I'm a Marriott points guy -not exclusively, but for short stay business travel, the Marriott brand is a safe bet. Marriott owns Ritz-Carlton of course so if you want to dial it up and get your Marriott points, Ritz Carlton is a solid option. My travel service recommended this Marriott in Waikiki Beach given proximity to everything, the hotel is labeled as a resort and spa, sounded like a notch up from a mainstream Marriott, and the price was fair. I'll start with the positive points: Hotel room is clean, restaurant is good, specialty shops in the lobby like the ever-present ABC Store is very handy, very nice gym with modern equipment on the 3rd floor, and the view from my balcony looked directly at Diamond Head mountain and Waikiki beach. Now for the reality check...this is by no means a resort and spa. They may HAVE a spa, and want to call themselves a resort, but a resort is a destination you would want to bring your wife/husband/family, has great all around service, exclusive shopping, great dining experiences, recreation, beautiful swimming pools, kids activities, friendly staff, -all on the property. For instance there is a pool on the third floor, but I have seen much larger and more resort like pools in private residences than this tiny, overcrowded pool. The deck chairs were not anything you would want to sit in for a long time -no cushions, and absolutely no waiter staff. The gym is right at the pool so you have people coming out of the gym going directly into the pool..real nice. The restaurant is essentially a big buffet and does have decent food for a Marriott...not for a resort. The shops in the hotel are what you would find in the middle aisle at a shopping mall -the pop-up type vendors that are selling stuff made in China. My room...I expected decent "resort & spa" shampoo, conditioner, soap -instead it's the same detergent grade soap you get at any Marriott. The valet parking staff was surprisingly rude -double parking valet cars in the driveway so my cab couldn't get out, and the valet told me "you have to wait until we move the car". I went to collect my checked baggage at the bell stand and the first question the bellman asked me was "did you happen to see where they brought your bags?" Now for the location -yes it's central, and right on Kalakaua Avenue, across from beach, near the Honolulu Zoo, and a bunch of shopping on Kalakaua Avenue. Now for what is not on the website..there are more homeless people sleeping and walking around across the street from this hotel than I have seen in any part of New York City. They are everywhere and being from NYC I have pretty good situational awareness...you don't want to walk this street alone at night or venture too far behind the hotel, and police are camped out pretty close by so that should be a red flag. Surfers abound at the public beach across the street, but this is not a soft-sand, destination beach that you would spend the day at, let alone take your shoes off and go in the water. It's a public beach right on Kalakaua Avenue -a main thoroughfare for cars, buses, taxis, and people with not shirts who really should have a shirt on. Homeless people using the beach shower and then napping on the sidewalk is not something you want your kids remembering when their friends ask "how was your vacation"? All of this is not Marriott's fault, but you do have to leave the hotel to use the beach and Marriott has no spot on the beach for guests.
At night the bars on the street and rooftop levels are outdoors which means you get to hear music blasting from your room ..and I was way up on a high floor! So my caution here is that when you see a "Resort & Spa" hotel in the $200.00 a night range, something is up. Resorts cost more because true resorts are an entirely different experience and someplace where it's just easy to relax. This is not a resort -this is a hotel that just happens to be across from a public beach, with a whole lot of tour groups crowding the lobby starting early in the morning on their way to Pearl Harbor. If you want a resort -there are other options close by, for just a bit more $$ that you won't regret flying all that way for.
- Official Description (provided by the hotel):
- WAIKIKI BEACH MARRIOTT RESORT & SPA fronts the best stretch of Waikiki Beach. Conveniently located in the heart of Waikiki, the hotel offers 1,310 refurbished guest rooms and suites with private lanai providing spectacular views of world-famous Diamond Head and Waikiki Beach. Other amenities include Kuhio Beach Grill, featuring the best in Pacific Rim cuisine; Sansei Seafood Restaurant & Sushi Bar and d.k Steak House; Arancino di Mare Italian Restaurant; newly redesigned Moana Terrace, offering live Hawaiian entertainment nightly; Seattle’s Best Coffee; Paul Brown’s Spa Olakino * Salon; a surf school; two freshwater, heated swimming pools; 10-person whirlpool; new 3,000 sq. ft. 24-hour fitness center; business center with 24-hour Internet access; high-speed and wireless Internet access throughout the resort’s guest rooms and public spaces; shops and boutiques; and Hawaiian cultural activities. ... more less
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- Also Known As:
- Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort And Spa
- Waikiki Beach Marriott Hotel Honolulu
- Marriott Waikiki Beach
- Marriott Honolulu
- Honolulu Marriott
- Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort & Spa Hawaii/Honolulu