Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (2024)

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (1)

For our trip to the Big Island, Hawaii, we opted to stay at the Hilton Waikoloa Village. Located on the Kohala Coast on the eastern side of the Big Island (a 30-minute drive from the Kona International Airport), this oceanfront property boasts 62 acres of land and has 1,113spacious guest rooms.

This hotel offers everything you need for a relaxing day on the Hawaiian shore, from spending some time by the pool and enjoying delicious food to encountering sea creatures up close. Let’s take a closer look at Hilton Waikoloa Village and explore all the amenities this property has to offer.

What to pack for Hawaii?

To help you prepare for your journey to St. Kitts and Nevis, we’ve put together a comprehensive family packing list that covers everything you’ll need to make the most of time on the islands.

Read our Hawaii packing guide

Booking

For our stay, we booked a Standard Room using 70,000 Hilton Honors Points per night and redeemed 350k for 6 nights in total. The great news is that when you book a Standard Room reward stay, every 5th night is free, so to make the most value out of your points – book at least 5 consecutive nights!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Apply Now 🔒

American Express Hilton Honors Aspire

Right now, it’s an incredible opportunity to earn a signup bonus of 150,000 Hilton Honors Points and get an automatic Diamond status with Hilton when you signup for the Hilton Honors American Express Aspire Card!

In addition to that, we took advantage of the 30% transfer bonus when transferring Amex Membership Rewards to Hilton, which Amex was running at that time, to top up our account!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Apply Now 🔒

American Express Business Platinum

Unleash the ultimate rewards experience with the American Express Business Platinum card! Get 120,000 Membership Rewards Points by spending $15,000 on purchases in your first three months as a new cardmember. Redeem your points for a world of travel and lifestyle opportunities – the possibilities are endless!

REWARDS RATE

1x-5x

BONUS VALUE

$1,900

SIGN-UP BONUS

120,000 points

ANNUAL FEE

$695

Check-in

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (5)

We arrived at the Hilton Waikoloa Village around 11 in the morning and made our way to the check-in area. Since Hilton Honors Aspire credit card automatically gave us the highest Diamond tier status with Hilton, we wondered if the hotel could offer us an upgrade from the Standard Room Golf Course View we initially booked.

The concierge was accommodating and kindly offered us a few options – a complimentary upgrade to a 2 Queen Beds Room in the MAKAI building, a Garden View Lanai with 2 Queen Beds Room in Palace, and a paid upgrade to a Palace Tower One Bedroom Royal Suite.

After negotiating a daily fee of $150 for the suite upgrade, we accepted the offer and were happy to find out that the room was ready to move in already at 11 in the morning.

💡 Good to Know

Since it was an award stay, a daily resortfee of $45 was waived for us.

Parking at Hilton Waikoloa Village

Hilton Waikoloa Village has a nearby parking lot and offers self-parking with a daily fee of $48 and valet parking – with a daily fee of $55. The parking fees were not waived for the Diamond members, but valet parking was offered for the price of the self-parking instead.

Diamond member Upgrade

We got upgraded to a 1,895 sq. ft. Palace Tower One Bedroom Royal Suite. The cash rate per day would have been almost $3,000! A great deal, I might say!

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (6)

The suite featured a spacious living room with a complete dining set, a King Bed bedroom, and two bathrooms. The room may have looked a bit dated, but clean and nice looking nevertheless. The last renovations took place in 2015, and we are not sure if all the buildings underwent the process.

The queen-sized pullout couch in the living room was perfect for our oldest daughter (or any extra companions), so we did not have to request a rollaway bed. We also asked for a crib for our youngest, and the hotel staff delivered it promptly.

The room was also equipped with a small desk, a mini-refrigerator, and a coffeemaker.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (7)

💡 Good to know

An interesting fact about Hilton Waikoloa Village is that it initially welcomed its first guests in 1988. At that time, the hotel was actually owned by Hyatt and operated under the name Hyatt Regency Waikoloa. However, in 2002, Hilton acquired the resort from Hyatt, bringing it under their brand.

Bedroom

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (8)

The bedroom was equipped with a King-sized bed, a spacious walk-in closet, and an extra entrance to the balcony.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (9)

In addition to the soaking tub, the bathroom offered a shower cabin and a separate double-sink counter area. We were also provided bath robes and Kohala Spa Coco Mango bath products.

Patio

An oversized patio/balcony offered beautiful views of Waiulua Bay across the boat canal. Note that it was not even partially covered and offered no umbrellas, so there was no shade whatsoever during the day.

Now, the balcony was a great place to unwind, but unfortunately, we couldn’t use it for proper dining since there was no outdoor table available.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (10)

Dining at Hilton Waikoloa Village

Hilton Waikoloa Village offers several dining options – from a quick coffee from the coffee shop and poolside lunch to a fancy sunset-watching dinner at the restaurant.

Lagoon Grill

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (11)

If you are looking for a place to grab a bite, check out Lagoon Grill! They offer a variety of lunch and dinner options, including burgers, sandwiches, salads, and drinks. The kid’s menu offered items like grilled cheese, chicken strips, and a side of fruit!

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They offer a single menu available throughout the day and are open from 11 am to 7 pm.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (13)

Breakfast at Water’s Edge

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (14)
Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (15)

💡 Good to Know

As Diamond members with Hilton, we got a daily $18 food credit per adult (so $36 credit per day for us).

Water’s Edge restaurant had a spacious room with floor-to-ceiling windows, but alas, the lack of open windows made the space feel stuffy. The restaurant served breakfast in a buffet style for $55 per adult and $26 per child (ages 5-12); kids under 5 eat for free. Even though the restaurant seemed to have so many options, we were not that impressed with them.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (16)

Nui Italian

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (17)

The Nui Italian restaurant is open every day from 5 pm to 9 pm and serves Roman and Neapolitan pizzas, pasta, and salads. Overall, I would describe the food as average and not particularly outstanding.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (18)

Waikoloa Coffee Co.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (19)

Waikoloa Coffee Co. coffee shop was our favorite breakfast spot. In addition to having a great coffee (or Hawaiian latte with macadamia nut syrup), they served amazing Açaí bowls. It was absolutely delicious and approved by all the family members!

Hilton had two Waikoloa Coffee Co. on the property – by Ocean Tower and at MAKAI.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (20)

Unfortunately, as Waikoloa Coffee Co. is an independent third-party vendor located on the property and not affiliated with Hilton, you are unable to utilize the $18 Diamond food credit there.

Kamuela Provision Co.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (21)

Kamuela Provision Co. is open nightly from 5 pm to 9 pm. The reservations are highly recommended, especially for outdoor dining. You could book a table on OpenTable for the same day.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (22)
Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (23)

The restaurant provided a choice between a three-course style or à la carte for its steak and seafood dishes.

We enjoyed our sunset dinner on the patio and recommend trying Kamuela Provision Co. out while staying at Hilton Waikoloa Village (you ought to try the Wagyu Beef & Truffle ravioli!). The restaurant even provided our little own with plain butter pasta (that was not on the menu), and she was pleased about it 😃.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (24)

💡 Good to Know

If you need to stock up on water, snacks, or souvenirs, head to Island Gourmet Markets, just a 4-5 minute drive from the hotel. They also offer a variety of food options, including pizza, sushi, poke, and salads.

The Beach

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (25)

💡 Good to Know

For the whole week we stayed at Hilton Waikoloa Village, it was low tide in the morning and high tide in the evening.

Now, at Hilton Waikoloa Village, you won’t find a sandy beach suitable for swimming. However, they do have a beautiful snorkeling beach that is home to a variety of vibrant reef fish and sea turtles. Please be careful around triggerfish, also known as the humuhumunukunukuāpua’a, the state fish of Hawaii. They may perceive you as a threat and charge or bite first 😅.

If you prefer calm waters with a sandy bottom beach, the saltwater lagoon is a perfect place for it.

Turtles

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (26)

Encountering wildlife in their natural habitat is a thrilling experience, and the green sea turtle is a particularly fascinating creature to meet.

Luckily, the Waiulua Bay at Hilton Waikoloa Village is perfect for spotting a green sea turtle! In fact, we had never seen so many sea turtles on any of our trips. The turtles would sunbathe on the shore or come and go as they please to the saltwater lagoon! Fascinating!

Remember that green sea turtles are animals protected by law, so please don’t try to get too close or touch them.

Towel vending machine

You could get your towels using your room key at towel vending machines located throughout the property (the closest to us was at the Palace Tower). You had to return the towels to one of these machines, and failing to return them may result in charges since they allegedly had microchips.

Saltwater Lagoon

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (27)

The four-acre saltwater lagoon is connected to the ocean and is perfect for family swimming, snorkeling, and paddling. And yes, sea turtles come right into the lagoon and back to the ocean as they please.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (28)

You also have the option to rent paddle boats, kayaks, and snorkeling gear by the hour.

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (29)

Amenities

Kona Pool

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (30)

The Kona Pool is the largest pool on the island. It featured a 175-foot waterslide, a rope bridge, hot tubs, and a sandy beach for children.

Orchid Marketplace, located by the pool, offers sandwiches, salads, and local favorites including poke bowls.

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Kohala Pool

Hilton Waikoloa Village, Big Island, Hawaii, the Hotel Review – On Points With Kids (32)

The Kohala Pool is a complex of four interconnected pools with its own junior waterslide. Additionally, the walk-up Kona Pool Bar offers poolside drinks and snacks.

Ocean Tower Adult Pool

Hilton Waikoloa Village also had a third adult-only pool located by the Ocean Tower. Unfortunately, we did not have a chance to check it out.

Dolphin Quest

At the Hilton Waikoloa, visitors can experience the Dolphin Quest, which offers the opportunity to interact with dolphins in a tropical lagoon through touching, feeding, playing, and swimming.

Transportation within the hotel

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One thing to keep in mind is that this resort is enormous, and it literally has its own transportation within it.

The hotel runs Swiss-made trams daily from 6 am – 1 am. The tram can take you from Makai to Ocean Tower, with stops at the Main Lobby, Convention Center, and Palace Tower. The usual wait for the tram was for about 10-15 minutes, so it did not make much sense to use this transportation all the time. Plus, they had temporary air-conditioning problems inside, so it was uncomfortably hot.

In addition, Hilton Waikoloa Village also had a boat canal with electric boats cruising along the property and making the same stops as the tram.

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On Points With Kids Summary

For six nights at Hilton Waikoloa Village, we redeemed 350,000 Hilton Honors Points. The cash rate for six nights was $4,688.60 ($781.43 per night on average, including taxes and fees), which equals 1.34 cents per point (considering the average value of Hilton Honors points to be 0.5 cents per point), an outstanding value!

You can apply for the following credit cards to earn Hilton Honors points that can be redeemed at Hilton Waikoloa Village:

  • American Express Hilton Honors Aspire
  • American Express Business Platinum (American Express Membership Rewards points can be transferred to the World of Hyatt program)

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