Marriott Wailea Beach Resort in Maui

In September, I hotel-hopped about Maui, and Marriott’s Wailea Beach Resort was my second stop after a fantastic stay at the preppy Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua on the northeastern side of the island. Though my room wasn’t the most luxurious, the resort’s amenities and beachside setting made for an unforgettable visit.


My stay was booked through in order to take advantage of the Capital One Venture Rewards Credit Card’s 10x points offer when you book a room using the link and pay with the card through January 31, 2020. The two-night stay cost $1,119, without counting the daily $35 resort fee, which was added to the bill upon checkout.

The Wailea Beach Resort is a Marriott Category 6 facility, costing 50,000 points per night at the normal rate. Off-peak and peak rates will be 40,000 and 60,000 points, respectively, beginning in 2019.

If you’re not looking for Marriott or other hotel chain status, this is a terrific option to book because you’ll get 10x miles on your purchase and can use those miles to cover travel expenditures. You might also use the Rewards program to get a free night (one for every ten paid stays). By combining the two, you’d be looking at an effective 20% return.


This resort was located on a considerably busier section of Maui than the Ritz-Carlton, which was about an hour away by car from the airport. The Wailea Beach Resort, on the other hand, was approximately 30 minutes from Maui’s Kahului Airport (OGG). This was useful at both the arrival and departure points of my journey. The Maui area of Wailea did not feel distant or private, but the beaches were stunning.

And this resort was enormous, resting on 22 acres and allowing access to not one, but two beaches for swimming, snorkeling, kayaking, as well as a plethora of on-site activities.

While there was much to keep me busy on the property, it was also close to numerous stores and restaurants in the Wailea region, and the resort provided courtesy cars to Wailea locations on a first come, first served basis.


My mother joined me for my stays at the Ritz and this Marriott resort, and we drove down from Kapalua to Wailea for about an hour, arriving at the Marriott resort a little after our 3pm check-in time.

The parking valet personnel was polite, and as soon as we stepped out of our rental car, other employees swooped in with lovely orchid leis. (Valet parking, by the way, costs a stunning $40 per day.)

The check-in agent swiftly changed my reservation to a room with two queen beds instead of one king. She also offered us chilled tropical fruit juice and cool towels, as well as a booklet with hotel information and coupons for two free mai tais at the pool or poolside restaurant.

The Room

The two-bed, garden-view room wasn’t luxurious, but it wasn’t too small either.

It had the essentials: two beds, a bathroom, and a spacious closet.

There weren’t many design flourishes, but everything was modern and tidy.

The bathroom had a combination shower/tub, which was far less inviting than the separate shower and tub at the Ritz.

The lanai (balcony) largely overlooked a road that appeared to be used only by personnel.

However, we could see a glimpse of the ocean all the way to the left.

There was a huge flat-screen smart TV and a desk/dresser combination.

There was also one inside chair to the right of the dresser on the lanai that we primarily utilized for storage. We liked that the room featured a mini-fridge with only two water bottles – it was ideal for keeping leftovers.

Food and Beverage

The mai tais at the Wailea Beach Resort were robust and presented with the essentials — pineapple wedge, maraschino cherry, and all. We redeemed our free drink coupons at the poolside bar and watched the sunset from there.

The room-service menu was quite extensive. We got the penne marinara ($19) and the farm-greens salad ($19). The salad was excellent, but the penne was disappointing.

At the Kapa Bar & Grill, I had a $19 kale salad with glass noodles, crunchy onions, and fried tofu cubes. It was quite informal, which was exactly what I wanted.

The Mo Bettah food truck, located off the hotel route to Wailea Beach, and Whale’s Tale, a café that also featured cold-pressed juices and smoothies, were two other dining alternatives. In addition, the hotel provided a luau and could organize private oceanfront and cabana meals.

Breakfast was included in my accommodation rate and was provided at the Humble Market Kitchin restaurant by Roy Yamaguchi, a pioneer in the Hawaiian food movement. The restaurant had stunning views of the ocean and the island.

The breakfast buffet was delicious. I didn’t miss the lack of an omelet station. From lox and other savory spreads to pastries and hot foods like curried cauliflower and Brussels sprouts, there were plenty of options. Breakfast was included in my lodging fee; it would have cost me $34 if I had ordered it separately.

My waitress refilled my coffee several times and brought me delicious POG (passionfruit-orange-guava) juice.


The 22-acre Wailea Beach Resort has a lot going on, from five pools (one with a waterslide) and three golf courses to an on-site spa, lots of beachfront water activities like snorkeling, and a frickin’ escape room (really).

Because school had just begun, there weren’t many children at the resort when we visited, but the Wailea Beach Resort would be an easy choice for families. There was a kids club, a movie theater with beanbag seating, a games section with life-size chess, a big Connect Four, a cornhole throw, and sand art (!).

In the open-air foyer, there was even a selection of ukeleles to strum.

I enjoyed the beaches, and while I didn’t go snorkeling during my stay, there were plenty of tourists who did.

The resort provided beach chairs and umbrellas on a first-come, first-served basis at Wailea Beach. We missed out on this on our first day because they closed at around 5pm, but we still had a great day swimming in the (very warm!) lake.

I also enjoyed the pools.

However, it was here that I had my one less-than-impressive customer service encounter. I took a seat under an umbrella at the Maluhia adults-only pool, intending to read, work, drink, and perhaps order lunch.

At this time, I was traveling alone, and the poolside workers taking food and drink orders didn’t appear to be passing by my location. I didn’t want to be rude and wave them down while they were busy with other customers, but after about 30 minutes of no success, a man sat next to me caught the attention of a waitress, so I asked if I could make a drink order with her as well. Her tone and behavior indicated that she was annoyed that I had asked her that, yet she did take my order.

Later, she handed ice water to everyone around me but ignored me. She even closed my bill quickly after the drink order, while telling other customers she’d keep their tabs open in case they wanted to purchase anything additional. I had planned to get dinner, but with that awful sensation, I was ready to go somewhere else.

The plus side of this poolside experience was that staff came around with excellent banana bread for guests — I even witnessed a guy go all the way into the pool to distribute samples to swimming guests.

Overall Impression

Marriott’s Wailea Beach Resort is in a beautiful position with not one but two great beaches, and I had a fantastic time altogether. The pools are lovely and numerous, and there are plenty of food options and activities on-site. My room was simple, but pleasant, and it had definitely been freshly remodeled. I’d suggest this resort to families and other guests that appreciate variety over a more opulent resort experience.

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