Kitchin is a standout
Additional dining options include a food truck, a casual beach bar, and Starbucks
Signature Mandara Spa and modern 24-hour fitness center
Family game room with arcade games
Small movie theater with free admission and free popcorn
Free Wi-Fi (included in daily resort fee)
Not directly on the beach, Wailea Beach is a five-minute walk
Daily resort fee and daily parking fee
Room decor is generic
After a top-to-bottom $100 million renovation in 2016, the four-pearl Wailea Beach Resort - Marriott, Maui feels like a new property. The hotel’s 547 guest rooms are housed in low-rise buildings spread across the well manicured property. They’re decorated with sleek furnishings and are stocked with nice amenities like Nespresso machines and flat-screen TVs. Four pools and a water park cater to all kinds of travelers, and varied dining options keep the food scene interesting. Additional amenities include a spa, fitness center, family game room, and a small movie theater, but the biggest disappointment is the resort’s indirect access to Wailea Beach. Though it’s an oceanfront property, there is, ironically, no beach in front of the Wailea Beach Resort. Guests must walk to the nearby Grand Wailea in order to access the sand. Travelers looking for a truly beachfront property may prefer Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club, though it isn’t as upscale.
A contemporary resort that appeals to couples and families
A winding driveway lined with banyan trees leads to the Wailea Beach Resort - Marriott, Maui. The driveway culminates at the stunning open-air lobby where contemporary decor is framed by a background of swaying palms. It doesn’t feel overtly Hawaiian, but the atmosphere is certainly relaxed. The hotel also has the luxury of space -- its eight towers are spread out, allowing for wide, manicured lawns and plenty of open-air public terraces. Like most Marriotts, the Wailea Beach Resort attracts lots of families, though it does a nice job of creating adult-only and kid-friendly areas. The Marriott isn’t quite as chic as the neighboring Andaz, or as luxurious as the nearby Four Seasons, but it’s a calmer, quieter alternative to the grandiose Grand Wailea, and is more stylish than the Fairmont Kea Lani.
Like its name suggests, the Wailea Beach Resort - Marriott, Maui is located in Wailea, south Maui’s ritzy resort community known for expensive hotels, posh shopping and dining, great beaches, and year-round sunshine. The Shops at Wailea (a mall with over 70 shops and restaurants) are about a seven-minute walk from the hotel. Golfers can get to Wailea Blue Golf Course in about eight minutes on foot. The hotel is a 30-minute drive from Maui’s Kahului Airport.
The Marriott is located on a sprawling oceanfront property, but, here’s the kicker -- there’s no beach. The property gently slopes into the ocean below, where tall waves majestically crash along black lava rock. It’s scenic, but not swimmable, and there’s no sand in sight. The Marriott has dedicated lounge chairs and umbrellas for guests on nearby Wailea Beach, but it’s a five- to 10-minute walk along the Wailea Beach Path from the hotel. Guests will find the beach chairs and orange umbrellas in front of the Grand Wailea.
Sleek rooms with nice amenities, but decor is a bit generic
Rooms at the Wailea Beach Resort feature minimalist design and contemporary furnishings. Pale gray walls and white tile floors create a neutral palette for sleek dark wood headboards and dressers. Beds are dressed simply with white linens and fluffy duvets, and an abstract print of the Hawaiian islands is the only hint of locality. Decor is thoughtfully subtle, but also somewhat boring, especially for Maui. Bathrooms feel slightly more interesting, with floating vanities, thick granite slab counters, and locally made toiletries, but the shower/tub combos found in most rooms are less than thrilling. In-room amenities include flat-screen TVs, mini- fridges, Nespresso machines, and closets are stocked with terrycloth robes, electronic safes, and ironing equipment. All rooms have outdoor balconies or patios, and most offer peeping ocean views. Ground floor terraces are furnished with large cushioned loungers in addition to the standard cafe table and chairs.
There are a multitude of room types at the Wailea Beach Resort, ranging from Standard Rooms with two queen beds to Two-Bedroom Suites with separate living spaces. Rooms are housed in several low-rise buildings that are scattered across the sprawling property. Travelers with mobility issues may want to request a room in one of the buildings adjacent to the lobby, since lots of walking is required to reach other room types.
Lots of nice amenities for adults and kids, but beware of hefty daily resort fees
The Wailea Beach resort has a nice array of amenities for adults and children. Families can take advantage of the Nalu Adventure pool, game room, and movie theater, while adults can carve out their own space around the adult-only infinity pool and the signature Mandara spa. Guests should note that the Marriott charges a daily resort fee for amenities like Wi-Fi and activities. Daily parking costs are not included in the resort fee.
The Wailea Beach Resort has five pools in three distinct areas. Each pool area has a different atmosphere, and caters to different clientele. The Ohi pools are the resort’s main hangout spots. They’re open to all guests, and tend to be the most crowded. Neither is huge, but one has a sleek infinity edge with ocean views. The Ohi pools are surrounded by lounge chairs and umbrellas, as well as curtained cabanas that can be rented daily. For kids and families, the Nalu Adventure pool is the place to be. The two-tiered pool is connected by two massive waterslides: The Big Kahuna and the Wailea Wipeout. The upper pool is quiet and rarely used, but the lower pool has jetted fountains, waterfalls, and climb-able sea animals that kids can horse around on.
For adults, the Maluhia Serenity pool is the best spot to relax in peace (Maluhia is the Hawaiian word for peace, or stillness). The pool’s long infinity edge offers incomparable ocean views, and the quiet atmosphere is almost spa-like. Cushioned lounge chairs are spread across terraced patios, and over-water cabanas are available to rent. Though there isn’t a bar nearby, pool servers take food and drink orders and deliver items to guests’ lounge chairs.
Wailea Beach is a five- to 10-minute walk from the property
Though the Wailea Beach Resort doesn't have its own beach, guests have access to Wailea Beach, the area’s most popular stretch of sand. From the southern end of the Marriott’s property, Wailea Beach is about a five- to 10-minute walk, but the trek is much further if you’re coming from the northern side of the hotel. The Marriott sets up lounge chairs and umbrellas for guests along the shore, but guests should expect to share the sand with other vacationers. The beach itself is crescent-shaped with light brown, powdery sand that stretches over a third of a mile. The southern edge of the bay (far from where the Marriott sets up camp) has healthy reefs where sea turtles like to swim, so it's a popular snorkel spot.
Varied on-site dining options, Roy Yamaguchi outpost is a standout
The Wailea Beach Resort has four dining venues. Two are sit-down restaurants, while the other two are fast-casual establishments. The hotel’s signature restaurant, Chef Roy Yamaguchi’s Humble Market Kitchin is a standout. Open for breakfast and dinner, Humble Market Kitchin is an ode to Yamaguchi’s parents. His father grew up on a plantation in Maui, while his mother was raised in Japan. The menu reflects Roy’s heritage with an interesting array of options. Dinner entrees include everything from whole red snapper and rack of lamb, to ramen and creative sushi rolls. In the mornings, the restaurant serves both buffet and a la carte breakfasts.
Kapa Bar & Grill is the casual lunch and dinner spot located next to the Ohi Pools. It’s an open-air restaurant, where guests can dine in their pool attire. Diners can expect creative cocktails and craft beers paired with upscale bar food like Mahi tacos, guava barbecue Kula pork, and asian-inspired skirt steak. Guests who’d prefer grab-and-go style dining can check out Mo Bettah Food Truck and the Whale’s Tale. The food truck serves Maui favorites, like shave ice, acai bowls, and poke. The Whale’s Tale is a juice and coffee bar that serves smoothies, coffee, and light meals and snacks. The Whale’s Tale is particularly popular (read: crowded) in the mornings, when guests stop by for coffee and breakfast sandwiches. Those who require an all-day caffeine fix can visit the on-site Starbucks. It’s the only one in Wailea, so it’s one of the Marriott’s most popular features -- for guests and non-guests alike.
The Marriott’s 9,000 square foot Mandara Spa has 12 treatment rooms (including four couples rooms), a relaxation lounge, and a hair and nail salon. Signature treatments include a Hawaiian inspired Lomi Lomi massage, a Mandara facial, and a hand and foot ritual. The adjacent 24-hour fitness center features modern Life Fitness cardio and weight equipment, along with free weights. Free weekly fitness classes are available.
Though the Wailea Beach Resort appeals to both couples and families, the hotel has several nice amenities for kids. Along with the Nalu Adventure pool, there’s a family-friendly game room with pool tables, foosball, arcade-style video games, and gaming equipment like Xbox and PlayStation. There’s also a small movie theater that shows different films every night. There’s usually a kid-friendly movie in the early evening, and then something for adults later at night. The movies (and popcorn!) are free for guests.
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