Two weeks ago, I visited the Grand Hyatt Kauai for the second time. I first visited the resort in June 2012, using my free night certificates from my Hyatt Credit Card, and today, the property is just as beautiful and vast (situated on over 50 aces) as I remembered, and a great place for couples and families to stay while visiting Hawaii.
The resort is located on the south side of Kauai on Poipu Beach, and it’s truly a Hawaiian paradise with luscious gardens, fiery tiki torches that light up the resort at night, and what seemed to be an endless amount of pools, waterfalls, and lagoons.
Rather than a standard review of my own, in this post you’ll find a condensed trip report with lots of pictures and 10 tips I think you’ll find useful if you’re planning a visit to the Grand Hyatt Kauai soon.
Free Nights are Possible
Using World of Hyatt points is an excellent idea if you’re considering a stay at the Grand Hyatt Kauai. With standard room rates starting at around $550, you’re getting more than 2 cents value with your points when you redeem 25,000 points per night.
The new World of Hyatt Credit Card offers a sign-up bonus of 50,000 points after spending just $3,000 in 3 months, which covers two nights.
The points and cash rate of 12,500 + $150 is also an exceptional value, too. I would not recommend spending an extra 8,000 points per night for a free night with Grand Club access.
There is a $35 nightly resort fee (waived on full points bookings), which includes free self parking, wifi/fitness center access, etc. Here’s everything that’s included in the resort fee.
The standard room for a points redemption is a garden view room. As a Globalist, I was given a room on a high floor with amazing pool views. As, I mentioned, this property is huge, so to put that into perspective, the distance between the lobby and my room was approximately 1/4 of a mile.
The room itself was spacious and comfortable, but certainly ready for a renovation. I was a huge fan of the cocomango bath products.
Aside from everything that’s included in the resort fee, here’s a list of elite benefits available for each status tier:
- Member: 20% off lunch at Ilima Terrace between 11am – 2pm, 15% off Anara Spa Retail, $25 a car rental from Avis (minimum 2 consecutive days).
- Discoverist: All “Member” benefits, plus 2pm late check out and preferred room type booked.
- Explorist: All “Discoverist” benefits, plus complimentary access to Anara Spa and upgrade to best room available, excluding Club Lounge access and Suites.
- Globalist: All “Explorist” benefits, plus 4pm late checkout, upgrade to best available room (up to standard suites), waived resort fees on free night awards, complimentary valet parking on free night awards, complimentary access to the Grand Club Lounge.
The ride from LIH to the Grand Hyatt Kauai takes approximately 25 minutes and will cost about $50 for a taxi or ~$35 for an Uber. Since self parking is included in your stay, it might economically make sense to rent a car for a short stay and have the freedom to explore the island at your leisure and try restaurants that are off the resort.
Plus, you’ll have a chance to stop at a nearby supermarket on the way (Big Save Mart) to stock up on water bottles, wine, and snacks to bring to the resort before checking in.
The Grand Hyatt Kauai opened up in late 1990, and I’ll be honest – though the property is beautiful and meticulously-manicured, it’s due for an upgrade (especially the guest rooms).
The good news is that they are slowly renovating the rooms and suites (I saw some construction during my stay), and the manager I spoke with confirmed that more renovations are scheduled for later this year. I did get the opportunity to peek at a renovated suite and was impressed.
There are a total of 39 suites ranging from 1,050 – 2,813 square feet of space on the property, and two newly-renovated smaller ocean suites are opening this week.
While there wasn’t a suite available for me during one night of my stay, I did ask a manager if I’d be able to briefly see what they looked like before checking out – a pool suite and an ocean suite. Both of these are considered standard suites and are available as an upgrade.
I was really impressed with the pool suite, featuring 800 square feet of contemporary Hawaiian furnishings, a king sized bed, separate sitting area with a full size sofa sleeper, 65-inch television, wet bar, coffee maker and refrigerator.
The bathroom included a spacious wet room with a luxurious double shower and a free standing French tub.
Though a bit more dated in design, the ocean suite is also really spacious and a nice upgrade, especially for families. There is a separate living room, wet bar, dining table for 4, and large bathroom.
Pools & Beaches
There are pools to suit every pool desire you may have – including a “lazy-river” style pool, a salt water lagoon (my favorite), an active pool with a volleyball net, and even a pool with a water slide.
From what I observed, none of the pools were ever overly-crowded and the majority seemed to be family-friendly. All of the pools were heated, and some pools were warmer than others, but all were perfectly comfortable to get right in.
Lounge chairs, towels, and sunscreen are provided, but you’ll have to pay extra to reserve a cabana for the day.
Shipwreck Beach (the resort’s private beach) was also very nice, but the waves were a bit rough, so the little time I actually spent in the ocean could have ended tragically, LOL.
I enjoyed climbing up to the top of the cliff on Shipwreck Beach to catch some great views, though I wasn’t daring enough to take the plunge into the water below!
The Grand Club
The Grand Club is located near the Anara Spa and serves breakfast between 6:30 and 10am, afternoon snacks from 12 – 4pm, and cocktails (honor bar) & hors d’oeuvres from 5 – 7 pm, and cordials & desserts between 7:30 – 8:30pm daily. There is plenty of indoor and outdoor seating.
The spreads were decent and breakfast included fresh fruit, yogurt, pastries and some hot dishes like eggs and miso soup. Grand Club access is great for families and to pop in for a cold drink, have coffee, and snack through the day.
If you’re craving a more substantial breakfast offering, the food at Ilima Terrace was tasty and not too expensive:
Spa & Fitness
One attribute of the resort that I thoroughly enjoyed was their commitment to fitness. When I’m away, it’s nice to be able to stay fit, and being in an environment that’s conducive to staying healthy is important to me.
The fitness center here is large and is fully loaded with new equipment, and there’s also a number of fitness classes available free of charge ranging from power walking, Zumba, water aerobics, and conditioning classes. I took part in a 7am HIIT class one morning, and it was one of the most fulfilling (and challenging) classes I’ve taken in a while – I was sore for days afterwards!
The Anara Spa is also a nice place to kick back and enjoy the facilities, even if you do not have a scheduled treatment planned. There were separate steam rooms and saunas in the mens’ and women’s locker rooms, as well as a lap pool and hot tubs.
Make a Furry Friend
This is so heartwarming! The Grand Hyatt Kauai has a special partnership with the Kauai Humane Society, which allows guests to take a dog out for a field trip. You can take a furry friend hiking, to the beach or just spend time hanging out outdoors.
The Mahaulepu Heritage trail, adjacent to the hotel, is a nice easy walk that’s good for dogs. The Humane Society will provide you with information about trails and beaches you can go to, give you towels, treats, and a water bowl for your day out.
It’s a great program that gets the dogs out of the shelter, socializing, gives you your dog fix, and has resulted in many adoptions across Canada and the US. There is a map in the shelter that shows where some of the alums have moved to which includes Germany, all across Canada and the US!
While the Grand Hyatt Kauai as a whole is extremely family-friendly, there is a Camp Hyatt kids club option available for kids ages 3 to 12.
The price is $125 per child, per day, for a full day from 9am-3pm (includes lunch). A 1/2 day is $60 for 3 hours. There is a 50% discount for siblings.
Though I personally think that’s steep and would opt-out all together, some parents may crave some bits of alone time on a family vacation.
Below is a sample schedule of daily activities available for kids:
I’ve rambled a lot in this post, but I hope I was able to provide some helpful information to those who are planning a trip to the Grand Hyatt Kauai. I truly enjoyed my stay, and I’m excited to visit again after the property refresh.
If you have any other questions, please feel free to comment below, and I’ll do my best to answer them.
For those who have visited the Grand Hyatt Kauai already, what were your impressions?