Kapalua Bay's refit earns guests' approval


KAPALUA -- Fresh off the heels of a massive renovation, Kapalua Bay Hotel & Ocean Villas here is boasting that guest satisfaction is at an all-time high.

And Revell Newton, the property's director of sales and marketing, said he has the numbers to prove it.

"We just got the numbers back from our guest satisfaction survey for the month of July, and they're our best ever," Newton said.

"The upgrading of our facilities and services has had a very positive impact on our guests."

With the paint barely dry on its five-year, $32 million renovation, the 196-room Starwood property was named the brand's most improved and best in class for guest satisfaction.

The Guest Satisfaction Index, which is based on guest comment cards, measures everything from check-in to the restaurant fare to the comfort of the beds, Newton said.

"We're very proud of those results. We're sort of the little property that can," he said.

During the redesign, Newton said, Kapalua Bay was "very conscious" of creating a sense of Hawaiian place and culture, even bringing in a Hawaiian cultural concierge to educate the staff.

The renovation project included extensive remodeling of the lobby, which now features seamless, floor-to-ceiling glass windows providing views of the ocean and neighboring islands.

"The sense of arrival is amazing. The views here are one of the best features of this hotel," Newton said.

As part of the refurbishment, the meetings facilities were upgraded and expanded by more than 50%.

With 6,000 square feet of indoor meetings space, the property can accommodate a reception of up to 1,600 guests. An outdoor meetings area was updated and offers views of the ocean.

In addition, two new deluxe hospitality suites for VIP receptions and meetings have been built.

"Unlike bigger hotels, we only take one meetings group at a time," Newton said.

That improves the level of attention and service the property can offer the group, he added.

The hotel's butterfly pool also was upgraded, with the deck space doubled to house cabanas and a new whirlpool spa.

The fitness center was relocated to a space above the lobby, where it features an ocean view and new equipment.

Rack rates at the property range from $360 to $620, but year-round Escape package rates begin at just under $300 a night, Newton said.

Commission is 10%.

For more information or reservations at the Kapalua Bay Hotel & Ocean Villas, contact (800) 367-8000 or visit www.starwood.com/kapalua.

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