"Delightful Repeat Visit. Still Same Outstanding Quality."
SHORT VERSION: Stayed May 21-29, 2017. In case you don't read this entire review, let me say up front that all the positive reviews are true. I've stayed here over 40 nights since 2003. I really do know what I'm talking about. In short: Stay here. Splurge on a Diamond Head Ocean View room. Sip cocktails and take in the Hawaiian music and classic Hula at House Without a Key at sunset. Eat breakfast at Orchids (beautiful view and they actually wait on you...much more relaxed than the self-serve buffet at House Without a Key). Dine at Orchids or La Mer. You will have a grand time! Your soul will feel renewed! The entire hotel staff is second to none. They will treat you like royalty. You will be spoiled for anything else. If you want crowds and excitement (or less expensive options), just cross the street in front of the hotel...This is an IDEAL location, with none of the negatives of Waikiki. This is a WONDERUL hotel. We truly love it. AND...I assure you, It's still as good as it always was. SO YOU WON'T BE DISAPPOINTED: Don't expect a large (or even mid-sized) beach (not happening here...but you can walk a bit to get to one). Their pool is a decent size, heated and aesthetically gorgeous, but no hot tub. No water slides or water features. No zoo-like atmosphere. If you have children older than toddlers, or are looking to concentrate on beach activities, perhaps other hotels might better meet your needs. Only you know what is best for your family. ---Now for Details, if you have the time. Hope it helps you -------- SPECIAL THINGS: Take the weekly Back of the House Tour, with Auntie Melba. It's fascinating! You find out what goes on behind the scenes to make it all work so seamlessly. Take the Historic Halekulani Tour with Hi'inani, where you'll get a 90-minute cultural and historic perspective on what makes this hotel so magically special. ROOM SELECTION: Go to the Halekulani's website and find the graphic that shows the layout of the hotel, with color-coded room category locations. It's really helpful. Get an idea of relative costs associated with different categories and packages. Then, CALL the Halekulani's Reservations Department and make your arrangements through them directly. They can give you great insights as to best rates and specific room options. I'm glad I did, even though I am a multiple-repeat guest, because I was able to enter some special requests, as well as make sure I understood exactly what view I would have from what room. They will be honest with you about rooms. For example, some of the oceanfront category rooms are set back a bit, and you might not realize this. Some of the ocean view category rooms (and even partial ocean view) have generous to respectable views, so do ask for advice from these very friendly and knowledgeable reservation agents. It could save you money. But see next paragraph for MY ultimate room preference. The Halekulani's balconies are very generously sized and furnished with a table and two chairs, plus a reclining lounger. It's always a pleasure to spend time on your balcony with a beautiful view. I HIGHLY recommend the Diamond Head Ocean Front View...it's breathtaking. It costs more, but it's just enchanting. We spent the first four nights in oceanfront, the last four nights in Diamond Head Ocean view. The latter view is definitely more than worth the price differential. SURROUNDING AREA: Understand going in that Waikiki is very crowded and built up, but you would never know that when you are actually AT this hotel. It's completely serene and quiet. Yet...you can walk across Kalia RD to Beach Walk (a shopping/dining area) in a matter of nano-seconds, and be right in the thick of everything...Hawaiian music groups performing free at Beach Walk pavilion, Roy's restaurant, Ruth Chris Steakhouse, Blue Ginger Apparel, Kahala Sportswear, Honolulu Cookie Company, Starbucks, etc. Scores of shops. A block further to ALL levels of shopping, from Gucci and Prada to Macy's. Long's Drug Store (CVS) and ABC stores nearby have all your travel needs very reasonably priced. There's even a Denny's right in front of this hotel! I kid you not!!! You'll not run out of options for diversion. When we were there, the local Community College's Culinary School was just opening a little cafe/restaurant right across from the Halekulani in the Waikiki Parc Hotel (former site of the Nobu restaurant, and before that, the Waikiki Parc Cafe). The menu sounded great, and VERY reasonably priced. Wish we could have had a chance to sample it! If you can, go and support the budding chefs for us! BEST TIMES TO STAY: Mid-to-latter part of May is a nice time to visit Hawaii. It is after the "Golden Week" in early May (when many Japanese guests travel because of three successive holidays within a 10-day period) and before the schools on the mainland USA let out. We've also found April and October/November/early to mid December to be less crowded in Hawaii (especially Waikiki) than other times. Watch out for the Honolulu Marathon, which is held early in December...that can complicate things somewhat. As I said before, the great thing about the Halekulani is: No matter how crowded Waikiki gets, you always feel serene and relaxed when you're on the hotel's property. It's really true. SECURITY AND RULE ENFORCEMENT: When researching for this visit, I was dismayed to find a negative review, complaining that standards had slipped and security was less. I can honestly tell you that we found NO evidence of ANY such thing. The security guards (in black suits) are still on guard everywhere you look. No intruders are walking around the pool, having wandered in from the street or the beach. We felt completely safe, and we also never saw ANY hint of smoking on balconies. There are a few designated smoking areas (one in front of the hotel, on the street). Other than that, the guests honored the no-smoking policy of the hotel...at least as far as we could see. Considering we spent over a week here, and I really checked for all of this, I feel confident in assuring all of you that everything is STILL just as genteel, safe, pleasant, clean, and quiet as it always was here. And THAT is saying something. CONCIERGES: The Concierges will do ANYTHING for you. They can pull rabbits out of hats, and DO, with great regularity. And they are not there to sell tours or tickets. They are there for the guests, and your best interests are their only concern. They provided me with packing materials and shipped my packages, steered me toward some of the best experiences, took care of everything. And I never had to wait to speak with them, like at so many other hotels. There are always several concierges on duty, and they are at it from morning until 10 p.m. every night. They seem able to get you reservations at almost any restaurant, sometimes even last-minute. Amazing service! CONCLUSION: Stay here, even if you have to save up for a long time (like we do). It's worth it. There is a level of luxury and service here that is beyond that of ANY other Waikiki hotel. You will be treated to multiple excellent food options (with elegant ambiance), highly personalized service, outstanding spa services, and a large, comfortable room. Get an ocean view room, whatever you do...preferably on a high floor, above any rooftops. You didn't come all the way to Hawaii to look at anything less.
"Great spot "
Had a lovely lunch there. Setting is great as is the service. I had the fish of the day which was really nice but strangely served with sliced raw carrots. Also served with asparagus and a black bean sauce. That worked well. The highlight was the coconut cake for dessert. Cocktails were also nice
rooms confortable and spacious with good amenities, service attentious. very good location to visit waikiki and the city, even to go to diamond head. many options of good restaurants and shops near the hotel
We chose the Halekulani for its reputation and location. We enjoyed the proximity to restaurants, shops and the beach, attentive staff and manicured grounds. We had an ocean view room which was decorated in relaxing colours, was comfortable (though not overly large), with a direct view across the pool and sea. The pool area and the strip of beach by the hotel were never busy whilst we were there. We ate breakfasts a couple of times in each breakfast location, choice was varied and we thought both were good depending on our preference for restaurant and buffet or waiter service. We also dined in the evening in both House Without a Key and Orchids and rate both highly on food and service. We found the Concierge desk helpful including booking a hire car which was delivered to the hotel. Watch out for the daily pre-charge on your credit card, this may be usual for Hawaii, but is not usual to that extent in other countries. In all, a relaxing and enjoyable stay, we would come again.
"Attention to Detail"
Truly exceptional service and attention to detail here, certainly meets its own reputation, and met my high expectations. Check-in was smooth, easy, early check-in request was granted and even upgraded me to a Partial Ocean View room. The personalized escort to the room for check-in, hotel grounds and hotel room walk-through was all great, addressing almost every detail in the room and hotel grounds. The rooms are spacious, well-appointed (though no toothbrush or toothpaste), and has many small touches that truly separates this property from the rest. The pool area can get quite crowded and busy but is nonetheless beautiful and relaxing. Always met with a smile and willingness to help by staff no matter which part of the hotel they worked at. The food is also quite good, especially the waffles at breakfast. The service at the restaurants and pool area was also very friendly yet professional and everyone is quite knowledgeable not only about the hotel but about Hawaii and its culture. The Spa is excellent, worth a visit. Would definitely recommend and be back.
Credit cards accepted by the hotel: Visa - MasterCard - American Express - Diners Club - Japan Credit Bureau (JCB) - Discover
Check-in: 3:00 PM , Check-out: 12:00 PM