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Mother Nature seriously went all out when it came to creating Kauai, and this picturesque Hawaiian island doesn’t hold back with its natural beauty. Otherwise known as “the Garden Isle,” thanks to its stunning jungle-like center, Kauai is a haven for all travelers. As well as being endlessly beautiful, Kauai offers all kinds of adventures, no matter whether you’re looking to lie back on the golden sands and relax for a week or go all out with any number of exciting excursions. The first step to ensuring the vacation of a lifetime? Checking into the right boutique hotel. And we’ve rounded up all of the best places to stay while you’re exploring this incredible spot.
Timbers Kaua’i Ocean Club & Residences is part of the 450-acre Hōkūala resort, which gives you easy access to winding trails, freshwater lagoons, and the Jack Nicklaus Signature Ocean Course for some golfing. Fusing the best of both – a boutique hotel experience inside a larger community with plenty to offer – this top-notch Kauai resort is a top choice no matter who you’re traveling with. The two-tiered infinity pool and majestic spa offer endless relaxation during your time here, with romantic oceanfront dining options if you’re visiting Hawaii with your other half. It brings together everything you need right on your doorstep.
Ko’a Kea Resort is a four-star boutique hotel that ticks all the boxes when it comes to impressing. This top-rated Poipu Beach hotel is home to an oceanfront spa, delicious dining options, and plenty of awe-inspiring experiences that practically guarantee the vacation of a lifetime. Named one of the world’s most romantic hotels, Koa Kea Resort’s oceanfront rooms and suites reflect Kauai’s lush, exotic nature all around. Upscale furnishings, subtle colored linens, plush bathrobes, and premium toiletries are just some of the perks while staying here. The Red Salt Restaurant, with its oceanfront views, is another top choice.
The Lodge at Kukui’ula is often regarded as one of the best five-star hotels in Kauai, and this beautiful spot goes all out with the amenities. A top choice for a romantic vacation, The Lodge at Kukui’ula sits on the south shore of Kauai and features plantation-style architecture and tree-lined drives. It doesn’t matter how many people you’re traveling with when you check in here, as the hotel’s Club Bungalows, Club Cottages, or Club Villas offer space for all. Check into the spa for the ultimate in Hawaiian relaxation, or make use of your exclusive access to the sprawling amenities of The Club at Kukui’ula.
It doesn’t matter what time you arrive at Waipouli Beach Resort, as this beautiful Kauai hotel shines on a 24/7 basis. But it’s especially beautiful just after sunset when the lights around the pool seem to glimmer against the backdrop of the ocean. Set on the East Side of the Garden Isle, between the historical towns of Kapaa and Wailua, this stunning spot features a two-acre fantasy pool and garden with dreamy waterfalls that surround you as you swim. Poolside services include a snack and beachside bar, while Waipouli’s Spa by the Sea and Fitness Hut offer a relaxing tropical sanctuary.
This hotel’s gorgeous greenery is punctuated with vibrant red flowers – something that adds to the Hawaiian magic you’ll experience at Kiahuna Plantation Resort Kauai. This three-star hotel sits on sunny Poipu Beach, making it excellently located if you’re hoping to spend a lot of time in the water. Its charming, cottage-style vacation condos are spread across 35 acres of verdant lawns with the beach just behind. While here, make use of your free entry to Poipu Beach Athletic Club to lounge at the swimming pool, enjoy a game of tennis, or dine at the Cabana Bar & Grill.
Grand by name and grand by nature, the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa is often called one of the best resorts in Hawaii, and it’s easy to understand why. Surrounded by gardens and beautiful sea views, you’ll never feel anything less than perfectly chilled out while staying here. As well as picturesque gardens to wander around, the Grand Hyatt Kauai Resort & Spa has its own golf course, as well as seven restaurants, and a spa. Don’t skip the Luau Show, with its Hawaiian buffet and traditional Polynesian dance and culture.
Hanalei Bay Resort does things a little more traditionally, which means rooms are decked out in Hawaiian charm and those rainbow-hued sunsets are available to admire from each balcony. Lush, relaxing, and as comfortable as your own home, this Princeville-based boutique hotel offers direct access to one of Kauai’s best beaches as well as its own impressive pool. Only a 12-minute walk from Makai Golf Course and a five-mile drive from Hanalei Bay, you’re never far away from activities while staying here. Located on Kauai’s North Shore, Hanalei Bay Resort captures the island’s beauty inside and out; it’s a place you’ll never want to leave.
If you’re looking for vast open spaces and a gorgeous setting, look no further than Waimea Plantation Cottages. Set on an expansive 43 acres of beautiful land, these prestigious cottages provide all the essentials and more. Each oceanfront cottage at Waimea has been restored with plantation-period furniture and has its own patio overlooking the Pacific ocean. Think tropical-inspired decor, mahogany, rattan, or wicker furnishings, and stunning surroundings to admire each morning. Spend your days chilling in the oceanfront pool and your evenings cooking up a feast at the on-site BBQs.
Gaze out the front of Hanalei Colony Resort and you’ll see azure waters just below and one of the prettiest white sand beaches in the entire U.S. If your room faces the opposite direction, you’ll be able to throw back the curtains each morning and admire impressive mountain views instead. Hanalei Colony Resort is the definition of a hidden gem: a place you’ll love just as much for its location as you will for its amenities and friendly staff. As well as its pool and deck with BBQ grills, you’ll find the Hanalei Day Spa and five acres of lush foliage, tropical landscaping, a koi pond, and water features. There’s also a complimentary shuttle service to nearby beaches and Hanalei.
Koloa Landing Resort is a multi-award-winning hotel and ticks all the boxes if you’re searching for relaxation. Winner of Best Resort in Kauai and boasting three lagoon pools (including the ‘Best Pool in America’ three years in a row) and some of the most spacious suites in all of Hawaii, it’s fair to say that this hotel doesn’t hold back in any way. Located on the southern tip of Kauai Island, rooms and villas include floor-to-ceiling windows, stone flooring, and large balconies with ocean views. The spa packages are regarded as some of the best on the island and consist of the island’s only all-copper Ofuro Japanese soaking tub.