My son and I stayed at White Sands Beach and it was PERFECT for us! We felt so at home. I loved that we weren't right in town with all the traffic and people yet very close to everything. The beach right across the street was so nice for those lazy days. The condo's photos from the website are absolutely accurate. The condo could use some detailed cleaning- not the type of cleaning a service does so I was certainly pleased with how things were. You need to stop at another hotel who manages the property to get the combination to the lock which holds the key. Both properties were easy to find. I loved the washer and dryer! The very basics are there but it probably varies with the previous tenant- we left paper towels, nice bath tissue and soap for both the clothes washer and the dishwasher. We used the foil and used up the rest of the baggies... So stop by to see what is there before going to the store- There is a nice shopping area just a few miles away. We had fun using the pool table and there were lots of paperback books to read. The rules to the pool keep it nice for adults but the kids can't play games like Marco- Polo. There are nice beach chairs, a couple of coolers and lots of swim things like flippers, snorkels... My only complaint is the pillows :) A pillow is a very personal thing but all the pillows are like fluffy marshmallows that nearly flatten when you lay on them. Without prompting, my son even complained about them. A few firmer pillows would be nice. Would I stay here again? Absolutely!! My son even requesting coming back to the same place.
My son took surfing lessons at the beach a mile away (Kahalu'u Bay Surf and Sea) and for him, that was the highlight. Ben was a WONDERFUL instructor; absolutely the best. Mike was also good. The woman and co-owner (wife of Ben) was very rude but Ben more than made up for her. Despite the wife, I would return.
We visited the Hilo side for 2 nights and stayed at Aaron's Cottage. Since I was paying for both places, I needed some place cheap and Aaron's was perfect. Felt like a very nice youth hostel. A community kitchen where they served a homemade breakfast every morning. So nice to sit outside and chat with the other guests. I do think Hilo is worth more than a day visit. We spent one day at the Volcano- so worth the time. We also did a zipline in Hilo. Great fun.
Sure hoping to return here in the coming years!!