Best family-friendly resorts in Maui
By Mimi Slawoff
Four Seasons Resort Maui (Four Seasons)
Whether you’re looking for a comfortable beach hotel or luxury resort, Maui — the Valley Isle — has an array of family-friendly accommodations for every budget. Staying in beautiful Ka’anapali places you close to the historic town of Lahaina. Luxury awaits those staying in upscale Wailea, where pampering is simply a way of life.
Here’s a sampling of 5 resorts that welcome families with open arms, the aloha way.
Wailea. A luxurious resort community in South Maui, Wailea is home to opulent resorts and golf courses.
The luxury resort’s WeTime/MeTime Family Travel Program embraces child/parent togetherness but makes time for mom and dad, too. After snorkeling, swimming, games, movies and more with the kids, parents can break away for golf, cocktails and a massage. The free Kids for All Seasons program entertains ages 5 – 12 with activities, such as searching for geckos, ule maika (Hawaiian bowling) and lei-making. Regroup in plush guest rooms and suites, with sitting areas, marble bathrooms and private lanais, which are safety proofed with bedrails, bumpers and netting on balconies. No need to pack strollers, playpens and baby monitors. These and more are provided free during your stay. Weekly farm-to-table events allow families to hand-pick their dinners from various food stations. Live music and a Keiki Corner round out an evening of culinary delights and family fun.
Tip: Be sure to call ahead with children’s ages for complimentary amenities, which include robes, toiletries, and toys.
Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria Resort
Grand Wailea, a Waldorf Astoria Resort (Grand Wailea )
Nestled on 40 acres of lush gardens, the posh oceanfront resort caters to families on a massive scale. At the 20,000-squate-foot family play space, kids can dress up like pirates and create a Lego masterpiece while teens hang out in a sports lounge with games. Camp sessions offer ages 5 – 12 cultural activities, games and swimming. Soak up sun and water play at nine pools, seven waterslides, waterfalls, caves, white water rapids and grottos. Gather everyone for Spa Grande’s Family Spa Suite, designed to introduce children 6 – 12 to spa etiquette. A selection of treatments from facials to pedicures await teens. Come bedtime, enjoy upscale amenities in guest rooms, suites or villas with views of the ocean, gardens or Haleakala.
Tip: Guests 12 and older get one free scuba dive lesson.
(MORE: Find kid-friendly attractions in Wailea.)
Ka’anapali Beach. Three miles of white sand beaches, a coastal boardwalk and access to shops and restaurants make Ka’anapali Maui’s signature beach. Numerous family-friendly resorts face the ocean and are near historic Lahaina.
Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa
Hyatt Regency Maui Resort and Spa (Hyatt )
After settling into your ocean-, garden- or mountain-view room, take a guided property tour of the 40-acre resort so you don’t miss a thing during your stay. Meet penguins, cranes, swans, flamingos, parrots and other exotic wildlife in the atrium, visit the spa, learn about onsite cultural activities and check out restaurants and shops. Kids will love the pools, especially the 3,000-square-foot Keiki Lagoon, complete with sandy beach play area, water slide, a sandy shore and lava rocks. The Napili Pool features a 150-foot enclosed lava tune water slide. Camp Hyatt for ages 5 – 12 offers daily activities for a fee.
Tip: Be sure to make a reservation for the onsite Drums of the Pacific Luau.
Westin Ka’anapali (The Westin Ka’anapali)
The 12-acre resort rolls out the welcome mat to families with spacious guest rooms, suites and spa facility but the main attraction is the 87,000-square foot aquatic playground. It would be easy to spend all day at the five amazing pools and two water slides. But there’s more to see. Take a guided tour or stroll on your own the lush gardens and waterfalls, home to swans, flamingos, macaw and koi. Weekly cultural programs include coconut husking, lei-making and hula. The Westin Kids Club entertains kids ages 5 – 12 with activities and games while teens can play water volleyball and basketball and learn to surf.
Tip: Ask about late checkout on Sundays.
(MORE: Find other kid-friendly hotels in Ka’anapali Beach.)
Sheraton Resort Maui (Sheraton Maui)
Situated at historic Pu‘u Keka‘a, Black Rock, the resort’s nightly cliff diving and torch lighting ceremony has been a tradition since 1963. Staying at the Sheraton is a relaxing experience, where you can fall asleep to the sound of the surf from rooms and suites, 83 percent of which face the ocean. The Ohana suite sleeps up to seven with two double beds, a Murphy bed and sleeper couch. Resort amenities include a fresh water swimming lagoon that meanders through tropical gardens and under wooden bridges. While the Sheraton doesn’t have its own children’s program, kids are welcome to join the neighboring Westin Kids Club.
Tip: A complimentary shuttle brings guests to the Westin and to Lahaina.
Mimi Slawoff, a Los Angeles-based journalist, contributed this to MiniTime.