Our Maui family journey continues and takes us south to Wailea. Wailea remains my favorite region to vacation on Maui. This trip, we were fortunate to try out the Fairmont Kea Lani and were blown away by the service, style and many extras this resort offers families of all sizes.
Our visit came at the perfect time for this style-obsessed family. The Fairmont Kea Lani has made big investments in updating this iconic property and has nearly completed a $28 million renovation, making the Kea Lani a luxurious vacation experience. There are stylistic details everywhere you turn, with whitewashed buildings, open breezeways with hip lounging areas, and every suite has impeccable style, from the art on the wall, to the gorgeous bathrooms and curvy pull out couches.
In Hawaiian, Kea Lani means, “heavenly white,” and the hotel’s architecture reflects a strong Mediterranean influence infused with Hawaiian history. As a guest, you feel a sense of the spirit of the place the moment you walk through the open lobby.
New renovation brings Comfort and Hip Style for Families
With 413 one-bedroom suites and 37 beachfront villas, The Fairmont Kea Lani is an intimate luxury resort and offers a slower pace to that of other large neighboring hotels. Sitting on the soft white sands of Polo Beach, with 22 acres of tropical landscape (including tropical fruit trees, and a small grove of banana trees that the kids club uses to teach kids about local agriculture), there are no shortage of open, grassy areas and places to explore on the property.
“Over the past three years, over $28 million has been invested in improvements and renovations. The culmination is our signature restaurant, Kō, which is reopening in a few short weeks after a complete rebuild,” said Megan Haertling, Director of Public Relations. “These many improvements will not only result in a beautiful and luxurious resort, but will also provide new dining options and experiences for the many families that visit us each year.”
All-Suites and Luxury Villas are perfectly suited for families
The spacious, renovated rooms and villas are perfect for families. All rooms have separate bedrooms (with seriously sturdy doors), beautiful bathrooms, pull out couches and spacious balconies with dining seating for four and a lounge chair. I even had enough room to roll out my yoga mat and practice on the balcony overlooking the ocean. Each unit is equipt with a Keurig coffee maker, mini–fridge and ample space for afternoon naps.
Down by the beach, the 2 and 3 bedroom villas are stunning and great for larger families, or vacationing with friends. Completely renovated, each villa has a full kitchen, laundry room, private splash pool and BBQ. The villas are also stocked with all of the little extras, such as board games, Wii consoles and other family amenities. The nightly rates are a bit higher than other villa properties in Wailea, but include so many extras that I expect once you add it all up, the cost is very comparable. Sharing a villa with another family is always a great way to cut your costs in half.
All the Little Extras Are Included
On vacation, the little extras such as eating out and activities are what start to hit your budget. But at the Fairmont Kea Lani, they’ve gone out of their way to anticipate what families need and include it in the package.
Most villa packages now include a complimentary luxury class rental vehicle (sedan, convertible, SUV, Jeep, or minivan) for pick up at the Kahului airport (OGG). New to 2012, villa guests have complimentary valet parking, as well as a daily breakfast buffet for villa guests at Kea Lani Restaurant (four guests daily for two-bedroom villas and six guests daily for three-bedroom villas).
The Fairmont Kea Lani also has no resort fee (a big deal, as most Maui resorts charge $25 a night which can add up for a week stay), and kids under 5 eat free. Other extras included in your stay include water sports including complimentary boogie boards, snorkels and paddle boards, and pineapple and popsicles for the kids poolside.
Family friendly at it’s finest
Perhaps my biggest takeaway from our stay at the Fairmont Kea Lani, is that the resort didn’t just say it was family-friendly, it delivered. Family-friendly is something you know when you experience it, and shows up in subtle ways and in the little details. In my experience, many hotels do a lot of talking about how “family friendly” their properties are, but few execute it with precision. Others hotels and resorts go too far to please kids, leaving parents feeling like it’s the kids that took them on vacation. We didn’t have to force making our family fit at the Fairmont Kea Lani, it was just, truly, great and comfortable for our family.
New Kō Restaurant: Celebrating Hawaiian Culture and Community
The newly transformed signature restaurant Kō, which means “sugarcane” in Hawaiian, showcases the diverse culinary history and many cultures of Hawaii’s sugarcane plantation era, serving innovative dishes and family recipes that have been passed down for generations. Executive Chef at The Fairmont Kea Lani, Tylun Pang, shares more on the new Kō Restaurant and involvement with Maui’s community.
Because the restaurant was not yet open on our visit, we were fortunate to be able to enjoy the extraordinary cuisine of Kō and experience a Twilight Dinner under a private cabana poolside. This dinner is a memory we will cherish as a family for years to come.
The pictures from our trip to the Fairmont Kea Lani perhaps do a better job of telling the story of our experience. I’ve dedicated a board on Pinterest to our Fairmont Kea Lani experience for you to enjoy and plan your own experience. Aloha!
Note: we were hosted guests of the Fairmont Kea Lani, Maui but were not required to express any opinions or write about our stay. I’ve done my best to share our family experience and as always, can vary for every family.