One of the perks that we enjoyed immensely on our stay both this year and last year at the Hilton Waikoloa Village Resort on the Big Island of Hawaii is their free meals program for kids four-and-under. Now please tell me, RMT’ers, at what hotel (let alone a 60+ acre vacation resort) can you find a place willing to feed your kids for free each time you choose to dine on property?! Yeah, I can’t really think of another one myself either.
In addition, this year the Hilton Waikoloa Village really jazzed up their kids’ menus by making a game out of the kids eating from them. For each different restaurant that your child dines at (either off the free four-and-under menu or the paid items), they receive a different colored bracelet (different colors are assigned to different locations). Then, if the kids are able to collect six different colored bracelets, they receive a free ice cream at the hotel’s poolside restaurant (in other words, the ultimate treat – ice cream while taking a break from swimming!). And if a child can collect those six colored bracelets plus the rainbow-striped one from the on-site Legends of the Pacific Luau, then in addition to the free ice cream the child also gets a free photo with one of the hotel lobby birds. Now that’s something to really squawk about!
No, T didn’t get to the Luau on this visit, but he did get around to most of the hotel’s restaurants not once but twice-over at least. I think T’s favorite dinner by far was at Imari, the Hilton Waikoloa’s Teppanyaki-style Japanese restaurant. We went here last year, too, and T loved every minute of the experience, from the table-cooking show to eating with the “sticks.” He looked forward to eating dinner here again on this year’s visit, and we were happy to oblige as we enjoyed it, too. The free child’s entrée here is a chicken Teppanyaki plate of chicken, veggies, and edamame; the same entrée on the regular child’s menu runs $17.50. That just shows that not all the free items are of the usual kids’ meal choices and an effort is made to allow the kids to try a particular restaurant’s native cuisine, and we appreciated that very much.
Another wonderful dining program that the Hilton Waikoloa Village offers is in the form of a restaurant discount card. For just $30 you can buy the 10 percent F&B Savings Card from one of the hotel’s restaurants (selected locations listed), and with that purchase price you immediately receive two-$10 restaurant vouchers along with the card that’s good for 10 percent off at any of the hotel property’s restaurants and poolside bars. Yes, the discount works on drinks, too! So if you do the quick math on this one, within about one to two restaurant (or bar) visits, the card easily pays for itself (basically if you are going to spend $100 on property in dining or drinking during your stay, it easily pays for itself and then some). I believe our card paid for itself by breakfast the first day of our stay. Unfortunately, we didn’t hold onto our card so I could show you ours (you can see a photo of one in the link above), but trust me when I say we were able to buy the card at Big Island Breakfast the first morning of our stay, and it was as easy as ABC: Aloha, Bon appetite… and Cheers!
One restaurant where we happily used the Hilton Waikoloa’s dining discount card was at the Kamuela Provision Company (KPC for short), the hotel’s finer dining choice. KPC prides itself on its local and sustainable fare, specialized cocktails, wine list, and sunset views. We were happy to return to KPC this year again for our anniversary dinner, and we were happy yet again to find their service nothing short of first-rate. Warren, our server, was attentive to us not just because of our special occasion (there are a ton of those at KPC) but because of dining with our young son; he understood what expectations and limitations there are with both of those situations without having to say much of anything. Thanks to Warren’s efforts though, we got to spend a non-rushed time at KPC and enjoy all of what it had to offer, including a complete sunset!
Also when it came time for us to receive our complimentary dessert and we found ourselves too full to partake, Warren seamlessly offered to comp our appetizer for us in honor of our special occasion. Of course, T didn’t pass up dessert, but that was fine by C and me as it gave us ample time to enjoy the views and finish our wonderful bottle of wine together. Happy eight years to us!
Given that there are about 10 different restaurants on property and most if not all of them participate in both of these generous dining programs, let’s just say that the Hilton Waikoloa is pretty successful in getting families to stay on property to eat, and that’s not such an easy feat for a hotel let alone a destination vacation resort! So if you should find yourself on a stay at the Hilton Waikoloa Village, remember to buy the 10 percent discount dining card at the start of your stay, and don’t forget to feed the kids either. If you need a bracelet to remind you of these two things, I think I know where you can get some, RMT’ers!