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Hokulani Waikiki by Hilton Grand Vacations
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Reviewed 23 March 2014

You can miss the entrance from the street (Lewers street) easily. Look for a valet kiosk next to the ABC store and what appears to be an unmarked driveway. Right behind the kiosk are escalators that bring you up to "Cheeseburger" restaurant which is right next to the entrance to the hotel lobby. You have to stop at the kiosk to drop your car off. The valets will take your keys, count your bags and give you a ticket. When you check in at the front desk upstairs, give the receptionist the ticket, and they will have your bags brought to your room. They only have valet parking for $35/day, but if you want to save a few dollars, you can park your car at the post office a couple of blocks over on Saratoga street for $20/24 hrs. It's about a 5 to 7 minute walk.

The elevators are very high tech and take some getting used to. You have to scan your room card to a sensor on the wall (outside the elevator), then type the number of the floor you want to go to. Then you get into the elevator and press the "close door" button. There are no floor buttons inside the elevator, just close door/open door. You wouldn't be able to tell how many floors are in the building with this interface, or make any last minute decisions to go to the rooftop. I find that it makes it rather difficult when multiple persons staying on different floors need to use the same elevator at once. I was behind a lady one morning, that by the time I finished typing in my floor, she was in the elevator and the doors closed. I had to take the next one. So I guess you could say that the elevators are made so that you take them up by yourself. The other plus side to this is, your snot-nosed little brats can't push all the elevator buttons, forcing you to take the "scenic route" by stoping at each floor up or down. Which by the way, happens to me quite often.

The bathroom. Huge and Luxurious. Waterfall shower with optional hand shower. Nice big free-standing tub. Two sinks, plenty of towels, space-aged television built into the giant mirror; something straight out of Star Trek. The bathroom is about as big as the bedroom. There are two closets for your clothes. You could probably have a small party in there. And speaking of party, I feel this next item is of the utmost importance to your experience.

The toilet is in its own little room. It's not an ordinary toilet, it's got an electronically operated bidet. Oh yes, much like those fancy massage chairs that you can control the settings to, the bidet can be set to give your "bat cave" an oscillating cleansing massage. I must have sat there an extra ten minutes of guilty pleasure adjusting the flow pressure, temperature and oscillation.

The kitchenette. Not really ideal for cooking full multi-course meals, but sufficient enough for maybe breakfast and meals that require little preparation. No oven but there is a microwave. Also at your convenience are a heated drawer with plates and utensils, pantry containing lots of glasses, rice cooker and ice bucket and toaster. There's a nice little refrigerator with see-through door, pull out freezer with ice maker and a single cup coffee maker. You need to read the illustrated instructions for the coffee machine. It's not exactly a Keurig. Got dirty laundry? There are free washers and dryers on every floor.

The suite is configured to where you can compartmentalize the bedroom or open up the whole space to the outside with all of the sliding doors. That's probably why the balcony is kind of small. You get another 2 TVs in addition to the one in the bathroom and also a Playstation 3. They'll give you a DVD withdrawal card where you can go to the business center and checkout DVD's one at a time for free. (They are actually Blue ray discs)

The rooftop pool is more for sitting in and ordering drinks and they do have a hot tub, but the beach is like a block away if you really want to have fun in the water or just relax on the cool sand. If you have the fundage, the cabanas on the roof cost around $175 for the day.

Hotel service was great. The valets were very helpful with bags and such, like how to operate the equipment in the room and the front staff were very accommodating. They let us check out at 12 and even offered to store our bags and use the rooftop showers later in the day if we wanted. The location is convenient to a lot of shopping, food, massage, and the beach. It was really awesome staying here.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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7  Thank Bael
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 23 March 2014

This is my 1st time in Hawaii. I came out here with my whole family to celebrate my 30th Birthday. I was a little nervous about checking into this hotel b/c of the reviews I read. But after checking in I was impressed. The check in lady was absolutely great. She was very kind and courteous and the bell guy Mike was very knowledgeable about the town. The kitchen is bit small as stated in previous reviews but all in all it's a great room. At that moment, I was definitely happy and excited I was able to book this hotel.

And then it all went downhill when I went to get my car from Valet. This is my first time ever reviewing a hotel, but I did it b/c I feel that what happened to me and the hotel's Valet is a MAJOR CONCERN. It makes me question on the hotel b/c of who they trust to do business with. I would hate for what happened to me, to happen to anyone else. This alone would make me not want to stay here again, especially if you pay the price it costs to stay here. The Valet is horrible. First off, they want to charge you $35/day. With that price, I would expect them to take better care of my car, even if it is just a rental. I left my car downstairs with the Valet so I can check in and unpack my belongings. The Valet attendant said he would take my car to the garage while I settle in, and pull it out when I come back. After about 45mins I came back out and they gave me my car. When I was about to get in, I noticed that there was a HUGE scratch from the back of the car, to the front of the car. It was about 8 feet long. I calmly asked the Valet attendant what happened to my car and he said that it was there when we dropped it off. I tried to be calm about it b/c I didn't want to get worked up and ruin my trip. Anyway, I told the Valet guy that the car was not like that when I dropped it off and asked what are we going to do about it. He still continued to go on about how it was there when we dropped it off, and how the other Valet attendant told him it was there when we dropped it off. Meaning he didn't see that it was there when we dropped it off with his own eyes, he took some other guy's word for it and made it his own. When we asked to speak with the other Valet attendant who pointed it out to him, he said he was already off. Then he said that "oh the bell guy who took the luggage even saw it." So we asked to speak with the bell guy and continued to ask him what are we going to do about it. Instead of trying to offer a solution or some type of protocol on what to do in these incidents, he immediately went into defense mode and starting accusing us of trying to put the blame of the scratch on them and continued to say "It was there when you guys dropped it off and all I did was back it up to the garage and pulled it out when you came back." It was like a broken record. I pointed out that scratch was new b/c the car is maroon and the scratch is BRIGHT WHITE. AND there were still car particles from the scratch falling from the paint. It's a rental car so of course there are little scratches here and there, but you could tell that those scratches are old b/c they are faded. But this scratch was BRAND NEW. Any one who saw it could tell it was a fresh scratch b/c we were still about to wipe off the access residual from the scratch off the car. From the 45mins I took to check in and settle into my room, to the time I came downstairs to leave, there was a huge scratch that was put on my car, and I said I needed to know what happened to it while I left it in their hands. Not only did he continue to say it was there when we dropped it off, he said "WELL IT'S YOUR WORD, AGAINST MINE!!" Now what type of customer service is this?!?!?! I expect more from this hotel. That right there made me not only want to scream but it just ruined my entire day and possibly my trip. I asked him for his supervisor and he said he was the supervisor. By that time Mike (the bell guy) came down. He didn't say he noticed the scratch (meaning the valet "supervisor" probably lied) and the first thing Mike did was apologize that we have to go through this. And it wasn't until Mike came that we were able to go through the process of possibly resolving the issue. Then Mike got the actual supervisor for the Valet to come out and introduced us to him. At the end of this, I spent about a good 2 hrs from the time I came down to pick up my car, to the time I finished arguing with the Valet attendant, filing an incident report, and filing a police report. And of course, b/c this hotel is located right in the heart of Waikiki, I had to do this in front of everyone to watch. Not only was it draining but it was absolutely embarrassing.

I came to my brother's hotel b/c I had to get away from the whole scene. And to top it off, when I got to my brother's hotel, I noticed that the rear view mirror of my driver side is missing a piece. Meaning this is something else that they probably messed up. I was so caught up on the huge scratch on the car, I didn't even think to walk around it again and see if there was anything else wrong. I'm just at the point to where I don't even want to deal with having to go back and tell them that I have something else messed up on my car. I already have to spend my evening calling the rental car company and my insurance to make sure this is covered. This is not how I wanted to spend my first Saturday night in Hawaii. Not only that, now I have to go find somewhere else to park my car, b/c I refuse to go through their valet again. I'd rather park my own car after this. I'm hoping one of the neighboring hotels will let me pay to park in their garages. Not only will it probably be cheaper, but it'll probably be safer as well. Heck I'll probably just stay here at my brother's hotel tonight so I don't have to deal with having to find somewhere to park tonight. And to think I have try to figure out where to park until I check out on March 28th. UGGGHHH!

If you were able to read through this long review, hopefully it was useful and hopefully you won't have to deal with what I just dealt with. Definitely ruined my Hawaiian island experience. If after reading this, and you still trust to park your car here, make sure you do a walk around when you drop it off and again when you pick it up. Or better yet, just tell them that you'd prefer to ride shot gun while they park your car. I wish I would've booked a different hotel after this incident.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
13  Thank JTaula
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hiltongrandvacations, Manager at Hokulani Waikiki by Hilton Grand Vacations, responded to this reviewResponded 7 April 2014

Thank you for your candid review. Your incident with our valet is very regrettable and we addressed the situation with the valet attendants, hopefully to your satisfaction while you were in house. Please reach out to me if you would like to discuss this further at will.bethel@hilton.com. Thank you for staying with us & we hope to see you again in the future.

Will Bethel
Assistant General Manager

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 17 March 2014

We stayed in a 1-BR suite at the Hokulani 4 nights using HGVC club points, so some policies may be different for cash customers.

PROS:
-my wife loved the suite feel and design with wooden floors and muted Asian colors (probably a Japanese designer was used). It felt like a small modern apartment with kitchen and large bathroom with a fully functional Japanese Toto toilet. Not a noisy room even though we were just two floors above Lewers near Kalakaua Avenue.
-very central Waikiki location across the street from the Sheraton Center and a block away from the Kuhio-Lewers bus stop where practically any bus you need will stop.

CONS:
-early checkout. We were told to checkout by 10am, but got an extension to noon.
-no beach. This is a city location, and no privileges to the Hilton Hawaiian Village beach and facilities were made available.
-no housekeeping during our stay, but this may only apply to HGVC members.
-could not figure out the AC control, so it was turned off at night.
-Concierge staff not very helpful (competent), e.g., promised restaurant reservations were not made, and seemed to rotate with the Hilton Hawaiian Village.
-no restaurant on site, but plenty of selection at the Sheraton Center across the street.

CONFUSION:
-physical entrance is by escalator on Lewers Street, but the hotel address is Kalakaua Avenue.
-parking entrance is on Kalahaua Avenue, but it's not obvious.
-we found it cheaper and less stressful to use the bus and taxis instead of renting a car.

CONCLUSION. We would stay here again and recommend it to friends. Key selling points are the room decor/design and location. The hotel was not officially open until around February 2014, so hopefully service problems encountered by earlier reviewers have been solved. For those using HGVC points, this property costs at least twice as much as the Hilton Hawaiian Village.

Room Tip: We were assigned to the lowest floor, but didn't notice any problems with this location.
  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
2  Thank PiedmontWalker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 March 2014

I am at the hotel until the 12 of March, after going around the block about 10 times I finally found the entrance. Valet is not present at this hotel. After reviewing it on trip advisor, I was not sure however I already paid in advanced and could not change the hotel. Now I understand the problems that are mentioned on trip advisor. First off I missed my flight to go to Muai for 2 days because their was no Valet person at 5:30 am to get my car. It took the front desk 25 minutes to find them. Luckily I flew with Hawaiian Air line and they put me on a flight a hour after mine. Second the noise from the sliding doors is so noticeable, I downloaded a app for my phone to check decimals, at the bed its 23. The problem is that the sound is not constant, a lot of road noise, the sliding doors don't function because their are issues with the design. This is evident because the locks don't work and they comprised with a hook and a pin. After reading the reviews one of them mentioned about amenity's, they are all true. The gym is a bench with a few pounds, the room size is 14 by 12 feet. No place to stay after dawn, they close the roof top pool, only option is to go on your Balcony that is 2 feet wide, you can't even put a chair outside.

What I have noticed is that William always apologizing, so in my eyes I need to be the experiment and loose money and time. Why don't you do something about it, such as reimbursement me some of my money. That would show how sorry your company truly is.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
3  Thank Frank C
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
hiltongrandvacations, Manager at Hokulani Waikiki by Hilton Grand Vacations, responded to this reviewResponded 13 March 2014

We apologize for the inconvenience you experienced with our valet parking. We do have our valet staff available 24 hours a day and they should have been ready to bring your car out at 5:30 am. This is something we will address with the staff. Regarding the lock in your rooms, I believe that door may be malfunctioning if you are not able to secure the door with the regular lock as the hook lock is placed on the door as an additional security feature and not as a substitution lock. We hope you have contacted the front desk regarding this so that we may address it immediately. Although the gym is not spacious in size, we do have dumbbells sets ranging from 5 pounds to 50 pounds with a variety of stationery exercise machines as well as medicine balls, it is unfortunate that this does not meet your needs. We continue to monitor the hours of our pool, but have found minimal demand in the evening. We truly appreciate your feedback as we are a new hotel. Please feel free to contact me regarding your issues as I will be happy to answer any of your other questions.

Mahalo nui loa,
William Bethel
Assistant General Manager
Will.Bethel@hilton.com

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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 6 March 2014

Forced to stay at the new Hilton we were pleasntly surprised on the use of space in the Condo and view from our room. The staff was well prepared for us and left nothing to guess work. The facility is in the heart of the new Lewers St. and access to the fun is easy and convenient. We had a great time at the new location.

  • Stayed: March 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Review collected in partnership with Hilton Grand Vacations
1  Thank William Andrew M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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