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“Disappointed!”
Review of Hale Ko'olau

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Hale Ko'olau
Reviewed 13 April 2015

I usually don't take the time to make any comments on travel accommodations; however, this time, I feel that I need to make my opinions known. These comments are in support of those of Ron S. whom my husband and I travelled with to Hawaii in March. We had ended our island cruise at 7:00 a.m. and were early arriving at Hale Ko'olau; I think around noon. Despite arriving early, the owner was very accommodating and allowed us to drop our bags off in our beach house. He welcomed us and apologized for the water that had accumulated in the car port due to flash flooding the night before. We did, in fact, go into the house with our bags but it was being cleaned so we simply checked out the layout of the house and commented on how nice and bright it was because of the large windows. We did not take time to actually look to see if there was anything wrong with the house. We did not want to interfere with the cleaners and, after all, we were early. As reported by Ron S., I was asked to sign the many documents prior to taking occupancy. Although somewhat uncomfortable with this process, I did sign which, in hind site, was a mistake. The owner indicated that he was asking us to do this as he would be very busy that day checking others in and that, if I signed now, it would be helpful to him. What Ron S. reported is accurate in terms of what we found in the house, i.e. water stains, paint peeling, 2 empty holes in the ceiling which should have accommodated smoke alarms and the only smoke detector on site had run out of batteries which was reported, promised to be replaced but, in fact, wasn't. Sliding closet doors, in the room where my husband and I stayed, were in rough shape and we were unable to close them. No need to go on and on. What was reported by Ron S. is true. We were told the story of the maintenance man being injured and that they were without someone to fix or repair such things. During the check-in process, it was made very clear that should anything be found damaged or stained while we were there, charges would be laid, even if there were makeup stains on the towels or face cloths. We were, truthfully, fearful that if we brought anything to the owner's attention, we would be blamed and, therefore, charged a fee. So, we kept quiet and all 4 of us decided that this would not ruin our Hawaiian trip.

I think one of the biggest disappointments is that the pictures we saw online, which looked beautiful, were nothing like what we found when we got there. We thought we were renting a 'beach' house where we could get up in the morning, go for a swim, walk along the sandy beach and then come in and have a leisurely breakfast, all without having to travel to another site. Again, out of fear of some kind of repercussions from the owner in terms of 'charges', we kept quiet. Also, had we chosen to leave, we had no other accommodations to go to. The owner requires that full price be paid a few weeks prior to taking occupancy. We would have then lost half of our money, if I am not mistaken.

My advice to those booking accommodations online is to be aware that things aren't always what they seem. We have learned a valuable lesson.

Dina W.

Stayed: March 2015, travelled as a couple
7  Thank dgwells
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hale K, Manager at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this reviewResponded 18 April 2015

Aloha & mahalo for your candid review. We do appreciate your feedback and will consider it towards improving our property and guest experience.

We would like to point out, however, that we receive all our guests with a lei greeting and then provide them with the opportunity to review the homes upon arrival. We ask them to sign our Clean Guarantee. The Clean Guarantee is a detailed check-list of all areas of the home which our cleaning staff have cleaned. We invite each guest to take their time and review the home to make sure it meets their satisfaction. If there is anything a guest is not satisfied with regarding cleaning all they have to do is let us know and we’ll spot clean the home until they are satisfied…guaranteed. Even if its something they don’t notice upon arrival they can always call us or visit our office between 10am and 6pm and we’ll respond to their reasonable cleaning and other requests.

In addition to the Clean Guarantee we have all guests sign our Receipt of Possession that states the rental is as shown online and in our marketing and that they are satisfied and are taking possession of the rental. Afterwards we go through our Guest Services Directory and give a tour of our property. All guests know that if they need anything at all we are available to assist them, however if they stay the length of stay and then upon departure or afterwards come back to us with complaints there is little or nothing we can do.

I was the one who greeted you when you arrived and you were given plenty of time to inspect the property before signing our documents. It was necessary for you to sign documents as you were dropping off luggage early and we had to have a liability release for that. We try to be as accommodating as possible but we have policies that have to be followed for our own protection...especially considering some people will make absolutely absurd claims after-the-fact.

The house you rented is a direct beachfront home with 2 bedrooms, travertine stone floors, a/c, new kitchens with stainless steel appliances and granite counter tops yet it seems the only thing you can comment about are a few missing smoke detectors (which we did replace) and some other minor maintenance issues which, considering the home is only 10 feet from the ocean at high tide is understandable. Right next to our property is a wonderful sandy-bottom swimming beach and the property itself is indeed beachfront. Unfortunately there are effects of erosion which is covered in the rental agreement and in our online FAQ, etc. If you had taken the time to read and review prior then you would have been prepared...however, from your husband's review I can see that you were not the ones who actually booked the property.

Again, we appreciate your review and the opportunity to respond to it. We’re always working hard to improve our properties while continuing to provide affordable and family-friendly beachfront rentals on the North Shore of Oahu.

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34 - 38 of 160 reviews

Reviewed 12 April 2015 via mobile

I was at Hale Koolau for about a week at the end of March, It was an amazing trip for me. The property we stayed in was much like home to me....not at all a resort. Which is exactly what they advertise. There service is amazing, they offer supplies if you need some with just a tiny fee. The owner was incredibly helpful and even met me in the middle of the night to check me in, since my plane was delayed. I absolutely would suggest Hale Koolau to anyone.

Stayed: April 2015, travelled with family
Thank JABrailsford
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hale K, Manager at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this reviewResponded 15 April 2015

Aloha and mahalo for your review. We're happy that you enjoyed your stay at Hale Koolau.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 4 April 2015

After staying here, I feel the majority of these bad reviews are justified. Although the rental unit was not in my name, my wife & I did pay half of the rental costs so I feel justified in commenting.
There are a lot of waivers to sign & you are charged for additional toilet paper. We were told that because we arrived early & to speed up the check in process, my sister-in-law was asked to sign all documents prior to taking occupancy, We did not get the chance to check the unit as it was still being cleaned. We found the unit to be rundown, water stains on the livingroom & bedroom ceilings & the walls in the bedroom under the windows. Paint was peeling off the wall by the headboard of the bed. The were three fittings for smoke detectors throughout the unit but only one had a detector. After being there for two days, the battery in the only operating unit died. We took the partially dead battery out of the unit to stop the constant beeping & took it to the office.
The lady told us she'd have it replaced, that never happened. One of the mirrored closet doors was jammed & rusting out so we could only use half of the closet. We would have reported this but the owner made a point of telling us when we signed that he didn't have a maintenance man as he was in a car accident. The pictures that are used to sell this property are misleading. The property is shown as having a nice sandy beach when in fact the beach consists of large black rocks. A lot of the furnishings shown in the units ad are no longer there. After reading some the owners previously responses, I'm sure he will say that we expected too much & that I'm not being truthful. I would strongly advise anyone who is thinking of renting should read all of the reviews. I made a point of taking pictures to back my claims. Renter be ware.

Stayed: March 2015, travelled with family
6  Thank Ron S
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hale K, Manager at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this reviewResponded 15 April 2015

Aloha & mahalo for your candid review. We do appreciate your feedback and will consider it towards improving our property and guest experience.

We would like to point out, however, that we receive all our guests with a lei greeting and then provide them with the opportunity to review the homes upon arrival. We ask them to sign our Clean Guarantee. The Clean Guarantee is a detailed check-list of all areas of the home which our cleaning staff have cleaned. We invite each guest to take their time and review the home to make sure it meets their satisfaction. If there is anything a guest is not satisfied with regarding cleaning all they have to do is let us know and we’ll spot clean the home until they are satisfied…guaranteed. Even if its something they don’t notice upon arrival they can always call us or visit our office between 10am and 6pm and we’ll respond to their reasonable cleaning and other requests.

In addition to the Clean Guarantee we have all guests sign our Receipt of Possession that states the rental is as shown online and in our marketing and that they are satisfied and are taking possession of the rental. Afterwards we go through our Guest Services Directory and give a tour of our property. All guests know that if they need anything at all we are available to assist them, however if they stay the length of stay and then upon departure or afterwards come back to us with complaints there is little or nothing we can do.

You stated in your review that we charge for additional toilet paper, however that is not the case. Per the rental agreement (which you acknowledge you were unaware of as you didn't reserve the property) we are self-catering rentals. We stock each rental with the same basic supplies upon arrival. If guests have an emergency situation and stop by our office we do charge for additional paper products because we have limited storage space and must make weekly trips to Honolulu to restock our supplies. We do this so we will not run out. We are small business which provides self-catering rentals...we are not a resort or a Bed and Breakfast.

You also stated that our photos online are misleading, however many of our reviews state that our photos are accurate. You are correct that the furniture is different...this is because last year we changed the old sleeper sofas with brand new hard-wood convertible day beds as well as and put in a new dining table and chairs...which we consider to be a furniture upgrade. As for the beach erosion..that is unfortunate and it is also covered in our rental agreement. We are very honest and up-front with guests in our rental agreements and in our online FAQs about the beach in front of Hale Koolau. It can be very sandy or it can, at times, be rocky, and we don't know or cannot predict such occurrences. Just a short walk, however, is Hauula Beach Park where guests can swim year around in a barrier reef-protected area and sandy beach. Our pricing reflects the fact that our beach is not permanently sandy and we are in no way misleading about it. You may not know this, but all the sand in Waikiki has been trucked in and is regularly replenished, as with other beaches around the island. Even so, a 2 bedroom with a/c which is not beachfront will cost almost what we charge for direct beachfront with hot tubs.

Again, we appreciate your review and the opportunity to respond to it. We’re always working hard to improve our properties while continuing to provide affordable and family-friendly beachfront rentals on the North Shore of Oahu.

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Reviewed 20 March 2015

I stayed here with my husband for 10 days, the whole stay we had at Oahu, and sincerely we had an amazing time! This type of rental is ideal for people searching for a great convenience price-quality, and given the fact it has houses of different sizes for rental (from 1 bedroom 1 bathroom for a couple to big awesome houses for entire BIG families to stay in), it suits every purpose and every party.
It's right in front of the beach (it's like having your own beach actually because Hauula is really chill), has beautiful gardens, barbecue and jacuzzi for most units, comfortable parking and free wi fi all over the grounds!
The staff is REALLY friendly and the place is clean, neat and tidy. They also have snorkels and boards for rental, very convenient in a place like Oahu.
I'd say it's definetely your best option when it comes to North Shore really. Is a little bit far away from Honolulu and the airport... but that's the point of staying here: no crowds!
Prices are super accomodated to what it has to offer. I recommend it 100%!!!

  • Stayed: March 2015, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank Mariu H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hale K, Manager at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this reviewResponded 5 April 2015

Aloha and mahalo for your review. We're happy that you enjoyed your stay at Hale Koolau and look forward to seeing you again in the future.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 18 March 2015

We recently spent a night away with a bunch of girls for a mini retreat! What a perfect location. We were looking for somewhere to stay that allowed us to get away from our normal cares. This was the place. There were 3 bedrooms, dining room and upstairs living room. The kitchen was beautiful and clean. We enjoyed that we had a space that allowed us to cook and potluck thereby saving money. The living room space was large enough for all of us to comfortably hang and make plans as well. The view of the ocean made even the cloudy day not so bad. It was breathtaking, Oti went out of her way to make sure we were taken care of and had everything we needed. We would definitely come back. Mahalo!

  • Stayed: March 2015, travelled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Service
1  Thank lk t
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hale K, Manager at Hale Ko'olau, responded to this reviewResponded 20 March 2015

Aloha & mahalo for your review. We're happy that the Nani Kai Hale (Beautiful Beach House) was a perfect venue for your meetings and gave everyone the space they desired. We do try really hard to provide affordable and family-friendly beachfront accommodations and the fact that we get so many local families who stay-cation with us is testimony to our success in that regard.

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Hale Ko'olau

Address: 54-223 Kamehameha Hwy, PO Box 223, Hauula, Oahu, HI 96717-9522
Region: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Hauula
Amenities:
Beach Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette
Hotel Style:
Ranked #1 of 2 Speciality Lodging in Hauula
Price Range: $134 - $608 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 16
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Hale Ko'olau Hawaii Vacation Rentals on the North Shore of Oahu is a family owned & operated business rated "excellent" on TripAdvisor and ranked the #1 specialty lodging in our area. Our oceanfront & beachfront vacation rental homes are located next door to one another in Honolulu, Hawaii in the small fishing town of Hauula on Oahu's North Shore near the Polynesian Cultural Center, Turtle Bay, Sacred Falls, Sunset Beach, Pipeline, Kualoa Ranch and many other wonderful Oahu attractions. ... more   less 
Also Known As:
Hale Ko`Olau Hotel Hauula
Hale Ko Olau Hauula

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