Rating: Hawaii | Beach Front | Ultra Luxury
Mauna Kea Beach Hotel
An architectural trend-setter, this hotel features golf, gardens, and 1,600 Pacific and Asian artworks. A beautiful white-sand crescent beach tops a list of amenities also including a swimming pool with ocean view; salon, fitness center, and activities such as star-gazing. Ceiling fans cool guestrooms with louvered shutters and locking screened entries. All accommodations have tile floors, teakwood furnishings, and watercolor artworks.
Inspired by its environment, the hotel set architectural trends when opened by businessman and conservationist Laurance S. Rockefeller in 1965. Its open-air, blue-tiled entryway has sand-colored concrete and seven-story palm trees. Staff and guests here include multiple generations of families.
Mauna Kea's golf course is built over black lava rock, and golfers can still tee off over an ocean inlet at the third hole. Public spaces feature 1,600 Pacific and Asian artworks from founder Laurance Rockefeller's private collection—including one of only three known 7th-century pink granite Buddhas from India. Lifeguards watch swimmers, snorkelers, and sailors at the hotel's beautiful, white-sand crescent beach, and the large pool has an ocean view. Guests can choose from excursions, craft classes, lu'aus, and many recreational activities.
Mauna Kea guests enjoy the amenities of the resort's companion, the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, which includes a golf course designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay. A shuttle between Mauna Kea's hotel, oceanfront tennis courts, and golf course; and Hapuna Beach's lobby, golf clubhouse, and fitness center departs every 20 minutes.
The resort's helipad is used by helicopters offering private aerial tours of the Big Island. The concierge can also help guests arrange activities such as parasailing or bicycle tours on the island. Lifeguards are on duty at the hotel's white-sand crescent beach, and snorkel gear, kayaks, boogie boards, and sailboats are available for rent.
Hotel founder Laurance S. Rockefeller's private collection of 1,600 Pacific and Asian artworks and artifacts is displayed throughout the hotel. A brochure is available for self-guided art tours; docent-guided tours of art and gardens are also offered weekly.
A salon offers hair styling, pedicures, and manicures, as well as massage treatments given in tents on the beach or in guestrooms. The fitness center with cable TV has self-service complimentary coffee. Coin-operated laundry facilities are also available.
One evening each week, guests can join astronomers to view constellations through an 11-inch lens telescope. At Manta Ray Point, manta rays dine at night on small fish attracted by a spotlight, as hotel guests watch.
This hotel has 310 guestrooms, all of which include teakwood built-in closet drawers and sliding closet and lanai doors. Louvered shutters, ceiling fans, and locking screened entries offer an alternative to air conditioning. Each room has postcard reproductions of an original watercolor on its walls. Additional room furnishings include teak writing desks and rattan chairs. Bathrooms have a second phone, Neutrogena toiletries, lace-edged shower caps, bathrobes, and slippers. All rooms have lanais with a table, chairs, and lounge chairs.
The Pavilion at Manta Ray Point - Architecture is inspired by 18th-century Buddhist temples. Two large bronze Japanese koi and a 9-foot diameter Japanese bronze bowl filled with small fish and water lilies sit at its southern entrance. The dining room has hardwood floors and glass doors that open to additional lanai seating. Breakfast service includes an á la carte menu, Continental, or full buffet. The gourmet dinner menu features native Hawaiian ingredients and such dishes as Big Island ahi sashimi, Waimea tomato and sweet Maui onion salad, and macadamia nut-crusted prawns with grilled pineapple rice and chili butter sauce.
Mauna Kea's coastal golf course, built on black lava rock, includes a third hole where golfers tee off over an ocean inlet. A lifeguard is on duty at the hotel's white-sand beach, and guests can rent snorkel gear, kayaks, boogie boards, and sailboats. Guests can also swim in the large freshwater pool with a whirlpool spa tub. Of 13 tennis courts, 11 are oceanside. Tennis clinics, round robin play, aqua fit, and yoga classes are offered throughout the week (fee). The fitness center has cable TV and includes a weight room, treadmills, stationary bicycles, elliptical machines, and circuit training. The resort's helipad is used by helicopters offering private aerial tours of the Big Island.
Complimentary activities each week include a golf clinic and a couples putting contest; hula dance and ti-leaf skirt-making classes; and tours of Mauna Kea's Pacific and Asian art collection and gardens. Guests can also help prepare the imu (underground oven), where a pig is roasted for a weekly lu'au. The hotel offers Hawaiian craft lessons in making miniature bowls (umeke) and decorative flowers (fee). One night a week, astronomers with an 11-inch lens telescope offer guided constellation viewing (fee).
At no additional cost, guests can take advantage of all recreation at the resort's next-door companion hotel, the Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel, including a golf course designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay and summertime "Dive In" poolside movies.
|Mountain View||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Premier Mountain View||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Beachfront (floors 2-4)||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Beachfront (1st floor)||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Deluxe Ocean View||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Premier Ocean View||1K or 2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Beach Front Junior Suite (27 Series)||2T||1-2 (3 max)|
|Beach Front Junior Suite (00 Series)||1K||1-2 (3 max)|
|Mountain View Suite||1K||1-2 (3 max)|
|Beach Front 1 Bedroom Suite (27 Series)||2T||1-4 (5 max)|
|Beach Front 1 Bedroom Suite (00 Series)||1K||1-4 (5 max)|
|Ocean View Suite||1K||1-2 (3 max)|
|* K = King, Q = Queen, D = Double, T = Twin, H = Hideway|
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Richardson Travel Company
325 Washington Ave. S., # 405
Kent, WA 98032