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“This is the best hotel with the best service on Oahu”
Review of Halekulani Hotel

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Halekulani Hotel
Ranked #9 of 84 Hotels in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
Washington DC, District of Columbia
Level 5 Contributor
65 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 73 helpful votes
“This is the best hotel with the best service on Oahu”
Reviewed 8 February 2014

Waikiki is a hot mess. Literally, its Vegas without the charm. However, if you're making a visit to Oahu and you want to be down in the thick of it without losing your mind. . .you simply have to stay at the Halekulani. Its an oasis of calm. As beautiful as it is comfortable, this hotel is true to itself despite the clamor of tourists and merchandising just outside its doors. If there is a better place to enjoy a sunset, I haven't found it.

The bars and restaurants are top notch. They are a credit to their brand and a the epitome of what a corporate food and beverage program should be. All their guests are on vacation and they want to spoil you. The concierge service is superb. I would trust Miss DeeDee Mikasa with my life. Don't make a move without her. We were headed over to Marine Corps Base Hawaii and she recommended some terrific foodie hot spots that were all very good. More importantly she helped us avoid some traps. Our favorite? Pah Ke's Chinese Restaurant in Kaneohe. Thanks so much to DeDe for saving us from the horrible Hilton Hawaiian Village.

Room Tip: As they are in the middle of a "refresh" I would suggest one of the recently upgraded room...
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  • Stayed October 2013, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank duchamp_98
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Rating summary
  • Location
  • Sleep Quality
  • Rooms
  • Service
  • Value
  • Cleanliness
Traveller tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (423)
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  • Dutch first
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English first
Seattle, Washington
Level 4 Contributor
35 reviews
12 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 147 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 February 2014

I think Adrian's review is spot on regarding Halekulani's strong points, especially the superb staff. House Without a Key may be as close to perfection as you'll find anywhere at sunset. He's also correct about it's major (only?) weakness: some rooms are overdue for an upgrade.
As for his question about the Surf Rider, that property is louder and the service doesn't come near Halekulani. Halekulani's customer base is also different...maybe it's the dress code, which I truly appreciate.

  • Stayed April 2013, travelled with family
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Helpful?
6 Thank John F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
25 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 33 helpful votes
Reviewed 6 February 2014 via mobile

After a journey that seemed to take days it was nice to walk into a environment where you relax immediately.
From the in room check in to the express early morning check-out the staff made everything painless.
I ate at the different restaurants
All, very different in style but, with the common factor of quality. The restaurant staff seem to have met everybody before in a different life. They remember all the details.
When I'm lucky enough to stay in Hawaii again then, it will be the only place I will be.!!!

  • Stayed February 2014
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank Cheekyjohn13
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Sydney, Australia
Level 5 Contributor
46 reviews
30 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 39 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2014

The staff and service make this hotel a great one. Rooms make it only a good one. Don't get me wrong. We loved our stay at the Halekulani. For a first time to Hawaii visitor, this hotel and staff had ,and gave, more than i could ask for. But after the helpful check- in and the attendant to our room had opened our room door to show us around, the slight sigh of disappointment might have been obvious to all. To nail it on the head, it was just a little dated, furniture, bathroom etc. It wasn't the sort of room that you looked forward to returning to after a day or night out. Maybe I am being a little harsh, the room had all you could ask for. And a stunning view to boot. And the rest of the hotel shone very brightly. We were on the top floor, of an ocean view room (i think 1408),this gave us an exceptional sunset every night. But also an early morning alarm. As the closeness of the huge, overbearing Sheraton next door, ensured that no matter how high up you were, the noisy, 5.30am delivery trucks and their reversing beepers, delivering to the Sheraton woke you up! This didn't spoil our stay at the hotel. But it didn't give me the desire to award this hotel my top marks. Maybe another room( if it's been updated) in the other wings might have proved a better choice? But I am still going to recommend this hotel. Because the staff were exceptional, their manner and helpfulness should be rewarded. Also the rest of the hotel gave me complete satisfaction. Dinning, poolside- lunch and breakfast was a great service treat. Also a mention to the hotel concierge staff, whom in every hotel I visit ,I always ask for their recommendations. And the staff here didn't disappoint, they shone brightly, very helpful. Would I go back? I would if I knew the rooms had been updated. My wife? She want's to try the "Surf Rider". What do you think? And for a first time visitor to Hawaii, did I enjoy it? Well it wasn't quite what I expected, had the image of Maui, more in my mind. But yes I enjoyed it. Just like America, but on a small island is how my amazing wife described it...true!

Room Tip: Try and avoid a room near the next door, huge overpowering Sheraton.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
4 Thank Adrian M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
San Antonio, Texas
Level 4 Contributor
41 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2014

We took a group of clients to HNL for the Pro Bowl. It was our first extended stay on Oahu and the Halekulani made it memorable. Great welcoming staff, terrific, ocean view rooms. and a concierge staff that never failed to perform. And we really tested them !!
The on site restaurants were beautiful with open patio seating and ocean breezes to enjoy with any meal. I preferred the less formal 'House without a Key'. They have a fabulous roast pork hash to pair with eggs on the buffet line. We ate at Orchids on occasion but avoided the dressier La Mer. I'm sure it is very nice if you like 'Island Formal'
There is nothing you can do about the traffic in Honolulu but having the Halekulani to retire to makes it better.
The staff, once again , made the hotel even better. Friendly, informative, engaging...just what we would always hope for in a Hawaiian vacation.
I give the Halekulani 3 pineapples out of 3. It's where we will stay from now on........

Room Tip: get an ocean front villa...great ocean view
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled on business
    • Value
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Helpful?
3 Thank Dave R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Canada
Level 2 Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 3 February 2014

In my heart I really want to give this hotel 5 stars. Wouldn't be fair to 5 star hotels though. I'll dispense with the nits first: the beach in front is tiny, the outer halves of the balconies are not private either for sight or sound, no in-room coffee or expresso maker, room carpeting possibly has overstayed it's welcome. None of these were bad; I make these comments in context of the room being $900 a night.

The positives? The staff throughout are outstanding. Perhaps not as spit-and-polish as I've experienced say, in Four Seasons Tokyo, but exceedingly trained and caring. There's the usual 5 star reception - you generally don't stand in line to be summoned to the next wicket; they come out from the counter and walk you back; they later walk you to and tour your room, etc. That your stay be an outstanding experience appears genuinely important to every one of these people. If it's just an act, it's a good one. We did comment to the front desk about the coffee maker (we thought maybe it was just missing); a hot water dispenser was in our room when we returned. In the middle of booking a helicopter flight with the concierge we joked we didn't know our exact weight because our bathroom scale wasn't working, and we were happy it wasn't. "I'll note that," she said. It was fixed when we returned from breakfast. I asked the server to take our picture - I apologized for interrupting his work (I asked for lots of pictures). "This is my work", he said. I could go on - nuances of attention and attentiveness repeated daily. We had booked 4 nights; we extended to 9.

Some reviewers have dissed the hotel's dress code. Don't be fussed. The place is not the least pretentious. If want to walk through a hotel public area in a thong, do it in a different hotel; you'll look like a rube here. The guests are tasteful – quite different from the beach-chair-backpackers you'll find trekking through Hilton Hawaiian Village. You can dress as you wish in the more causal "Room without a Key" poolside/beachfront restaurant; food and service are excellent.
Pool is perhaps on the smallish side, but never busy. There are more than enough lounges to accommodate all comers - and do so with ample space. And if it isn't obvious from the hotel's location, major shopping and dining starts just across the street.

The hotel hosted small weddings in the courtyard almost daily. Made for nice pictures for us actually. Conferences or receptions almost nightly; never noisy or intrusive on our stay; hardly knew they were there.

Based on advice of another TripAdvisor review, we booked a Diamond Head view. Loved it. For the second part of our stay we moved to a room closer to the ocean. Better view (less obstructed the by the Sheraton Hotel), but the view from the first was great. Worth the money? I can't rationally justify it, but we thought so.

By the way, my wife raved about the spa. "Never been served a snack after a massage", she said, "Seated overlooking the ocean too. The whole atmosphere was elegant." Maybe we're just peasants; surely lots of other places in the world do this. But my wife has been to countless spas.

  • Stayed January 2014, travelled as a couple
    • Value
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank ASimpsonCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Melbourne, Australia
Level 3 Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 January 2014

We have been to Hawaii on several occasions, and we love Hawaii. First time stay at the Halekulani and we cant praise it any higher. From the greeting on arrival and being escorted to our room and explained the room and the hotels features, we were made to feel very welcome. The room was terrific, roomy and clean. The hotel is spotless, the staff very friendly. We had an ocean view room and the view of the ocean and beach was superb. We watched one day the whales frolicking in the sea.
Each night the turndown service left a small gift on the bed, it was a great touch.
Wednesday nights the hotel has a cocktail party for guests, it was fun and the managers attend and chat to guests, it was very enjoyable.
The hotel is located in the heart of Honolulu, and it is very surprising the lack of noise from busy Honolulu. It is only a 5- 10 min walk to the main shops.
The only problem we had was no tea or coffee making facilities in the room.
Otherwise I cannot fault the hotel and this will be our first choice when we return next.

Room Tip: High up ocean view or Diamond head view. The sound of the sea at night is very relaxing.
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  • Stayed January 2014, travelled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank Steve K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Additional Information about Halekulani Hotel

Property: Halekulani Hotel
Address: 2199 Kalia Road, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815-1988
Phone Number:
Region: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu > Waikiki
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Centre with Internet Access Fitness Centre with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
#3 Business Hotel in Honolulu
#4 On the Beach Hotel in Honolulu
#4 Family Hotel in Honolulu
#5 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#6 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): ££££
Hotel Class:5 star — Halekulani Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 453
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Halekulani has been hosting visitors to Waikiki Beach for nearly 100 years. Today its reputation for gracious hospitality, impeccable service and magnificent cuisine is unequaled on Oahu and renowned, throughout the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Halekulani Hotel Honolulu
Halekulani Hotel Hawaii/Honolulu

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