We stayed at the Outrigger Reef twice during a trip to Hawaii in October for a total of 7 nights. The service at the hotel is very mixed, ranging from good to rude. The valet staff were great and very helpful. The reception staff ranged from rude (first stay) to good (second stay).
We had booked an Oceanview room for both occasions with mixed results. The first room had an great view, but was mostly a view of the pool and deck with a reasonable good view of the ocean. I actually liked this view as there was a good atmosphere at night with the music from the pool restaurant. The second stay was also an "oceanview" room but was mostly a view of the ugly hotel next door, and the airconditioning system / roof of the lower floors of the Outrigger. It was too noisy to sit on the balcony, as all you could hear was the roar of the aircon and the cleaning staff from the hotel next door.
We had booked through a preferred partner (Whatahotel), who provide great service to us with this booking and other hotels we stayed at in Hawaii (we would definitely recommend them). The preferred partner booking provided us with breakfast for 2 daily, an amenity gift (biscuits) and an upgrade if available. It was definitely worth booking through Whatahotel for the included breakfasts alone, however we were very disappointed with the Outrigger Reef as they seemed to completely ignore the upgrade. While I understand that it is subject to availability, I would have expected them to at least say something along the lines of "we are sorry but there are no upgrades available". However, I got the feeling that the reception staff did not even bother to try to find a room, or whether the Outrigger Reef ever offer this in reality. On the first visit, I asked if an upgrade was available, and was rudely dismissed.
The rooms are adequate and clean. The balconies are small but ok. Valet parking very expensive at $35 (plus tips).
We were in the Outrigger's "Business Centre" one night and were having difficulties printing a confirmation email for our visit to Pearl Harbor the next day. After spending a small fortune trying to print (the yahoo page would crash every time 'print' was selected), my wife approached the Outrigger reception staff for assistance. She was dismissed and told that it was not their problem as it was managed by another party. What a pathetic response for a hotel and completely summed up their attitude toward guests. A good hotel would have assisted their guests, even if it was managed by another party.
We ate at all three restaurants. The Ocean House was perfect for breakfast. Great view, service and excellent breakfast food. We had breakfast at the buffet at the Shorebird on day 1, then wisely changed over to the Ocean House. The Shorebird breakfast buffet was ok, but with an odd assortment of food. The Ocean House has the same view but in a more relaxed atmosphere with better food and service. The Kana Pile Grille had a great Cobb Salad and burger.
On another note, if you are traveling to Hawaii and only staying at Waikiki, you are missing out! Grab a cheap 30 min flight to Maui or Kauai for a few days - you won't regret it! At the very least, hire a car and drive to the North Shore.
Overall, this is an average hotel. Apart from a couple of rude staff, everything is ok but not great. We will look to stay somewhere else next time.
Be careful if paying extra for an "Oceanview" room. A pool view is probably nicer dependin...
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.