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Reviews (4,224)
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Reviewed November 22, 2012

We passed wonderful holidays over there, with an absolutely Hawaiian-friendly and competent staff and a beautiful location. Even a 6pm check-out could be managed. All what the hotel publishes as advantages and photos is true: a beach, the old stylish hotel and the fantastic garden, plus the main street, Kalakaua Av, closest.

We got our two-bed suite, unfortunately with only a shower and not any bath tub (pic #1 attached). That a room could have only a shower was published, that suites could have only a shower I did not imagine. The 331 was quiet as maybe most of the rooms in the old building, but my pic #2 may show you the corroded a/c and its wall. Not just luxury! The rooms are dark, and as described, without balcony, which finally was a bit disturbing, so I had to smoke chilling out in the garden. I did not change to a smokers room, so, without balcony, smoke also may have disturbed myself.

Now comes negative: When you arrive late as we did, at 11:20pm you will not find not even an open bar in the luxury, which has not any inside, so you open the empty mini-bar and have to wait for an expensive room-service beer, or you drink a warm spring water they provide sufficient bottles of it in the room. One day, we came in at 6:30pm from an excursion and asked for a dinner table in “Azure”, the only dinner restaurant. Booked out that Thursday night, also for hotel guests! A table for the partner hotel Westin could not be arranged for us for any time of this night! We went to discover and dinner by ourselves.

Next morning I wrote a letter to the GM complaining about that all - that the old Pink Lady of The Hawaiian could not feed their guests appropriately. A snack in the MaiThai bar outside was not just an alternative. This was answered quickly by George-English-last-name, his vice in charge, on my voice-box. When I called back he unfortunately was already off and the guest-service-complaint-manager in duty she offered me by phone 100 USD or an accommodation in her famous resto, in which I had had denied to step already in my letter to the GM. She did not understand me, so 100 is not my price for a fully written one-page-letter contesting by phone, and I did not want do bargain with her on the phone. The rate was 595+++ per night! So I will roll on to ask for compensation points to SPG. George may have understood me in a personal five-minutes-talk!

This hotel is of the higher Starwood brands -only the St. Regis higher- but if I compare with the Castillo Hotel Son Vida in Spain or with the Laguna in Bali, both of the same Luxury Collection, this Royal Hawaiian is big inferior for me.

They let you pay a “residence charge” which is well explained and includes, not bad at all, a free Wi-Fi and one hour of telephone calls all over the world per day. Plus a parking we did not need, so we had no car. They let you pay, if you want to access to their “private” part of the public beach, USD 40++ per couple and day for the sunbeds, well, better: beach chairs, umbrella included. Worse are the free beach chairs close to the mini-pool, which are absolutely dirty and uncomfortable . No cushion for my spine, five-stars++? (pic #3).

You may wonder why I only put ugly photos: that’s because the nice ones are already published.

The stay and the -overpriced- breakfast were pretty good. Go there on Sundays and you will have cheaper buffet, if not order a USD 12/20++ fruit platter or a really huge and good 21++ omelet. I would go there again, but fortunately it’s too far from Europe, so it’s expensive. If you decide to book there, or to another hotel close-bye (Trump without beach, The Westin Moana with beach) take a cheap breakfast or snack at the crowdy ”Duke’s” with cute waitresses next door (entry quickly from beachside), or a fabulous Italian dinner at “Taormina”, or a Asian Fusion at “Roy’s”, both next street nothing far from this hotel, way to the Trump, crossing the parking lot of the Sheraton.

Room Tip: Difficult, see my comment. If you need a big room, Main Building. If you need a small room with balcony and seaview, the Tower.
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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3  Thank masmiguelDusseldorf
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded November 26, 2012

Aloha masmiguelDusseldorf,

Thank for taking the time to detail your experiences and the kind compliments about our ambassadors. Our staff truly takes pride in providing service that is beyond expectation. However, we are disappointed that your experience was anything less than exceptional. We take all feedback seriously and have addressed your experiences with our leaders. I hope you will choose The Royal Hawaiian again in the future so we may demonstrate our unparalleled level of service and hospitality.

Mahalo.

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Reviewed November 20, 2012

Loved our stay there. Room was terrific, bed comfortable, AC quiet and cooling, Only negative is the bathroom is small compared to more modern hotel construction. Enjoyed being right on the beach and right next to Kalakaua street where all the stores, shops, restaurants, other hotels are. Overall Waikiki is overpriced relative to other comparable beach resorts and the resorts are all showing their age. I would expect prices to be 200-250 per night for the age, size, and quality rather than 300+. Breakfast at the beachside restaurant, though excellent, was still $25 a person for a classic eggs, bacon, hash brown, breakfast.

A great place to spend 2-3 nights. But not a whole week.

  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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1  Thank jcbrad
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded November 26, 2012

Aloha jcbrad,

Our historic charm and location in the heart of Waikiki certainly makes us a unique luxury destination of choice for many of our guests. We thank your for your recognition.

We truly appreciate you taking the time to detail your experience, and we are so pleased that you had a wonderful visit at The Royal Hawaiian.

It will be our pleasure to welcome you back soon.

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Reviewed November 18, 2012

The Royal Hawaiian is an inconic hotel right on the beach in Waikki.
The lobby of the hotel is vast and spacious with large wondows designed to capture the sea breeze to cool you on a hot day.
The hotel has a private section of the beach which cannot be accessed if you are not staying at the hotel and you literally walk out of the hotel on to the beach.
Now that is perfect.
There is a wonderful outdoor breakfast spot at the hotel where you can enjoy beautiful food and watch the activity on the beach.

Room Tip: You must get a room facing the beach
  • Stayed: January 2012, traveled with friends
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1  Thank DamianRoberts1965
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded November 26, 2012

Aloha Damian R,

Thank you for taking the time to share your experience. Our historic charm and exquisite atmosphere make us a truly a unique destination for celebration and we appreciate your acknowledgement. I will be sure to share your comments with our leaders. It will be our pleasure to welcome you back soon.

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Reviewed November 18, 2012

This is a great hotel and I booked it after speaking to friends who had been to Hawaii. The ocean room view was great with a fantastic ocean view and although the pool was small it was no problem getting a spot to relax in the sun. The beach was fantastic and the concierge I dealt with was very informative. Short walk to all the local shops and restaurants on Kalakaua. Would have given this hotel a 5 star rating had the check in agent not tried so hard to sell an upgraded room (at a ridiculous cost of $1000/night) and told me I could not get my SPG benefits as I had booked through my travel agent

Room Tip: Ocean view rooms go for the higher floors (at a price no doubt)
  • Stayed: November 2012, traveled as a couple
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2  Thank amit1978
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded November 26, 2012

Aloha amit1978,

Thank you for taking the time to share feedback about your most recent stay and your loyalty to the Starwood family. We pride ourselves in providing a flawless experience for our guests that surpasses expectations. We appreciate your kind comments about the “informative concierge”, “fantastic ocean views” and the pool and beach facilities. We are disappointed that your stay was anything less than exceptional. Bringing these details to our attention allows us to improve and I have shared your feedback with our leaders.. We hope that you will allow us another opportunity to demonstrate our signature hospitality, for which The Royal Hawaiian is known.

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Reviewed November 17, 2012 via mobile

I have stayed in many nice hotels and resorts and so far The Royal Hawaiian tops them all! The service, cleanliness and amenities were all excellent. Upon check in we were given fresh leis and kukui necklaces. The valet guys were always extremely friendly and helpful. My mother spent several hours at the spa and said the whole experience was great. Personally, I spent the majority of my time on the beach. They had 2 chairs with an umbrella to rent at $40/day. The Waikiki beach is quite famous and the Royal Hawaiian has the ideal spot on it! I did venture over to the Sheraton next door to enjoy their large tropical pool and slide. It was a lot more crowded but still enjoyable! The breakfast on the beach exceeded our expectations and Wayne was a great server!! My mom and I made Kukui bracelets with a wonderful lady right outside the lobby. She had pre-packaged kits to create your bracelet or you could design your own! It was one of the highlights of our stay! The balcony and view from our room was surreal and will be sorely missed! I cannot say enough amazing things about this hotel. The staff were so extremely gracious and helpful and went above and beyond in everything they did! It is not an inexpensive hotel but for a special occasion/vacation look no further... The Royal Hawaiian will not disappoint!!

  • Stayed: November 2012
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Thank Thecrayonbx
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Management response:Responded November 26, 2012

Aloha Thecrayonbx,

It has been a true 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 Ambassadors has a commitment to each guest to create exceptional experiences. 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 kind compliments with our managers and Ambassadors.

We look forward to welcoming you back to The Royal Hawaiian as our ohana.
With warmest aloha,

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