Relaxing, spacious stay at Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea, Maui

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When I think back on our January stay at Fairmont Kea Lani, I think of relaxation. This resort gives you space to breath, reflect and enjoy.

Location

The Fairmont Kea Lani is perched on a bit of an oceanfront hill of the south end of posh Wailea in sunny South Maui. This location is convenient for sight-seeing all across Maui.

Picturesque Polo Beach fronts this luxury Fairmont property that spans across 22 acres. We made sure to make a visit to Polo Beach for sunset as part of our evening routine. As you can see from the following photo, that routine was rewarded.

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Polo Beach sunset

Though the resort has its own good restaurants and some limited shopping, from the oceanfront Wailea resort path, you can take a scenic stroll to other Wailea resort restaurants and shops. Alternatively, the resort’s private courtesy car service can also help you get around to golf, tennis, restaurants and shopping within Wailea Resort.

Polo Beach

Polo Beach

All-suite rooms

Even the “smallest” room, a one-bedroom suite, at Fairmont Kea Lani is very spacious at 860 square feet. It’s enough space that I almost felt like I could live in one of the suites. As you can see from the following floor plan of the one-bedroom suite, there’s plenty of room for a couple or a family of four to enjoy. (In addition to the one-bedroom suites, Fairmont Kea Lani also offers two and three-bedroom villas.)

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The foyer area includes a kitchenette area stocked with a microwave, compact refrigerator, coffee maker, kettle, drinkware, ice bucket, coffee and a selection of teas.

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The living area offers a sofa with a hideaway bed, entertainment area and a desk. See this photo and this one for more views of the living area.

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Between the living area and the bedroom area, there are doors that you can close for privacy. The bedrooms are quite nice with a king-sized bed, large nightstands, drawers, a TV and a closet.

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The marble baths are generously sized with two vanities, a large soaking tub, a separate walk in shower and water closet. I had taken a peek at room photos on TripAdvisor before booking our stay. I had an impression that the bathrooms didn’t have enough space for grooming products, but I was mistaken. There was plenty of space for our stuff without it feeling crowded or untidy.

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While we’re on the topic of the bathrooms, we should mention some of the luxury toiletries that are stocked in the baths. Firstly, there’s the lovely Rose 31 scented La Babo soap, shower gel, lotion, shampoo and conditioner. I fell in love with this scent and you better believe I brought our partially used La Babo products home with me. I must admit that Le Labo wasn’t a brand with which I was familiar. So I recently searched for information online and was surprised to discover that a bar of soap costs $45 and and 8oz bottle of shower gel goes for $50. Wow, what luxury!

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Other thoughtful items in the bathrooms include a loofa which is especially useful to use when you’re trying to removed layers of slathered on sunscreen. There was also a caddy that included mouthwash, cotton swabs and balls.

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Grounds, pools, beach services

We enjoyed all the blooming flowers, gardens and seating areas throughout the grounds of the Fairmont Kea Lani.

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We enjoyed the pool options with both a kid-friendly pool with a waterslide as well as the more serene adults-only pool.

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At the beach, you can lounge under an umbrella and beach chairs provided by the resort on a first come, first served basis. Snorkel equipment rental for 1-hour per day is included in the daily resort charge.

Wellness and fitness

We didn’t allow time for spa treatments, but we did get to take a quick tour of Willow Stream Spa. I really wish I had been able to squeeze in some spa time as the resort was awarded the top spot for Hawaii hotel spas by Travel + Leisure. [Tip: check to see if the resort offers any special spa deals or access on the day of your check out to help extend your stay.]

What a beautiful setting for a massage.

What a beautiful setting for a massage.

The fitness center offers 24-hour access plus a load of group fitness classes. We saw some fellow guests who were taking the bootcamp class and they sure looked like they were getting a workout.

Kid-friendly

The Fairmont Kea Lani is very kid-friendly. See this link for more details on special amenities for families.

Restaurants

We dined at all the the onsite restaurants. We loved starting our day Kea Lani restaurant, which was a treat as daily breakfast was included in our package.

Nick’s Fishmarket is definitely a favorite of ours with it’s romantic ambiance and absolutely delicious food. I highly recommend the Opakapaka Picatta and the Strawberries Panzini dessert is not to be missed!

Ko is another award-winning restaurant onsite that pays homage to the cultures and cuisine of the sugar cane plantation era. I recommend the fresh catch with the Macadamia Nut Crust preparation.

Ama has a swim up bar. We had lunch there, but we hear that they are now offering dinner, too.

Luana Lounge is a lovely place for a sunset cocktail.

If you have dietary restrictions or preferences, you’ll find that all the menus include special options.

Unique amenities and notables

  • Text program – guests are invited to ask questions, make reservations, etc via the responsive text program.
  • Guests can take part in a Hawaiian Canoe Experience. We had reservations to go out on the last day of our stay. We were disappointed that it was cancelled due to high surf though. Fortunately, we had an epic canoe experience the prior day.

Daily resort fee

Resort fees are more the norm than the exception in Hawaii nowadays. At the time of writing, Fairmont Kea Lani charges a daily resort fee of $35 plus tax. It includes daily self-parking for one vehicles, shuttle service, bottled-water replenished in room daily, beach umbrellas and chairs, fitness center, sunscreen at the pool and beach pavilion, cultural activities, internet access and more.

Final thoughts

We loved our stay at Fairmont Kea Lani. The resort has recently completed a $70 million renovation and it shows. It even “smelled new.”

The resort is a tad pricy, but it’s worth considering that, at worst case, you get a one-bedroom suite with 860 square feet. That’s  quite a bit larger than other luxury Maui hotels. From a quick search, I found rates starting at $416. If you are a Costco member, check their options as that’s where we found our best rate.

Feel free to check out our photos here and be sure and watch our short video tour. It’s filmed in 4K and even includes a fun virtual trip down the waterslide.


For more opinions, access TripAdvisor reviews here.


About Sheila Beal

Sheila Beal is the founder and editor of Go Visit Hawaii. You can connect with Sheila Beal on Twitter, Go Visit Hawaii on Facebook, or Sheila Beal on Google+.

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