Poipu (Kauai) Under Construction

In September we did a last minute two week trip to Hawaii. We stayed in the same area where we always stay, Poipu on the south end, but this time we stayed on the eastern part of Poipu, near the Hyatt. And it is a good thing that we did not stay in our usual location, in a cottage on Ho’ona Road, just off the road to Spouting Horn, because that part of Kauai is in the middle of a huge construction project!

I posted about this on the Slow Travel Forums, but wanted to repeat it here so anyone thinking about going to Poipu, Kauai in the next few years knows about the construction.

We had a lovely vacation, but the major construction projects have just started. They are digging now, but the building has not started. We won’t be going back to Poipu for a few years – until these projects are done.

Kauai
Monk Seal coming up on the beach to sleep for the day

Half of Poipu is under construction – the western half!! For years we have been wondering when the construction project along the road to Spouting Horn would start, but it kept getting stalled. There are houses on the water on the water side of this road, but on the inland side is are huge fields where a new development was planned. The project started this summer at the same time as several other major projects. The construction sites are huge – acres and acres – and currently they are dynamiting and digging. The sites are surrounded by high fences so you cannot see into them.

But you do not want to be staying anywhere in Poipu west of the Shearton. This rules out a lot of vacation rentals homes and condos in Poipu. The vacation rental sites make no mention of this (and did not mention it to me when I was booking). My guess is that people will go to Poipu this year, like we did, but won’t go back for a few years. Right now is the best time to go – because once they start the building there will be a lot more traffic on the roads and noise in the area.

The noise and dirt did not affect us at all in the area near the Hyatt.

Kauai
View east from the edge of Poipu, near the Hyatt

A lot of Poipu and Kauai is still undeveloped. Even with all this new construction in Poipu, I don’t think it will feel over-developed.

There are concerns that the current infrastructure cannot support all this new development. Already the main road that does a horseshoe around the island can be very congested with traffic for several miles around the main city of Lihue. Most of it is one lane in each direction.

Here are the paragraphs I inserted on the SlowTrav pages about Kauai:

In summer 2007, several large constructions projects started in the western end of Poipu. These projects will add 4,500 homes and apartments to this area. Construction has started on the large project of homes along the road to Spouting Horn. Several other large condo/resort projects, just west of the Sheraton have started. They are redoing the intersection of main Poipu road where it meets the road to Spouting Horn, so you have to detour.

If you are staying at the Hyatt end of Poipu (Pe’e Road, Poipu Kau, Poipu Beach Park) you will not notice the construction, but if you are staying in the Spouting Horn side (Ho’ona Road, road to Spouting Horn) you will be in the middle of this dirt and noise. These projects are expected to last for five years and will greatly increase the traffic to this area.

Here is a local article about it: Star Bulletin – Development projects affecting Garden Isle style

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Pauline Kenny

Pauline Kenny and Steve Cohen are US expats living in Dorset. We moved to the UK in 2010. Read about our move. If you would like to talk about travel, please join us on the Slow Europe Travel Forums.

3 thoughts on “Poipu (Kauai) Under Construction”

  1. Thanks for passing the information, such kind of help becomes more helpful when one goes there first time. My travel agent told me that there is no shortage of good accommodation options. we have shortlisted Whalers Cove, Sheraton Kauai Resort and Aston At Poipu Kai to stay at Poipu. Will it be O.K.?

    1. Whalers Cove is near the construction, but probably far enough away. It is right on the ocean. The Sheraton has the best beach on Poipu (IMO) and that is where we swim, but there is a big construction project a block away. Poipu Kai is on the other end of Poipu, away from the construction and is probably the best choice of the three. Can you talk to the onsite people and ask them? My friend Marta was on Kauai last fall and said that the construction was still going on – we were there fall 2007 when it was just starting.

      Some sources will tell you the construction is finished, but they mean just the road construction – the main road was being redone. The projects I am talking about are large home and condo projects that are being built. Possibly they are on hold with the current housing and economic situation – I don’t know.

      Post again with any information you find out. I would love to do a spring trip to Kauai.

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