Hilton Waikoloa Village is a scenic resort located at the base of Mauna Kea on the Big Island of Hawaii. This full-service resort offers many recreational facilities and a number of dining options. There are two 18-hole championship golf courses, eight tennis courts, three freshwater pool complexes, a saltwater lagoon, spa facilities, a 7 million dollar art collection, and programs for families.

Guests can relax on the sandy man-made lagoon shore or at one of the pools. The Kona Pool features waterfalls, a 175-foot waterslide, three Jacuzzi and a children's pool. Children can play in a protected sandy area at the edge of the pool. A swinging bridge crosses this giant one-acre pool. Lagoon guest rooms are the closest to this pool.

The Kohala Pool is really three pools connected by waterslides and a river current, a fun place to be. This pool is located at the north end of the resort. The Ocean Pool is for adults only where you can enjoy cocktails and relax in the sun. In addition, the Lagoon offers an assortment of water activities, such as kayaking and snorkeling. The four-acre saltwater lagoon provides an enclosed area for children to snorkel, kayak and swim.

Two Championship Golf Courses

The resort has two championship golf courses (Waikoloa Kings' Course and Waikoloa Beach course) and a 30,000 square foot Seaside Putting Course. Enjoy beautiful scenery, challenging layouts and practice facilities to improve your game. The courses are surrounded by lava fields and the ocean. Both are appropriate for golfers of all skill levels. In winter, you can watch whales from the Waikoloa Beach course's signature 12th hole, designed by Robert Trent Jones, Jr.

Designed by Robin Nelson, the putting course has challenging sand traps and water features. The course is surrounded by tropical plants indigenous to the Big Island. If you are interested in plants, follow signs along the course to learn about different species. Rates start at $125 per person; from $175 for non-guests. Remember to check for packages when reserving your room.

Kohala Spa

The spa, located in the Lagoon Tower, is a 25,000 square foot facility. Services offered include seaweed body masques, aromatherapy, Lomi Lomi Hawaiian style massage, nutrition, beauty counseling, and Tai Chi classes. You can work out, unwind in the outdoor gardens and treat yourself to relaxing treatments. The 25,000-square-foot facility has a Pilates/Yoga studio, fitness studio, cardiovascular and strength rooms, relaxation lounges, Turkish steam rooms, Finnish saunas, whirlpools and outdoor gardens with access to the tennis center.

Rates for hotel guests are $25 per day or $65 per stay. Spa treatments are additional. If you are not staying here, the cost is $35 per day, which includes use of locker room facilities, spa amenities, wardrobe, wellness classes, cardiovascular and weight workout rooms. The spa is open daily from 6am to 7pm; treatments are available from 8am to 7pm. You can book your appointments through the hotel.

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Swim with Dolphins

If you are interested in learning more about dolphins on your family vacation, you can sign up for the Adult Encounter with Dolphin Quest, a 30-minute program where you get to swim with dolphins in a natural lagoon. Be sure to book well in advance since this program is very popular.

Resort Rooms & Suites

The Hilton Waikoloa Village hotel offers rooms and suites in three separate towers. The Ocean Tower with 600 guest rooms has an atrium filled with exotic flora and an adults only pool. The centrally located Palace Tower has 396 guest rooms and features art treasures from around the world.

If you want to be close to the spa on your family vacation to Hawaii, stay in the Lagoon Tower which offers 244 guest accommodations. This tower houses a selection of galleries, boutiques and the Kohala Tennis Garden.

Where to Eat

There are a number of formal and casual dining choices, including California cuisine, seafood and Japanese and Chinese restaurants. For a romantic night out try Donatoni's which serves Northern Italian cuisine. On Fridays, guests can attend the Dinner Luau Show featuring Pacific Rim food and dancing.

Several outdoor cafes provide vacationers with an easy way to dine close to the pools. Take-out is also provided at several locations. We liked the Orchid Cafe at Kona Pool in the Lagoon Tower which offers breakfast, lunch and take-out. If you want to watch dolphins while you eat, visit the Lagoon Grill for a very unique dining experience.

Resort restaurants offer special children's menus or half-portions. Imari features a Zen garden, Koi pond and waterfalls. Food choices include Teppanyaki, traditional Japanese cuisine, and a Sushi Bar. Malolo Lounge next to the lobby serves quick meals and drinks both indoors and outdoors.

Best Time to Go & Getting There

The weather is warm in Hawaii year-round. Hilton Waikoloa Village is approximately 25 minutes by car from Kona International Airport at Keahole. You can take a taxi or ask the hotel about other options when making a reservation.

Does the Hotel Offer Packages?

The Unlimited Golf Package includes a daily round of golf at Waikoloa Beach or Kings' Course. Golfer may play a second round, same day at the same course, subject to availability. The package includes: golf shuttle, storage of bags and use of practice facilities. Rates are per golfer. Two golfers must be booked as two adults, one golfer as one adult.

You may also like the 4-night "Ocean Explorer Family Escape" which includes: Breakfast Buffet, Glass Bottom Boat Cruise, Kids backpack with an Underwater Camera, Coloring Book and other goodies.

"7th Night Free With Luau" packages includes the 7th night free and two Legends of Hawaii Luau tickets which can be upgraded to Ali'i seating for an additional $26 + tax per person.

Dolphin Days Summer Fest

Head to Hilton Waikoloa Village for the Annual Dolphin Days Summer Fest which usually takes place in June. Events that range from dolphin encounters to dining and music will benefit the Hawaii Shriners Hospital for Children and the Pacific Marine Life Foundation. The highlight of the event is the Great Waikoloa Food, Wine & Music Festival on Saturday, June 16. Hawaiian chefs will prepare a selection of menu items in an outdoor setting on the resort's Palace Lawn. Entertainment will include music, a silent auction and an after party until one o'clock in the morning.

There will also be plenty of TV coverage, especially since finalists from Bravo Network's "Top Chef" will be participating in some of the events. For sports enthusiasts, the festival will offer both a tennis and a golf tournament. The tennis tournament is scheduled to take place over the weekend. The golf tournament will start on Saturday, June 15. It will include prizes and a post-tournament lunch to give you a chance to meet fellow travelers.

Plan This Trip:

Room rates start at US $199 plus tax, depending on season and availability.

Location: 425 Waikoloa Beach Drive , Waikoloa , Hawaii , United States , 808-886-1234