Kings’ Land by Hilton Grand Vacations Club
Rack rates: One-bedroom suites start at $359 per night, with two-bedroom suites priced from $450. Three-bedroom suites are also available.
Commission: 10 percent
Hawaii’s Big Island is just that — big — so it’s no surprise that new developments continue to emerge on this youngest, and still growing, Hawaiian island.
Kings’ Land by Hilton Grand Vacations Club features luxurious suite accommodations. // © 2009 Hilton Hotels and Resorts
One of the newest is Kings’ Land by Hilton Grand Vacations Club (HGVC). The plantation-style resort is situated within the Kohala Coast’s expansive Waikoloa Beach Resort, laying claim to some 116 acres of land that were once the playgrounds of Hawaiian royalty. Kings’ Land will officially complete phase I of its construction this fall, but I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek of the resort on a recent stop to the Big Island.
My stay at Kings’ Land certainly felt like the royal treatment. After a long day spent hiking along the rim of Waipio Valley, also known as the Valley of the Kings, I wanted nothing more than to kick off my boots and unwind. My 1,269-square-foot, two-bedroom, two-bathroom suite proved to be the perfect solution. I practically dove into the gigantic soaking tub. Later, I reveled in a picture-perfect sunset over the golf course as I sat on my lanai, sipping a cup of Kona coffee I had just brewed in the kitchen. I don’t think I’ve felt so relaxed and laid-back for a long time.
Having my own fully equipped kitchen was a definite plus — something not found in most hotels and resorts. It is, however, a staple at Kings’ Land, as are barbecue pits and in-suite washers and dryers. That’s because Kings’ Land is a timeshare property where HGVC members use points to book stays at vacation rental properties worldwide. Agents, however, can also book stays at Kings’ Land for their clients, just as they would for nearby mega-resort, Hilton Waikoloa Village.
“All of our reservations in our inventory can be booked through your typical GDS systems,” said HGVC Waikoloa general manager Rob Gunthner. “Any of the GDS sales channels are available for travel agents to book our properties, and agents can also book online directly.”
Suites at Kings’ Land were luxurious and exceedingly family-friendly, without being pretentious. Classic tones played up elegant designs that hearkened back to Hawaii’s plantation past. The kitchen had smooth stone countertops, and the master bathroom felt even larger than the master bedroom. My suite’s second bedroom housed two full-size beds, perfect for large families. All suites feature flat-screen televisions, a DVD player, an iPod docking station, a Bose sound system, high-quality appliances, Cuisinart cookware and high-speed Wi-Fi. Suite cleaning services are available once a week during a seven-night stay, but can also be requested more frequently if so desired. Room service is also offered.
Although Kings’ Land is currently undergoing phase I construction, clients would hardly know it until they stepped into the temporary check-in center and saw a miniature model of Kings’ Land as it will look in the next year or two.
During my May visit, a total of five buildings had been constructed. Gunthner said he hoped to have 101 suites available by July. By fall, phase I will be completed with the unveiling of a new Arrival Plaza and the Great Hall, the main gathering place for Kings’ Land.
“It’s going to be a very family-friendly environment, one where people will come together and feel wonderful just being with their fellow visitors,” said Gunthner.
The area surrounding the Great Hall will boast a 20,000-square-foot pool complex with three separate pool areas — one for adults, one with a lazy river and one for kids — as well as an outdoor grill, bar, marketplace, keiki (children’s) club and fitness center. Judging from the range of its development plans, it seems clear that Kings’ Land will not be your typical vacation ownership property.
“Especially in today’s world where so many projects are on hold, Kings’ Land is a brand-new build that is joining a fabulous resort complex,” said Gunthner. “The success of HGVC already here on this resort complex really helped Kings’ Land to take shape.”
HGVC has two other vacation ownership properties within Waikoloa Beach Resort — Hilton Grand Vacations Club at Waikoloa Beach Resort and the Bay Club at Waikoloa Beach Resort. Unlike these two properties, however, Kings’ Land will encompass an even larger scale, eventually combining numerous resort-type amenities with the comfort, ease and flexibility of a timeshare. Gunthner said that the average HGVC guest stays for about seven nights in total.
Kings’ Land benefits from its close proximity to Hilton Waikoloa Village, championship golf courses and the Kings’ Shops and Queens’ MarketPlace. A complimentary shuttle is offered daily from Kings’ Land to and from the Hilton and area shops.
What I saw of Kings’ Land was just a sampling of the mega-complex it will soon become. But, from what I’ve seen thus far, it already seems well on its way to becoming the accommodation of choice for couples, groups and families who prefer to kick back and relax in grand style.