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Grand Hyatt Kauai REVIEW- MASTER THREAD - mid-2011 Forward

Old Aug 20, 2018, 4:29 am
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Last edit by: FlyinHawaiian
SHOPPING
1. Safeway
a. Multiple locations (2)
b. Significantly more polynesian/asian offerings in regards to food, Made in Hawaii, Grown in Hawaii goods

2. Longs Drugs
a. CVS-owned; all CVS coupons and rewards are accepted.
b. Many locations, including Lihue and Poipu https://longs.staradvertiser.com/loc...p?island=kauai
c. Stores have a more significant focus on local items and goods than Mainland CVS stores.
d. Reliable source of distilled water for CPAP users.

2. ABC Stores
a. Significant number (3) of locations, accessible.
b. They carry almost nothing but local items, and also beer

3. Costco (2.6mi from LIH):
a. Gas up before dropping rental car off. It was at least $0.80/gal cheaper than anywhere else (8/20/18)
b. Kauai/Kona coffee, other gifts (e.g., macadamia nuts in multiple preparations)
c. Gift cards for local vendors are often available
d. Food court (many of the same items as continental US with same prices)
4. Walmart (1.3mi from LIH). Exceptionally busy. Busy store inside/outside/around it.
a. Beach/pool toys
b. Snacks (if you dont have a huge family staying a long time to eat Costco bulk item)
c. Souvenirs (they have a section in the front for this)

KAUAI TOURS/SELF-GUIDED ADVENTURES
Swimming/Snorkeling
1. Poipu Beach - Massive reef offshore, with a reef onshore separating two beaches. With the closure of Tunnels/Ke'e/Lumahai beach due to landslides on Kuhio highway, Poipu beach has one of the top snorkeling spots on the island currently, and is just 5 minute drive from the hotel. Turtles and monk seal are spotted here regularly
2. Lydgate Beach - protected snorkeling spot perfect for beginners. Located on East side of the island. This looks close, but traffic in Kapaa can make this a 45 minute drive.
3. Anini Beach - Northeast on island, 1 hour to reach. Reef with significant amounts of sea life.
4. Tunnels Beach/Ke'e Beach - currently closed. 1 hour 30 minutes away. Snorkel right next to the beginning of the Na Pali coast, with significant amounts of turtles. Before Kauai restores access to the beach via Kuhio Highway, residents are strongly considering limiting access to the beach (no vehicles, only shuttles, or limited number of vehicle permits sold per day). Parking fills up fast here, and these beaches are the end of the road on island.


GUIDED TOURS
1. Wailua River + Secret Falls Hike. 30-45 minute drive from hotel. Cost $40/pp. 4 hour+ trip. 1 mile of kayaking followed by a short hike to a large waterfall. Some tours offer pineapple as a snack at the waterfall. Some offer just chips or granola bars like what you might buy from Costco.
2. Kauai Sugarloaf Pineapple. See the Huber families sugarloaf pineapple farm. Hole in the mountain farms is situated on 38 acres of land, where you will be given the rare opportunity to taste sugarloaf pineapple. An extremely low acidic pineapple that has a core that is edible, and not stringy. $65/pp w/ free pineapple and smoothie. The ARV of the pineapple you receive will be around $8-15. Sugarloaf pineapple sells for $3-4 a pound, with an average pineapple being 5-6 pounds in size. This is a once in a lifetime experience. 1 hour from GH Kauai http://kauaisugarloaf.com BOOK TOURS IN ADVANCE. We booked two weeks in advance, and at the farmers market on a Wednesday we overheard them say they were booked out for 2 weeks (so almost September). They only do tours on Thursdays.
3. Chocolate Tour. Lydgate Farms has a chocolate tour. $95/pp
4. Captain Andy's Tours. Captain Andy is currently leaving out of the south shore in Port Allen. He offers all 3 kinds of boat tours. 55ft catamaran w/ restroom, warm water rinse, cooked lunch, snorkeling, napali coast, alcoholic drinks included (up to $179 pp). They have smaller boats that do not have restrooms/rinse/cooked lunch, but will go in the sea caves. And then they have raft boats that require you to wear gloves, and are very much a thrill ride. They do beach landings in those, and basically anything. The choices are listed from most comfortable to least comfortable. 55ft catamaran is the preferred way for most

HIKING/SIGHTS
1. Kalepa Ridge Trail. 1 hour from GHK. Free. 2 hour round trip. 1.7 mile hike. Classified as hard by alltrails.com. For the time and distance you walk, this trail beats the Awaawapuhi Trail
2. Awaawapuhi Trail. 55 minute from GHK. Free. Half day. 6.7 mile hike. Classified as moderate by alltrails.com. It is a longer hike, but once you get to the end, the views are IMO better than the Kalepa Ridge Trail
3. Canyon Trail to Waipoo Falls. 50 minute from GHK. Free. 3 hours. Hike to a the top of a waterfall on the Waimae Canyon.
4. Heritage Trail. Literally on the beach at the GHK. Free. Not necessarily a crazy cool hike
5. Wailua Falls: do some research if you plan on doing a hike down to the waterfall
6. Spouting Horn. 7 minute drive from GHK. Underwhelming, but worth it to say you've seen it. 2-3 minute drive from Spouting Horn is the Kukui'ula Village Shopping Center, which has a Bubbas Burger/Tortilla Republic/The Lanai/Merriman Fish House/Eating House 1849, Dolphin, Ruth's Chris and other restaurants. To see the spouting horn, you will walk past a 150-200ft of street vendors selling crafts, everyday of the week.
7. Queen's Bath-dangerous, slippery and muddy on way day, rocky and if you are inside you may get washed out by the waves. But go at sunset and you'll see why.

FARMERS MARKETS
1. Kukui'ula Village Shopping Center - Wednesday Evening, 3:30PM - 6PM. Kauai Sugarloaf Farms attends this, and will let you try their pineapple and buy tours here. There is supposedly a beer garden, but I didn't find it. There is also food from restaurants there, as well as a booth by the "Pie Lady" (The Right Slice).

RESORT FEE INCLUDES
1. Free self-parking (for all, not just Globalist)

2. Free laundry in each guestroom with free laundry pods

3. Towel at Valet for excursions (and after 7pm for pool)

4. Free bike use

5. Sunscreen at pool

6. Hospitality lounge for early arrival & late departing flights

7. Refrigerator in all rooms
  1. Self-parking
  2. Two complimentary refillable water bottles
  3. Purified water stations
  4. Poipu Bay Golf Course and Clubhouse shuttle service
  5. Coffee maker in room with Hawaiian coffee and tea
  6. Complimentary self-service washer, dryer and detergent
  7. Reusable logo tote bag located in closet
  8. Access to 24 hour Anara Spa fitness center
  9. Fitness and yoga classes at Anara Spa
    1. See daily activities schedule, 14 years and older
  10. Hospitality lounge for early arrival & late departing flights
  11. Welcome lei greeting
  12. Guided sunrise walk Monday - Saturday
  13. Hawaiian crafters daily in lobby
  14. Wildlife Walk twice weekly
  15. Hydroponic Garden tours twice weekly
  16. Entertainment and hula at Seaview Terrace
  17. Torch lighting ceremony three times per week
  18. Ukulele, lei-making and hula lessons
  19. Koi fish feeding and parrot talk
  20. Sunscreen samples at pool recreation desk
  21. Mountain Bike use - based on availability
  22. One hour tennis court time daily
    1. Reservations required, equipment rental available
  23. Complimentary boarding pass and incoming fax printing
  24. Unlimited local and toll-free calls
  25. In-room safe
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Grand Hyatt Kauai REVIEW- MASTER THREAD - mid-2011 Forward

Old Sep 8, 2017, 1:17 am
  #1501  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Originally Posted by pilotjustin
Did Garden Suites get turned into Standard Suites or some other reclassification?
I was wondering the same. Anyone?
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Old Sep 8, 2017, 1:19 am
  #1502  
 
Join Date: Mar 2015
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Originally Posted by daq
I'm sure this has been discussed before but appreciate any advice... looking to book a standard 2 nights points stay in December but see that they appear to only be available for 4+ nights when I'm going to be there.

Is there any point of calling and trying to get them to let me book only 2 nights? Any other thoughts on if this is possible? Thanks!
It certainly can't hurt to call or email.
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Old Sep 8, 2017, 4:19 pm
  #1503  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
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Posts: 247
Having a tough time reserving a room with points/certificates for the holiday week in December. I know it is very busy and full during that time.

However, there are standard rooms available as part of a package (Breakfast at Tidepools package specifically). It shows a standard queen/queen room. However, World of Hyatt tells me they cannot do anything with that, that it has to be available from the hotel at the standard rate (no additions/packages). I called the hotel and they were very nice but could not do anything about availability...

Kind of puzzled as I thought the reason Hyatt points and certs were so valuable because they do not have blackouts and you can usually book something. Not sure what I can do at this point, I scored award tix to Kauaii for the family already and was really looking forward to staying there...
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Old Sep 8, 2017, 11:06 pm
  #1504  
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Originally Posted by Nyurka
Having a tough time reserving a room with points/certificates for the holiday week in December. I know it is very busy and full during that time.

However, there are standard rooms available as part of a package (Breakfast at Tidepools package specifically). It shows a standard queen/queen room. However, World of Hyatt tells me they cannot do anything with that, that it has to be available from the hotel at the standard rate (no additions/packages). I called the hotel and they were very nice but could not do anything about availability...

Kind of puzzled as I thought the reason Hyatt points and certs were so valuable because they do not have blackouts and you can usually book something. Not sure what I can do at this point, I scored award tix to Kauaii for the family already and was really looking forward to staying there...
Unfortunately, many Hyatt properties have worked out that if they offer 'packages' they can deny redemptions. I had not thought that Kauai was one of these, but it seems so.
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Old Sep 9, 2017, 10:12 am
  #1505  
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Originally Posted by Nyurka
Kind of puzzled as I thought the reason Hyatt points and certs were so valuable because they do not have blackouts and you can usually book something.
It's a clear violation of program rules by the property, but unfortunately quite common.

You might try pm'ing WoH concierge here on the website and see if they can help you open award inventory. Though generally Hyatt does absolutely nothing to punish properties for this obvious violation of the rules.

And btw, the relative value of Hyatt points is not based on availability, or purported lack of blackout dates; it's based on the relatively low number required for redemption, e.g., 25K Hyatt points for a property that would cost 40K Marriott or 95K Hilton.
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Old Sep 9, 2017, 12:10 pm
  #1506  
skj
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
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Posts: 2,141
It looks like GHK has implemented a minimum stay for points bookings over the Christmas/New Year's period. I can book a room on points if I stay 20-29 December, but I can't even book a room at any cash rate for the night of 28-29 December. If you have the points available, you might book more nights than you really want, and then call and try to cancel the nights you don't want.

Last edited by skj; Sep 9, 2017 at 12:10 pm Reason: spelling
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Old Sep 26, 2017, 1:29 am
  #1507  
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Location: SFO/SJC
Posts: 247
Originally Posted by skj
It looks like GHK has implemented a minimum stay for points bookings over the Christmas/New Year's period. I can book a room on points if I stay 20-29 December, but I can't even book a room at any cash rate for the night of 28-29 December. If you have the points available, you might book more nights than you really want, and then call and try to cancel the nights you don't want.
Thank you for the tip, it sort of helped me in searching for availability here. It looks like they have relaxed their high season stay requirements a bit as of today. It does not have to start on the 20th any more, but there is a 6 or 7 minimum night stay over the holiday week. I was able to book 7 nights starting on the 23rd today using the combo of certs and points. if you are still looking for a room there, hopefully you'll find this helpful.
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Old Oct 8, 2017, 1:02 am
  #1508  
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
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How much nicer are the Grand Club rooms than standard award rooms? Or is it mostly just location.
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Old Oct 8, 2017, 4:54 am
  #1509  
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Originally Posted by Kacee
It's a clear violation of program rules by the property, but unfortunately quite common.

You might try pm'ing WoH concierge here on the website and see if they can help you open award inventory. Though generally Hyatt does absolutely nothing to punish properties for this obvious violation of the rules.

And btw, the relative value of Hyatt points is not based on availability, or purported lack of blackout dates; it's based on the relatively low number required for redemption, e.g., 25K Hyatt points for a property that would cost 40K Marriott or 95K Hilton.
Kacee,

25K hyatt points = 5k usd base spend, 95k hilton = 6.3k usd base spend. Now if you add in double points promos which are frequent at hilton and rare at hyatt i would say that its much easier nowadays to get 95 k hilton than 25 k hyatt... just my point of view
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Old Oct 8, 2017, 7:55 am
  #1510  
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Originally Posted by synd
25K hyatt points = 5k usd base spend, 95k hilton = 6.3k usd base spend. Now if you add in double points promos which are frequent at hilton and rare at hyatt i would say that its much easier nowadays to get 95 k hilton than 25 k hyatt... just my point of view
I would agree that Hilton earn is better than Hyatt, especially with the 2x promos.
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Old Oct 8, 2017, 1:51 pm
  #1511  
skj
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
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Originally Posted by rbears
How much nicer are the Grand Club rooms than standard award rooms? Or is it mostly just location.
A club room simply gets you access to the Grand Club. It is the same as any other (non-suite) room and, in theory, any room could be a club room. The "club rooms" tend to be located in the Poipu wing, closer to the Grand Club, but this isn't always the case. They also usually have an ocean view, but again, this isn't assured. There are reports in the past few months that Grand Club rooms are king bed only, and 2Q is not an option, but doesn't make any sense unless other changes have been made, and there's been no hint of that.
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Old Oct 9, 2017, 10:55 am
  #1512  
 
Join Date: Jul 2017
Posts: 33
Originally Posted by skj
A club room simply gets you access to the Grand Club. It is the same as any other (non-suite) room and, in theory, any room could be a club room. The "club rooms" tend to be located in the Poipu wing, closer to the Grand Club, but this isn't always the case. They also usually have an ocean view, but again, this isn't assured. There are reports in the past few months that Grand Club rooms are king bed only, and 2Q is not an option, but doesn't make any sense unless other changes have been made, and there's been no hint of that.
Thanks for the clarification. I'm still thinking that the extra point differential is worth club access, but the nicer room would have been icing on the cake.
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Old Oct 10, 2017, 5:50 pm
  #1513  
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With just 3 days until check-in, we snagged an upgrade to one of the two Presidentials.
Took a bit of negotiating to get the rate I wanted, and it's still more than I was ultimately hoping to pay, but it'll be well worth it for the extra space.
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Old Oct 11, 2017, 10:57 am
  #1514  
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Originally Posted by joecool1885
With just 3 days until check-in, we snagged an upgrade to one of the two Presidentials.
Took a bit of negotiating to get the rate I wanted, and it's still more than I was ultimately hoping to pay, but it'll be well worth it for the extra space.
don't be a tease...tell us what you paid!
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Old Oct 13, 2017, 10:23 pm
  #1515  
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Originally Posted by bsdstone
don't be a tease...tell us what you paid!
$150+12.5K+TSU+$700 nightly.
Points made in negotiation: we're globalist, this is our fifth stay here, and we're hosting our rehearsal dinner and wedding here.
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