Discovering hidden beaches, gorgeous rainforests 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 Maui for group getaways.
Feature Photo: Sheraton Maui Facebook
TIP: Don’t waste your day! Since most hotels have check-in until 4pm, be sure to ask for an early check-in.
Ka'anapali Beach Hotel
Next door to the Sheraton Maui and thus close to the underwater attractions of Pu‘u Keka‘a (Black Rock), the moderately priced Ka‘anapali Beach Hotel has long had a reputation as the state’s most Hawaiian hotel. The staff not only embrace the Hawaiian cultural value of hospitality, but also made many of the heirloom-quality artifacts in its public spaces and 432 guest rooms.
In early 2021 the hotel debuted the first phase of a $75 million renovation, including upgraded room decor, new native plant gardens and a beachfront restaurant and Hawaiian voyaging academy, celebrating the achievements of the celestial navigators and outrigger sailing canoe crew members who first discovered these islands.
- The 11-acre grounds, connecting guest rooms and 3-mile beach offer plenty of room for groups to spread out.
- Take advantage of the local expertise of Hale Huaka‘i, the hotel’s water activities hub, and learn the traditions of outrigger canoeing or the finer points of snorkeling from a friendly, safety- and sustainability-oriented team.
Napili Kai Beach Resort
The usually calm waters of reef-protected Napili Bay and its wide crescent of soft sand make Napili Kai Beach Resort an alluring choice for all travelers, with lodgings appropriate for groups of all sizes. The beachfront resort’s 163 accommodations include hotel rooms, studios and one- and two-bedroom suites, most with kitchen facilities, spread across 11 low-rise plantation-style buildings.
Swimming pools tend to be on the small side, but there are plenty to choose from and the beach is only steps away. Unusual in not charging in resort fees, Napili Kai also hosts a weekly slack key guitar concert, putting greens, barbecue facilities, fitness center and intimate day spa; golfers and tennis players can head across the street to the championship facilities on the Kapalua Resort.
- Stand-up paddling and snorkeling in Napili Bay are first-rate, as are dining and views at the Sea House Restaurant, tucked on one end of the beach; the Kapalua Bay Trail begins nearby.
- Pick up complimentary beach gear at the poolside snack bar.
Sheraton Maui Resort & Spa
The first hotel to open on 3-mile Ka‘anapali Beach, back in 1963, Sheraton Maui claimed pride of place with a 23-acre beachfront compound that includes Pu ‘u Keka ‘a, a.k.a. Black Rock, the region’s premiere snorkeling spot and site of a nightly cliff diving ceremony. The hotel has grown to 508 rooms over the years, with 83 percent offering an ocean view. The lobby’s Sand Bar offers terrific views of sunset and the island of Lanai, with an ocean-themed game room below for kids.
A leader in eco-friendly initiatives, the resort also includes an oceanfront lagoon pool with waterslide, three tennis courts, a vast fitness center and spa, which incorporates soothing seaweed and deep ocean mud into various treatments. A boardwalk leads to the shops and restaurants of Whalers Village.
- In calm conditions, snorkeling or paddling around Pu‘u Keka‘a can provide an amazing window into Maui’s marine life, from brilliantly colored reef fish to the occasional spotted eagle ray or even a rare Hawaiian monk seal; just leave the cliff diving to the experts.
Hana-Maui Resort by Hyatt
Long known as the Hotel Hana-Maui, this serene enclave in remote East Maui has changed owners and management several times in recent years. Now part of Hyatt’s Destination Hotels brand, the 66-acre resort has maintained its romantic air of seclusion, offering 7 rooms and suites, including airy bungalows with dazzling ocean views and subtle island-inspired decor. Oceanfront bungalows also come with a Jacuzzi on their decks, ideal for warming up on a cooler misty evening.
Excellent dining, Hawaiian cultural activities and its iconic spa also encourage cocooning with your sweetheart here. There’s a free shuttle to gorgeous Hamoa Beach, where the resort provides beach services.
- Many of the welcoming staff are family members themselves, with deep roots in Hana.
- The long list of possible activities for your group include horseback rides, throw-net fishing lessons, and water sports, not to mention excursions to nearby beaches and dramatic waterfalls.
This adults-only hotel features 72 one-bedroom suites designed to evoke the ultimate island-style pied-à-terre, spread across 15 acres on a secluded hilltop with sweeping views. Each one-bedroom suite has a separate living area, luxury linens, deep soaking tubs, kitchenettes and private lanais.
Poolside cabanas with roomy daybeds entice guests to get to that book they’ve been meaning to read, while beach valet services at nearby Wailea Beach include reserved beachfront lounge chairs, umbrellas, bottled water and towels. Two Tesla Model X cars will shuttle guests around Wailea.
- Book the hotel’s private surf safari for your group, followed by sunset cocktails in the open-air Birdcage lobby bar and a delectable prix fixe dinner in the Restaurant at Hotel Wailea.
- Couples can reserve the ultra-discreet Treehouse, nestled in mango trees with an ocean view, for a private, seven-course meal with wine pairings.
Fairmont Kea Lani
Perched above secluded Polo Beach at Wailea’s southern end, the all-suite Fairmont Kea Lani embodies the genuine spirit of aloha and offers exceptional cultural, spa and dining experiences in a truly spectacular setting. Closest to the beach, two- and three-bedroom villas offer prime accomodations for larger groups or families, including a private furnished courtyard with plunge pool and barbecue grill. At the top of the hillside site, roomy suites (starting at 800 square feet) can also accommodate up to four and include a mini-kitchen in the foyer and large lanai.
- Don’t miss the complimentary outrigger canoe ride, dinner at Ko restaurant (drawing from the island’s multi-ethnic plantation heritage) or a tropical cocktail at the swim-up pool bar.
- The Maui-themed rain showers in Willow Stream Spa provide another unique experience.
Destination Residences Wailea
Large families and groups will really appreciate the conveniences of this collection of roomy condos—some of them quite luxurious, others more affordable—as well as the fantastic beaches of Wailea and Makena. The management company represents short-term vacation rental units in seven complexes, nearly all with ocean views: Makena Surf, spacious bungalows on secluded Po‘olenalena Beach; Polo Beach Club, at the end of the Wailea Coastal Walk; Wailea Ekahi Village, a 34-acre enclave of low-rise buildings on Keawakapu Beach; Wailea Ekolu Village, overlooking the ocean from the hillside entrance to Wailea; Wailea Elua Village, a 24-acre compound fronting Ulua Beach; and Wailea Grand Champions, an 11-acre resort along the fairways of the Wailea Blue golf course. The condos of 11-acre Wailea Beach Villas are among the most luxurious offered,right off Wailea Beach.
- The Polo Beach Club’s discreet location is next to Fairmont Kea Lani and its great dining and spa options, while family-friendly Wailea Ekahi offers easy access to moderately priced restaurants of Kihei as well as low-key Keawakapu Beach.
- Tennis players as well as golfers will love Wailea Grand Champions, close to Wailea Tennis Club.
- Adult travelers will love the grownups-only lagoon pool at Wailea Beach Villas.
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