When Dallas and I talked about what kind of a place we wanted to rent for our stay in Kauai, we decided that a house would be best. Usually we get a condo and it is perfectly fine, but this time we figured that we needed some place bigger and that we could use as a gathering place. As people arrived on the island and needed to get things to us, or from us, or even just wanted to visit, we needed a place that could accomodate this. And not just a place with a large common area, but also one that had ample parking for guests.
Oh, and also? Since this was a special trip, for our wedding, we also wanted it to be really nice. And have it’s own pool. And an ocean view. But not be so expensive that no one could afford it. Too much to ask?
We spent a lot of time on VRBO and HomeAway doing research. At one point we even made a spreadsheet to compare pricing and amenities of different properties. Finally, we found what we thought seemed to be the perfect place, Ho’Onani Estates.
Ho’Onani Estates Back House (Photo by Dallas)
Ho’Onani Estates (located on Ho’Onani Road in Poipu) was very close to our wedding venue and all that Poipu and Koloa have to offer. The estate was actually two houses, one with 4 bedroom suites and one with 5, and had a private pool. Get this list of amenities:
- ocean view
- central location
- 9 bedroom suites plus two pull-out sofas, a queen air mattress, and 2 twin air mattresses. 6 of these suites have an ocean view. 4 have lanais. 3 have walk in closets.
- 2 state-of-the-art gourmet kitchens each with top-of-the-line Viking ranges and each with 2 dishwashers (4 total!)
- oceanside pool with a little waterfall fountain
- central air
- built-in sound systems
- 3 washers and dryers
- 4 car garage with a huge driveway with ample parking space
- free wireless
- 5 televisions with cable (not that we watched TV much!)
- huge lanais with ample seating and tables
- two grills
- beach chairs and umbrellas
- 4 refrigerators
- outdoor shower
- filtered water
- high-end furnishings and interior design
- very short walk to 3 different beaches
Ho’Onani Estates Back House – Staircase (Photo by Dallas)
Ho’Onani Estates Back House – Looking down from staircase
Not only that, but after talking to the rental agency, they were willing to give us a discounted rate because Dallas was a “local boy” getting married. If we could get enough friends to fill up Ho’Onanai Estates, it would come out to $100 per person per night. Sounds too good to be true, right? We thought so too! We couldn’t find any online reviews and I was feeling a little leary about the whole thing. We actually had Dallas’s Uncle Dee drive over there and take some photos to make sure the estate actually existed. It did. So, we sent an out to the friends we knew were attending within a few hours we had a full house.
Staying at Ho’Onani Estates were
- Rachelle & Dallas (of course!)
- Jordan & Liz (visiting from Seattle)
- Jen & Chad (from Chicago)
- Tien & Shannan (from New York)
- Jill & Brian (Chicago)
- Rob & Colleen (from an island off of Maine)
- Kristin (Chicago)
- Cousin (Chicago)
- Limey (Chicago)
- Matt (Boston)
- Ross (Boston)
With the exception of one person, everyone who was with us on the Kauai trip where Dallas and I met was staying with us on our wedding trip. I thought that was pretty cool.
Ho’Onani Estates Pool
Jordan in the Ho’Onani Estates Pool
So, anyway.. Long story short, Ho’Onanai Estates lived up to and even exceeded the expectations we had for it. The houses were so beautiful with all top-of-the-line features. I don’t think there could have been a more ideal set up for our needs. Everyone had a private bedroom and assigned bathroom. One of the “suites” even included a private living room and kitchenette! There were many large common areas to accomodate guests and even quieter sitting areas. Our bedroom was a bit removed, on the quiet second floor of the back house, with a private lanai and a huge bathroom.. a giant tub (for my leg soaks), walk in closet, double sinks, private toilet. Sitting in the tub or standing in the shower, we had sweeping views of the ocean! And it was the first thing I saw when I opened my eyes in the morning. It couldn’t have been more perfect.
Ho’Onani Estates Front House
Ho’Onani Estates Front House
The living room in the front house had so much seating. On the last day we were all hanging out, eating and drinking up the rest of or supplies, and watching the Oscars. We probably had 20+ people comfortably seated in there with bar stools in the kitchen and a full dining area. On the lanais, too. Huge. Tons of seating around tables and on outdoor couches. We could sit outside our houses and whale watch without ever leaving the property. Ho’Onanai Estates is across the street from the ocean, but nothing stands between except for a quiet road that has more walking and running traffic than car traffic. Across from the estate is a pull off for the scenic overlook. This is THE PLACE to watch the sun set and at night it would get a bit crowded with people watching the sun set. But not in a distracting way. Everyone was respectful. But it was funny that our friends would come down here to watch the sun set when we could just sit comfortably on our lanai and have the same view.
Quiet road in the front of the house. (Photo by Rob)
Deck on the front house. (Photo by Rob)
Looking from back house to front house. Outdoor shower is right through those trees. (Photo by Dallas)
Dallas, Josh & Tweeny barbecuing at the front house.
Another plus to Ho’Onani Estates was that Poipu Kapili and the Sheraton Kauai Resort were both within very short walking distance. We had guests staying at both of these properties and it was so convenient that they could just walk up the street to visit us. We didn’t have to worry about driving in the dark (it gets so dark at night) or after having drinks.
Ho’Onani Front House Lanai (Photo by Jen)
Finally, the rental company, Garden Island Rentals, was very easy to work with. Very prompt in communications, always speedily sending along the receipts and documents we needed. And our deposit was returned way before we expected. Great to work with.
View from our tub. Same view from the shower (sort of behind, to the right of camera).
More of our bathroom – double sinks, vanity. On the end is a huge walk-in closet. To the left is a seperate toilet room.
The view from our private bedroom lanai.
Front of the house looking out to the ocean. (Photo by Rob)
I could not reccomend Ho’Onanai Estates more if you have a large number of people staying on the south shore of Kauai.