By TODD PLUMMER
Condé Nast Traveler Contributing Writer
Give us your first impressions.
You may need to catch your breath when you step into this hotel’s stunning lobby, a soaring, light-filled space that is immediately serene compared to the busy streets of Honolulu. The grand lobby features wide open spaces, high ceilings, Hawaiian artifacts on display, a gorgeous coral sculpture behind the check-in desk, and best of all, an enormous two-story “oceanarium” at the heart of the hotel filled with tropical fish.
Is there a backstory here?
Waikiki Beach’s longstanding Pacific Beach Hotel made waves in 2018 when it unveiled a $125 million renovation and rebrand into the ‘Alohilani Resort Waikiki Beach.
Tell us about the rooms.
For a large hotel on Waikiki Beach, the newly renovated rooms have a clean aesthetic and plenty of light. Reclaimed wood headboards and accents throughout the room have a beach feel, and modern updates like bedside USB ports are a welcome update. The bathrooms feature rainfall shower heads and sensor toilets. Most rooms have at least a partial ocean view, which is a nice touch.
Is there a charge for Wi-Fi?
Wi-Fi is included in daily $48 resort fee.
What’s the food like?
If you’re a breakfast person, make sure to add breakfast to your room rate when booking; it is served at Momosan daily. As to the rest of the food, a highlight is Morimoto Asia from famed Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, which features a range of inventive pan-Asian delights. You can also have it delivered to your room. Other than that, the bar at the pool deck has a great all-day menu of drinks and snacks to carry you from morning till night.
How was the service?
The service is efficient and welcoming. Just off the lobby, you’ll find an especially large concierge area with a team of Honolulu experts waiting to provide tips and tricks for exploring the area. Thanks to the abundance of staff it never feels like you have to wait long for an answer to your questions.
Because of the hotel’s larger size and proximity to Waikiki Beach (it’s across the street), you’ll see a little bit of everything, from conference-goers and business travelers to families of all sizes.
What about the other stays in the neighborhood?
Given the hotel’s top-notch Rockwell renovation, its location smack-dab on Waikiki Beach, and its delicious F&B offerings, it’s fair to say that the ‘Alohilani is almost a steal compared to some of the area’s pricier—and dustier—resorts.
Tell us what we missed.
At 10:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. every day, a SCUBA diver drops into the oceanarium and feeds the fish, which is fun to watch. You can also see the oceanarium from the lobby bar, so it’s a great way to kill some time before heading out for dinner or an excursion elsewhere.
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ʻAlohilani Resort Waikiki Beach
REM Public Relations