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Holiday Surf Hotel
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Reviews (192)
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All reviewsmin walkingtwo single bedsfull kitchenenterprise car rentalthe ala waiwaikiki beachbig balconykitchen facilitiesliving roomhotel staffentire staytwo blockshome away from homecleaning staffstaff was very friendly and helpfulfutonpans
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Reviewed 2 November 2013

I've been to Waikiki before, as the lacrosse club I play for sends a team to the annual tournament held at Kapialani Park each October. Everyone typically stays at the Waikiki Banyan but when my g/f couldn't make it due to work commitments, I decided to search for a cheaper option that still had a kitchen. Location wasn't a major concern for me, as I've found that everything is within walking distance; from this hotel it's about a 35-40 minute walk to Safeway from this hotel, a 10-15 minute walk to the beach, and about a 20-25 minute walk to Kapialani Park.

The Holiday Surf Hotel seemed to meet my criteria, and for the price I paid the room and furnishings were about what I expected...maybe a little lower in standards. The size was fine, and it had everything I needed so for the most part it was satisfactory. The dishes and cooking instruments provided were perfect, and the room and items in it were all clean and well kept. However, the drapes were very thin and since my room was facing Ala Wai Boulevard, with all the street lighting my room was lit 24/7. The A/C was also very weak (I had to pull the mattress off the bed and lie it on the floor right next to the A/C unit) so combined with the light pollution, it was difficult to get to sleep.

The highlight of this hotel is definitely the people running it. Anytime I had a question the ladies at the front desk were more than happy to help answer them, whether it was regarding the best shops to get food, which farmer's market to go to, or helping me find a local SIM card for my phone. If they didn't know, they'd find out and call me in my room with the information. Service with a smile goes a long way.

The low point of this hotel, and the reason my rating is so low, is the water quality. I'm an experienced traveler and have been to many countries outside North America (India, Africa, Mexico, Europe) where water quality is a concern. But when visiting places within North America, I expect that the tap water should be drinkable and in previous visits to Waikiki -- albeit staying at a different hotel -- this has not been an issue. But at the Holiday Surf it was.

I arrived on Thursday and with the heat, I started drinking a lot of water. I'm thirsty after flying and since the lacrosse tournament started the next day, and ran over the weekend, I also needed to hydrate. By Friday night, I noticed some slight stomach cramping; like a more severe hunger pang. Over the course of Saturday and Sunday, it got worse and while I didn't notice it while playing in the tournament, when I wasn't playing it was very uncomfortable. By Monday morning, it was very painful.

I suspected the water was the reason because it was the only thing that had changed. I bought the same groceries that I do at home, and hadn't eaten out since my arrival (I like to keep my food intake consistent during competitions). As a test, I stopped drinking the tap water and 6 hours later, the cramping had subsided significantly. The next morning, my stomach was almost back to normal, so to test the theory further I drank 1 glass of tap water. Within 30 minutes, the cramps were back.

At that point I simply bought several jugs of bottled water from the store and I had no further issues the rest of the week. I'm not sure if this hotel is just older and has some issues with their own pipes but as I mentioned, I've drank from the Waikiki water supply before with no problems.

Draw your own conclusions as to whether this hotel is for you. If you are like many of my teammates and you buy water whenever you travel, then I would definitely urge you to consider the Holiday Surf. I stated the service was excellent, and with a sleep mask to combat the light issue this would be a solid place to stay at an economical price. But I couldn't give it a higher rating based on the issues/concerns I had regarding the tap water.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank vrecksler
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 October 2013

I couldn't get a room at the other hotel I wanted to stay at so decided this one would do. The rooms were nice except for the bathroom. There was no room to move around in the bathroom and had to stand in the tub to close the door when friends stopped by. The bathroom sink was not even in the bathroom, its out by the closet. While staying here nobody cleaned my room and when I asked to have new towels and sheets they were given to me and was told to do it myself. If you want wi-fi you need to pay $14 a day for it, so I went to other hotels to use the wifi they offered. The staff were not helpful at all when I asked how to get places. I would never stay here again.

  • Stayed: October 2013, travelled with friends
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10  Thank partygal82
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 8 October 2013

My husband and I were there in August to set up our daughter for college. When I booked this hotel it was the best price AND it was in waikiki. The room was spacious complete with kitchen. We had a patio that looked out at the Alai Wai canal and we enjoyed our coffee there very morning. The staff is very friendly and helpful. We both loved Carmen, the guest services mgr. She sent us to some great places for local hawaiian food. It was great !!!!! And some places to get good deals on goodies !! The hotel and rooms are clean but not fancy. That was ok with us because we weren't there very much anyway. We loved being so close to everything in Waikiki. We would recommend this hotel for its great price and great location. A win win !!!!!!!

Stayed: August 2013, travelled as a couple
4  Thank Spree2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 October 2013 via mobile

This small hotel served out purpose just fine. One of the cheapest options I could find online to prebook. Carmen and all the staff are extremely helpful and accommodating. The location is just a few short blocks from everything central to downtown including Duke's, shopping, the beach, etc.

The hotel itself is outdated like most in Waikiki. That's almost a given until you are willing to spend over $400 a night.

We recommend "upgrading" for $35 extra a night through Carmen. We felt it was worth it. She booked everything for us that we planned, was extremely pleasant, have us reduced parking rate and a room upgrade when available. Best to call ahead if time.

Again, for the amount of time spent in the room it more than served the purpose. It isn't the Trump hotel, but it is children friendly.

We would stay here again. No problem.

Mark and Krista.

  • Stayed: September 2013
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4  Thank Mark W
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 September 2013

This is a great location as it is down the street from some of the most popular night life and great shopping. The rooms are in good condition and the housekeeping staff as well as the front desk are very friendly and accommodating. GREAT PRICE...GREAT LOCATION..

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled solo
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2  Thank CamilleJ314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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