When traveling with little ones, the last thing you want to do is lug everything from one place to another. Diapers, bottles, wipes, extra clothing…… it all takes up extra space. A stay at the Grand Hyatt Kauai in Hawaii turned into one of the most relaxing vacations this traveling mom can remember–and she was traveling with a baby!
Now that I am a parent, I have a greater appreciation for resorts that do not require leaving the property in order to have a good time. A resort that has plenty of things to do and enjoy, for both adults and children, is the Grand Hyatt in Kauai.
When my son was 1, my husband and I decided to take him to the Grand Hyatt Kauai during the month of October. We were traveling with a baby, so we wanted to go somewhere that did not involve a lot of traveling. We were able to book a package through Costco. It included a daily breakfast buffet, and rental car for the duration of our stay.
And because we live in Arizona, we were able to book a direct flight from Phoenix to Kauai. It still ranks up there as one of the best, and most relaxing, vacations we have ever taken and here are five reasons why.
By far, one of the best features at Grand Hyatt Kauai is the saltwater lagoon. The beach area near the hotel can be rocky and the lagoon is a perfect compromise for those who enjoy the beach but do not want to not want to deal with the ocean and sea life. Not only was the water in the lagoon calm, but my son was able to play in the sand while my husband and I watched him.
For those who are more adventurous, kayaks are available to rent. We did take our son out on the kayak once while we were there, and he ended up falling asleep in my arms. We were also able to check out beach toys, buckets and shovels for him. That means we did not need to bring them with us on the plane. We also appreciated that the lagoon never seemed crowded while we were there.
This was another big selling point for us when we decided to book our vacation. I brought an inflatable flotation device with us so that our son could enjoy floating down the lazy river (with us by his side). Like the lagoon, the water in the lazy river was very calm and relaxing. The tropical scenery also looked very natural, with palm trees and small waterfalls.
Unlike some of the other resorts we have stayed at in the past, the lazy river maintained a sense of privacy because it was in an area that did not seem to get a lot of foot traffic.
For first time visitors to Hawaii, a trip is not complete without experiencing a luau.
The Hyatt hosts a luau of its own twice a week, for an additional charge. We liked it. After a day of relaxing or sightseeing, we could just walk there instead of driving to another location. It was also convenient in case we needed to take our son back to the hotel room.
The luau included entertainment as well as a buffet. The performers danced to traditional Hawaiian music and played instruments such as drums. It was also extremely interactive. I have been to other luaus where the audience simply watches the performers. At the Hyatt luau, though, guests who were celebrating their birthdays were invited on stage to do the hula. Because my husband and my son both have birthdays in October, they were part of the group invited on stage. They both looked like they were having a great time, and it was fun watching all the children trying to dance on the stage.
While I do think the luau is fun for the family and should be experienced at least once, I think that once is enough to enjoy it.
Even though the price of the luau is not included in the hotel stay, the Hyatt has other entertainment options that are included in the hotel stay. Most of the entertainment occurs at the Seaview Terrace, an area of the resort that overlooks the ocean. For example, there’s a torchlighting ceremony a couple of times a week. And on any given night, Hawaiian performers can be heard singing Hawaiian music as well.
Certain Hyatts, like the one in Kauai, have children’s activities available through a program called Camp Hyatt. The Camp costs extra and is for children ages 3 to 12 years old who are potty trained. Because my son was only 1, he was not able to participate in the activities. However, there are other kid friendly activities that younger children can participate in, at no additional charge. Those include feeding the koi fish at the Tidepools Bridge and seeing parrots at the Seaview Terrace.
There were a few things we did not enjoy about the Hyatt, beginning with the amount of walking involved from getting from our hotel room to the lazy river and lagoon and vice versa. The resort is very spread out, and our room was not located near an elevator. Ask nicely when you check in to see whether the front desk clerk can assign you a more conveniently located room.
As for our hotel room, when we booked our package through Costco, we paid to upgrade to an ocean view room with a balcony. Our room was average sized, and we were provided a complimentary crib for our son, but I wish there was some sort of partition in the room itself so that my son could nap during the day with out any sort of distractions, like the television. My husband and I either had to sit out on the balcony while our son napped (which is not necessarily a bad thing when your view is the ocean), or we had to keep quiet while in the room.
The food was also expensive, with dinner costing approximately $20 or more for an adult, depending on the restaurant. However, that is not unusual when staying at a resort, especially one in Hawaii. And while some of the restaurants at the resort seemed too fancy for young children, some of the restaurants did have a Keiki (Children’s) Menu with a variety of food available, with dinner costing around $10 per child.
The fact that the resort is spread out and involves a decent amount of walking, though, is not a deal breaker. Neither is the lack of a partition in the hotel room. There is so much to see and do at the Hyatt, that it’s a destination of its own.