Rated 3 out of 5 by WorldTraveler73 Severely Understaffed Hotel
Hotel grounds and facilities are fine, and the location draped over the Big Island's black lava rocks is lovely. Rooms are typical of what you would find at a Sheraton resort, except that the ocean view ones are extremely relaxing and tranquil, and listening to the waves crash against the rocks lulls you into a peaceful slumber. The biggest problem by far of this hotel is that it is severely understaffed. Every employee I interacted with was very friendly, caring and helpful, including the front desk personnel, restaurant waiters and poolside servers. The problem is that there are not enough of them, so waits for everything are enormous. These include a 45 minute wait to get seated at the restaurant (even with a reservation) and another 30 minutes for the waiter to come take our order (he is frantically running around seemingly trying to serve half of the huge restaurant). It was also near impossible to find anyone to take our order at the pool (so we had to walk over to the pool bar to place our order - after waiting there a long time too, of course). I had to call twice to get my delayed laundry delivered (the housekeeping staff was too busy to deliver it - or to even answer the phone the first time), and it is even difficult to reach the front desk on the phone (as there is always an enormous line in the lobby). Thankfully, we did not use the valet parking. All of these irritations accumulate, marring the terrific individual performances of the staff and preventing the full enjoyment of a perfectly relaxing vacation. Also, the wifi connectivity in the room is extremely poor, virtually nonexistent
January 10, 2015
Rated 1 out of 5 by pauldes2014 Awful compared to my other Sheraton Resorts
Front desk staff didn't care
Concierare didn't care
Valet staff rude and unhelpful
Rays on Bay staff.....average
Food at Rays on Bay....very very poor, cold and tasteless for the price
good in room 'basic breakfast package'
good quality gym..but missing a rowing machine
January 6, 2015
Rated 5 out of 5 by gmjensen My Favorite Sheraton
This property is updated and well maintained. The rooms are large and spacious with some incredible views. The staff is well trained and meets or exceeds what you'd expect at a Starwood property. Food is great and the pool area is awesome - with a big slide too! It's one of my favorite Starwood properties. if you get a room overlooking the manta ray dive you can watch them do that at night (or eat at Manta Rays restaurant). Very fun. Highly recommend this property.
December 22, 2014
Rated 1 out of 5 by WishWeHadGoneElsewhere Don't Stay In This Old Dump!
This hotel used to be the Kona Surf in the 80's and it has not changed. It is a run down dilapidated property that offers nothing to its guests that would ever want them to return. Rooms are old and beat up as is furniture, fixtures, the pool tile is filthy and the staff simply don't care. Visited 12-14 and will never return! No beach, the food was almost not edible! WE live in Honolulu and are SPG Gold and expect more from Starwood!! But a huge bummer.The toilet in our "Suite" was 30-40 years old!!
December 20, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by starwoodreviewer Excellent location for manta ray viewing!
Because this resort is not in the busy part of town, it was a fairly quiet and relaxing spot to spend a vacation. Restaurants and shopping are within easy driving distances. The oceanfront location is GREAT, although there is no beach to enjoy because the resort sits on a cliff. The nighttime snorkeling (specifically for manta ray viewing) just offshore from the resort was spectacular!
December 8, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by HappyCat3000 Gorgeous Slice of Paradise
I have no idea why anyone would complain about this hotel in any way. I travel all over the world, and stay at SPG hotels exclusively. This Sheraton has exceeded my expectations so far (I'm here all month)! I am a platinum member, and I was upgraded to a very nice ocean view room. I highly recommend this hotel to everyone, but especially platinum members as you will receive a generous complementary daily breakfast (a $17+/day value), complementary use of the wonderful exercise facility, and 50% discounts on cabana rentals at the lovely spacious pool. All of the employees that I have come in contact with are extremely friendly! The pool attendant, Sara, and the other pool attendants are all very pleasant and attentive! They greet everyone with a smile! Ray's bar is an excellent place for drinks and dinner or pupus. It has a breathtaking view (and great bartenders)! The daily trolley into town is free for platinum members and very convenient. I am originally from Oahu, so I don't do the "touristy" thing; however, there seems to be many, many things to do for the visitor to Hawaii. I love this place so much that I am going to revise my next trip and come here instead of my originally intended destination! I only have one minor complaint: I am used to being spoiled with an executive lounge and there isn't one here, but think I'll live. Ha ha. Mahalo Nui Loa!
December 6, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by iVulture Old but good location
It was a old hotel, but had a very good location. The reception was nice and gave us a free upgrade to a partially ocean view room.
December 3, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Brink33 great location/great staff experience
This hotel is in a great location--it is small enough to be friendly--not a mega size like some. Vicky at front desk and both David and Yuki at concierge are off the charts customer friendly. The one busy woman downstairs making coffee was just as terrific. We really liked this hotel--rooms fine, views wonderful, able to do activities close by. Never felt like the hotel wanted to charge you just for breathing their air--nice. Good job hotel manager.
November 24, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by magspanz123 Great location poor housekeeping
I rently visisted the Sheraton Kona and was satisfied with the resort for the most part. As a platinum SPG member, I was upgraded to a 2 room suite which was nice with an excellent view! The resort overall was fine; pool, food etc.. However, the housekeeping service was probably the worst I have ever experienced. The only thing that seemed to happen on a daily basis was replenished towels, bathroom ammenitites and a made bed. After four nights there were still empty glasses from the first night left untouched. I also noticed the shower was never cleaned during my stay. We ordered roomservice one night which was never removed, we had to put it outside our door in order to get rid of it. I was very dissappointed in the standards for thier housekeeping. Cleanliness is very important to me and I didn't feel that my room was cleaned properly, if really at all.
November 20, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by 65Traveller Hotel features
We stayed in this hotel from 11/12-11/18. We liked the hotel. Overall all everything is clean and well maintained. Staff friendly and eager to help.
Only complaint we have is about the breakfast food quality. This is just average especially they do not have even omelets stand on Mondays and Tuesdays.
November 19, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Brewermhk Superb facility on Kona!
We just stayed at the Sheraton Kona and could not have been more pleased. The staff, including car parking attendants, bell hops, front desk, concierge, waiters, bar tenders, even the maintenance staff, were extremely friendly and courteous. The rooms have those comfortable beds the Starwood chain is known for. Food at the restaurants was great. The ambience at Rays on the Bay is awesome. Great bands each night and you can see the manta rays from the bar. Try the hibiscus bourbon drink they have. I had it each night I went.
The location of the resort is great too. We like being away from the crowded tourist spots and this is just that. Peaceful and quiet! If you want to go into the town of Kona, they have a free shuttle bus to take you there. You can rent kayaks and snorkel gear right next to the hotel and use them right in there in the same bay. They have 2 nice pools, both of them good sized. One has a water slide and the other a waterfall. We have already talked of going back to Kona next year and if so we will stay at the Sheraton Kona again!
November 19, 2014
Rated 2 out of 5 by virgie42 Poor service in older facility
When we checked in to our "ocean view" room, we discovered that the room overlooked the parking lot and you could only see the opening to the bay if you went out on the balcony, to the railing. This was changed when I complained but why should I have to do that? The room was not stocked with bathroom amenities, so I got to go get them from the maid's cart. The toilet was an industrial "foot flush" model--not very attractive in a higher quality hotel. Pool area ran out of towels and, rather than bringing some to us when available, we told to just "come back in 20 minutes". On the evening of our fifth and last night, we recieved a call from the concierge "welcoming" us to the Sheraton. The self parking lot fills up on weekends when events are going on and there are no reserved spaces for hotel guests.
There are so many better hotels in better locations in the area. A beautiful lobby and viewing of the manta ray area do not make up for the deficiencies of this hotel. Find better service, a prettier pool area, more modern facilities and a beach somewhere else.
November 15, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Marla10 Truly Hawaiian
My husband and I came for our 36th Anniversary and upraded to an Oceanfront Suite and we loved the view, privacy and the comfort.
I however was disappointed in the selection of dining experiences. The breakfast buffet needed more variety and the dinner at Ray's was just average.
The staff was great and attentive and the hotel was filled with rich history which we enjoyed hearing about.
November 12, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Francesco001 Relaxing stay at Sheraton Kona
This hotel has very friendly staff everywhere. It also has gorgeous setting with the pool and poolside facilities. Fantastic sunset view! If the mattress had been less soft I would have slept comfortably.
November 12, 2014
Rated 2 out of 5 by ksmw Rude staff but great location
The best word for the Sheraton Kona is mixed. Some things were amazing (the pool, the size of the rooms, the concierge, the view/location). An a few things were downright embarrassing. First, the room service was brought in a paper shopping bag!! The other thing is that several people on the staff were rude and disinterested – for instance when I asked one of the guys at the bell desk how to get to the shopping center he just shrugged and said “how should I know”. Another example, when I asked to see my bill and noticed I was not given the 15% platinum discount for meals (which I was offered upon arrival in a letter) he said “well there is nothing I can do – you need to ask for that when you eat”. The rooms were dated, but HUGE so I can’t complain there. Overall the biggest issue was the staff, pretty weak for Starwood overall and downright pathetic for a beautiful tropical paradise.
November 10, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by OtherChuckStone AStarwoods Resort Facility with wonderful vistas and amenities.
My major complaint was Ray's Restaurant on premises which soured us on any other food venues at the resort. Guests should be prepared to eat off premises. It is one thing for resort food to be expensive, but my wife's hamburger order was botched both the first time and the second. When this was pointed out to waiter, he appeared annoyed, said a correction would be made on the bill and then failed to do so. I asked the waitress who brought my food whether they had bread and she mentioned something about chips, but did not offer to bring any or indicate a price. Small portions, terrible service and an indifferent attitude by restaurant staff resulted in our decision to avoid all other food venues at the resort and would lead us to recommend other resorts to friends despite being Starwoods Preferred Guest Members.Starwoods needs to close this restaurant and should reimburse members for such atrocious service.
November 8, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by PeepMN Great Location
We enjoyed our stay here when using the hotel as a base of operations. It was a great location for exploring the Big Island. The concierge was super helpful with finding and setting up activities. Free valet with Platinum status was great. Beware that the $30 resort fee really adds up over a stay and you won't feel like you have anything to show for it - internet and bottled water should both be free if you are Platinum, if you don't take yoga classes or ride the trolley you will wonder why you paid the extra charge every day.
Regarding the actual facility, the buffet breakfast is expensive and does not change, I would avoid. Beware of rooms in the Helani wing on the ocean side. You will be over Rays on the Bay and cannot get away from the nightly live music until it is over between 9 and 10 - when trying to appreciate an ocean view suite it is much less relaxing when you have to sit through a cover band for hours every night.
November 5, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by AlohaSmile Banquet Staff is Awesome!
Stayed here for an event me and my copany booked at the hotel. Everyone we came in contact with in the banquet department (porters, sound technician, captain/manager, director) were great. We asked and they delivered whatever we needed. Definitely exceeded my expectations. Wish I stayed longer and with my daughter so we could enjoy the other facilities like pool and spa.
November 1, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Cynthia5 This hotel a great romantic getaway
Celebrated our anniversary in beautiful oceanfront room with view from our lanai of the Manta Rays swimming below. Arrived to our room decorated with a beautiful floral arrangement and flower petals arranged in a romantic heart on the bed. Friendly and courteous service from all the staff, especially the room attendants, food servers, and front desk hosts. Meticulous grounds and beautiful pools with fun slide. Rays on the Bay a great place for food, fun and entertainment. Definitely left with great experience celebrating our special occasion.
October 28, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by YourGuest666 Hotel needs better signage
Upon arriving to the hotel and parking at the self-parking area. My friend and I were clueless as to where the registration/check-in desk was. There are no clear signs as to where check-in was and we rolled around in our heavy luggage for a while before stumbling upon it. Advice: not everyone drives up to the front of the hotel - especially in Big Island lots of people rent cars and the hotel had terrible directions and even the signage that were there were vague and confusing.
October 27, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Gary426 This hotel needs improvement
My wife and I spent six nights at this property, October 16-22. The hotel is a beautiful property in a great location (although no beach).
However, there are two items that I feel should be improved upon. The first is the food in the main dining room, Ainakai. The breakfast buffet was sorely lacking in variety and quality for the cost. This property is away from the main Kailua-Kona area so guests are a somewhat captive audience. Food service improvement should be considered.
The other item: Please consider replacing the toilets in the guest rooms. I'm not sure if the one in our room was typical of all rooms but ours was a wall-hung (no tank), institutional toilet similar to what you would find at the airport or in a bus station. The worst part was that it flushed so loudly and with such force that it always woke up the other person. Not the kind of thing I would have expected in a higher-end Starwood property like this.
October 25, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by IronwomanX10 Excellent choice
SK was a last minute choice for Ironman Week due to the condo we had reserved 9 months in advance being too hot and noisy to occupy. The room was fine - great view - comfy beds and pillows - quiet fridge and A/C. You did have to listen to the Hawaiian Trio in the main resturant until 9:30 but it was not obnoxiously loud. Every staff member we were in contact with was exceptionally helpfull in all respects. WiFi was very poor in our room and even AT&T cell phone connection was unreliable without going outside the room. Wonderful food in the main resturant (Ribeye and Ahi) Contintental breakfast had no adult cereal except granola (if you like Frankenberry, Count Chocula and Mini Chocolate Chip Cookies, you're OK) Keep in mind that you will need a car, taxi or the once every two hours Trolley to get into town. Good swimming/fish viewing from the dive center next door. All in all a very nice experience and would love to return.
October 18, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by lee48 awesome ocean views
Beautiful location with amazing ocean views from lobby and pool. Very nice pool with waterslide and ample shaded areas. Great hotel for those that like to spend a lot of time poolside. Only disappointment is the cost of food and drinks. but to be fair starwood property on Maui also expensive with cocktails at $13, lunch $20, and dinner $35. The night dive/snorkel viewing manta rays at this hotel is not to be missed! Recommend you buy an underwater digital camera before arrive ($120).
October 18, 2014
Rated 3 out of 5 by Busy90814 Disappointed
The restaurant was closed when I arrived, so I had to go to the Lounge for dinner. They should have provided hearing protection; the band's volume level was 87-89 decibels. I asked for the manager, and they turned it down to 85-87. You couldn't even hear the surf. There were tiny spiders all over the desk in my room. I when I was leaving in the morning there was no one at the Express Coffee Bar that was supposed to have been open 45 minutes earlier. I usually love Sheraton properties, but this one was an extreme disappointment.
October 11, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by krill996 make you feel like Ohana
The hotel staff at this site are wonderful. They remember you and make you feel like part of the family. It is truly special! Also there are recent changes in the bay area (addition of a ladder to get into the water and a new restaurant at the docks) that make the immediate hotel area more user friendly and fun.
October 5, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by LizaMariee Amazing Experience
My fiancé and I stayed here a month ago, we cannot say enough great things about the quality of service and our overall experience. Every moment of this trip was wonderful, we loved the location of the hotel, inside and out it was beautiful and well maintained. There were many events to choose from so we were never bored. The staff was always friendly and welcoming. You can't go wrong with the Sheraton Kona, we'll be back!
October 3, 2014
Rated 2 out of 5 by Kaimu Needs improvement
The meals was not to my satisfaction...the food was too much salt....very salty on our Hawaiian buffet night. Breakfast at the restaurant was full with birds flying around and eating out of a customer plate when he went to get his omelet.
September 29, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by Elliokri The Staff Makes the Difference
The hotel is not a new property, but the staff were amazing, attentive, and friendly. The property is certainly clean and well maintained just shows it age a little. The staff addressed me by name by the second day, and went out of their way to make me feel comfortable.
September 29, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Tom83 Awesome Resort We'll be back
Very nice resort! As a platinum, we were upgraded to a ocean view family suite prior to check-in. The hotel is older, but has been extensively remodeled in the last 5 years. The hotel had new, modern appearance.
Immediately after check-in we went to see Samantha, the concierge, and booked a Manta Ray snorkel, golf and a helicopter ride. Sam was very friendly, knowledgeable and worked hard to book exactly the excursions we were looking for.
We ate dinner at Ray's the first night. The food and service were excellent. They also had a live band and a dance floor. After eating we walked out to the viewing area to watch the Manta Rays.
The only problem that we experienced during our stay was that our room was located directly above Ray's and my wife found it difficult to sleep. We reported this to the front desk the next morning and we were moved to a larger, Corner suite that had a patio that was larger than our first room. That's what I call great service.
The resort has a huge pool with a 200' water slide, which we used on two days.
This resort also does an excellent job of recognizing Platinum guests. At check-in were give platinum colored wrist bands to wear during our stay. We got 15% off in all the restaurants and at breakfast each morning they brought us out a special plate of pastries without asking. My favorite was the Long John that was topped with a strip of bacon, caramel, and chocolate!
We will definitely stay at the Sheraton Kona the next time we visit the Big Island.
September 25, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by ShivaJ Spectacular Location. Very Comfortable Stay
My wife and I spent a week here and we were very impressed with the hotel's location and the upkeep of the property. The views here are quite fantastic and excellent for a laid back visit to the Big Island. It is also quite close to the Kona area - 15 minute drive times each way.
The service and staff here are excellent - very polite, friendly and our concierge was exceedingly helpful in getting us booked on a last minute helicopter tour.
I would strongly advise that you Yelp yourself to other locations to eat/drink instead of dining at the resort. Big Island isn't exactly a foodie destination but you can certainly get better bang for your buck elsewhere. The breakfast cafe they have in the morning is a notable exception - we preferred that over the restaurant buffet that is served in the morning.
The pool area is also quite fun - try the water slide! You're never too old for a water slide.
My one tip - beware the Luau. This is not run by the hotel - although it is held on hotel property. Apparently the Luau here is one of the best on the Kona side of the island but it is unfortunately subject to weather. It rained during our Luau and they moved it to the convention center ballroom- which completely killed the atmosphere of the event. Make sure the evening is clear before you buy tickets (which are pretty pricey to begin with). Maybe it will be better the next time we go.
Overall - I would absolutely wholeheartedly advise that you stay here if you're looking for an SPG hotel on the Kona side of Big Island.
September 25, 2014