All the Reasons You’ll Love Waimea Plantation Cottages on Kauaʻi

Preserving the past while providing a great Kauaʻi vacation experience.
rainbow over waimea plantation cottages
Photo: Waimea Plantation Cottages

There is a special feeling you get at Waimea Plantation Cottages. Perhaps it is because these vintage plantation homes were once lived in and loved by people who helped shape the Garden Isle. Or perhaps it’s the overwhelming quiet only interrupted by the rhythmic sound of ocean waves like a heartbeat connecting us to the past. Whatever it is, vacationing in these historic homes from Kauaʻi’s plantation era provides a stark contrast to the hustle and bustle of many other Hawaiʻi resorts.

The resort’s humble beginning started in 1905 when the Faye family purchased a sugarcane operation that included much of the surrounding land. After the devastation of Hurricane ‘Iniki in 1992, the visionary Faye family began renovating the beachfront homes and converting them into vacation rentals. That‘s when the resort was born.

Today the classic 59 one- to five-bedroom plantation homes, built between the 1880s and 1930s, are arranged in enclaves strung across the 43-acre oceanfront site. While cottages have been lovingly refreshed, they retain the charm and rustic quality of plantation homes. Many of them even have nameplates of the people who lived in the cottages and worked on the plantation. Each cottage comes with a guest folio detailing the history of the plantation and, in most cases, includes a line or two about the former residents. Reading it is both intriguing and entertaining.

lanai at waimea plantation cottages

Photo: Waimea Plantation Cottages

Inside your cottage you’ll find comfortable, casual Hawaiʻi-style furniture. Some cottages showcase antiques or period-inspired accents. Kitchens are equipped with everything you need—stove, refrigerator, coffee maker, microwave, dishes, silverware, pots, pans. If you love eating meals outdoors, you can do that, too—while listening to the ocean—on your own private lānai.

The landscaping between the cottages with lush tropical flowers and trees creates a sense of privacy. Don’t be surprised to find a mango or a papaya tree next to your cottage—and yes, feel free to pick some to eat. The expansive green lawns between groups of cottages provide wonderful routes to the beach and safe play areas for children.

Although dedicated to preserving the past, the resort offers amenities for today’s guests. Swim in the oceanfront pool; choose a new movie from the free DVDs in the lobby and watch it in the privacy of your cottage; cook up some dinner at one of the propane barbecue stations around the property; or dine at the on-property restaurant.

oceanfront pool on kauai

Photo: Waimea Plantation Cottages

Close to the resort you can visit the many scenic wonders of West Kauaʻi, such as Waimea Canyon and Kōkeʻe State Park. Or play in the ocean off the 15-mile-long white-sand Kekaha Beach; it’s just a five-minute drive west of the resort. If you’d like to see the spectacular Nāpali Coast, choose a boat tour out of one of the nearby harbors. Explore the shops, boutiques and eclectic eateries of Waimea and Hanapēpē towns. Or do nothing at all except watch the clouds roll by while resting in a hammock near the ocean at the resort.

The event of the day for many guests is watching a spectacular sunset with the island of Niʻihau in the foreground. Sans city lights, stargazing here can can be quite magical.

sunset on the napali coast

Photo: Waimea Plantation Cottages

Take a trip to the past, while staying in the present with those you love. A vacation at Waimea Plantation Cottages will help you let go of the chaos of the everyday and remember the important things in life., Facebook: @waimeaplantationcottages, Instagram: @waimeaplantationcottages

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