We’ve often said in our writing that Kaua’i is the world’s best place. And we stick by that sentiment, heartily. Of course it only make sense that the world’s best place features of the world’s best hotels to ensure that visitors are well taken care of in comfort and style, and of course, the famed Aloha Spirit shared throughout the chain. Starwood Hotels & Resorts has long had a presence in Hawai’i, and their Kaua’i properties are among the finest in the collection, as readers of some of the world’s finest travel publications have voted time and again. From the dry, sunny shores of the island’s south short to the haunting beauty of Hanalei Bay, the three Starwood properties on the Garden Isle are well-paired sisters, complimenting each other, yet different enough to suit any vacation style and most budgets.
We recently visited each of the three properties (dining reviews are forthcoming in our Restaurantscolumn) and found them to be beautifully planned and maintained, with a warm Aloha from friendly staff at both arrival and departure.
Mahalo nui loa and warmest Aloha to Starwood Hotels & Resorts Hawai’i for providing accommodations and some dining in preparation for this article.
St. Regis Princeville Resort
For those who appreciate the world’s best luxuries and are either intimately familiar or just becoming acquainted with the legendary traditions of the worldwide St. Regis brand, the St. Regis Princeville, nestled on Hanalei Bay on Kaua’i’s North Shore is a wonder nearly guaranteed to inspire. With food and beverage offerings from private butlers (in specific accommodation categories) to the nightly champagne saber ceremony and the hotel’s own riff on the signature Bloody Mary (invented at the King Cole Bar at the St. Regis New York), the epicureans in any party will find plenty to entertain. We enjoyed the sunset (Hanalei Bay is famed for fabulous sunsets) from the bar. Doubles from $395 plus tax depending on season.
Westin Princeville Ocean Resort Villas Overview
A Starwood Vacation Ownership property which is also open to individual travelers booking retail, this gorgeous resort is located atop sea cliffs high above Anini Beach in Princeville on the island’s North Shore, and appeals to vacationers seeking a more “at home” experience in a more casual, intimate atmosphere than a larger resort hotel. Although not beachfront, the property is touted as “two steps” (one step on the complimentary shuttle, and one step off) from beach access at the neighboring St. Regis Princeville.
As a Westin property, each villa bedroom is outfitted with the famous Westin Heavenly Bed. Several of the first floor units we viewed open up onto a well-maintained garden with communal grills which are cleaned daily for guest use.Guests can stock their ensuite kitchens from local grocery stores or from an onsite cafe and pantry offering most basic kitchen needs and some pretty good looking cuts of meat just begging to be taken directly to the grill. Studio villas from $223 per night depending on season and availability.
View from an Oceanfront room at Sheraton Kaua’i Resort
During our recent stay at Sheraton Kaua’i Resort, we had the immense pleasure of enjoying an oceanfront room. For the most transcendental Kaua’i experience, we heartily recommend springing the additional room rate for oceanfront accommodations with a magnificent view of Po’ipu Beach. From waking up at the first strains of one of Kaua’i’s spectacular sunrises to immediately stepping out onto your private lanai (balcony) to listen to the sound of the crashing waves (which the name Po’ipu is often translated to mean), it won’t be difficult to see why the hotel was voted one Travel + Leisure’s World Best Awards – Top Resorts in Hawai’i for 2013. For more luscious photos, follow us on Instagram @AbFabSkyLife. Rooms from $169, Oceanfront Rooms from $249 depending on season and availability.