The tourist stronghold of Sandusky, Ohio just got a little wetter. After being closed for several years, the indoor water park at Maui Sands Resort has opened its doors again. That makes four indoor water parks in the Sandusky area for visitors and residents to choose from.
Maui Sands Resort had a rough start in life. Originally opened in 2007, it quickly ran into financial trouble and had to close. After going through bankruptcy, the resort reopened with new owners in 2012. However, due to the need for extensive renovations, the water park didn’t reopen until this summer.
Can this new (old) water park compete with heavyweights like The Kalahari, Great Wolf Lodge, and Castaway Bay? Only time will tell, but Maui Sands seems to offer a pretty compelling proposition to visitors. At 45,000 square feet, the water park is larger than all but the Kalahari. At the same time, it’s generally cheaper than The Kalahari, and competitively priced with the other options (though with so many discounts floating around, it’s always tough to say what the real price of a hotel room is).
Of course, square footage and price don’t mean a lot unless the park also features lots of great rides. Here, too, Maui Sands seems to compare favorably. While it doesn’t have anything terribly unique, it does offer just about every standard water park attraction out there – tube slides, body slides, lazy river, bowl slide, and so on. Unlike many smaller water parks that cater overwhelmingly to young kids, this water park seems to have something for children, teens, and adults.
Another selling point is that the facilities haven’t seen a lot of use. Because Maui Sands closed down so soon after opening, neither the resort nor the water park have served a ton of customers. Much of what’s there has been renovated, and those renovations are ongoing.
Maui Sands offers day passes for those who want to enjoy the water park without booking a room. Children under two get in free, and there are lower prices for small children, spectators, and those arriving after 4pm. There are also package deals available for birthday parties and other group events.
Reviews of the resort and water park tend to emphasize the low prices and helpful staff. For a detailed review, read this recent article from The News-Herald. Also be sure to check out TripAdvisor, where the hotel is currently ranked 3rd out of 35 hotels in Sandusky.