We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.

“Overpriced yurts with mosquitoes (holes in yurt netting); has potential, but too pricey”

Best prices for -
Check In dd/mm/yyyy Check Out dd/mm/yyyy
Prices are for 1 room, 2 adults
Show Prices
Compare best prices from top travel sites
and 6 more sites!
Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Kapaau
Certificate of Excellence
GreenLeadersPlatinum level
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
16 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 27 helpful votes
“Overpriced yurts with mosquitoes (holes in yurt netting); has potential, but too pricey”
Reviewed 23 December 2011

My wife and I really wanted to like this place, but we had to leave after just one night (we planned to stay for three nights).

We are very discriminating travelers who expect good excellent value and service. The yurts have holes in the netting, and therefore we got eaten up by mosquitoes during the night. That is simply unacceptable for $200/night. We did stay during a stormy period, so I don't fault the resort for the high winds. However, the cheap, overused velcro on the yurt windows were no match for the wind, meaning we got little sleep as we lessened to the windows slam open and bang around the interior wood curtain hanger all night. The wind was strong, but not exactly hurricane strength. I tried to re-seal the velcro but it was cheap and worn. My $300 tent from REI has much stronger velcro and I would have been more secure in it than this $200/night yurt.

This is EXACTLY the type of location I want to be successful: it is eco-friendly, serves locally-sourced food, and promotes environmental stewardship. I hope the owners improve the yurt quality and change their advertisements about the facilities to make it a bit more honest: they advertise a "fitness room" and "wellness classes" on their website. The "fitness room" as a few dumbbells and mats and a couple very old machines. I expect better from a Holiday Inn, much less a "luxury retreat." We did not hear about any classes while we were there, but we stayed for only one night.

Customer service was adequate, but not lacking in comparison to more reasonably priced eco-boutique retreats and inns we've enjoyed in Hawaii, Costa Rica, and the mainland U.S. At 10:00 p.m., when I called the owner to ask if they could address the windows banging around, she immediately offered to move us to another yurt and was slightly apologetic on the phone, but did not convey a strong commitment to customer service. We already were in bed and did not want to move (in the rain), and the appropriate fix would have been to send a maintenance worker over to seal the velcro flaps with duct tape. There was no reason we thought a different yurt would be better.

They had almost nobody staying there, so I'm not sure why they did not offer to move us into one of their "hotel rooms" in the main building. It would have been appropriate customer service instead of offering us a different yurt. Although they sold the hotel rooms at $450/night instead of the $200 night, they missed the opportunity to keep us there for three nights.

The next morning, we enjoyed a nice breakfast, served by a very friendly waiter. The eggs, chicken sausage, and local fruit was good. They also served some kind of yogurt parfait my wife and I couldn't eat because it looked and tasted like it had been premixed and sitting in a refrigerator from some time.

Had they offered to move us into a regular room for the next two nights of our planned three-night stay, we would have done so. They did offer us discount to "upgrade" to one of those rooms for $300/night, but this place simply did not seem worth it to us. We returned to the Sheraton Keaohou Bay for $170/night, breakfast included, where we enjoyed the final two nights of our trip.

I do hope the owners take our feedback to heart and turn things around. The location here is very beautiful, and it's great that they serve meat from animals they own and raise on the property. They just need to take their customer service from "adequate" to "excellent" and provide greater value and honest advertising about what they really mean by "luxury yurt" and "fitness room."

Room Tip: Do not stay in the yurts unless they repair the screens so you don't get eaten by mosquitoes and...
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank DougAtlanta
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
jacque12456, Owner at Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia, responded to this review, 1 January 2012
Hawaii Island Retreat is a destination of intentional peace and connection to nature as healer. Persons come to this special place because they recognize and cherish the beauty and magnificents of its natural setting, and want a quieter experience than large hotels provide. Understandably, your visit was during the most intense rain and wind storm we have had in 9 years. I can understand that this was more "nature" than you could appreciate, and a poor nights sleep due to the sound of rain and wind would get in the way of appreciating anything. I am happy you found affordable accomodations to your liking.

Our intimate environment is unique and guests comes here for such an experience. We provide a generous discount for those that enjoying longer stays to encourage visitors to fully appreciate this special place. It is unfortunate that your brief visit and the unusual weather did not provide the opportunity for you to appreciate this experience of "nature as healer". The storm has now passed, the air sparkles with warm sunshine and balmy breezes. Our three weeks of Winter is over.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Write a Review

132 reviews from our community

Traveller rating
    99
    14
    11
    4
    4
See reviews for
18
60
19
5
Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (45)
Date | Rating
  • English first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Japanese first
  • Any
English first
Edmonds, Washington
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 December 2011

The Hawaii Island Retreat was a true oasis and retreat. The staff treats you like family and Moe whips up the most amazing meals. I have never eaten so well! Fresh fruit and veggies from the estate gardens. The Spa and Pool are not to be missed. Our couples massage on the lania over looking the valley was a highlight of our trip. The rooms are beautiful, with amazing bathrooms. We enjoyed leaving our windows open and listening to the sound of the water crashing below. The only downside to the room is with the beautiful hardwood floors, if you have any "heavy walkers" in the room above you, you will hear it. Also don't miss the night blooming jasmine as you come home in the evening.

Room Tip: Higher floors so you don't have to worry about someone walking above you.
See more room tips
  • Stayed November 2011, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Erin G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
London
Level Contributor
8 reviews
4 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 August 2011

A slightly overdue review from me here as we actually spent last Christmas at the Hawaii Island Retreat. It was absolutely wonderful. Our room (we had the Golden Penthouse) was beautiful; airy, light-filled and with a big veranda/lanai outside double doors, with a view of the sea through some pine trees. We saw some lovely sunsets as well as some interesting local bird life.

The grounds of the retreat are possibly the main draw. They're pretty extensive, and you can walk all the way down to the sea if you're reasonably fit. While we were there we kept hearing some loud bangs that sounded like a car door slamming, and we thought nothing of it until it occurred to us that there weren't that many cars around; what we were actually hearing was humpback whales coming in really close to shore and slapping their tail fins on the water! As soon as we realised, we rushed to the edge of the property overlooking the sea (see hammock picture below), and we had quite a few sightings of whales, including the very occasional sighting of a baby whale with its mother, also slapping its tail fin. It was magical, especially in such a beautiful setting.

The proprietors were lovely, and happy to give you as much attention or not as you wanted; if you wanted to be left alone they'd leave you to it, but they made everybody feel included too, which was very nice, especially over the festive season.

To state the (possibly) obvious, there are no phones or TVs in the rooms; you don't need them! There is internet access in the common areas if you really can't live without it. The swimming pool is beautiful, particularly when the sun's setting.

Logistics-wise, actually getting to the retreat is a bit of a challenge, especially in the dark as it's down quite a rough, unpaved road. It's ok though; we didn't need a 4X4 to get down it (it's too far to walk though). There is a small town nearby called Hawi, which has some nice restaurants and gift shops. (They do provide food at the retreat if you request it, but it needs to be requested in advance, so it's useful to know where the restaurants and wine shops are too!)

All in all this is a wonderful place to stay, and if I'm ever in Hawaii again I would love to go back.

Room Tip: We booked well in advance and took advantage of a special offer on the hotel's own website.
See more room tips
  • Stayed December 2010, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank LondonAnonymouse
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
philadelphia
Level Contributor
17 reviews
13 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
Reviewed 17 August 2011

We loved everything about it. the yurts are a fabulous bargain.

  • Stayed August 2011
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank ilovesocal
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Rancho Santa Margarita, California
Level Contributor
17 reviews
9 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 22 July 2011

My experience at this lovely property was life affirming. Having recently quit my job I was feeling lost but the minute my friends and I checked in my stress melted away and my mind opened to new possibilities. This is the place you go to heal, to breathe, to be.

The rooms are beautiful, spacious and comfortable. We played the serenity CD left in the in room stereo over and over while we stared at the stunning ocean from our balcony.

The yoga room is stunning, the salt-water infinity pool invigorating and the spa area peaceful and lovely.

We walked the sacred grounds, pet the goats and meditated (many perfect places for reflection and contemplation). Breakfasts were organic and yummy.

We went into the charming town nearby to enjoy dinners. I only wish we'd stayed longer! I will be back...hopefully soon!

  • Stayed May 2011, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank adgal310
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
jacque12456, Manager at Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia, responded to this review, 28 July 2011
Thank you so much for your kind words. We are so gratified when people like you really get the profound energy of this place, open to magic, and allow transformation to happen. we loved having you here and hope to see you again soon!
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Waimea, Hawaii
1 review
Reviewed 18 July 2011

This is THE place to be if you enjoy creature conforts and the finer things in life...but not at the expense of our home Mother Earth. Yes, luxury with a conscience can be found here at Ahu Pohake Ho'omaluhia.

I recently attended a marvelous yoga teacher training here and I was blessed to have resided at this amazing place for a full week. it was truly a delight to live in accordance with yogic principles of unity and non-harming, of living with awareness of how my actions impact others and the world around me. The owners and the entire management staff walk their talk of respect for the planet and all living things.

The owners of this eco-resort have created a leading edge model of sustainable iving. From the outrageously beautiful lodge building with humongous rooms with all the bells and whistles, to the sturdy and modern yurts, your options for comfortable living are all good. The best news is that the buildings are earth and human friendly, free of toxins and geared for sustainabliity. Even though off the grid, this resort delivers comfort and convenience to guests. Anyone who cares about our precious environment will enjoy the amenities here and the attitude and guidance of the staff.

All the delicious food is grown here and this place is off-grid via the use of wind and solar power. Remarkable really that such a large and sophisticated lifestyle is sustained without wasting or abusing precious resources. In nearly all cases, the off-grid lifestyle does not compromise your creature comforts. With the only exception being that the enormous tubs in many of the lodge rooms might need to be used mindfully at night since the hot water is solar heated and could be limited after dark. One small matter really when one appreciates and respects their accountability for caring for our earth and for being conscious of their carbon footprint.

For the owners of Ho'omaluhia this resort business is not just their job, it is their home and their life. They have lived and served the inhabitants of Hawai'i for decades. They care deeply for the island of Hawai'i and for it's people, animals, and environment. They live on sight and even so, they remain quietly respectful of their guests as they attempt to provide a sanctuary setting for those desiring some peace, serenity, and respite from the hectic and loud lifestyles found elsewhere. If you are looking for night life beyond gazing at the spectacular star show, then best to go elsewhere. Nature and quiet enjoyment are the order of this place.

Looking for connection to nature, space to tune in and find your deeper self, room to breathe and enjoy friends and family? Look no further than this precious gem...Ahu Pohaku Ho'omaluhia.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Zett33
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
jacque12456, Manager at Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia, responded to this review, 28 July 2011
What a beautiful review! Thank you so much for being here for the week and really understanding what this special place is about. We really appreciated your presence in particular, and especially appreciate you taking the time to share your experiences and impressions.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Toronto, Canada
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
Reviewed 13 July 2011

I arrived at KOA (Kona airport) in the evening (8:30 p.m.); I was stunned that they didn't have some sort of organized transportation worked out for guests who needed to make their way to the retreat centre which is pretty remote. Average cost for taxi (if they'll take you that far) is about $150.00 USD. I was part of a group of 12 for a Yoga retreat.

The centre is nice - pretty courtyards and places to relax (if only you were allowed to!). It was very expensive to then spend a week being scolded and have the back of your hand slapped for breaking rules that were made up on the fly. The worst part was the passive-aggression behind all of the communication. As an adult, I appreciate polite and direct communications of expectations.

Oh my goodness, the rules! I'm a real rule-follower too.. but this was ridiculous. None of the literature outlines the restrictions and constraints we were suddenly subject to after we'd paid and arrived at the centre.

We were shushed at 9:30 for excessive noise; apparently, as the only guests we were being disruptive with our laughter.

After dinner, we had some wine in the dining room and we were scolded for drinking in public. A few days later, other guests arrived and were served wine at their table with wine glasses; I'm still confused about the double standard.

We gathered on the patio of one person's room and rather than knock on the door to ask us to keep the volume down, the owner hid in the bushes and then snuck up on us to wag her finger. That was so invasive and creepy.

We were asked not to bath in the evening without permission.

The entire week, was spent getting in trouble for normal things one might do while on holiday. It's a good thing my husband did not accompany me for this - he would not have tolerated such an egregious invasion of dignity, privacy, and respect.

I only recommend this for the sadists at heart.

  • Stayed July 2011, travelled on business
    • Value
    • Sleep Quality
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
17 Thank travelling_koneko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hawaiiislandretreat, Manager at Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia, responded to this review, 15 July 2011
Thank you for your perspective. This is who we are:

Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho’omaluhia is an ancient, sacred site serving as a physical and spiritual healing retreat center. Located along the pristine Kohala coastline with breathtaking views of the ocean, it is a place where individuals and groups may find peace and tranquility among the ancient stones and healing gardens. Nestled in historic North Kohala on the Island of Hawaii, Hawaii Island Retreat is an eco-friendly spa retreat and center that offers luxury boutique style rooms in an elegant and tranquil setting. Set among 50 acres of evergreens, untamed forests, gardens, orchards, and ocean breezes Hawaii Island Retreat is the perfect gathering place to hold a specialized retreat , spiritual retreats or for wedding celebrations, commitment ceremonies, a personal wellness retreat, executive retreats, , or social group events. The retreat has a full service spa to rejuvenate your senses, restore balance, and provide lifelong paths to well-being, providing an even deeper immersion into the retreat experience.

The mana (life-force) of the land is so strong and enhances our feeling of peace, tranquility, and serenity. We have the opportunity to live and move and have our being in this place of intentional serenity.

•In keeping in harmony with this sacred land, this is a non-smoking property. If needing to smoke, one can walk over to the public access trail.
•Beer and wine in moderation may be enjoyed at meal times. For additional consumption of drinks, there are bars and restaurants in the towns of Hawi and Kapaau, each 1 ½ mile drive from the lodge.
•To honor each person’s opportunity to appreciate and enjoy quiet and serenity, 10:30 will be lights-out in public areas. We strongly encourage you to use your little key flashlight to take night walks and revel at all the stars.
•We are truly sustainable and green, growing much of our own food, creating our own power and water. Here is an opportunity to come and live lightly on the earth. There is plenty for use and nothing to waste. To help honor our sustainability, please turn off lights, fans, computers when you are not using them.
•Since we are organic, we do not use harmful pesticides. It is best to keep food and food scraps out of your room. They invite insects. If you have snacks in your room, ask us for ziplock bags for safe storage.

The energy of this land can inspire and enhance any group’s intentions. Perhaps there are more suitable places for the intentions of this group.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hotels you might also like...
Also consider these accommodations in or near Kapaau
28.1 km away
Hapuna Beach Prince Hotel
27.0 km away
Mauna Kea Beach Hotel, Autograph Collection
70.7 km away
Courtyard by Marriott King Kamehameha's Kona Beach Hotel
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices
33.6 km away
Fairmont Orchid, Hawaii
34.3 km away
Mauna Lani Bay Hotel & Bungalows
50.8 km away
Four Seasons Resort Hualalai
Show Prices
Show Prices
Show Prices

Been to Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia? Share your experiences!

Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Additional Information about Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia

Property: Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia
Address: 250 Lokahi Road, Box 185, Kapaau, Island of Hawaii, HI 96755
Region: United States > Hawaii > Island of Hawaii > Kapaau
Amenities:
Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free Breakfast Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access Airport Transportation
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Hotels in Kapaau
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia 4*
Number of rooms: 17
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Nestled among towering pines and cooling ocean breezes Hawaii Island Retreat and Spa is unique among Hawaii Destinations. Located on 50 acres of North Kohala's coastal land, this boutique hotel is the ultimate in sustainability merged with a luxury spa retreat. Our elite 17 room boutique lodge features farm-to-table dining, spacious yoga studios with polished hardwood floors, and luxurious guest rooms with roomy private bath and balcony. We offer elegant venues in a distinctly Hawaiian setting. Perfect for group retreats, weddings, reunions, and corporate retreats. ... more   less 
Reservation Options:
TripAdvisor is proud to partner with Booking.com, Expedia, Hotels.com, Travelocity.ca and Priceline so you can book your Hawaii Island Retreat at Ahu Pohaku Ho`omaluhia reservations with confidence. We help millions of travellers each month to find the perfect hotel for both holiday and business trips, always with the best discounts and special offers.
Also Known As:
Hawaii Island Retreat At Ahu Pohaku Ho`Omaluhia Hotel Kapaau
Hawaii Island Retreat At Ahu Pohaku Ho`Omaluhia Kapaau

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing