Marriott's Ko Olina Beach Club?

Discussion in 'Marriott | Rewards' started by viguera, Dec 23, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Any thoughts on this property?

    I'm going to Hawaii in a couple of weeks and wanted to know if anybody had anything to say for/against staying here. I've seen it mentioned a couple of times in separate threads but nothing solid as far as reviews go.

    I'm doing some hopping for a week but my other properties are set, and I want to find out if this is a good idea or not since I have another week to cancel.

    They're running a promo now where members get 30% off the "Leisure rate" which I was told applied to me as I'm with Ritz-Carlton Rewards and apparently they're all one big happy family. Still, I'd like to know if maybe I'm missing something in spite of the online reviews.

    Thanks
     
  2. dmc730

    dmc730 Silver Member

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    I'm planning on going there as well so feedback is appreciated. This resort offers kitchenettes and multibedroom suites from my research. If I wasn't taking kids I would try to stay at the JW though
     
  3. Swice

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    Excellent resort. We were there July4th. Note: It's not Honolulu.... things are much more spread out.
    Pools are excellent and appeal to both adults and kids. This is a timeshare property. They do have regular-syle hotel rooms, but I'm assuming you'll have at least a one bedroom unit with a kitchen. If so-- plan on stopping at the Target store (exit before Ko"olina) and picking up breakfast and lunch foods and taking them back to the unit. Life will be so much easier (and cheaper!). Call NOW and check on the Fia-Fia show performances and buy tickets in advance (you'll get a better table). This is a luau type show built around "the Chief." The chief explains the culture of the south pacific and is FUNNY. Once you've done one luau, you've done them all... but this one is different and worth doing. Have your camera ready when this man climbs a tree (he's fast!). The Ko'Olina development is built around man-made lagoons. The lagoons are protected from the surf (so no waves). This makes it great for all ages to enjoy. You can walk around the lagoons on a wide sidewalk to take in the rainbows and check out the new Disney property and see the J.W. Marriott. After walking around the J.W. Marriott, you'll be glad you are at the timeshare property. I was actually disappointed after seeing the J.W. and glad we did not book there.
     
  4. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Thanks for the review, definitely worth knowing.

    I'm still worried that we'll get pitched on the timeshare bit as we have in other places, but I suppose all you gotta do is say no if you're not interested... :)
     
  5. Andy
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    Andy Silver Member

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    We stayed there in June for 3 days. Over the weekend the place was packed, but it emptied out significantly on Monday. We were in a 1 BD suite, which was great for us and our 2 kids (6&7). They had just finished a light remodel on our room (they were making their way through the entire tower), and it was gorgeous.

    There are 3 pools. The oldest has a sandy area for toddlers on one end, and sports courts (V-ball and B-ball) on the other. Pool 2 is grown-ups only pool. Pool 3 is monstrous and amazing. Multi-level, with a waterslide and waterfall grotto. The 6&7 year old literally spent ALL day on Sunday in the pool, only coming out for very brief breaks to shovel food in their faces or hit the head. The lagoon was cool, but we'd already been in Hawaii for a couple of weeks and the pool was much more interesting to them than the beach.

    We got a VERY light pitch on the timeshare thing - maybe 3 or 4 minutes while we were inquiring about some activities.

    We had breakfast at the JW, and wandered around the grounds a bit. It was nice enough, but in retrospect I would never consider staying there over the Beach Club, all things being equal.

    It definitely is a good hike out to Honolulu, but that was actually a huge plus in my book. I hadn't been to Oahu in almost 30 years, and with any luck, it will be about that long before I go back. But if I do end up back there for some reason, I'll definitely be out at Ko'Olina.
     
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  6. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I just checked in your today and the resort is indeed incredibly nice.

    The show today was canceled because of some unstable weather and rescheduled for Friday. However I ended up going to the macadamia nut farm yesterday as a suggestion from my sister and the same chief was running the entertainment there. Small show with torches, very funny coconut demonstration and even a canoe ride. I'm sure the Fia Fia show with him is very funny indeed.

    The resort is not without its faults though. They're a timeshare property so the villas seem to have no daily housekeeping -- only light "tidy up" service once a week or on demand. Not sure if that's the same case for the regular rooms.

    They also seem to be hit and miss on some of the details. For example my wife commented how they lack bath/house robes and have no shower caps -- I personally don't care but I guess that's the sort of thing that makes a difference.

    And without a doubt the place is priced way up there. If you don't mind forking out the dough for good food and drinks you will have a good time, but otherwise do plan to get some outside food or to roll your own.

    Just for reference we had lunch at Longboards while our room was being readied today. A steak sandwich, a fish sandwich and four drinks rang up at $80, without gratuity.

    Still, the place is quite nice and seems to be well worth the price of admission.
     
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  7. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    A quick correction about housekeeping, as it seems I had this wrong.

    If you're staying as a vacation property owner, you get this "tidy up" service once a week. The day varies depending on when you arrive, and the service includes (as it sounds) very basic clean up. You can have them come "on demand" and do either a light cleaning or a "full" clean-up of the room for $25 or $50 a pop, respectively. The full clean-up includes fresh linens, vacuuming the floors, etc.

    If you're staying in the property as a guest (you don't own) then you get standard room service every day. We were actually impressed with their service, and even once when we were in the room with the "privacy please" sign up they slid a card under the note saying that they came by and to call them up when we were ready for housekeeping.

    They post a daily schedule of activities on the elevators and you can get one for the next few days from the from desk. They include stuff like feeding the fish in the rather sizable koi ponds, yoga at sunrise, hula lessons, etc.
     
  8. farbster

    farbster Silver Member

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    We stayed at the Disney property nearby. The only caution I would put out there is that it is far from Honolulu. We wanted to take the kids in to Honolulu for dinner etc., but the traffic is awful. Also, the restaurants in the area are really lacking. We ate at Roy's (at the Ko Olina Country Club), but we could do that at home. One good food option is the local Costco.
     
  9. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Absolutely.

    There's a mexican place down the street and they're decent, but otherwise you have to trek for a while to find decent food options.

    Someone at the hotel told me about the area down the road from Target too. There's an Outback out there, Panda Express, an Italian place called Assagio, Chinese food, a noodle place and quite a few other places. There's a Safeway nearby if you feel like getting your groceries from there rather than Target / Costco.
     
  10. amazzajr

    amazzajr Active Member

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    We go there every year. It's a great property with a lot of activities. Several offsite restaurants, great golf, great staff. HNL is not far at all...20 min w/o traffic and it's well worth it to get away from the city. By far on of my favorite Marriott properties.
     
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  11. farbster

    farbster Silver Member

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    We went shopping at the Safeway, Costco and ABC Store for breakfast and lunch stuff. If I was going to Hawaii (some of the best food in my opinion) I would not eat at Outback or Panda Express on a bet.

    We ate at the Marriott (both the timeshare and the JW) and neither impressed at all.

    Just my opinion.
     
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  12. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    We were there for 3 nights and we tried Longboards once, but nothing else actually looked worthwhile. And I agree that I don't even do Outback back home, but I was pointing it out as an option. :)

    But either way, some times you don't have a choice -- I know I tried hitting some of the local spots while I was there with mixed success (went to Helena's for lunch and the line was out the door, for example).
     
  13. USAF_Pride
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    USAF_Pride Gold Member

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    Has anyone stayed in a villa vs standard guest room? Is ocean view from guest room actually a full view or off in the distance. Is mountain view from villa just as nice? Only 2 people in room.
     
  14. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    They have about 6,000 different room types, so it's understandable if you're confused... :)

    When I went last year, I stayed at what they call "1 Bedroom Villa, 1 King, Sofabed, Mountain view, Balcony" -- it was on the (at the time) farthest building, I forget the name but I'll try to look it up.

    They have (had?) three separate buildings at the time, and the one we picked was the closest to the kiddie pool and furthest from the beach (relatively speaking, since it's not really that far). We did this because we went with our (then) 2 year old, so the focus was the pools.

    The room is impossibly large for 2 people, but if you can swing it it's definitely worth it. Our "villa" was 900+ square feet with a full kitchen, living room, dining room and a separate bedroom with a master bath (that was also accessible from the kitchen). There was also a large balcony that spans the entire room, although we didn't make much use of it, plus washer and dryer.

    Ocean View in this building is relatively far... you can certainly see the ocean, but it's not like you can swing a chair off the balcony and it get near it. From the main building (where the reception desk is), it's a different story though. And that building is closer to the bigger pool with the slide and the lagoons.

    I'd be cautious about the "mountain view" rooms though... my understanding is that from the building we were on, you have pretty much unobstructed views of the golf course (and I suppose the mountains), but from some rooms in the middle building you have a view of the parking garage if you're in one of the lower floors.
     
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  15. Zomby Woof

    Zomby Woof Silver Member

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    I did the timeshare presentation at the one in Vegas and thought it was strange that owners have to pay for service while guests don't. Would have figured it would be included in the $0.45/point maintenance fee.
     
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  16. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Yeah I found that pretty ridiculous... as a non-ower you get daily housekeeping and they even loaded the dishwasher for us.
     
  17. MyTravels
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    If you are staying during an ownership week, as an owner, guest of an owner or exchanged-in the ownership maintenance fees do not include daily cleaning (the maintenance fees are already high enough!!)

    If you rent the week from Marriott, as an owner or as a guest, Marriott includes daily cleaning in your room rate.
     
  18. USAF_Pride
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    USAF_Pride Gold Member

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    Which begs the question, is it just cheaper to pay for the week instead of owning the timeshare?
     
  19. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    Good question... I guess it depends on the rates.

    When I booked though Marriott was having a sale. It was 30% off for stays of 3+ days, so I made out like a bandit :)
     
  20. MyTravels
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    MyTravels Silver Member

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    I don't think most people pay for (or even want) daily housekeeping so I don't think that is a driving factor.

    As for price vs own overall, well that depends on a lot of variables including your travel patterns. Iif you don't own you can rent from an owner typically a 7-night stay cheaper than you can rent from Marriott (Although as mentioned, Marriott includes daily housekeeping, while 7-night ownership weeks have housekeeping before the rental, after the rental, and some have a mid-week tidy).
     
  21. viguera
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    viguera Gold Member

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    I can see why there's some stuff you wouldn't want, but for the most part I'm happy with daily housekeeping while I'm on vacation.

    Don't get me wrong, I can and at times do make the bed, and I certainly can throw the towels in the in-room washer/dryer (especially at a resort like Ko Olina where you're bound to spend the day at the pool/beach anyway and it comes in handy for your own stuff), but I'm certainly not opposed to someone doing it for me.

    If they say there's no daily housekeeping I would frown but deal with it, but I'm certainly not going to call and tell them not to come if they do offer it.
     

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