About This Listing
Hale Mahinui is a chalet in the rainforest, very close to Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. It is family friendly, and appeals to all ages. It has a hot tub on the lanai, two bedrooms, a queen bed, double bed & a single futon. No danger from Pu'u O'o
Chalet style home very near Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. This house is a good fit for families looking for a place to stay near the volcano, and also works for couples traveling together and for couples. It has only one bathroom, but there is also an outdoor shower. There is a hot tub on the lanai.
We take good care of our guests. The furnishings are top drawer. There is a 50 inch flat screen HDTV for movies or sports or whatever suits your viewing fancy. It is a good use of your time to watch a DVD about the volcano as you plan your visit. It makes planning easy and also helps set the mood for a vacation unlike any you will ever take anywhere else. There is wireless internet. The kitchen has the tools you need to prepare your favorite meals.
Hale Mahinui is a custom house on an acre of land about a minute's drive from the galleries and restaurants of Volcano Village. In five minutes you can be parking at the visitor's center inside Hawaii Volcanoes National Park.
A bonus feature is a pavilion on the grounds built for celebrations. If you are considering a Big Island wedding, that can be arranged there, complete with music, tiki torches, celebrant, and even a conch blower.
The entire house is open to you. There is a washer/dryer in the carport. The house has a feeling of being utterly private, in the wilderness almost. But there are neighbors, and sometimes when you are out wandering the grounds, you may hear people having conversations.
Interaction with Guests
We live on another part of the island, and generally communicte with guests via phone, text, and email. We have two wonderful local hosts who will be available on call for questions and service. We do ask that you familiariaze yourself with the house upon check in, and let us know then if you have questions. One of us can be on hand to walk you through the house if you wish - just let us know when you expect to arrive.
First, please know that this area is not affected by the lava flow that is currently impacting Pahoa and other areas of East Hawaii. That is another part of the island.
Our neighborhood looks more like the wilderness than a usual neighborhood. As you drive in, you will see a few houses and lots of jungle, with giant tree ferns and the twisted trunks of the swaying ohia trees that dominate this part of the forest. As summer deepens, the scent of the yellow flowered volcano ginger fills the air. Open the car windows and turn off the AC. It is cooler than it was below, and the air is usually sweet, even though the volcano is right here.
Chances you are chose to come here because of the volcano and the national park. You do not need to time your arrival to match up with check-in time. You can drive directly into the park. One admission is good for a week. If you would feel more comfortable dropping your luggage off at the house first, please ask. Even if the house cannot be ready yet, your luggage can come in.
You will need a rental car. We are often asked if a 4WD is necessary. There is a premium price for that rental, and if you enjoy the off road experience, by all means spend the extra money for access to more remote places. Otherwise, a regular vehicle is fine. One very important thing to know is that the island does run out of rental vehicles, so it is a very good idea to make your car rental reservation at the same time as you reserve your place to stay.
There is a bus system around the island. You will see the buses - green and white, with Hele-On written on them. Hele On means "Let's go". It is pronounced "helly on". Hawaiian language is everywhere here. A few words for you to use freely everywhere you go "Aloha"- a warm and friendly hello "Mahalo"-thanks "Mahalo nui"- much thanks
Nui means much and can go after aloha too. "Mauka" means toward the mountain and "makai" toward the sea. These are Hawaiian style directions, and helpful to know. Typically if you ask a local how to find a place, they will use the words mauka and makai to indicate whether you will head up or down.
So why not use the bus system? It takes a long time. Hawaiian time. If you are here for a long time, you might enjoy taking all day to get across the island.
Other Things to Note
How can you tell if Hale Mahinui will be a good fit for you on your visit? Here are some distinguishing characteristics of this house to help you make up your mind.
The house is about 40 years old. This means it has the character of an older custom house. It has old fir floors that at one time were covered with wall to wall carpet and manufactured wood. We tore all that out and revealed the soft old wood, nail marks, scratches and all. We refinished the floor. It has a lot of patina. There is a wool carpet from India in the living room. There is a large book shelf with a library of novels, Hawaiiana, children's books, biographies, coffee table type books of cars, architecture, tree houses - the things we are passionate about. French doors open to the forest and lanai. On the lanai there is a hot tub. This is an ancient hot tub, probably as old as the house. People are surprised it works. There is no one on the island who is readily available to service it, so Robert takes care of it. It is a delightful spot at either end of the day to relax and watch the forest.
Upstairs there is an entertainment loft with a very large television. There are movies, and cable service. We do not have premium cable channels at this time as there has been no interest in this service. We are open to adding it though if that is something that matters to you. So please feel free to ask.
A word about the water. Everywhere up here on the mountain the water comes to us by catchment. There are no county water lines. Our house water is on a triple filter system with a black light. It is also collected in a redwood tank that may be older than the house. You will bathe and shower in this water, and it washes the dishes. We provide bottled, reverse osmosis water for drinking. For cooking, the tap water is fine.
There is a fireplace in the living room. You will find it fronted with candles at this time. The interior chimney has undergone some collapse and the process of repair is such that we have taken interim steps with propane heaters that produce a fireplace effect in two downstairs rooms. They are effective and smokeless.
The weather on top of the mountain is cooler than below. The trade off you get is nice sleeping weather and access to the volcano after dark, when you can see the glow of the eruption at the summit about five minutes down the road, and attend After Dark in the Park functions.
When you stay here, there is a timeless sense. You are deep in the forest. Extra tall old growth ohia tower over 20 foot tree ferns. We have added orchids to the grounds, in the trees and ferns, for 15 years. When you stroll the grounds, you will see them along paths and along the curving drive. Bromeliads and other botanicals including hundreds of anthurium grow in the understory. This is a botanical garden rather than a restored natural forest, with the natural forest intact throughout the grounds. There are several large stands of intrusive volcano ginger, something you will not see in fully restored areas. We have left it for the flowers, and keep it in check by removing hundreds of plants a year. There is no paving along the paths, and the plantings are in groupings rather than lines and fields, so the way it seems is as if it happened. Children are particularly delighted, as there is so much to discover, even some lava tubes.
If you plan on using the pavilion, there is seating up there, and you may feel free to bring chairs and stools from the lanai of the house up to the pavilion.
Most people love their stay here. The vintage aura of the house is a plus for them. If your preference is for ultra modern up to date everything, there are other places that are newly built. You will be able to tell from the photos which these are, with their 21st century lines and granite countertops.
If there will be guests invited to the house in addition to whomever is renting the house or if the pavilion is to be used for a party with additional guests, please contact owner to make arrangements and discuss additional costs if any.
If you use the pavilion after dark, please bring flashlights to light the path down, or else leave the lights on all night. We would rather they be turned off, but it is more important that you safely return from your excursion. The path is right through the jungle, and there are several places tree roots grow up over the path, and you must step over and around them.
Hawaii tax on accommodations is 13.42%.
There is no smoking.
Nice place to stay. We really enjoyed staying at this place. Surprised to see good collection of movies and books in the house. Very near to Volcanoes National Park.
Отличное место почувствовать атмосферу гавайской природы в очень комфортных условиях. В доме очень чисто, уютно и удобно. До смотровой площадки на вулкан около 10 езды, что очень удобно, т.к. обязательно посещение после заката. За время нашего путешествия по США, это дом был одним из лучших. Всем очень рекомендую и, если посчастливится вернуться, буду останавливаться только здесь!
We loved this secluded private oasis in the middle of the rainforest. We arrived rather late but the host was more than willing to meet us to make sure we were settled in. We arrived to find a special 'welcome' package and great local breakfast ready for us the next morning. The house was amazing and a perfect jump off point for visiting Volcano National Park just 5-10 min away. There's nothing better than coming back after a long day of volcano trekking and soaking in the enclosed veranda hot tub while enjoying a brief rain shower all around you. Very happy and look forward to returning.
The house is spectacular. Hidden from view by thick foliage on all sides except for a hint of a view of the road. The hot tub is toasty and perfect for watching the rain fall. There is an outdoor shower that takes a minute to heat up but makes for luxorious private showering facing the foliage. The WiFi is fast and there's a washing machine for dishes. We were a bit surprised that the tax mentioned is separate and must be paid in cash upon arrival. She said she'd look into making this a bit more clear in the wording of the posting. Outside of that though, the stay was perfect and highly recommended.
Happy you enjoyed your stay. Hopefully the fact that there is tax charged for the stay, and that it is not wrapped into the price, is clear in our listing description. I believe it is the usual business practice to charge the tax on top of the charge for the stay, where taxes are due, as they certainly are in this state. I hope this tax surprise did not mar your visit.
We arrived at the home in the evening but it felt special even in the dark. We did not meet our host but she contacted us to ensure that everything was acceptable and made sure that she answered all of our questions. It was a lovely home, much bigger and beautiful than expected. A dense forest, with beautiful palms, ferns and orchids, surrounds the home. The hot tub was perfect after a long drive. It was incredible waking up to the birds singing, and sleeping to the sounds of coqui frogs. Loved, loved the outside shower. Its location was a quick 10 minute drive to the National Park. This was a cozy Hawaiian home; just sorry we only stayed one night.
This host has 85 reviews for other properties.View Other Reviews
About the Host, Mahinui
Aloha. My husband Robert and I offer a Big Island wedding destination near Hawaii Volcanoes National Park. We offer a full service wedding, with everything from the conch shell blowing to the honeymoon at the treehouse, and photography too.
We have two property locations. One contains the treehouse, and the other the wedding pavilion and main house. The main house can serve to stage the wedding and it can also house guests of the bride and groom.
For the photography, we go to places on the island that are particularly photogenic. We offer this service to both those who married with us and those who are married elsewhere and come to the Big Island to honeymoon.
For an up close and personal view of what we do, you may visit us online at Rainforest Weddings on Face book. There you will find photos, updates on what is going on here on the island, and comments from people who have been (email hidden) Lani. Mahinui Na Lani was recently featured on MTV Extreme Cribs. The treehouse was featured on the Today Show, and has been written up in Keola Magazine. Forbes has mentioned it in an article about our builder, Roderick Romero.
We also work with other amazing Big Island venues if you are looking for a larger wedding celebration.
We welcome any travelers who are seeking a wonderful place to stay on the Big Island. Aloha!