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Nightmare in Paradise - Review by T D | Kapalua Bay Hotel & Ocean Villas

Kapalua Bay Hotel & Ocean Villas

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Nightmare in Paradise 8/21/2006

Last year we went to Maui for a week. We’re “lucky” enough to accrue enough business travel to be at the platinum level with Marriott, so we chose a Marriott property for our stay and used points to pay for the hotel. The Kapalua Bay Hotel is a Marriott Renaissance property. It sits atop a bluff overlooking a beautiful bay and has access to a small crescent beach. Their pool (sadly, standard residential backyard fare) sits at the base of the bluff with a vast grassy area full of loungers spread out in front of it. The open air of the second story lounge area affords a terrific view of the bay. The Marriott properties in Hawaii seem to all be converting into the Marriott Vacation Club (time share) and so it’s hard to get anything beyond a standard room when using points. We had one of only two “suites” on the property, both of which were on the ground floor. While being spacious enough, the suite hadn’t been updated in absolute decades. The carpet was so filthy, with spots and spills all over (most prominent in the bedroom) that it truly looked as if housekeeping had completely given up the effort of maintaining it years ago. The area rug was as dirty and outdated as the carpet and permanently rumpled under a heavy trunk-type coffee table (leaving a big ruffle to trip over when going to/from the bathroom). The room was very dark with insufficient lighting sources. The furniture appeared dirty and mismatched, as well as awkwardly placed. The bedroom sliding door didn’t close all the way and therefore couldn’t be locked. The refrigerator didn’t work, neither did the air conditioning controls. There was visible mold growing on the walls and the air throughout was very musty. The shower had only one glass panel covering half of the opening which was a bad design as the floor became a big puddle with every shower taken. The feather bed actually scratched us to BLEEDING from the hundreds of sharp feather quills that poked through the cover (we had to lay out towels to sleep on). But the ultimate black mark for this hotel was the micro-ant infestation, which included the BED. We came back to the room one night and it was literally full of cigarette smoke. The neighbors were out on their lanai smoking (which was immediately outside our bedroom with the sliding door that didn’t close). As it turns out, this Marriott allows people to smoke on the lanais of *non-smoking* rooms! Of course, this not only pollutes the air for the neighboring vacationers (who keeps their slider door closed while in an ocean-facing room in Hawaii??) but their own room, contaminating it for the next occupants. It took asking after this at the front desk a couple of times before we found out that this was their policy *unless someone complained*. But even after complaining, it would be hit or miss as to whether anything would be done. (The staff, unfortunately, was often less than helpful with one member, in particular, that was overtly obnoxious.) We spoke to the manager and requested our points back. He agreed to refund them and moved us to a standard room. The process of waiting in our room for him to show up and then packing and moving our things to another room ate up one day out of our week. The new room, while much smaller, was on an upper floor and had a nice balcony and a wonderful view. It also, however, had the same ants in the bathroom. Thankfully, we found no ants in the bed. We still had to sleep on towels as the feather bed was only moderately less lethal. We had two neighbors smoking out on their lanais on and off without a significant effort shown by management to stop it. It’s a shame that this hotel is so badly maintained and managed. If considering a trip to Maui, I’d recommend staying somewhere in Kaanapali. more
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