Updated: May 21, 2015
Kaanapali Beach Map - Kaanapali ResortsIf you are planning a vacation to the Kaanapali region of Maui, we hope this guide will give you a good idea of what to expect. We include a thorough map listing all the resorts in the area, with descriptions of each and pictures of many, as well as generic pictures of Kaanapali Beach. To get started, remember that Kaanapali is located in northwest Maui, just north of Lahaina but south of Kapalua, Napili, and Kahana. A few resorts from Honokowai include the word "kaanapali" in their names, but they are actually located about 2 miles north of the officialy Kaanapali Beach. We will cover here only the resorts that actually sit alongside the famous Kaanapali Beach, starting at the Black Rock at the far north that delineates the start of K. Beach.
List of Kaanapali Resorts and HotelsWhat hotels are on Kaanapali Beach? This is a common question we get from people who have never been to Maui before, confused by all the similar names. The Sheraton Maui at Black Rock is at the north end of Kaanapali Beach. Black Rock is just a formation of volcanic rock that juts out into the ocean, dividing Kaanapali from Kahekili Beach (which is also a great beach, be sure to check out our Maui Beach Guide). The Sheraton Maui has over 500 rooms, a great pool area (including kids pool), a yoga and fitness room with a view to die for, valet parking, and of course lovely beachfront access to the beach and Black Rock snorkeling areas. The torch lighting ceremony here at Black Rock is a big deal each night, but this resort in general is top notch. Our most recent stay was in Winter of 2006/07. They offer valet parking (at $5 per day after the first day), but a covered garage is just 50 yards from the front door. They also charge an $18 per day resort fee. They have a luau every Wed. night, and the beach in front of the hotel is terrific - a good 60 feet or more of white sand between you and the ocean. Rooms here are not huge, and you will pay an extra $70 for a roll-away bed. You do get an empty refrigerator to fill as you like. Rooms can run from $300 to $1200. But overall we love the property and the location and would stay here and recommend this resort without hesitation. One nice thing about Kaanapali Beach is the proximity of the other resorts and the Whaler's Village Mall. You can easily walk down from the Sheraton to have dinner anywhere you like -- takes about 20 minutes to walk all the way to the southern end, with Whaler's Village being about a 10 minute stroll to the south. Here is a view from the Sheraton way up high on Black Rock, looking down Kaanapali Beach.
Next down from the Sheraton Maui is the Ka'anapali Beach Hotel. This is an older resort property, built in the 60s - it is NOT an ultra modern luxury hotel. Their website is KBHMaui.com. They offer more than 400 rooms, also on this awesome, wide section of Kaanapali Beach. Their rates range from $200 to $460 for an ocean front family suite (2 rooms, 1 bath). No charge for kids under 17, but other adults (beyond the double occupancy) are $30 each per night. Parking is $8 per day. Standard rooms at 425sf are fairly small, but the price is right. A good choice for the budget conscious, as long as your expectations are realistic.
Next up is The Whaler. See photo below..
Two 12 story towers here offer 360 condo style units. The pool is nothing too exciting, but the rooms and grounds are clean and well cared for. Parking is $12 per day here. Their website is here. Suites range from 600sf to 2000sf. The nice 1BR / 1BA units are over 1000sf, pretty huge for Maui hotel accomodations. The 1BR/2BA units offer an extra living area with a pullout couch. We have stayed here once before and were pleased both with the staff and the room. Expect to pay $225 (studio, garden view) to $750 for 2BR/2BA oceanfront. Most units have nice lanai with good views towards the ocean. Like the others above, this is a beachfront resort - just step out onto the sand. Also, it is conveniently located right next to Whaler's Village. This nice mall and retail space offers shopping an dining, right off the beach. There are a couple of restaurants to choose from here. The Hula Grill has an awesome Barefoot Bar and dining area, complete with shoveled-in sand so you feel like you are dining or drinking right on the beach. Leilani's on the Beach, right next door, offers casual dining downstairs and more formal settings upstairs, all with sunset ocean views! The photo below shows the view looking down from Black Rock - the first two towers on the left are The Whaler, then comes Whaler's Village, then comes the Westin Maui, just to give you an idea of what the beach looks like here.
Anyways, on with the resorts. Next one down the beach is the Westin Maui. The official Westin Maui website is here. They have a great pool area, both for kids and grownups, including waterslides. Their $20 per day resort fee covers all the basic expenses, like parking, in room WIFI access, and gym access. This is a big resort, with more than 750 rooms. The Ocean Tower here has older rooms, and the Beach Tower is newer (and has bigger rooms). The rooms here are not very big, but its hard to find rates of less than $400, with ocean view rooms closer to $600. There is a significant discount for Starwood Preferred Guests, so be sure to join if you are booking a room and not already a member. Our one stay here in 2004 was memorable and enjoyable, though we wish the rooms were larger if you have a family -- request a room in the Beach Towers if you can. Below is a picture of the pool area of the Westin.
Next up is the Kaanapali Alii (also written as Ali'i). There are four 11 story towers here holding just 260 rooms. The pool is nothing as elaborate as the Westin next door, but still adequate (WARNING: all these resorts require wristbands for guests, so do not try to "sneak" into a neighboring pool -- they have vulture-like employees that do nothing but sit and prepare to pounce on anyone they see grabbing a lounge chair by the pool). Their website is here. These are all condo units, ranging from 1500-1900sf, plenty of space for families. They come with kitchens, washer dryers, A/C, and large lanais (patios), all with good views. And did we mention free parking?? Expect to pay $350-$800. We have not stayed here personally, but our reports from friends give high marks to the staff and the room amenities with no complaints.
Down near the southern end of the beach is the Marriott Maui Ocean Club. As of 2006, they are in the process of building a new tower opening in 2007, with another one slated for 2008 occupying the northern parking lot space next door. This is a time share resort, and they are selling the units in the new towers as well. The pool here is another breath-taker, with waterfalls and connecting waterways and a shipwreck area for kids to play. They have 442 rooms which go for about $300-$350 per night, about $500+ for suites. A picture of the pool area is below.
The final resort along Kaanapali Beach is the Hyatt Regency Maui. But we've saved one of the best hotels on Maui for last. This is the biggest resort on the island, spanning more than 40 acres of property with more than 800 rooms. Rooms are located in 3 main tower buildings, the Atrium Tower in the center, the Napili Tower on the north end, and the Lahaina Tower on the south end. Another terrific pool complex occupies the center area, complete with water slide, waterfalls, etc. The grounds here are spectacular, with lots of trees and lush foliage -- even some exotic (but safe) animals are walking around! Like most of the resorts here, they charge a daily resort fee of $15, with valet parking another $10. Their official website is here. Rooms rates start around $400 but can quickly jump up to $600-$700 for ocean view rooms. We've stayed here once and loved it, but it is expensive. Also, the beach here is not as nice as it is farther to the north - if a great sandy beach is important to you, consider the Sheraton or Westin Maui or Whaler.