Royal Kona Resort
- What's Included
Hotels on the Kona Coast are expensive, even the mediocre ones, so careful attention to the experience you are seeking may save you from disappointment.The Royal Kona Resort sits right on the southern end of the tourist beach area of Kailua Kona. It is perfectly placed for folks who want a Hotel experience (rather than a Condo) but still want to be able to walk easily to the restaurants and bars that line the beach drive. There is usually a lot going on. Saturday night when we strolled into town there were at least 4 live bands playing at different venues and lots of restaurant choices. And that was only a short walk.This is different from the experience you get at the resort hotels up the coast at Waikoloa or Hapuna. There you will get the resort experience of great rooms, pools etc but you will be isolated which means you have limited (and expensive) entertainment and dining choices unless you want to drive thirty miles into Kona town and fight the traffic and struggle to find parking.If you decide you want to stay in town you have limited Hotel choices. There is Uncle Billy's (I won't describe here - read the reviews), A newer Holiday Inn express that is not on the beach, the King Kamehameha on the north end of town and the Royal Kona Resort on the south end. Prices are all relatively equivalent for what you get.So what do you get at the Royal Kona? It's definitely mixed - a run through of the reviews will show you both positive and negative views. In my opinion they are all valid based on the expectations the writers had for their vacation. You want a fine hotel? It was that once but no longer. You want a Hotel experience close to town? Perfect. The location and grounds are good but the Hotel itself disappoints in many small ways. It has the sort of sad shabbiness of a once great place that has been neglected. When it was built in 1968 as the Kona Hilton, it was (for its time) top notch. Time has not been kind. The facility is clean and quiet but the carpets are worn in places, the sconce lights crooked, the paint job patchy and so on. It is unfortunate as these are not big deficiencies but in aggregate make it feel more run down than it really is.The rooms are spacious with a relatively small bathroom and laid out in standard configuration with somewhat basic but functional furniture. There is a large lanai (deck). The beds are comfortable enough but it is apparently difficult to get a king bed instead of two doubles. You definitely want an Ocean View room though. Our 'partial' ocean view meant that we needed to go out on the lanai and look to our right. The view out the window was of the main hotel tower. Needless to say, we did not keep the doors wide open which made the room feel a little more confined.The outdoor lobby area with Koi pond is attractive as is the large open air restaurant and Bar. There is a pool that is somewhat small for a facility this large but nice enough. If you look for it they have a small salt water lagoon area on the south side of the complex that is really nice.If you are a local "Kamaaina" traveler be prepared to be placed on a lower floor 'partial ocean view' room. We probably will not stay here again but think this hotel may work well for some visitors.
I came here on Diamond Resorts Points. This is an affiliate location. No easy chairs in the room. I kept calling and begging for an easy chair. I'm a writer, I'm on deadline. I thought I was coming here to write for 13 days.Bathroom, seriously, guys? Gross. Just gross. By any standard. Property...didn't really see much of it. See above...I was trying to WORK.View - not one complaint. Corner room, lovely views. Housekeeping put an egg crate on the bed and got me a million extra pillows. They brought up various other chairs, but none was an easy chair. I had to jury-rig something so I could write. So no, I won't be returning here.Cleanliness level is generally casual. Like they never really cleaned the glass table well. Nothing about it said - "Yes! You want to put your food on this!"Warning to DR members. You get accosted by the concierge to get your parking pass. The one I got...well, lets just call her 'Ginger'. 'Ginger' was a doozy who did not understand the meaning of 'No, I do not want to meet your incredibly thuglike sales force. I came for vacation, not to be mugged.' 'Ginger' didn't understand that repeatedly. The lady behind me in line was laughing and commenting how dangerous it is to see the salespeople, how horrible they are. 'Ginger' told her to 'Not Interfere.' All this while she was trying to convince me how the salespeople weren't thugs anymore.Uh...hold on there sweetheart. You totally just proved they're still thugs by accosting not just me, but the other Diamond Resorts member waiting patiently behind me while you refused to take 'no' for an answer to whether I wanted an update. 'Ginger' also refused to explain why, if all that info is so important, Diamond Resorts finds it impossible to put the info into a PDF they can email me so I have it for reference.By the way, loved the part of the accosting where 'Ginger' intimated Royal Kona Resort was kind of a cruddy property. Okay, she's right. It is. So why is it on the Diamond Resort lists of properties? Why do I have to held captive by thuglike sales people for at least 55 minutes to find how to get 'really good properties' with my Diamond Resorts points? Asking for a friend.Housekeeping people very nice. The gentlemen who worked for the hotel who checked us in was very nice. Property has nice views, but also...there is loud live music every night. closing the sliding doors does nothing. If you want to sleep...you won't. Never even thought about that when booking. Had visions of working to the waves. The sound of waves is loud, but didn't drown out the music. Soooo...no. Not for me. Not again. Husband has been all over the island. It's our second trip to the Big Island. I got out a few times. I'm looking forward to my lovely bed and beautiful bathroom back home. I'm truly starting to feel a little cruddy here.
We stayed at the Royal Kona in Dec 2017. We had picked the package through Costco and opted for an ocean view room. We got a room in the building closest to the restaurant near the entrance to the hotel. The room was nice, the view was beautiful too - ocean plus the town of Kona. The room was well cleaned and bathroom had no issues as well. The only problem was that the sliding doors are single pane, and the restaurant/ bar would play live music which would float up...Sometimes, we were so tired that we just slept no matter what loud music is coming up :)We ordered pizza from the Don's Mai Tai's restaurant (downstairs in the hotel) and it was good. No room service though. We would order on the phone and then go down in 15-20 mins. The pool was ok, never went in it - it had a dark floor which I am not very fond of. There was a kiddie pool as well, and the kids enjoyed in that for sometime. The lagoon was nice too - some fish to see and be careful of the urchins in it near the steps. Overall, the location is really good, restaurants and stores are nearby.
It isn't the Four Seasons; however, I bet it was the Four Seasons of its day. It is a beautiful property. I fell in love with the outdoor lobby as soon as I stepped out of the car, I knew I was in Hawaii now. We got a 5th floor room with a view of the ocean and the hotels private lagoon. The room was appointed well, was roomy with a large deck. The only way I could tell this was an older property was the bathroom; although very clean some updating would serve the property well. There was a beautiful Coy pond in the center of the courtyard of our building, there were several buildings in the complex. I'm a photographer and was on the run most of the time and only had one meal at the hotel bar, it was wonderful as well as the delightful bartender. The bar was covered but open to the ocean on one side and the beautiful pool on the other. The staff was very helpful, we had a very late flight and they allowed us to stay in the room until one, then comped us a hospitality suite in the evening so we could freshen up before our 11pm flight. My only complaint was the parking, several nights per week the host a great and popular Luau and the parking disappears at these times. I was shocked one day to see an older lady taking photos of the outdoor carpet in the walkway, sure it was worn (big deal) I'm sure she was taking the photo to slam the hotel on trip advisor. Most evenings we walked across the street where the cool downtown started to shop eat and take in the wonderful ambiance of this cool beach town.
This place just misses the boat on so many little things. Parking is a hassle. You pay and they give you a placard. Guard won’t take just that on luau night. He wants the receipt showing I paid for the placard. Would I have the placard if I hadn’t paid? Clearly luau guests are more important than hotel guests. Beach towels. How hard is it to put a little sign in the room explaining how to get them? Interior is rundown. Location is great. Be sure to check out the little snorkel lagoon and get an outdoor massage. You might have to hunt around for them, because again the resort offers zero info on either amenity. The quest is worth it though if you’re staying here.
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- 1 king or 2 double beds
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Resort Location Map
Royal Kona ResortKona,United States
- Hotel Contacts
- Extra Info
75-5852 Alii Drive, Kailua-Kona, Island of Hawaii, HI 96740-1310
Some restaurants may be open for certain meals only and limited visits may apply. Reservations required and dress code in effect for a la carte restaurants. Time restrictions may apply for water sports.
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