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“Didnt Stay but Enjoyed the Facilities” 4 of 5 stars
Review of The Modern Honolulu

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The Modern Honolulu
4.5 of 5 Hotel   |   1775 Ala Moana Boulevard, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815   |  
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Ranked #2 of 82 Hotels in Honolulu
Vancouver, Canada
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
8 hotel reviews
Reviews in 25 cities Reviews in 25 cities
51 helpful votes 51 helpful votes
“Didnt Stay but Enjoyed the Facilities”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

To be clear, we didnt stay at the Modern but enjoyed the pool-pool area as rentors at the adjacent Ilikai Towers.
The best thing this hotel has going for it are its amenities: the pool area, the restaurant (Morimoto), and the downstairs lounge (the Study).
While you cannot technically use the pool or the rent a chair during the day, you are welcome to sit and order some food/drinks by the poolside bar. This is especially enjoyable in the evenings - the whole deck are is so well decorated and even includes cut off wine bottle lights hanging from the trees. The food is good (especially by Hawaiian standards which are a far cry from the quality of food we tend to be accustomed to in Vancouver, Canada) and the drinks are fine although if you want the best cocktails on the strip you have to stop in at the Moana Surfrider. With few people in the pool, the staff was nice enough to let us swim both times we went for an evening drink/meal - they even provided us towels.
No question this is the nicest pool area in Waikiki - well worth an evening stroll to visit

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 3 of 5 stars Location
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
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Rating summary
  • Location
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Sleep Quality
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Rooms
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Service
    4.5 of 5 stars
  • Value
    4 of 5 stars
  • Cleanliness
    4.5 of 5 stars
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Perth Australia
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
20 hotel reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012

My husband and 2 daughters spent 3 nights at The Modern. It is not modern on the outside however inside is a different story. It is a small boutique hotel that takes service very seriously, from the iced water, sorbet and peppermint iced towels served to you whilst relaxing by the pool to the friendly helpful staff at the front desk. The hotel is minimalist in decoration with natural finishes and amazingly comfortable beds. the views are amazing. If you want to get away from the big chain hotels, choose this hotel and you will not be disappointed. Make sure you have dinner at Morimoto which is on the first floor of The Modern.

Room Tip: Choose an Ocean View Room as high up as possible
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with family
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 4 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
San Diego, California
Top Contributor
308 reviews 308 reviews
41 hotel reviews
Reviews in 44 cities Reviews in 44 cities
230 helpful votes 230 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 31, 2012 via mobile

The Modern at first glance is pretty cool. I love the simple decor, the outdoor spaces and
the design vocabulary of the property. A pretty re-do in a great location with damn nice views. The Staff here for the most part are really really terrific and they make up for quite a lot of the inadequacies.
Bar and Pool service is friendly and professional-visually the two pools are nice and I didn't feel like it was a scene from rich kids of Instagram even though it would make a perfect backdrop.
Surprisingly quite a few Families with wee children vacationed here and it didn't seem to matter who you were or what watch you were wearing to get superb service.
Back to the details-the Pools are nice visually but more water feature and dip pool style. It's great that adults have the 2nd floor 21+ "Pool" option if you don't want water wings on your neighbor. However the main Pool was pretty chill even with kids running about.
Bartenders (all) were great. Very friendly and worked tirelessly during our vacation. Same to be said for the pool servers who ran food and drinks throughout the day-these people were working hard and their shifts seemed pretty rough in terms of how often we saw the same faces.
Poolside snacks were decent and more enjoyable than the breakfast food. I would only recommend Morimotos for breakfast not the outside dining.
Location-some Guests would not like the fact it overlooks the Marina versus beach- but it's a short walk to the beach or lagoon and certainly above average views.
Noise-it's pretty noisy but due partially to the architecture and volume of concrete that made it seem like someone 6 floors down was on your patio.
Also, there is a bit of late afternoon through evening wanna be gangsters flying F-bombs, partying, ka kawwwing with screaming girls hanging out both at the Hotel and surrounding area.
Our room was a bit of a letdown for the following reasons-
Bathroom is small and the lav is tight. Shower was okay-simple but with a regular shower, hand shower, retractable clothesline and an oddly located towel bar. No tub. The space obviously restricted by the prior floor plan but still not utilized optimally.
Toiletry quality good, abundant fluffy towels, but curiously no place to hang towels other than the odd shower bar and one hook outside the toilet. This Hotel conscientiously replaces linens on request or when they have not been rehung by the Guest-but it's hard to be green without a place to rehang towels. Plus it's still the beach-so I'd expect a more thoughtful approach to
towels, wet bathing suits and gear.
Bed was very comfortable but had that cruel low sharp middle of the night ankle slasher wood platform.
I think the most noticeable problems at this Hotel was deferred maintenance, marginal Housekeeping and slow Room Service. My guess is short staffed but there was no love in keeping the finishes in decent let alone top condition. Carpet fresh is not a substitute for clean carpets and the Halls and Lobby reeked of something but under dim lighting it's hard to know.
Our shower had mildew, our slipcovered sofa was torn and stained, the carpets were dirty, fraying and had burn holes, the outside patio wall had black marks from smooshed
out cigarettes (we don't smoke so find this pretty disgusting), many of the drawers were broken and the veneer chipped off and a completely dead orchid greeted us on arrival. The surfaces are worn here --not just in our room but--throughout the hotel and even though white slick and modern is much more unforgiving when it comes to chips scuffs and scratches I expect better. I expect more for our sliding rate ($800.-$1100. per night) and Housekeeping was slow even when we had been gone all day.
Room Service also seemed paralyzed-again I'm guessing short staffed??
I'd love this Hotel to be better. It does have a lot going for it and most of the Employees we encountered took pride in their job. The Modern could be a star and total niche property if someone pulled those loose ends together. I hope they sort it out.

  • Stayed December 2012
    • 3 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Reviewer
5 reviews 5 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2012

After reading so many rave reviews, my expectations were high. They were dashed from the second we arrived. The biggest thing this hotel lacks is that wonderful Hawaiian sense of hospitality. Rather than a warm and gracious Hawaii greeting, we got no less than five valets staring numbly at us, none of them making a move to help us. Eventually one came and parked the car, but no one helped us with our bags. Keep in mind, this place was more expensive to book than the Sheraton Waikiki. There was always a group of valets hanging in a throng in front of the hotel; you could often hear them gossiping about hotel guests when you walked by. Similarly, when you walk in the hotel, the overstaffed front desk just stares at you as you go to the elavator, it is creepy having so many eyes follow you.

It basically just continued like this for the rest of the trip. The Modern Honolulu tries to substitute pretension for their lack of service and amenities (the rooms are very spartan, small shade-covered pool) but it just doesn't work in a Hawaii setting. The pervading theme was a lack of value: you could pay LESS to stay at the Sheraton and have access to gracious service, a beachside infinity pool, etc in centrally-located Waikiki OR pay more to stay at The Modern Honolulu, located in a weird dodgy area a hearty twenty minute walk to downtown. This theme continued throughout our stay. Morning one, I ordered poolside breakfast at The Modern: Guava juice and the egg white omelet. I received a tiny square of eggs for $25. Fast forward to morning two: I go to the Hilton Hawaiian Village and get the entire breakfast buffet for $25. It was like this the whole time. I will never come back to this hotel. It has a weird shady vibe and unless you are 19 with a fake ID, you are not going to be into it. The one good thing were the beds: my husband and I still fantasize about those wonderful linens. Also the spa receptionist was super sweet and the only real professional we encountered.

Room Tip: Do NOT book a massage here-You can pay the same price to go to a nice spa. This was in a hotel room...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 1 of 5 stars Value
    • 1 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 3 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 2 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 1 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.
Dublin, Ireland
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 4 cities Reviews in 4 cities
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 30, 2012

My wife and I just finished 3 days at The Modern.

This is excellent hotel and highly recommended for couples / young people.

The hotel is located just next to the Lagoon, between the main beach and Ala Moana Mall - so it is pretty convenient location - close to both locations but far away from the masses of the main hotels on the strip.

Hotel is top notch in terms of room amenities and design, as well as the public areas (we just moved to trump which is not nearly as nice in terms of public areas).

Also - service was great - we got our room immediately as we checked in at 8AM! and were also offered paid upgrade upon checkin which we took for $75/day to Junior Suite - but because of some small problems in terms of some areas where the room was not very clean (which were immediately fixed) and because the room was very close to elevator which caused us some noise from 6AM when they turn the elevator on - they waived the upgrade charges and gave us the upgrade for free.

Also - you feel like the hotel don't try to earn every last dime on you like some of the other Waikiki hotels, as they give you almost everything for free, and even provide constant water and wet towels at the pool area even though it eventually hurt their business - this is what I call great service!!

They also have great restaurant (Morimoto) and club area - and have big beds and live bands in pool area!

Bottom line - by far the best hotel for young people / couples on the Island!!

Room Tip: Get Sea View! If you are noise sensitive - do not take the Junior Suites - as they are all next to...
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  • Stayed December 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 3 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 5 of 5 stars Service
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
1 review
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2012

Have been a frequent traveller to Hawaii, but not in the lasts 10 yrs. My stay at the Modern in December could not have been better.
From our greeting at 8am after a 9 hr flight to our departure, an excellent experience. We mad new friends, the coffee and food was excellent. Reception and concierge, pool staff were on the ball and could not be praised enough. Congratulations to the entire team
Peter Young & Fenton Beatty (Sydney)

  • Stayed December 2012, traveled with friends
    • 5 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 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
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Durham, North Carolina
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 hotel reviews
Reviews in 8 cities Reviews in 8 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 29, 2012

Gorgeous, hip, relaxing, The Modern has it all!
My spouse and I stayed here in spring 2011 during a conference trip. When we were there it was called The Edition, however that name was a bit cryptic and did not capture the vibe well.
It was really gorgeous, and the staff, service, amenities and overall experience was outstanding.
Luxurious, uniquely scented bath products were an unexpected, pleasant bonus!
Easy access to Waikiki beach, but far from the maddening touristy scene.
Highly recommended!

Room Tip: If you can afford the upgrade, go for a room with a harbor-front view.
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  • Stayed January 2012, traveled as a couple
    • 2 of 5 stars Value
    • 4 of 5 stars Location
    • 5 of 5 stars Sleep Quality
    • 5 of 5 stars Rooms
    • 5 of 5 stars Cleanliness
    • 4 of 5 stars Service
Was this review helpful? Yes
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about The Modern Honolulu

Address: 1775 Ala Moana Boulevard, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Pets Allowed ( Dog / Pet Friendly ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#1 Business Hotel in Honolulu
#2 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
#2 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#2 Family Hotel in Honolulu
#3 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4.5 star — The Modern Honolulu 4.5*
Number of rooms: 353
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
THE MODERN HONOLULU introduces cosmopolitan chic for leisure and business pursuits in Hawaii. We deftly combine sexy and sophisticated in everything we do. Every element is original; authentic or custom-designed to enhance your experience. Gourmet pleasures, vibrant nightlife, intimate pool settings, exhilarating spa treatments and all that Oahu has to offer - luxury shopping, beaches, nature - blend to create a feeling of progressive luxury, as refined as it is relaxed. We invite you to make the most of every moment with us. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
The Modern Honolulu Hotel Honolulu
The Modern Honolulu Hawaii

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