DISCOVERING HIDDEN BEACHES, eerie lava tubes and insanely good restaurants is all well and fine, but as most people come to realize, they’re even better experiences when they’re shared with our loved ones. Whether you’re planning a family reunion, milestone birthday, bachelorette party or work off-site, we’ve done the homework for you with this list of our favorite hotels on the island of Hawai‘i for group getaways.
TIP: Most hotels have 4pm check-in. Ask for an early check-in.
If they can’t accommodate, they will let you store your bags so you can head to the beach!
Mauna Kea Beach Hotel
- Spacious rooms with large baths and closets sport a Japanese-inspired aesthetic, with natural wood and lots of the hotel’s signature orange. Take advantage of the free beach services, from lounge chairs to stand-up paddle boards. Don’t miss sunset hula and cocktails at the Copper Bar, or dinner at Manta restaurant, named for the graceful manta rays that can be observed below it at night.
Westin Hapuna Beach Resort
- In calm conditions, look for sea turtles while snorkeling around the rocky point at the northern end of the beach. The resort sets up first-come, first-serve lounges and umbrellas on the northern end of the beach, which is part of a state recreation area that has a concession stand, restrooms and picnic pavilions on the southern end. In calm conditions, look for sea turtles while snorkeling around the rocky point closest to the hotel; you can also pick up a coastal trail there for a scenic, 1-mile hike to Kauna‘oa Beach (a/k/a Mauna Kea Beach.)
- The upscale, open-air Brown’s Beach House overlooks the Fairmont’s sandy swimming cove, while the casual, thatched-roof Hale Kai sits on the shoreline next to the pool; both make full use of the Big Island’s bountiful seafood, beef and produce. Expected to reopen after the pandemic ebbs are the lively Luana Lounge, perfect for sunset cocktails, and equally vibrant Binchotan, a Japanese-themed bar and grill named for its specially sourced charcoal.
Lava Lava Beach Club
- Complimentary bikes and stand-up paddle boards are at the ready for you to explore the resort or the bay, while lunch and dinner at the restaurant with your toes in the sand make restoring your energy easy and delicious. Sunsets are gorgeous here, especially accompanied by a cocktail on your private lanai.
Hilton Waikoloa Village
- Three towers of rooms (two currently open) offer a variety of views and accommodations for groups of varying sizes, with frequent special packages that help offset the steep resort fees. When you tire of the artificial beach, beautiful ‘Anaeho‘omalu Beach is a very short drive away, with plenty of parking. Restaurant prices are also steep at the Hilton, but luckily many affordable options can be found at the nearby Kings’ Shops and Queen’s Marketplace open-air malls.