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“What a let down!” 2 of 5 stars
Review of The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort

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The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort
5.0 of 5 Resort   |   2259 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815   |  
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Ranked #20 of 82 hotels in Honolulu
Sydney, Australia
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
“What a let down!”
2 of 5 stars Reviewed January 27, 2013

I believe that when one pays $400+ per night for hotel accommodation, one is entitled to the basics being peace and quiet. Our experience was quite awful as we struggled with the noise levels at the hotel throughout the night. The reason for the noise is due to the walls in the hotel being paper thin as well as inter leading doors in most of the rooms. We know this as we were offered alternative rooms. One is able to hear every word of conversations in adjoining rooms, let alone TV noise and the opening and shutting of doors in the hotel. We had to resort to taking sleeping pills in order to sleep at night. Some rooms have bath tubs but most do not!. Call me old fashioned, but I expect more from his standard of hotel. Do not stay at this hotel, and if you do so, do so at your own peril.

Room Tip: We could've find one. Good luck if you can!
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 1 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha Bob B,

Thank you for taking the time to share your review. We are disappointed to hear that your stay was anything less than flawless.

The Royal Hawaiian is widely recognized as one of the most significant examples of Spanish and Moorish architecture in the world, this luxury hotel is a living museum of design and decorative ornamentation. The stewardship of this historic landmark hotel has been bestowed to our senior leaders. Therefore, our leaders are tasked with difficult decision regarding historical preservation while maintaining the needs of our contemporary guests. Please know that we take your insights and comments very seriously and we are working on solutions.

May I suggest one of the tower rooms for your next stay? It is the newer addition to the resort.

We hope you will allow us another opportunity to welcoming you back to The Royal Hawaiian.
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Rating summary
  • Location
    5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4 of 5 stars
  • Value
    3.5 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (424)
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Los Angeles
Contributor
13 reviews 13 reviews
13 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 26, 2013

Having been here before, to my surprise they now charge $45 per person to have a chair on the hotel part of the beach. This was a shock to have sprung on me at the hotel on walking to the beach. The hotel has been open since 1927, and for the 80 years from then until now, the chairs on the beach were considered included in your room rate. On top of that, the hotel charges a mandatory $40 per day "resort fee." Wouldn't you think all the hotel would be included in that? When I expressed my views to the staff, the beach people were indifferent and said, "You can sit at the pool for free." There was not a single empty place in the pool ... all the spots were full. Much of the pool has been taken by "cabanas" for which they charge about $100 a day. There was a time when the reputation of the hotel was they would do anything for you. Now I wonder. The "beach boys," who used to be hotel employees and were great, are now replaced by "independent contractors" or an outside owner. Don't know if you can sell something like that, but they said something in that ballpark. Perhaps all this could be overlooked if the hotel did not skimp on maintenance. At about $500 a night you expect something very good. On this trip, the flaws were:
--long check in lines
--furniture in the room was beat up and had paint chipped off and needed to be replaced. That furniture is not expensive to replace.
--there was no place to plug in the computer at the desk. All the sockets were full.
--The buttons don't work on the phone, such as for front desk. Every call goes to "guest services" which refuses to let you talk to stations such as the bell desk. You ask to be connected there and they say, "I will pass your message on to them."
--The windows don't open properly. The crank doesn't work. You have to use your fingernails to pry them open and then push them manually.
--There is always an event there, and so there are parts of the hotel where you are told you can not go at times.
All this for $500 a night? You can have a much better time for that money at any of the other islands, the Big Island and Kauai being my favorites.
The positives are the old time staff members who are delightful, and the sheets. But the long time staff members are fewer than they were.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 3 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha Hawaii-Fan-from-LA,

We want to thank you for your loyalty to The Royal Hawaiian and for sharing your comments on TripAdvisor.

We do apologize that we fell short of delivering the amenities and services you deserve and expect from a Luxury Collection Resort. We pride ourselves in providing flawless experiences for our guests that surpasses expectations.

We value all feedback and have shared your comments with our senior management team. We do however appreciate your acknowledgement about the hotel ambassadors being “delightful.”

We hope you will reconsider and allow us an opportunity to regain your confidence and welcome you back again to The Royal Hawaiian.
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Hershey, PA
Top Contributor
102 reviews 102 reviews
69 hotel reviews
Reviews in 63 cities Reviews in 63 cities
257 helpful votes 257 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed January 25, 2013

Every once in awhile a frequent traveler has their number come up and it's time for a bad hotel experience. Well I guess it was my turn. Nearly everything went wrong here: from missed private transfers (would have been helpful to know the driver meets you at the gate and not baggage claim like every other airport in the world), wrong room assignment (even though there were two (2) reconfirmation phone calls - one direct and one to SPG desk), malfunctioning room items, incorrect spa reservations, nonexistent bellman service, nonexistent beach services, etc, etc. I don't care to recount it all as you get the picture. My biggest gripe was the mandatory 18% gratuity added to my spa treatment. EVERYWHERE else it is at the guest's discretion. That was a first for me. An informal poll of locals turns up that the Halekulani is the most preferred luxury hotel in Waikiki. So for the same price, go for the gold and leave this old pink palace to the uninformed.

  • Stayed January 2013, traveled solo
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 2 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 8
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, March 11, 2013
Aloha,

Thank you for sharing your comments on TripAdvisor. We truly regret to learn the details of your experience, as this is certainly not typical of the level of service we provide at The Royal Hawaiian.

I am pleased to hear that you were in direct contact with our Director of Rooms and were able to find a resolution and offer an understanding of your experiences.

We hope that you will allow us another opportunity to demonstrate our signature hospitality, for which The Royal Hawaiian brand is known.

Warmest aloha,
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Leicester, England
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 hotel reviews
Reviews in 9 cities Reviews in 9 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 24, 2013

My husband and I stayed here on our honeymoon in October for 4 nights and had an amazing stay. Firstly, in sight of all the high rise hotels this is a beautiful hotel in an excellent location right on Waikiki Beach.
Pros -
Beautiful rooms with old Hawaii charm, we stayed in the old part and I would highly recommend this as the rooms are beautiful and well maintained, bathroom wasn’t huge but perfectly formed!
The beach is great and the private area for guests was fantastic as I hate lying in the sand and the sun beds were comfy with an umbrella for some shade when needed!
The bar is really nice and so were the staff, I would recommend the cocktails and the bar snacks, these were amazing! The entertainment in the evening was also nice, relaxed but enjoyable and very Hawaiian!
Location was perfect as it is tucked away from the main road but you walk 2minutes around the corner and you are in the hustle and bustle of Honolulu with all the amazing shops and restaurants to frequent!
Cons –
Parking – not a big issue but there wasn’t any on site, so you will need to park in the multi-storey a few minutes walk away, this is fine but make sure you drop all you luggage off prior to parking!
Pool – as it was very small and felt like it was in the shade a lot (this can be good or bad depending on your preference!) so if you like a big pool then don’t expect much, we personally were not bothered as the beach was amazing!
We would definitely stay here again, it would be our pleasure!

Room Tip: Stay in the old part - just beautiful!
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  • Stayed November 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha SpookandtheBasset,

It has been a pleasure reading your review. Thank you for taking the time to share your experiences and for submitting a very thoughtful review. We truly appreciate your feedback and endorsement of our resort.

Our hotel ambassadors has a commitment to each guest to create exceptional experiences. Creating spaces with “old Hawaii charm”, rich textures, beautiful lighting and amenities at an arm’s reach where guests never want to leave is our ultimate goal. We take pride in continuing the legacy of The Royal Hawaiian’s iconic past. I am pleased to hear of your exceptional visit and have shared your comments with our managers and hotel ambassadors.

We look forward to welcoming you back to The Royal Hawaiian as our ohana.
With warmest aloha,
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Rochester, Michigan
Senior Contributor
32 reviews 32 reviews
6 hotel reviews
Reviews in 14 cities Reviews in 14 cities
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

This property was great. This was a spectacular hotel in the heart of Waikiki beach and was close to everything there. Beautiful sunsets from the beach and the MaiTai bar. The drinks were awesome. The only downside was that the pool was small and closed early (5 pm).

  • Stayed September 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha Melanie K,

Mahalo for your endorsement and kind compliments of The Royal Hawaiian. We look forward to the next opportunity to welcoming you back to Waikiki’s luxury resort destination.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Los Angeles, California
Senior Reviewer
6 reviews 6 reviews
4 hotel reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

The hotel itself is amazing, the staff is eager to please and there is a never say no attitude. The only negative is that the pool is the size of an oversized jacuzzi. You can go in to get wet, but swimming is an impossibility. Everything else is super

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 5 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 4 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 4
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha Randy G,

Mahalo for your kind compliments on TripAdvisor. We truly appreciate you taking the time to share your experience. Our unique destination and unrivaled accommodations are the foundations of The Royal Hawaiian. We look forward to welcoming you back to our beautiful island home.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Hillsdale, New Jersey
Top Contributor
82 reviews 82 reviews
19 hotel reviews
Reviews in 47 cities Reviews in 47 cities
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 23, 2013

While the hotel itself is beautiful, there is much lacking in order for this to be considered a luxury collection of SPG. Check in was fine. The room small. Our first disappointment was when the bathroom was stocked properly - no shampoo, not enough towels. Called and this was sent up, yet we experienced this 3 out of 4 nights. First morning, they couldn't find our car! We finally spoke with a manager who did try to make it right. This was Monica, who was outstanding throughout the rest of our stay. Anything we needed, it was Monica who dealt with it with the greatest smile. Trying to get a towel or two to sit at the beach (you need to spend $50 for a chaise on the beach) was daunting. The person handing out towels couldn't believe we would just sit on the beach with no chaise. Would I go back? Probably not, there are other hotels to try.

Room Tip: old building, the rooms are very small
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
RHCoordinator, at The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort, responded to this review, February 4, 2013
Aloha BarbaraSS,

We are pleased that you had a wonderful visit at The Royal Hawaiian. Our impeccable service and unrivaled accommodations are the foundations of The Royal Hawaiian. We are disappointed that the experience with our housekeeping team was anything less than exceptional. Your comments have been shared with our management team for follow-up.

We hope that you will allow us another opportunity to demonstrate our signature hospitality, for which The Royal Hawaiian is known.
Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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Additional Information about The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort

Address: 2259 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities ( Kid / Family Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#9 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
#10 On the Beach Hotel in Honolulu
#11 Business Hotel in Honolulu
#13 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
#18 Family Hotel in Honolulu
#20 Top resorts Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort 5*
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
The Royal Hawaiian, a Waikiki Beach Hotel, has Abhasa Spa, renowned restaurants, and a pool with a waterslide and cabanas. We have gorgeous indoor and outdoor event space for weddings and meetings. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Hotel Honolulu
Royal Hawaiian Honolulu
The Royal Hawaiian, a Luxury Collection Resort Hawaii/Honolulu

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