MALA - Wailea Beach Marriott Resort

3.7
432 Reviews
$31 to $50
Mediterranean

About

Chef Mark Ellman of Avalon fame and Chef/Owner of Maui Tacos, who also owns the orginal Mala Ocean Tavern in Lahaina, has joined forces with his long time partner Shep Gordon and opened a Southside outpost of Mala. Aptly called Mala Wailea at the Wailea Beach Marriott Resort and Spa Overlooking the Pacific Ocean and the Island of Lanai.

Our delightful restaurant offers stunning sunset vistas over the Pacific – every seat has an ocean view. Chef Sheldon Simeon, finalist and fan favorite on Top Chef Seattle has joined Chef Mark Ellman to continue the Mala tradition of making great food organic, healthy, fresh, and delicious. With an authentic menu of Mediterranean and Pacific Rim cuisine, our beautifully crafted dishes will please the palates of your most revered guests.
What 432 people are sayingWrite a review
Overall ratings and reviews
3.7based on all time ratings
3.7
food
3.8
service
4.0
ambience
3.2
value
Noise · Moderate
69% of people would recommend it to a friend
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B
vipBlou
Hawaii
74 reviews
Dined on May 7, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

So sorry they are closing! The meals, service and views were all spectacular!

MT
MaryT
Dallas
27 reviews
Dined on May 4, 2016
Overall3food4service3ambience3

I had the beef carpaccio appetizer,it was delicious.We both had the mahimahi it was well prepared.As we were the only reservation for Mala,they were not open and served us in the adjoining restaurant-The Mercantile which was much more casual and served pork rinds and dip instead of rolls or bread!Would have been nice if they let us know before we got there.
These 2 restaurants are closing and Roy's is taking them over.Can't happen soon enough.

X
Xyzz
Charleston
20 reviews
Dined on April 19, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Restaurant is closing May 15 as the hotel changes direction. Shame. Great food. Kimo was our waiter - he was outstanding - friendly. great attention to detail. If restaurants in Lahaina run by same team are as good - then worth the trip. Outstanding.

J
vipJimbo
Los Angeles
8 reviews
Dined on March 27, 2016
Overall3food3service3ambience3

It's not anything like the one in Lahina.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Toronto
1 review
Dined on February 18, 2016
Overall2food2service4ambience3

The original chef has moved on and the current chef is phasing out the restaurant. This was very apparent in our experience—the restaurant felt like an unwanted older child that was just being kept around. Our server was lovely and a lot of the food was fine, but only just fine.

b
vipburly
Hawaii
126 reviews
Dined on February 14, 2016
Overall4food4service4ambience4

We have stayed at the Marriott many times when traveling to Maui and have enjoyed the meal service. Now that we live on the island, we thought we would return to be treated special, as if we were vacationers. We went to dinner on Valentine's Day. The menu was nothing more than their regular menu, but prices inflated. Mind you, the food is very good--we had the special fish of the day and it was amazing! The beet salad is very small and we had their signature dessert which was not all that pleasing. There are not many people at this restaurant. It seems that the hotel's other restaurant has more of a following. We will probably enjoy another hotel for our special evenings at dinner. Good, but...

J
Jack
Houston
4 reviews
Dined on January 17, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The sweet potatoes were awesome. The salmon was cooked perfectly. I really enjoyed the entire experience.

LS
LindaS
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on January 10, 2016
Overall2food1service2ambience1

We have been to Mala's in Lahini many times and always loved the food, so we booked our reservation on the assumption we were about to have a great meal! Soooo disappointed!! My tuna poke, no flavor, had to ask for chili sauce! My husband ordered the ribs, they had a good sauce but were a chalky dry texture as if they had been reheated too often! I ordered the short ribs, they were also dry, not that beautiful falling apart tender juicy meat that short ribs should be, also the mashed potatoes they were served on were cold. We did tell our server our concerns, just so they could take it back and make improvements. We were not looking for compensation, but they did take our mains off the bill. But we would have rather had a good meal.

s
vipsassycactus
Phoenix
44 reviews
Dined on January 9, 2016
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The staff was very engaged, food was great and the Brussels's sprouts are de-lish. As Phoenicians, we enjoyed seeing pictures of one of the multiple owners, Mr. Furnier (Alice Cooper) that help keep jobs in the Wailea economy. We've long known Mr. Furnier and family have been life long supporters of many charities. We are most happy to be MaLa patrons - rock on :)

Mahalo nui loa,

xo

C
vip2ndCity
Chicago
16 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2015
Overall1food1service2ambience2

We have had better experiences at this restaurant previously. Having that said, the meal we are reviewing was the Christmas buffet. While there was supposed to be a decent selection, what was left was average. By the time they had replaced the ribs and prime rib that was out, (it took approximately 25 minutes) I had moved on to Luke warm Mahi-Mahi lemon and shrimp, crab legs and tuna poke (which was decent) and did not have much of an appetite for much else. My wife and daughter of were less pleased. The salad bar was "run through" and somewhat unkept as was much of the buffet. We had a 7:30 pm reservation. When I mentioned to our server that we were ready for the check and that after waiting in the beef station line unsuccessfully for prime rib - she brought me the check and some prime rib and baabyback ribs. In my mind while it was certainly a nice gesture, it was too little too late as I no longer had an appetite and was ready to leave. Needless to say, no discount off of the $59.95 adult buffet price or $25.00 12 and under price for my daughter.

Would have to seriously consider returning as there are other options equal and better nearby. Meal was below average. Service was barely acceptable (we bussed our own plates to the empty table next to us), price was unfair as we were not given essentially what we had paid for, food average - overall experience - disappointing.

j
jh11
Calgary
8 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2015
Overall1food1service1ambience1

Our family Christmas dinner was booked at the Mala at 7:15pm December 25th and it was beyond disappointing. The salad bar was poorly maintained and we did not have any prime rib or ribs available to us when we went through the buffet. It was loud, and the food that was available was not hot and not good. Our bill was over $500 and we feel that we could have had a far superior meal elsewhere. We mentioned to the staff that we were not happy and they were slightly apologetic, but we will not be back.

F
vipFoodisfun
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on December 25, 2015
Overall1food2service4ambience1

We went on Christmas, expecting Mala, not a Marriott Buffet. We have dined at Mala in Lahaina a dozen times and it is always a favorite dinner during our trip. This year we decided to stay in Wailea and saved Mala for our last night. I was furious that we showed up for an awful buffet! My 14 year old attempted to eat practically bleeding prime rib and the rest of us returned to the table with empty plates. The host felt badly (I was furious but nice about it) so he asked the chef to make me an appetizer of the ahi bruschetta off the Mala menu (I mentioned that I have that at the other Mala every time) and my other boys were able to order burgers. It was so nice of them to bring me the bruschetta (and didn't charge me) but it was all I ate so I was hungry. The buffet dessert looked like a Disneyland picked over buffet- yuck. The ambience is a hotel dining room, not the cool restaurant like they have in Lahaina. So sad that if we stick with Wailea instead of the Kaanapali side of the island in the future that We won't be dining at Mala. Our waiter, Zach, and one of the hosts, Tom, were very apologetic that we showed up for the buffet and were very nice about it. The other host could have cared less. Go to mala in Lahaina- it is awesome.

S
vipSkydog
Hawaii
12 reviews
Dined on December 24, 2015
Overall3food2service4ambience3

Mala's two sister restaurants in Lahaina, which I have been to many times, Hono and Mala, are both excellent with many interesting menu items, reasonable prices and good portion sizes. But Mala Wailea at the Marriott was a big disappointment. I thought the menu was limited and quite expensive. I had an opakapaka (red snapper) dish that was $40 and came with two really small pieces of fish. It was tasty but not enough to eat. I was hungry and asked for some rice and was charged extra for it. There are many other places to eat in South Maui which offer a much better dining experience. Pluses are the view and very good service.

BC
vipBryanC
Dallas
3 reviews
Dined on November 26, 2015
Overall2food1service2ambience1

Dined on thanksgiving day and was surprised to find a $60 per person buffet in place of the regular menu. Wish we would have known that prior because we would have dined elsewhere. It was standard cruise ship buffet food but at a crazy high price. What a waste of a dinner especially considering I had picked this restaurant because the regular menu looked amazing!

OT
OpenTable Diner
Vancouver
2 reviews
Dined on November 24, 2015
Overall4food4service4ambience4

Went there for our last night dinner before our vacation ended. Our server was very attentive, knew his product, and was accommodating, my only complaint was my girlfriend bought gift certificates from Costco with the intention of using them for our dinner. When we went to pay, our server informed us that they were only good for the Lahaina location, the restaurant needs to ensure that this is clearly stated, our server informed us that it happens all the time. More clarification needs to be addressed or include this location as well. Since we were staying near Kihea, we wouldn't have bought the gift certificates and possibly not have gone to the restaurant.

BM
vipBrianM
San Francisco
49 reviews
Dined on November 21, 2015
Overall2food3service2ambience2

This is one of two restaurants at the Marriott. The other, Migrant was packed while Mala was dead. That should have been the first clue. The menu was a way too expensive for what it was, even for Maui standards. The wait staff was slow to deliver drinks and the meal.

I hate when a server isn't managing the timing of your order at all. They're not checking on anything, they're taking an order when they probably should be bringing out your food. I've waited tables, I eat out a lot. Smart restaurants have the whole staff watching the quality of the experience. They don't leave a rookie or overextended server to fend for themselves.

VF
VisitorFrom206
Hawaii
2 reviews
Dined on November 12, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

It is our third time at the restaurant. It never disappoints us. Great food, great ambiance, very attentive service. I would highly recommend this place!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Francisco
12 reviews
Dined on November 7, 2015
Overall2food2service2ambience3

Everything was extremely slow in place less than half full. Our waitress apologized twice for the delay and the table behind us cancelled their entrees because they couldn't wait. My dinner was OK but my partner's fish was so over cooked it had to be cut with a knife. We will not go back.

WW
vipWaileaWahine
San Francisco
22 reviews
Dined on November 2, 2015
Overall2food3service5ambience2

We hadn't been to Mala in years, but it is restaurant week, and we like to use that opportunity to get out of our dinner routine. Big mistake. Although there were very few diners we were put at a table behind a huge column, not a great sunset spot. Then BOOM on goes the music, 60's metal that I didn't even like in the 60s!! We asked them to turn it down, which they did, for one song. Food marginal and cold. So sad.
I generally avoid negative reviews and go with the 'if you don't have anything nice to say...' But people should not expect a nice Hawaiian experience here, just a money grab
Waiter very nice and I could tell he felt badly re above

LL
LLSwifty
San Francisco
2 reviews
Dined on October 20, 2015
Overall2food3service2ambience1

Several things led to this restaurant being a big disappointment:
- Pop music was being played at a school dance level as opposed to an appropriate type and decibel level of music.
- There was a lot of confusion between the Immigrant and the Mala reception desks. Awkward to have Immigrant restaurant fielding Mala customers and sending them to a second reception desk. Why not just one reception desk handling both?
- Staff was easily confused and forgetful. Ordered off the bottled beer menu and had to point to each beer after saying it because the waitress didn't know it. Then she had to come back and ask one of orders again.
- When the beers were brought out, one had overflowed but was still set on the table. Both bottles were set on the table with glasses but the waitress did not pour them.
- Appetizers took forever to come out. I don't think this was a kitchen issue since the table next to us got their appetizers right away.
- Appetizer of fried tofu was covered in so much carrot shavings that we didn't see there was only four small pieces. I accidentally ate three before realizing my husband only got one. Four tofu pieces is ridiculous.
- My husband ordered pickle appetizer, tofu appetizer, and then the grilled veggie plate. The waitress failed to explain that the same veggies were in each of these items. Boring meal.
- Grilled veggie plate should but doesn't include rice. Its just veggies and sauce yet costs $30. Rice would cost an extra $3. We're in Hawaii where rice is served with everything. Go ahead and donate a scoop of rice why don't ya?
- I got the seared ahi. Everything tasted great but I couldn't taste the ahi. The fresh herbs that it was seared with overpowered the Grade A fish. Sad.
- Three red meat options and no poultry options! ???
- The walk between Immigrant and Mala took you past some weird linen and cleaning items pile. Why wasn't this all put away?
If they have a general manager they should be fired. It seems like they just don't and need one

OT
OpenTable Diner
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on October 17, 2015
Overall2food2service4ambience4

The meal was just ok.. Nothing special about the fish special! It was served in a bowl, rather than on a plate, which made the portion seem small and hard to eat.

OT
OpenTable Diner
New England
3 reviews
Dined on September 19, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great food and atmosphere

j
vipjbk1278
Los Angeles
6 reviews
Dined on August 26, 2015
Overall1food1service1ambience2

We have been to Mala's many times and were shocked to see the disintegration. Poor service--almost 30 minutes till our waiter came to our table. Awful food. We ordered a fish that was inedible. The rest of our selections were merely uninteresting and pedestrian. We will not be going again.

J
Jay03
Chicago
2 reviews
Dined on August 5, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

The ocean view is remarkable at sunset. Top notch service.

D
Dawn
Hawaii
1 review
Dined on July 31, 2015
Overall4food4service5ambience3

Our meals at Mala in Wailea were wonderful, but the best part was the service. The waiter was super friendly and accommodating. When we told him it was our 25th anniversary, he offered us dessert on the house. Not only that, but since I couldn't eat gluten and dairy, he was able to serve us a chocolate/coffee cheesecake made with breadfruit, coconut milk, and tree nut crust instead of the usual milk and wheat based alternative. It was absolutely delicious! I wish we'd gotten his name - he was the best waiter ever! And that was the best dessert I've had in a long time, and one of the only desserts I was able to eat during our stay in Hawaii. Highly recommended.

S
Svillefoodie
Charleston
5 reviews
Dined on July 29, 2015
Overall3food3service3ambience5

Lovely venue in Marriott Wailea, overlooking ocean. Can sit inside or as we opted, outside. Service and food typical of hotel dining. Nothing bad, nothing exceptional either. Very convenient for us though, as we were staying at resort.

FL
vipFortLaudJeremy
Miami
3 reviews
Dined on July 8, 2015
Overall3food3service4ambience3

We were at Mala two nights ago. The management and staff were incredibly thoughtful and friendly, especially because it was our honeymoon. However, the food is really lacking any flavor and creativity, which is surprising given the reputation of the Mala restaurant in Lihaina. It seemed as though there was little thought that went into the presentation of the dishes or how to properly season the items. For example, the baked cauliflower was served in a tiny side bowl and was quite bland despite the seasoning on it. The coconut shrimp appetizer was only four small shrimp placed in a small side bowl and mango dipping sauce in the middle. The shrimp themselves had no flavor other than being fried. The tuna poke appetizer, which cost more than $20, was a tiny dish with minimal tuna. The tuna itself did not have the freshness as the tuna in other restaurants on the island in that price point. Overall, the restaurant is way overpriced, the menu is unimpressive, and the presentation is lacking. The view from the balcony and service somewhat compensated for it. With respect to the food, it is as if the head chef is no longer overseeing this Mala and has let the quality drift way. I have heard that the other Mala in Lihaina is excellent. Perhaps that is where the head chef operates.

JD
vipJDoll808
Denver
13 reviews
Dined on July 1, 2015
Overall5food5service4ambience5

Seafood entrees were great. We loved the view and outdoor seating

A
vipAbc123
Orange County
17 reviews
Dined on June 29, 2015
Overall3food1service4ambience4

I went here with my wife and kids. We were hoping to enjoy some good food along with the sunset view. Unfortunately the food was awful. Both my wife and I ordered the Seared Ahi entree, which is something we both typically enjoy. However, this ahi had ZERO taste. I can't even explain it as I've never had ahi like this. And it's $44 so you'd expect it to be great, or at least decent. Also, the kids meal choices are subpar - pizza, grilled cheese,etc. How about a small serving of fish or chicken? We were very disappointed and won't be going back.

OT
OpenTable Diner
Dallas
2 reviews
Dined on June 18, 2015
Overall4food5service4ambience5

We had gift certificates but they would not take them at Marriott Ma La.

G
vipGreat
New York Area
66 reviews
Dined on June 11, 2015
Overall4food4service3ambience4

Great location for sunsets - varied menu - tasty food - uneven service last night at least. Seemed like a very long wait for our server to get to us even though the room was less than half full.

j
vipjoerich
Calgary
4 reviews
Dined on May 27, 2015
Overall3food2service2ambience3

Average food. Painfully slow service. It appears as though more focus is given to adjoining sister restaurant.

DK
vipDanaKxox
Hawaii
7 reviews
Dined on May 25, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Memorial Day was so busy and packed everywhere else, no available tables and we were trying to do something new to no avail so we went back to our old favorite, Malas, and were not disappointed once again. The ahi bruschetta is a must for the whole table and the soup and ribs were outstanding.

RC
RumClub
Las Vegas
2 reviews
Dined on May 6, 2015
Overall2food4service1ambience4

We chose this restaurant for the menu. The service was painfully slow. It took 20 minutes to be greeted and offered a drink. "island time" is something we expect and enjoy when visiting the islands... However this was absurd. The restaurant was 3/4 empty at prime time, so that should have been a clue to leave. I could go on and give every detail, but please just take it from us, don't go here. What we did eat was excellent, but it's not worth the investment of time and frustration.

V
vipVeloce25
San Francisco
40 reviews
Dined on April 25, 2015
Overall4food3service4ambience4

The location and view are what make Mala. If their food matched that would be dynamite.

s
vipsamplesc
Kansas City
19 reviews
Dined on April 17, 2015
Overall2food2service2ambience2

Where to begin....
Food - menu indicated that that the blackened Mahi Mahi came over Yukon mash, instead it came with plain brown rice on the side and the waiter didn't seem to know what the starch should be when asked. In addition, the Mahi Mahi was over cooked,very dry and didn't come with much blackening. The Ahi was just OK and nothing spectacular. Both were overpriced for the quality. Might have given three-stars if it wasn't for the out of proportion price.

Service - the waiter was spotty at best. After looking at the menus he asked if we wanted appetizers. We responded no and before we could finish saying that we were ready to order, he ran off, coming back 10 minutes later. We had to ask hi if there were any specials (there were, he just failed to mention it!) he did keep the water glasses nicely filled though..... Also, when we left we reported to the host and hostess that the food served did not match the menu for the Mahi dish as well as the quality and they seem totally non-plussed by our comments about the food and service.

Ambience - for a restaurant that claims all views of the ocean are great, our outside table on the row closest to the ocean had a large post right next to the diner, mostly blocking the view.

Noise level - absolutely no problem there, as hardly anyone was in the restaurant.

Overall - I would NOT recommend this restaurant for any reason. Interestingly, we also ate at Migrant, Mala's sister restaurant. at the Marriott (supposedly the change chef). The food there was far better and cheaper...a win-win as compared to Mala!

OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
68 reviews
Dined on April 16, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

Great dinner. Fish cooked to perfection! ingredients all fresh. Price comparable to other fine dining in Wailea. Our second visit and even better than expected.

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OT
vipOpenTable Diner
San Diego
68 reviews
Dined on April 15, 2015
Overall5food5service5ambience5

All the dishes we ordered exceeded our expectations. Pleased to have a gluten free menu available. Plan to revisit during our vidit.

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zzd112
San Francisco
9 reviews
Dined on April 4, 2015
Overall3food3service3ambience3

This restaurant is part of the Marion hotel. It's intended for hotel guests. If you are not a guest, get ready to park a long way out. Nice appearance and setting. Service was good. Food was ok. Prices were very high.

S
vipSpmccarl78
Palm Springs
64 reviews
Dined on March 5, 2015
Overall3food3service3ambience5

The view was spectacular and the staff was very friendly. Unfortunately that is where the positives stopped. We visit this restaurant every time we come to Maui one or two times. This time is our last for this trip. The menu was limited and the food was okay but not worthy of the prices being charged. It seems to me the emphasis is being placed on the adjacent restaurant and that is taking away from this one. I hope things change for our next visit or we will be crossing this place off our list.

FAQs

MALA - Wailea Beach Marriott Resort offers takeout which you can order by calling the restaurant at (808) 875-9394.

MALA - Wailea Beach Marriott Resort is rated 3.7 stars by 432 OpenTable diners.