Hotel Review: Napili Kai Beach Resort

I’d be lying if I didn’t say this was our favorite place we stayed on Maui.  The Napili Kai staff welcomed us warmly and authentically.  They congratulated us on winning the trip from the MVCB, which I thought was a nice touch.  The spirit of aloha runs through the place.  Staff were happy and smiling.  They really seemed to like their jobs and their guests.  The guests were nice.  People acknowledged our presence with a smile or a “hello”, which was definitely lacking in other places we stayed.  Families were playing on the beach together and not having public meltdowns like we had witnessed elsewhere.

View from the front door. (Photo provided by Napili Kai Beach Resort)
View from the lanai. (Photo provided by Napili Kai Beach Resort)

Our condo was a very well designed studio with a functional bathroom and kitchen.  It was small but it never felt like it was too small.  There was a small lanai where we were able to lounge and watch the ocean while sipping coffee in the mornings.  Oh, did I mention we took full advantage of the free coffee and tea in the main lobby every morning?  There are many activities for guests to take part in at the resort.  On Wednesday nights, guests have the option to mix and mingle with each other and resort management while sipping on free mai tais. We ran into a few Oregonians, including a gentleman and his wife celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary.  During the weekdays at 10a, a member of the staff gives a presentation on different aspects of Hawaiian culture. We were able to attend one on spear fishing which I found to be informative and interesting. Beach towels, snorkel masks and coolers are available for use by guests, and if you need flippers, you can rent those at Snorkel Bob’s just down the street.  I didn't get a chance to try out the putting green, but it looked like a lot of fun.

Spear Fishing Presentation

The Sea House Restaurant on site has a full menu featuring breakfast, lunch and dinner plus a happy hour menu full of locally sourced food.  We were fortunate to experience two meals at the Sea House Restaurant.  

Our first meal was breakfast.  Breakfast is one of my favorite meals of the day, as I have said here before.  There is a reason the Sea House Restaurant has been selected Maui No Ka 'Oi Magazine's 2011 'Aipono Gold Award for "Best Breakfast".  The food was delicious.  There were so many choices and everything looked so good, it was hard to decide.  I finally settled on the Haleakala Pancake, which isn't a true pancake, per se.  It's an oven baked pancake from a custard batter with caramelized cinnamon sugar, pineapples and bananas.  And it was huge!  I could barely eat all of it.  It took up an entire plate and was about an inch thick.  
Haleakala Pancake.  Absolutely delicious!
 We spent our last evening in Maui at the Sea House Restaurant having pupus (small plates) and drinks to celebrate the end of our trip.  I'm also a big fan of a good happy hour with reasonably priced food and drinks.  We found both of these things at the Sea House.  We were fortunate to get a seat outside with a lovely view of the ocean and each selected a couple of pupus to get started.  I had the coconut shrimp and the poke nachos.  For dessert, I tried the pineapple tiramisu.  My travel partner had the butter lettuce wraps and Molokai sweet potato quesadilla, followed by the chocolate lava cake for dessert.  All of these pupus were served quickly and with a nice presentation.  I really loved the poke nachos.  It was a creative way to eat poke (which I love!) and if I hadn't stuffed myself with everything else, I would have had a second order!

Coconut Shrimp
Poke Nachos
Pinapple Tiramisu
Molokai Sweet Potato Quesadilla & Butter Lettuce Wraps
Chocolate Lava Cake
Fruity drinks!
Our final sunset in Maui was a memorable one.  It was preceded by a twenty minute rain storm and then it stopped pouring down long enough so we could take pictures like this:
A perfect ending to a perfect stay at Napili Kai Beach Resort.

Resort Information: Napili Kai Beach Resort, 5900 Lower Honoapiilani Road, Lahaina, HI 96761, (808) 669-6271 

This trip was won by me from the Maui Visitors and Convention Bureau.  This was NOT a press trip.  There was no expectation or requirement for me to write about my experiences, but I am.  Accommodations, car rental, airfare and snorkeling trip for two were all a part of the package.  I brought along a good friend of mine who shares a similar travel philosophy.  The original trip was for six nights, but we paid out of pocket for two extra nights accommodations and car rental.  We were responsible for all of our food (except for breakfast at the Sea House Restaurant), gas and other expenses while on the island.  All opinions are mine and you will find me to be quite honest about my experiences.