Waikiki is located in a beautiful beach front neighborhood of Honalulu on the south shores of Oahu. Although Waikiki Beach is the best known, it is one of six beautiful beaches to relax and play. Waikiki was the resort of the Hawaiian royals during the eighteenth century and, by the later part of the century, small hotels were opened. in 1893 Greek American George Lycurgus opened the first resort, Sans Souci (French for “no worries”). The area continued to grow in popularity. Today visitors can enjoy the beautiful beaches, great waves and luxury shopping, dining and nightclubbing on Kalakaua Avenue. Here are our picks for the 5 best Waikiki Hotels of 2018.
The Royal Hawaiian
Located on the elegant and vibrant Kalakawua Avenue on Waikiki Beach, The Royal Hawaiian is steeped in history and guarantees guests a luxurious and royal treatment. The Royal Hawaiian opened in 1927. The 6 story 400 guest room hotel is designed in rich Spanish Moorish style. The grand opening was a black tie affair hosting 1200 guests and featuring a performance by the Honolulu Symphony. At the time the staff of 300 included 10 elevator operators and lobby boys dressed in Cathayan style. The Royal Hawaiian maintains its elegant style with accents of indigenous culture. Today there are 528 guest rooms and suites. Guests can stay in the grand Mailchi Tower where each room features a private lanais or in the fresh and sophisticated Historic Wing. The Royal Hawaiian is family friendly and provides fun programs in its kids’ club as well as a family friendly pool, the Helumoa Playground. A second pool, the Malulani provides a quiet intimate space for guests to relax. The Abhasa Spa provides luxury signature treatments, and guests can shop on site where stores include the Collection of Waikiki, fashion retailers and gift shops. Dining options include the Mai Tai Bar under a beach front cabana, the Azure Restaurant and Bar, and Surf Lanai. The Royal Hawaiian hosts an oceanfront Aha’aina Luau. Meeting and event space includes 12,000 square feet indoors and 66,000 square feet of lawn and beach front space.
Prince Waikiki is one of the best hotels in Waikiki. The newly remodeled spacious guest rooms and suites boast oceanfront views and marble baths. Centrally located, guests of the hotel are close to Waikiki’s most vibrant neighborhoods and beaches. The hotel features an infinity pool with the poolside Hianna Bar, perfect for watching the sun set. On site restaurants include 100 Sails Restaurant and Bar and Katsumidori Sushi Tokyo as well as the Honolulu Coffee Company. The Prince Waikiki pays homage to Hawaiian culture and hosts the story of Hulai i Ka Ta each day in the lobby. The hotel is a beautiful place to hold business conferences, events and weddings. There is 16,000 square feet of versatile and modern event space including a 7,000 square foot ballroom. The Prince Waikiki offers shuttle service to the magnificent Prince Golf Club. The 27 hole course was designed by Arnold Palmer and Ed Seay. Guests can enjoy the Bird of Paradise restaurant and the Prince Waikiki Club Lounge.
The historic Moana Surfrider was built in 1901 and retains its Victorian beauty with modern and luxury updates. Moana Surfrider, or as it’s known “The First Lady of Waikiki” was one of the first hotels in Waikiki. The hotel offers a historic tour twice a week. Located on the beach front, the Westin Resort and Spa hotel features the full service Moana Lani Spa which offers full service with ancient Hawaiian healing traditions. Guests of the hotel can enjoy the oceanfront pool and lounge overlooking the beautiful Waikiki Beach. Guest rooms and suites are well appointed maintaining their Victorian architecture with modern conveniences. Guests may dine at the oceanfront Beachhouse at the Moana which features contemporary American cuisine and fresh seafood. The Veranda at the Beachhouse provides breakfast, lunch and tea under a quaint Victorian canopy. The Beach Bar offers snacks and drinks. Vintage 1905 wine bar rests next to a beautiful shady Banyan tree. There is over 10,000 of modern meeting space for guests including boardrooms, a parlor and a ballroom. For events and weddings are indoor, rooftop and outdoor lawn spaces.
The historic Halekulani offers guests the opulence in a historic setting. In 1883 Robert Lewers built a two story home on the site of the Halekulani’s main building. His family named it Halekulani which means “house befitting Heaven”. The family added a beach front home with 6 bungalows let out to guests in 1907. The hotel continued to expand over the next century. Today the property hosts guests in 453 well appointed elegant yet understated spacious guest rooms and suites, each with Pacific views and decorated in the hotels signature “seven shades of white” theme. The Halekulani features the Spahalekulani Spa which offers traditional treatments with Polynesian accents. The hotel includes three restaurants. La Mer offers fine dining, Orchids offers casual dining, and the House Without a Key offers relaxed dining. The hotel offers modern meeting facilities and event space in a private tropical setting with views of the ocean and Diamond Head.
The Ritz Carlton Residences Waikiki Beach
The Ritz Carlton Hotel never disappoints. The luxury hotel chain has 91 resorts around the world and Waikiki’s is one of the best. The Ritz Carlton Waikiki is located on Waikiki Beach a short stroll from Luxury Row on Kalakaua Avenue. Guests of the Ritz Carlton are greeted by the airy eighth floor lobby. The infinity pool which offers private cabanas is also located on the eighth floor and is the highest pool on the island of Oahu. All 307 guest suites feature floor to ceiling ocean views and furnished terraces. Rooms are decorated in sophisticated yet comfortable style. The Ritz Carlton Waikiki has a luxurious spa where full service treatments are offered with traditional Hawaiian flare. The hotel also features a fitness center. Dining options at The Ritz Carlton include regional and seasonal fare in the open air BLT Market, a sushi counter at Sushi Sho, and gourmet foods and wine at Dean and DeLuca.