Recently completed a four day wonderful stay at Wailkailoa Marriott Resort on the Big Island of Hawaii. The hotel is lovely and the staff is wonderful!! My gold status was immediately acknowledged and we were upgraded to an ocean front room.
I agree that the food and drinks at the hotel are expensive, but then what isn't in Hawaii???? We found that at all restaurants the portions are large enough to share or bring back to have for a snack or lunch the next day. And, there's a fridge in the room so no problem. We also bought wine at the store in the Queens market to keep for Happy Hour on our lanai. Based on recommendations found on this site we tried Quinn's Almost by the Sea......GREAT!!! (in Kona) and had lunch at Bubba Gumps where the food was good (not great) but the fun atmosphere made up the difference.
We went horse back riding at Parker Ranch. We have our own horses at home so we were a bit disappointed. The staff was very nice and the horses in great shape but it's a boring ride across a couple of their pastures with not much of a view. If you want to go riding quiz the consierge before hand and tell her what you want. South Point is worth the drive down to see and say you were there. Interesting to see and talk to the guys who are fishing there. You can also hike to a green beach which we didn't do because of an approaching storm.
Hope this helps! We had a great time and I'd like to go back and spend a little more time to see some of the "off the trail" stuff. And....I would look forward to staying at the Marriott resort once again.
We rented a convertible from Alamo and on day 3 when the top got stuck mid-way, they simply exchanged the car for another....no hassle. Great customer service!!