There’s the babymooners holed up on a private cabana facing the sea, proud grandparents leading little ones around the breakfast buffet and shouting out questions at the marine biologist-led turtle talk, big kids showing off for new friends and sun seekers lounging by the adults pool. This 334-room luxury resort on the Island of Hawaii (the Big Island) welcomes all comers with its sheltered private beach, rich cultural program, laidback vibe and the non-negotiable palm trees, pools and pina coladas.

Where is Mauna Lani?

It’s an easy 45-minute flight from Honolulu to Kona International Airport on the west coast of Hawaii’s Big Island. Mauna Lani is a 45-minute drive along a highway that cuts through petrified lava fields; there are various car hire companies at the airport or the hotel can organise a transfer.

Room types

Mauna Lani, Hawaii, USA

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Mauna Lani’s 334 rooms range from standard – with ocean, garden or mountain views – to suites ideal for families and friend groups, and five residences: two-bedroom luxury homes with kitchens, expansive living spaces, pools and ultimate privacy. Regardless of the category, all are spacious, contemporary and designed with a sense of place: rope and rattan details, polished wood accents and neutral tones, rum-scented bathroom amenities and comfortable furniture for lounging on the balcony. Travelling without kids? Book a “serenity room” positioned above the adults only pool.

Restaurants and bars

Mauna Lani room bar, Hawaii, USA

With an ex-Nobu chef at the helm, Canoe House is the hotel’s special occasion spot. The coastal-chic diner sits on a quiet stretch of oceanfront, its high-end Hawaiian-Japanese a la carte and degustation menus – with plenty of fresh local seafood and flavours of dashi, bonito, soy and yuzu – complemented by sea breezes and an excellent drinks program. All day eatery HaLani hosts the breakfast buffet and a relaxed lunch and dinner service; with its pasta, burgers, seafood and salads, there’s something for everyone (and everything can be served in your room). Ha Bar and Grill, a tiki-chic open pavilion on the lawn, offers lunch, dinner and a fully-stocked bar – ideal for sundowners. For juices, coffee, sandwiches and snacks throughout the day, drop by The Market in the open-air lobby.

Travel for work

Mauna Lani, Hawaii, USA

There are formal meeting spaces – inside and out – high-speed complimentary wifi throughout the hotel (it even reaches the beach) and lots of space on the lawn, by the pools, in your room and around the lobby to quickly catch up on emails.

Spa and gym

If swimming, sunshine and lazing about doesn’t slow you down, the hotel’s spa offers treatments using Hawaiian sandalwood, turmeric and honey, such as the full body A'ala Massage as well as the signature Goop Glow facial by Gwyneth Paltrow’s Goop beauty brand. There’s an indoor fitness centre with Peloton bikes, HIIT Mills and more, six tennis courts fringed with palms, or you can head to the beachside activity centre to borrow a stand up paddleboard or book in for a sunrise canoe session.


Mauna Lani has two staff marine biologists that run the hotel’s decades-strong endangered sea turtle program (education, conservation, rehabilitation) and daily turtle talks for guests. A rich cultural program led by Hawaiian elder Uncle Danny is an integral part of any stay – whether it’s a sunrise canoe paddle where cultural practice is shared, a guided walk along the coast and to the property’s fish ponds (where traditional Hawaiian acquaculture has been maintained since long before the resort opened) or listening to mo‘olelo (stories) told by Uncle Danny.

What you need to know

Visiting Mauna Lani’s cultural director Uncle Danny to hear stories of the property’s sacred land and royal history.

Best for: Families 
Number of rooms: 334 rooms, 36 suites, 5 residences, 1 estate
Rates: From USD $790
Wi-fi: Complimentary for all guests
Address: 68-1400 Mauna Lani Dr, Kamela 
Telephone: (855) 201 3179

Mauna Lani, Hawaii, USA

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SEE ALSO: 27 Top Hawaiian Experiences to Tick Off Your Bucket List

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