I really like vacation rentals. As I said in an early post on this topic, rental homes are great for families or groups of friends traveling together who pay considerably less than they would for a flock of hotel rooms while enjoying more space, privacy, and conveniences. And what could be more authentic than staying in a real home instead of a hotel?
I like getting to know the neighbors and observing the local lifestyle, but most of all, I like being able to prepare meals at home instead of eating in restaurants three times a day. Seriously, wouldn’t you rather eat breakfast in your jammies and refill your own coffee cup rather than wait for someone else to do it?
I’ve already told you about the wonderful villa we enjoyed in Tuscany and another rental in Florence. My next post will be about Sicily, but right now I want to share with you my two favorite vacation rentals in Hawaii.
Vacation Rentals in Hawaii
On the Kohala Coast of the Big Island we rented a fabulous place in the gated Kolea community within the Waikoloa Beach Resort through Rob Dalton at Waikoloa Vacation Rentals. (See pin in map below.)
Our home, 7D, was a spacious ground-floor, three-bedroom villa that provided a view of the local outrigger teams practicing on the bay and was just steps away from a beautiful swimming pool and kiddie pool in the Kolea Beach Club. Beyond the pool, green sea turtles enjoyed the beach and the ocean, seemingly undisturbed by our presence.
I emailed Rob approximately a million times before we arrived and, just as he promised, the crib, the sand toys, the beach towels, and snorkel fins large enough for my husband’s big feet were all waiting in the unit when we arrived.
More recently, we traveled to the west coast of Maui and rented one of the Ridge Villas (2023) in the Kapalua Resort community. It was spacious and provided a 180-degree view of the ocean and the island of Molokai. I was somewhat disappointed in the nearby swimming pools and some deferred maintenance in the unit, but the kitchen was well equipped and the bed and bath linens were high quality.
The best things about the Kapalua Resort are the wonderful beaches and snorkeling (better than the Big Island) and the proximity to the beautiful Ritz-Carlton Kapalua. We swam with honu (turtles) at Kapalua Bay Beach and nearby at Honolua Bay.
At night we barbecued local fish and enjoyed adult beverages on the deck while surfers rode waves at Oneloa Beach in the last light of the day.
Vacation rentals in Hawaii are perfect for destination weddings – and Kapalua Beach is a favorite spot. At the end of almost every day, as the sun set, we watched couples exchanging vows on the sand with waves rolling up nearby.
Insider tip: groceries are very pricey in Hawaii. I recommend stocking up at Costco – yes Costco – before settling in to your vacation rental. There’s one near the Kona Airport on the Big Island and another near the Kahului Airport on Maui.