June 17, 2024


sights and trips

The 5 Best Maui Family-Friendly Hotels in 2021

With its golden-sand beaches, farm tours, hiking trails and a world-class aquarium, Maui is a great place for the entire family. There are even resorts that cater to kid travelers, with keiki menus, cultural activities and pools they’ll never want to leave. Here are the Top 5 Best Hotels and Resorts for Families on Maui as voted by you.

1. Kā‘anapali Beach Hotel 

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Photo: Courtesy of Kā‘anapali Beach Hotel

It’s not just all about the beach at the Kā‘anapali Beach Hotel—but it helps. This resort, which recently underwent a refresh, sits on 11 oceanfront acres, where kids (and adults) can snorkel, swim, take a surf lesson or just lounge on the golden sands. The hotel also offers a variety of cultural classes for all ages, from playing the ʻukulele to stringing lei. And kids love the whale-shaped swimming pool, too. The best part? Children up to 17 years old say for free. Yes, free. 2525 Kā‘anapali Parkway, Lahaina, (808) 661-0011, kbhmaui.com

2. Royal Lahaina Resort

This budget-friendly boutique hotel in North Kāʻanapali is great for families who want to use this as a home base to explore the rest of Maui. But there are also a few notable benefits to this property: an ice cream shop—Royal Scoop—serving handmade frozen treats, pastries and smoothies; three pools, two with ocean views and one with a bar (for the adults); and a fun lūʻau show—the Myths of Maui Lūʻau—with dinner. Families can opt to stay in one of the hotel’s charming beach cottages, which come with modern kitchens, renovated bathrooms and great outdoor spaces. 2780 Kekaa Drive, Lahaina, (808) 661-3611, royallahaina.com

3. Grand Wailea Maui, A Waldorf Astoria Resort

It’s all about the pools at the Grand Wailea. The 25,700-square-foot Wailea Canyon Activity Pool is 2,000 feet long and boasts nine individual pools on six different levels connected by a river that carries swimmers along whitewater rapids and gentle currents. There are slides, a sand beach, six waterfalls, caves, three Jacuzzis, a swim-up bar (for the adults) and the world’s first-ever water elevator. (The elevator is currently closed due to COVID-19 restrictions.) The Lava Tube Slide is an exhilarating 3-story drop slide—it’s a 14-second ride!—into a pool. Kids can spend the entire day here—and often will. You might forget—and you shouldn’t—that there’s a world-class beach right outside. The crescent-shaped Wailea Beach is a great beach for kids, where they can swim, snorkel and play in the protected bay. Grab lunch or dinner at the new Aloha Trick Pony Food Truck, which serves something called Magical Tacos. What kid wouldn’t love that? 3850 Wailea Alanui Drive, Wailea, (808) 875-1234, grandwailea.com

4. The Westin Kā‘anapali Ocean Resort Villas

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Photo: Courtesy of the Westin Kā‘anapali Ocean Resort Villas

Just north of Puʻu Kekaʻa (Black Rock) on Kāʻanapali Beach are these oceanfront luxury villas with large studio and one-bedroom units that serves as a home away from home, with kitchens, washers and dryers and comfy beds. There are six pools—heated!—including the massive South Pool with ocean views, waterfalls and a 90-foot slide. One of the two kids’ pools has a pirate ship near the playground that kids love. The hotel also features the Westin Family Kids Club for kids ages 5 to 12 with a variety of fun activities, from Hawaiian crafts to animal expeditions. Dine at Auntie’s Kitchen, which offers kid-friendly fare like pizza, chicken quesadilla, cheeseburgers and s’mores brownies. 6 Kai Ala Drive, Lahaina, (808) 667-3200, website

5. Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club

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Photo: Courtesy of Marriott’s Maui Ocean Club

Steps from Kāʻanapali Beach, this sprawling resort features guest rooms with private lānai, renovated pools (which all have cabanas and fire pits) and dining options for everyone. The Nalu Adventure Pool, which opened in 2016, features the longest resort waterslide in the state, a splash pad and family-size cabanas. 100 Nohea Kai Drive, Lahaina, (808) 667-1200, website