Late last year, Chris and I lucked into some very cheap tickets to Maui as a result of Alaska Air's Black Friday sale. We knew without hesitation that we would book the Andaz Maui at Wailea since we were both anxious to check it out.
It's no secret that the Andaz Maui is incredibly expensive ($700 per night and up) and unfortunately, there was no cash and points availability during the nights we would be staying. We didn't love he idea of booking a full points rate (the Andaz Maui is a Category 6 hotel, which requires 25,000 Hyatt points per night to book), so immediately after booking the tickets, Chris applied for the Chase Hyatt Visa, which offers two free nights at any Hyatt hotel once you complete the minimum spend. Once the two free nights posted, we used them to book two nights for our time in Maui.
Cost of two nights in paradise: completely free.
I shared my initial thoughts on the hotel here shortly after we returned home because I knew it would be a while before I got around to writing the full review, so feel free to check that out if you'd like a quicker read.
The Andaz Maui is located in Wailea, which is on the southern coast of Maui and is quite far away from where most people stay when visiting Maui, Kapalua. Wailea is a 30-40 minute drive from Maui's Kahului Airport (OGG), so unless you've rented a car, you'll need to take a taxi or an Uber to the hotel. Unfortunately for us, there were no Ubers available when we landed, so we took a taxi from the airport and it ended up costing about $45, which was pretty steep, but we didn't have much of a choice. Upon arrival at the hotel, you'll be greeted by attendants happy to help you with your luggage and hand you the most gorgeous flower (or kukui nut if you're a guy) lei. To enter the lobby, you'll walk down a beautiful covered walkway lined with water on both sides. As soon as you begin walking, you'll be greeted by the most stunning view of the ocean, which you can see straight through the lobby.
Once arriving in the lobby, we were promptly greeted by a staff member and she offered for us to take a seat anywhere in the lobby while we completed check-in. Would we like a complimentary lavender lemonade? Yes, of course we would! The lobby, much like the rest of the resort, is absolutely stunning. You'll be greeted by the most beautiful view of the ocean, which you can see straight through the open-air lobby. There's plenty of seating throughout the lobby, along with very high, elegant ceilings, and understated decor.
The hotel staff each had iPads that they used to check us in and go through our preferences. We chose to accept the Diamond amenity of wine and cookies and were happily informed that we had been upgraded to a partial ocean view Andaz Suite. Getting upgraded when we hadn't even paid a dime for the room in the first place was absolutely unexpected and we were absolutely stoked. After finishing our lemonade, we nearly ran to check out our home for the next 48 hours.
You'll find gorgeous wood accents all throughout the hotel and the hallways were no different. Room numbers lit up and the halls were open-air on the ends, which gave it a very island feel.
We were assigned to room 418, which was at the very end of the hallway on the left-hand side of the resort. The room was a partial ocean view suite, which was partial because it was blocked by the villas located right in front of the room, but if you looked out over the pool, you could see the ocean, which was absolutely good enough for us!
The room itself was also really incredible. Chris and I both love minimal, modern decor with wood accents, and the room was just our style. Immediately upon entering, there was a half-bath to the left and then the room opened up to the living and dining area. The room had a couch, chair and flat screen TV, along with a full dining table and armoire which held the bar.
All Andaz properties offer free non-alcoholic beverages and free snacks, which are replenished daily and usually the offerings are hit or miss. At the Andaz Maui, they were a hit! The snacks included Maui-style potato chips and the absolute BEST local granola bars (I was so obsessed, I looked them up when I got home and was disappointed to find out that they are incredibly expensive). The drinks were also on point. You'll find a San Pellegrino Limonata, as well as craft cola and local root beer. We definitely fought over them.
In addition to the bar, there's also a coffeepot for morning coffee.
The room also had an iPad Mini available to use while you're visiting, which is a nice touch, although we didn't need it during our stay. Next to the iPad and the phone, you'll also find the controls for the shades in the room, which is something I always love finding in a hotel room - definitely something you won't have at home!
The bedroom was simple and beautiful, with a door opening onto the patio, a king bed, a chair, and another flat screen TV.
The bathroom was spacious and had a lot of character. There was a double vanity, a soaking tub, and the shower took up the entire back wall, with the ability to open up the screens running behind the bed so you could (in theory) shower with a view of the resort. The toilet was in a small room off the bathroom next to a fairly large closet.
The toiletries were Malie branded and were absolutely amazing. Keeping with the very local theme of the hotel and amenities, Malie is a Hawaiian brand of all-natural luxury bath products. I loved the scent and would have taken home 50 bottles if I could.
Once we finally pried ourselves out of our gorgeous room, we went for a walk around the hotel. The Andaz is considered a boutique hotel in Maui, especially compared to the mega-hotels you will find nearby, with only 297 guestrooms and suites. When we visited, the occupancy levels seemed to be perfect. We were always able to find a lounge chair by the pool and the pools themselves didn't feel overrun with other guests.
One of the most stunning aspects of the hotel is the four tiered infinity pools that descend down to the lawn and, eventually, the beach. Each level has lawn chairs and offers perfect views of the ocean beyond the pool.
In addition to the tiered infinity pools, there is also an adults only pool off to the right hand side of the resort, with one of my favorite features - lounge chairs situated right in the pool.
There are a couple of towel huts spread around near the pools and pool attendants will be happy to set up a lounge chair for you. One of the nice extra features of the hotel is the Andaz branded water bottle you will (usually) receive at check-in (we didn't receive it and had to ask for one later). In an effort to be more green, the hotel gives them out to use throughout your stay so that you can refill them at the water coolers located around the resort, rather than wasting paper or plastic cups. It's also a fun souvenir to take home and remember the trip by.
Unfortunately, we found the service around the pools to be a bit lacking. Several times, we wanted to order drinks or lunch while sitting by the pool, but rarely saw any of the servers or bartenders who were supposedly attending to guests. This wasn't a huge deal, because there were bars on the top and bottom levels of the pool area, but at a five star hotel with such a high price tag, I would have expected excellent service.
I was lucky enough to be in Maui two weeks ago thanks to some amazing airfare deals from Alaska Airlines over Black Friday. Chris and I had the most amazing time and even though it was only for three days and two nights, it was worth it to visit such a beautiful place! I had been to Hawaii before, but not to Maui, and after this trip, it is my favorite island so far (I've also visited the Big Island and Oahu).
The icing on the cake (or the umbrella in our Mai Tai, if you will) was undoubtedly staying at what Chris and I both agreed is the most beautiful hotel we have ever stayed at - the Andaz Maui at Wailea. The hotel is incredibly beautiful and the decor was just our style - modern and minimalist, but with a bit of Hawaiian inspiration. Not to mention, the views are second to none. The Andaz Maui is located on its own stretch of beach and has views from seemingly every part of the hotel. Possibly the coolest feature of the hotel is the tiered infinity pools which cover 4 levels so that it's easy to get a great view no matter where you've spotted an empty lounge chair.
All of that being said, the hotel is also incredibly expensive and it's one of the few in Hyatt's portfolio that is not available for cash and points stays. This means that you're either going to be paying cash (which can easily be $600/night and up) or full points, which will set you back 25,000/night. As luck would have it, Chris had just finished applying for the Chase Hyatt Visa and received two free night certificates for any Hyatt property in the world, so we chose to use those for our stay here. We got even more lucky when we arrived and were upgraded to a one bedroom partial ocean view suite without even asking. All in all, it was perfection.
I plan to do a full review eventually, but wanted to share my initial thoughts on the property. Essentially, if you're looking for a place to stay in Maui, I really can't recommend anything more. While we have had issues with not feeling "cool" enough for Andaz properties in the past (see here and here), this one was absolutely perfect. It wasn't too hip or happening for us and really just offered (mostly) great service in a beautiful setting, which was exactly what we wanted. The pool and beach area were excellent and were better and much nicer, in my opinion, than the surrounding hotels that I visited in Wailea, including the Four Seasons, The Grand Wailea, and the Wailea Beach Marriott. I loved the smaller, boutique feel of the Andaz and amazingly, the hotel wasn't incredibly busy while we were visiting, which made it easy to find a great lounge chair by the pool and enjoy the quiet. Admittedly, there were a few things that weren't quite up to par during our stay, which included service in some cases, but the amenities and the resort as a whole more than made up for these issues as far as I was concerned.
Just a twenty-something with a full-time job and a full-time obsession with traveling. It's best to LiveTraveled.