(844) 683-8959 or (808) 661-0031
2605 Kaanapali Pkwy, Kaanapali
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This was the first resort built in Ka‘anapali on a property that does not feel particularly Hawaiian but more modern and a tad spartan. It lacks the same splash offered by other mega-resorts. (Well, except for the cliff diver who dives into the ocean every night at sunset from Black Rock.) Instead, the 23 acres of grounds are green but comparatively simple and less exotic, dominated by large expanses of lawn.

The beach is the star here, and don’t you forget it. Located at the north end of Ka‘anapali Beach, the water here is heavenly, and the swimming is good during calm seas. Their swimming pool has a cool mist coming from the rocks that feels pretty good when you walk by. It’s laid out so that adults tend to hang out on one end (with drinks and food), and the children’s side is on the other end with food service nearby that caters more to their tastes.

Part of the hotel is built on Black Rock (Hawaiian name Pu‘u Keka‘a). Every night they have a torch lighting ceremony culminating with the torch bearer leaping off the short cliff at Pu‘u Keka‘a. This is a re-enactment of King Kahekili’s leap in the 1700s, which demonstrated his god-like powers to his subjects. (The Hawaiians believed that this is the area where spirits depart this world after death, and any living people jumping here would die.) The ceremony is dramatic and offers excellent photo ops. The Cliff Dive Grill by the beach attracts a lot of people around sunset to view the ceremony and serves their signature Black Rock Lager made on the island by Maui Brewing Company. Snorkeling and scuba around Black Rock are superb, and the resort offers intro scuba classes for an extra fee.

There’s several choices for grabbing a quick snack or beverage, including BRK-On-The-Go which can make you meals to take on your day trip or back to your room. A dinner for up to four people can be arranged by the beach at a few locations for $235 per person. Cabanas with four chairs by the pool are $275 per day, cabanas with six chairs by the adult pool (called ali‘i cabanas) are $325, casabella chairs (for two) are $90, a beach chair and an umbrella are $55. The worst part is that they pull the furniture off the beach at 5 p.m. just when you’d like to watch the sunset, but you can stay by the pool till 8 p.m. They have a Marine Life Hale where you can learn about sea creatures in Hawai‘i. There are complimentary classes in lei making, hula dancing, ‘ukulele lessons, taro pounding, bamboo stamping and more. A game room with a wide range of options for the rare rainy days is also a welcome addition.

The reason for our Real Gem isn’t the rooms or services, but rather the beach location—it’s probably one of the best in West Maui. That being said, the resort does have a relaxing, uncrowded feel, even when full. Plus, recent updates to the lobby area have made for an even more welcoming atmosphere. We really like the eco-friendly additions such as the complimentary reef-safe sunscreen stations and water bottle filling stations. Note that building 6 is the most oceanfront and during whale season you can book a package that includes binoculars for watching the behemoths from your room, as well as a whale watching boat tour.

Regular rooms are fairly small, but the latest (2018) renovations have given them a brighter look that makes them feel roomier than they are. All rooms feature their “Sweet Sleeper” beds. Rooms (320–420 sq. ft.) start around $850, suites (665–1,600 sq. ft.) start around $1,500. There are also lots of packages and specials on their website.