Luxury Stay Ritz-Carlton Kapalua in Maui

Ritz-Carlton Kapalua
Ritz-Carlton Kapalua

On my very first visit to Hawaii in 2003, we stayed next door to the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua in the Kapalua Villas. Back then, villa guests were welcome to enjoy the three-tiered pool at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua. That’s when I first fell in love with this beautiful Maui resort. I guess you could say it was my first Maui hotel crush. Fast forward about 9 years later, I finally had the chance to stay at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua and it did not disappoint.


Maui’s Ritz-Carlton is located in the Kapalua Resort in the northernmost resort on West Maui. Maybe I’m partial to this area because it was where I first stayed in Hawaii, but Kapalua is definitely one of my favorite places in Hawaii.

Kapalua Beaches are gorgeous crescent-shaped beaches flanked by lava rock. D.T. Fleming Beach, located right by the Ritz-Carlton, was named America’s Best Beach by Dr. Beach in 2006. It’s a beauty! Not all beaches in Hawaii are watched by lifeguards, but D.T. Fleming beach has a lifeguard station. It’s actually not very common for a beach by a hotel to have a lifeguard station. Oneloa Beach is another beach located near the Ritz-Carlton. In the evenings we enjoyed the 5 to 10 minute walk to Oneloa Beach for wonderful sunset views.

Kapalua sunset from Oneloa Bay
Kapalua sunset from Oneloa Bay

Kapalua is close enough (15- 20 minute drive) to the action of Kaanapali and Lahaina, but far enough away to make it feel special and remote.

Several of Maui’s top restaurants are located within Kapalua Resort. One of our very favorite Hawaii restaurants, Pineapple Grill, is located in Kapalua. Other great Maui restaurants in Kapalua are Sansei and Plantation House. We like the location of the Merriman’s Kapalua for pupus and sunset drinks. At the hotel, we liked The Banyan Tree restaurant and beachside restaurant,  The Beach House.

Lunch view from Ritz-Carlton Kapalua Beach House Restaurant
Can’t beat this beautiful beach view under a canopy of palms at The Beach House

Kapalua offers two championship golf courses. You might recognize the Plantation Course from the January Hyundai PGA Tournament, formerly known as the Mercedes-Benz Championship.

Kapalua’s historic Honolua Store is a great place to grab a quick breakfast, plate lunch and picnic supplies. We always enjoy popping in to this store.

Kapalua Resort offers a shuttle system to get you to resort restaurants, golf and activities. The shuttle service pulls right up to the front of Ritz-Carlton Kapalua.


The spacious guest rooms at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua are exceptionally well designed. We had plenty of storage with his and her closets, plus a large chest of drawers.

Room at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua
Our room at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua

Dark hardwood floors and furniture along with the artwork with Hawaiian influences made us remember we were in Hawaii, even with the drapes closed.

The travertine baths offered over-sized tub, step-in shower and  his and her sinks with plenty of drawer and shelving storage for our toiletries. The towels were super plush. Actually, they were the most luxurious towels I’ve ever used.

Double sinks at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua
Bath at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua

The toiletries were fantastic and perfect scents for a Hawaii hotel. The shower gel was  coconut and papaya scented. The shampoo and conditioner were coconut, mango and ginger scented. I don’t bring partially used toiletries bottles home very often, but I did this time.

Other nice amenities we liked were the plush bath robes, refrigerator with bottled water refreshed daily, and a nice shelf for media charging. Of course, the view from the lanai, was always an attraction.

Lanai at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua
The lanai from our room at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua

Housekeeping came twice per day to refresh the room and keep it very tidy.


The cascading pools are certainly an attractive feature. We liked to station ourselves by the waterfall area of the adult-only pool. The sound of the water lulled us to relax. For children, there’s a separate pool just for kids.

Cascading, three-tiered pool and ocean view Ritz-Carlton Kapaluaat
Three-tiered pool with Pacific Ocean views at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua

For some spa time, I enjoyed the Waihua Spa before getting a pedicure. I especially liked the whirlpool in a lava grotto setting.

We splurged on a cabana rental  ($50) once during our stay. We enjoyed a wonderful view of D.T. Fleming beach with chilled water service and a freshly sliced Maui Gold Pineapple that was so delicious that it tasted like it had been soaked in sugar.

Cabana with a DT Fleming Beach view
Cabana for two at D.T. Fleming Beach

For exercise on vacation, there’s a very nice fitness center with views of the pool and ocean. If you prefer to exercise outdoors while in Maui, there are some scenic jogging/walking trails. Tennis and top notch golf are also located within the Kapalua resort.

Final Thoughts

We really enjoyed our stay at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua. This luxury resort makes you feel pampered from the moment you arrive with a lei greeting.

I think Ritz-Carlton Kapalua appeals to both couples and families. It’s a great resort for a honeymoon or to celebrate a special occasion.

With Hawaii’s tourism economy recovering, rates have started to creep up in recent months. The best deal they’re currently offering is $519 per night with fifth night complimentary and daily breakfast buffet for two.

A fee worth noting is a daily resort fee of $25. This fee covers wireless high-speed internet access, local telephone calls, toll-free telephone access, discounted golf fees and preferred tee times,  Kapalua Resort shuttle services, use of the 24-hour fitness center, cultural history tours, arts and crafts, resort charging privileges at select shops and restaurants and in-room coffee.

Self-parking is $10 per day. Valet parking costs $18 per day.

Feel free to check out more photos on flickr from our stay.

Have you stayed at Ritz-Carlton Kapalua? How was your stay?

  1. Holy moses… Cari finally read this, too, and we’ve both agreed that this needs to be our next hotel stay on Maui. Wow. And yes, I saw the new discount you just posted today! 🙂

    Thx Sheila.

    1. Awesome, Matt! It’s always fun to have a wishlist of places to stay and things to do for next time on the islands!

  2. My family and I spent ten glorious days at this resort last June. One of our best vacations ever. I would recommend checking the shopping clubs for deals. We purchased our vacation through Costco. We were on the club level ( which i highly recommend), rental car included, for a similar price range. Aloha!

  3. My kids and I stayed at the Ritz-Carlton Kapalua a couple years ago when I did the blogging for the Celebration of Arts event. It was a fabulous experience and seeing the photos here brought back fond memories! I highly recommend staying there 🙂

  4. Do you know if you can rent a cabana if you don’t stay at the Ritz? Even though we have a condo elsewhere, I’m thinking it would be nice to get a couples massage and a cabana for the day.

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