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“Best Grand Vacation Property We Have Visited”

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Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations
Ranked #22 of 84 Hotels in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
Pitt Meadows, Canada
Level Contributor
16 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“Best Grand Vacation Property We Have Visited”
Reviewed March 9, 2012

As owners, we have visited a number of the Grand Vacation properties and particularly enjoyed our week at Kings Land in Waikaloa prior to a week in Waikiki. Despite more than 20 Hawaiian trips, been a long time since we visited Waikiki / Oahu and were apprehensive. No more. Grand Waikikian is new, the entire Hilton complex is first class and all the "little" items that make the difference are present at the Grand Waikikian. Upscale rooms, appliances, HD TV (but ask how to use the remote / channels---why they don't have instructions is beyond me. the maintenance man who came had 8 calls backed up just to show folks how to operate the remote....once you learned great channel choices etc. but a very solvable problem that should be addressed)...we had a wonderful view from the 26th floor. Elevators are quick and waits short to non-existent. NIcely stocked convenience store next to the elevators and lots of shopping very close. Happy Hour at Tropics is a must do. Best property / accommodations I saw.....and the Hilton Hotel--while VERY NICE is a zoo with 3300 rooms....too many moving parts for our taste but probably great for families. Can't go wrong with any of the HIlton set-ups at Waikiki

Room Tip: High, facing the Diamondback side.
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  • Stayed March 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
7 Thank dlea
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,235 reviews from our community

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Rating summary
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Traveler tips help you choose the right room.   Room tips (124)
Date | Rating
  • Chinese (Simplified) first
  • English first
  • Finnish first
  • French first
  • German first
  • Italian first
  • Japanese first
  • Korean first
  • Portuguese first
  • Russian first
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English first
Texas
Level Contributor
28 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed March 5, 2012

We stayed at the Grand Waikikian for our 21st anniversary, a trip we have planned for many years. The grounds and public areas were very beautiful and interseting. The room we had was a one bedroom with a sleeper sofa in the living room, a full kitchen and dining area. Full size washer and dryer(we had issues with our dryer, but it was resolved later that week). We bought some groceries from the ABC store down the block and would have breakfast in our suite, before setting out to explore the island. The amenities were perfect and the pool, lagoon and beach were nice and isolated from the the main row of Waikiki beach hotels. Dining on site was very expensive and the quality was less than we expected(live and learn), but the restaurants near by had great food and were not too far if a walk. Overall, we really liked our stay and would live to stay there again, hopefully sooner than later.

  • Stayed June 2011
    • Value
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    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
2 Thank Scratchrmg
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Eureka, California
Level Contributor
69 reviews
40 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
Reviewed February 22, 2012

Checkin went without a hitch and we were in our room an hour before official checkin time. We were in a nicely appointed, one bedroom suite with what they called a city view, but we could see a small patch of the ocean if we leaned out on our balcony a bit. As usual with HGVC properties, there was a dearth of towel bars in the bathroom but being used to this shortcoming we brought some stick-on Command hooks to keep towels off the floor. Front desk warned us that the DVD rental machines were troublesome and they were right. We had to get replacement cards three times and sometimes the machine would not vend the disk we had rented. Having stayed at the Hawaiian Village before, we either fixed our own meals or ate in town rather than pay the inflated dinner prices at the Village.

Room Tip: Ask for a room with a view of the ocean or the lawn, otherwise you'll be listening to the traffi...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank Dub1955
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lighthouse Point, Florida
Level Contributor
59 reviews
33 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed February 21, 2012

We have stayed at the Grand Waikikian several times and always find the property to be great. It is located on the huge grounds of the Hilton Village which has a variety of shops and activities available. The rooms in the Grand Wai are superior to the standard Hilton ones and worth the additional money. We usually stay in a one bedroom suite which has nice appointments and ample space for two. The kitchens are rather complete and are a good alternative to dining out if desired. The grounds have a variety of native Hawaiian fauna and flora and even some penguins to keep the kids entertained. The salt water lagoon offers a calmer alternative to the ocean and has ample beach for sun and fun. We always enjoy the Atlantis submarine trip and recommend that you spend the extra to get on the larger one as it is more spacious. There are many dining choices in the vicinity and we always enjoy Signha Thai at Ena and Ala Moana. They even have authentic Thai dances in the evening. Our favorite sushi place is a short cab ride to Doraku Sushi on Kalakaua Ave. Overall the Grand Wai has a lot to offer and is convenient to all of the fun in Waikiki.

  • Stayed April 2011, traveled as a couple
    • Value
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Helpful?
2 Thank ejbondar
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
Level Contributor
185 reviews
29 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 104 helpful votes
Reviewed February 17, 2012

I had been to this property when it was first opened, and by myself, stayed in a 1 bedroom city view that looked out at the Illikai next door. This time, with 5 of us, we upgraded to a Premier 2 bedroom, our view was straight out to the gorgeous sunset, over the marina. We could watch surfers all day long, see the Friday night fireworks from the lanai (really loud echo off the Illikai). It was called a "corner ocean view" by the staff checking us into the hotel. I had read about a lack of service here, and found this trip it was completely the opposite experience for us, we were treated quite well, and anything we needed was ours by pressing one button on the phone. We were advised there would only be a midweek cleaning, as we were staying a week on my Hilton Grand Vacations Club points. We called a few days into the week and said we needed more towels & shampoo, they were there in minutes. When the technologically challenged 3 of us messed up the TV, we pressed the customer service button and about 30 minutes later we were helped by Joanne from Maintenance. She was great! She walked us through how to manage the TV, DVD player, stereo system, and channel 4, which is SO beautiful in the hotel! We looked down on the twice weekly luau and had that lovely music on the lanai at dinner time. Even the always shady lagoon pool was just below our room, and we watched the filming on Hawaii 5-0 from our deck one afternoon. We bought some beach chairs for $25 at the ABC store and used them the whole week, instead of paying $11 per day to rent a beach chair. Most days we sat at the Hilton Lagoon, which was warmer than both the ocean and the Ocean Pool at the Hilton (very cold). I rented a Paddle Board on the lagoon ($30 hr) and was a little bored after the first 20 minutes. A couple of times around the lagoon and you're done. It's is a great workout and the boards at the Hilton Lagoon are nice and new. Service at the Tropics bar and pool were excellent. Almost all the food served at the pool comes pre-packaged from the same place, the grab and go next to the Ocean Pool. Meals eaten onsite were very good, Tropics Bar (except one poor breakfast item), Japanese Restaurant in the Bazaar, Round Table Pizza and Lapperts Ice Cream were all excellent and not unreasonable priced. We walked almost everywhere, just minutes from the Ala Moana and it's excellent food court, We needed a cab to Pearl Harbor and the Diamond Head Trail, so location is great. We rented a car for a circle island trip one day, watched the surfers at Bonzai Pipeline and Makapu Beach. Yes, the resort is huge, there is a lot going on all the time, but if you are sitting out at the lagoon, you don't feel overcrowded at all. We were there a full week, everyone who worked in the hotel was very friendly and said Aloha as we walked by. I will mention that I do always travel with ear plugs, and this is one of those places you will need them. Honolulu has a lot of traffic noise, but there also is a plethora of things to keep you entertained. This condo oasis amid the hectic city is a perfect place to stay in Waikiki.

Room Tip: Pay a little more and get an ocean view room. You will see beautiful sunsets and all the activity b...
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  • Stayed February 2012, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
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    • Cleanliness
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Helpful?
4 Thank MONichols
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Upper Brookville, NY
Level Contributor
60 reviews
39 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 138 helpful votes
Reviewed January 5, 2012

This is a lovely hotel located int
The Hilton Hawaiian village...great location on Waikiki beach and very serious shopping but really REALLY huge...a mini city unto itself with a ton of people, mostly from Asian countries so the Japanese food selection is FIRST CLASS sushi etc... Food very good but the pools are FREEZING and unheatead and interestingly very crowded since I swear they pour ice cubes in the pool at night! The pacific is also cold so if you have temperature issues (as I do ) swimming is difficult. Service is top notch...staff could not be more attentive which says a lot about the Hilton management as this is a very large complex and they do not let you feel invisible! Great little convenient stores on site with late hours that serve booze and food at all hours and perfectly located to all the good stuff n Honolulu ....

  • Stayed December 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank amc10
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Atlanta, Georgia
Level Contributor
22 reviews
7 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 50 helpful votes
Reviewed December 28, 2011

I have delayed in posting this review since my family of four (two girls aged 11 and 5) visited at Thanksgiving, thinking that the longer I wait, the better my attitude about our stay will be. Alas, it has been over a month and I just can't shake my overall poor impression. Which means that I will have to post this review despite the fact that we were upgraded to a three bedroom penthouse unit on the top floor. Now before you close this review in disgust about me, assuming that I am a prima donna who cannot be satisfied, let me disclose that I write from our $120/night room at the Residence Inn in Overland Park, KS where we are having a wonderful stay visiting family for the holidays. So I don't need any kind of over the top luxury to have a good time, but as the price creeps up, and when certain "amenities" appear to be present, then my expectations do change.

So, we booked a two bedroom ocean view unit at the Grand Waikikian over Thanksgiving. About a week ahead of time, their travel coordinators called and helped answer all of my questions about the unit and the amenities at the hotel - I had several questions about the kids club, about the spa, about the other activities at the resort, and about other activities we had planned while on the island. She was so knowledgeable and friendly, taking so much time with me on the phone, that I was actually more excited about the trip after talking with her!

We used the recommended hotel transportation company to book a car service to pick us up. The driver was terrific and gave us his card so he could take us back to the airport when we left the island. He charged literally HALF what we paid en route to the hotel. If you want his number, message me.

We happened to mention just as we were approaching the Hilton Hawaiian Village that we were staying at the Grand Waikikian, and that is very important information since there are two different hotel entrances. Ask your driver to drop you off at the Grand Waikikian or you'll have to trek through the grounds with your bags, and as several other reviewers have indicated, no one who works at the resort knows where anything else is located, and the signs and maps are not precise enough to be helpful.

Up to the point of arriving at the check-in line at the hotel, the whole experience was really wonderful even with the very expensive airport transfer. When we got out of the car, we were greeted by lovely smiling faces and kukui nut leis for everyone. The appearance of the check-in area is beautiful, and consistent with a full-service hotel. We waited for some time in the check-in line, even though there was only one family in front of us. When we finally got to the front of the line, the person checking in was very disoriented and typed madly into the computer for several minutes without any word or update (think of the scene in Honeymoon in Vegas when Nicolas Cage is trying to get a flight to Hawaii to win back Jennifer Aniston). She finally looked up and said, "It looks like you've been upgraded to a penthouse unit, so you can check in upstairs on the 35th floor if you want." I asked if we had to go to the 35th floor to check-in and she told us that we could check in there where we already were, but that we "might want to go to the 35th floor to check in." We flew 10 hours to get to Oahu from Atlanta and my wick was rather short, so I figured rather than ask her again to check us in, we would just go upstairs and check in where she seemed to want us to go. The trek to the 35th floor was long and arduous. The layout of the hotel is odd in that the main lobby is separated from the elevator bay that leads to rooms by two long hallways, lined by "concierge desks" that appear to be focused on sales of timeshare units. We finally got to the 35th floor and ended up spending at least 45 minutes getting checked in there because "they didn't have a record of our reservation," though I brought the printed confirmation with us and gave it to her. In the end, of course, we didn't complain since they upgraded us from a two bedroom to the most exquisitely beautiful three bedroom unit on the top floor.

We figured that it would be nothing but smooth sailing from here. How bad can it be from the penthouse suite? Truthfully, our stay in Hawaii was wonderful, and of course we did enjoy our spacious suite very very much. The lanai facing out toward the ocean was absolutely delightful and naturally there is nothing to complain about AT ALL regarding the features of the suite. I have never before, and very likely never again will, stayed at a place as nice as that penthouse suite. The kids ADORED the Toto toilets/bidets.

However, the niceness of the suite only served as a more stark contrast with the poor service provided by hotel staff. One example was when I called to find out about the kids program. I wanted to sign up my children for a session but was told that not only could they not tell me over the phone whether there was availability, but I had to physically walk all the way from the Grand Waikikian to the main Hilton Hawaiian Village check-in area to find out if they had availability and to sign up. Really? OK. So I walked all the way, only to find that all of the sessions we were interested in signing up for were already full.

Another example occurred on our first morning there when we were looking for a place to have breakfast on the resort. We literally walked around for 25 minutes looking for the Rainbow Lanai, having asked three staff people that we bumped into, where to find it. We were either given incorrect directions or the staff people just didn't know. Several staff people milling about the main check in area saw us looking around clearly lost at 6:00am, but no one offered to help us. When we finally did find the breakfast place (it was temporarily in another building due to construction), we were extremely disappointed in the quality of the breakfast buffet. We paid $90 for our breakfast for two adults and two kids and the waffles were rock hard while the rest of the food was unremarkable at best. DO NOT EAT ON THE RESORT, except at Roundtable Pizza where you will get what you expect - greasy, decent pizza at only slightly elevated prices.. Best low cost and quick breakfast we found was the Wailana Coffee House across Ala Moana. Best breakfast buffet - about 20 minute walk with our five year old slow poke - was at the Moana Surfrider hotel. Before we fully learned not to eat at the resort, we ordered room service and once again were amazed at the gaping difference between food quality (very, very low) and price (very, very high).

Another unsettling experience is the bus/shuttle terminal which serves the entire Hilton Hawaiian Village resort. I understand why they need to do this given the size of the resort, but there is an unmistakable air of being treated like chattel when one is waiting for a shuttle to an off-site activity (such as the Paradise Cove luau or our shuttle to Hanauma Bay to snorkle). Not to mention that it is a solid 15 minute walk from one's room at the Grand Waikikian to the bus pick up. It would actually be quicker and more convenient to arrange your pick-ups and drop-offs at the Ilikai Hotel which is right across the street from the Grand Waikikian. We got off at this stop when we returned from Paradise Cove and were in our room with our tired kids probably 20 minutes sooner than if we'd gone on to the Hilton Hawaiian Village stop.

On top of all this is the ambiance created by their treat-customers-as-criminals approach regarding pool towels and wristbands, mentioned by other reviewers. Though we were upgraded to a suite we clearly could never afford to pay for at full price, we were still paying $650 per night for the two-bedroom suite we originally booked and so all of this poor service leads to a little bit of a bad taste in the mouth.

The piece de resistance was that when we traveled to Oahu in November, the high temperatures outdoors were hovering right around 80 degrees. Not super hot. The one pool that my kids would want to play in - the one with the slides - was absolutely FREEZING. I couldn't even stand in the shallow one foot deep water for more than 10 minutes at a time. The hot tubs were overflowing with people - many of the children with visibly blue lips - and my kids ultimately didn't swim because they were too cold. The pool with slides does not get any direct sun at all throughout the day because it is located in the shadows between several buildings. They need to add a heater to that pool for it to be enjoyable. Luckily, we did play in the lagoon, renting stand up paddle boards two days in a row.

Overall, I doubt we would return to any property at Hilton Hawaiian Village for all of these reasons. I am likely to look for adjoining rooms at a hotel closer to the action on Waikiki that will cost about the same as the suite at the Grand Waikikian. But especially in these economic times, I feel like I shouldn't settle for being treated this way when I am paying this much.

  • Stayed November 2011, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
18 Thank husbus
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations

Property: Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations
Address: 1811 Ala Moana Blvd, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815-1601
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Kitchenette Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#8 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#11 Family Hotel in Honolulu
#12 On the Beach Hotel in Honolulu
#12 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
#15 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations 4*
Number of rooms: 331
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations is located on the grounds of the Hilton Hawaiian Village. This 38-story tower heralds a new era of elegance in the oceanfront paradise of Waikiki, a Hawaii destination of romance and dreams, of cultures and cuisines. With the surrounding Hawaiian Village at your doorstep, you can dine in over 20 restaurants and lounges, find that perfect souvenir, or enjoy a wide variety of activities the whole family will enjoy. Enjoy six swimming pools including the new Paradise Pool at Grand Waikikian by Hilton Grand Vacations. Accommodations include one and two bedroom suites. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Grand Waikikian Suites By Hilton Grand Vacations Hotel Honolulu
Hilton Hotels Honolulu
Hilton Hotel Honolulu
Grand Waikikian By Hilton Grand Vacations Hawaii/Honolulu

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