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“Horrible Hotel”

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Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort
Ranked #41 of 84 Hotels in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
brisbane
1 review
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Horrible Hotel”
Reviewed February 12, 2013

Hi so i just stayed here last week, i CHOOSE this Hotel from trip advisor recommendations, Well im going to be brutally honest WHAT A DISAPPOINTMENT!!!!!! The hotel is not located close to the main areas of waikiki yes it has a beach out the front but if you want to go for dinner or shopping its a mile walk, which for the first 2 days wasnt so bad,but after that we were catching taxis in and out which cost $12 each way! we also booked a day to pearl habour threw the conceige what a stuff up after getting up at 5 in the morning to only find out he didnt book us on the tour!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The hotel is complete rip off the rooms are dated and the hotel staff are rude, we also had to pay an extra 25 dollars a day for internet which we were never told about! I book beach front and got the building furtherest from the beach the kalia tower yes it did have part ocean views but when i looked down i saw cemented carpark. I am not one to complain but the vibe at the hotel was restful it was quite stressful, it my first visit to hawaii a complete shambles! we also stayed the Modern Honolulu for the last 3 nights what a different the hotel staff were lovely they went above and beyond there job roles the rooms where amazing and the hotel had a incredibly relaxed vibe! i would highly recommend to not always stay at the BIG NAMED HOTELS and to find the small boutique hotels this place was incredible!!!!!!

  • Stayed February 2013, traveled with friends
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
7 Thank kylie m
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hhvguestservices, Manager at Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 14, 2013
Aloha kylie m,

Mahalo for choosing the Hilton Hawaiian Village! We regret to hear we have failed to exceed your expectations on your recent visit. We are a popular full-service beachfront resort dedicated to providing our guests the best accommodations in paradise and sharing the warmest aloha spirit thru our service. Thru valuable guests’ feedback we are able to diversify our resort offerings making it convenient for guests to find something here for everyone. We apologize you did not feel our team carried out our goal to enhance our guests’ experience. Thank you for sharing your comments as we hope for the opportunity to welcome you back for the true Hilton Hawaiian Village guest experience.

Mahalo,
Hilton Hawaiian Village Guest Services Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Chicago, IL
Level Contributor
208 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed February 12, 2013

My first trip to Hawaii was 7 nights in January 2013 for the Pro Bowl. My booking was through a travel agency, who choose the HHV’s Rainbow Tower, deluxe ocean view room. The HHV is a mega sized complex and can be confusing. The choice has to be made of which tower to stay in: Rainbow, Ali’i, Tapa, Kalia or Diamond Head and which view: ocean front, ocean view, partial ocean view, resort view, corner room, etc. The only beachfront/oceanfront towers are Rainbow and Ali’i. Diamond Head is behind Ali’i. Tapa and Kalia are the furthest from the beach. There are two other towers, Lagoon and Grand Waikikian (Hilton Grand Vacation timeshares) and a Mid-Pacific Conference Center.

Pools at the HHV: Super and Keiki, Tapa, Paradise, Kalia Tower, and Ali'i Tower. Super pool is outdoor and 10,000 square feet and Keiki pool (children's pool) is next to it. Tapa pool has a nice bubbling shallow end. Paradise pool has slides, waterfalls and spas and is 5,000 square feet. Kalia Tower is an infinity pool, but is on the fourth floor. Ali'i Tower pool is only for guests in that tower. There is also the Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon, which is a five acre salt-water lagoon and beach. During my stay Paradise was packed with people because it is away from the main crowd at the hotel (the spas were overly packed). Super pool had no swimmers, because there is no privacy from the crowds at the Tropics and Hau Tree Bars. The same was true with the Tapa pool and Tapa Bar. I did not see any signs with posted pool hours, but I did see a sign that swimmers needed a wristband, but I don't know if that was an old policy because I did not see any swimmers with wristbands (and I was never offered a wristband at check in).

The beach just outside of the hotel was a little bit less crowded than the rest of Waikiki Beach. The HHV is at one end of the beach, and you can walk as far as you would like to see the other beachfront hotels, but it can be a real hike. There are many other non-beachfront hotels within walking distance.

There are many shopping and restaurant options, but you will need your map to find them. Some of them are in the Rainbow Bazaar (an area across from the main lobby), but most are sprinkled around the complex. You can also find lower cost food options a short walk away, such as at the corner of Kalia and Ala Moana (Wailana Coffee House) or at the snack bar of the hotel next door (Hale Koa). ABC Stores are mini-marts where you can get almost anything… there is one is in the Rainbow Bazaar, but there are other locations nearby with better prices. If you are looking for pampering, the Mandara Spa is located in the Kalia Tower.

We arrived via a Robert’s Hawaii airport shuttle, which drops off at the Tapa Tower bus depot (distance from the airport is less than 10 miles). If you sign up for any tours, they pick up here. The walk from the bus depot to the main lobby registration desk was quite a hike, especially with luggage. There is a bellman to take luggage, but we did not realize how far the main lobby was from the bus depot. There is almost no signage pointing to the main lobby, but we followed the crowd and found it. The check-in line was long (this was late afternoon). I had two reservations (due to the travel agent booking) and the front desk staff was not sure if I would have to change rooms mid-vacation. I needed to find where to pick up a package from the travel agency with all the paperwork for my Pro Bowl package, but the desk staff did not know where to send me. I had a room number, and when I asked where that was, they gave me a map and vaguely pointed in the direction I had just came from. Instead I decided to try and find the Rainbow Tower, which was luckily near to the lobby.

The elevators seemed to puzzle all guests…. you push your floor button on a display and it tells you which elevator to go to. The wait for elevators was usually 5-10 minutes, but on a couple of occasions it was 20 minutes and the elevators going up were jammed full. The room had a king bed, small fridge (hidden in a cabinet), in room safe, coffee pot, and a gorgeous view of the ocean from the lanai (and chairs to sit and enjoy the view). My complaint would be that the room was always warm when you re-entered…. the thermostat reset to 80 degrees, no matter what you set it at when you left the room. If you opened the door to the lanai, the A.C. reset itself. Local calls from the room are $1.50. The Hilton cable channels ran endless commercials for activities at the hotel and on the island. Maid service during our stay was excellent.

When you check in you receive a plastic card to exchange for a towel. The towel stands are near the pools, and when you return the towel, you get the card back (otherwise you pay a $10 fee when you check out). The towel was nothing spectacular, but it was nice to not drag sand back to the room. You just have to be aware of the opening/closing times of these stands and may have to go to a different stand to return your towel (I only found one open in the early evening).

I found a card in the room asking me to stop at the concierge desk for a “free gift” and when I brought down the card, they tried to sign me up for a time share presentation. For listening, they will give you tickets to the Starlight Luau, but I had no interest in wasting 2 hours. The "free gift" was a bag and a discount card that could be used at some stores on property (nothing spectacular). One other employee tried to sign me up for a timeshare presentation later in my trip. The concierge and activities desks seemed more interested in selling me tourist packages (and collecting a fee) than answering questions.

Be aware that you are paying a $25 per day “resort fee”, for what, who knows. You can sign up for crafts and activities, but if you don’t ask about them, they won’t tell you. There is a kids camp (Camp Penguin), Starlight Luau (Sun-Thurs), Rockin' Hawaiian Rainbow Revue (Fridays). There is live music in the Tapa Bar (Fri-Sat), and at the Tropics Bar. We could hear the band in the Tropics Bar from our room every night, so if you want peace and quiet, request a high level floor.

There is a Hertz rental car kiosk on site (open limited hours). Make sure to get a GPS…. it was a lifesaver (roads are not well marked, many are one way). Self-parking is $27 (parking garage), valet is $33 (at the main lobby). If you want to send any mail there is a small mailbox in the main lobby (small and gold, to the side of the registration desk) and a U.S. post office in the Diamond Head Tower.

The gems I found were the penguin and turtle pool (near Ali'i Tower, be sure to see their morning feeding), koi ponds, parrots and macaws (only during certain hours), beautiful flora, sculptures, chapel, and waterfalls. Costumed torch lighters run around the property at dusk and light the torches. Friday nights at 7:45 pm sharp there are fireworks on the beach, but they are incredibly loud and tourists from other hotels come on property to see them.

The hotel offers baggage storage and hospitality rooms if you need to check out in the morning and have some time before your flight home.

The HHV is undergoing renovations, but it did not have any effect on us besides having to walk by cordoned off construction areas.

Overall experience: everything is expensive…. food, tourist attractions, beach activities. I stumbled onto several pamphlets with coupons for local attractions… great find! A Hawaii coupon book is good investment. When shopping, many small stores will offer you a discount, so be sure to ask. Front desk staff at the HHV could have been more courteous (and faster). Other staff (maids, valets) were extremely friendly and personable. Make sure to keep your hotel map and don't be afraid to explore. When I asked for directions from hotel workers I would get a useless vague point.

I would definitely return to Honolulu, but to get more quiet and privacy, I would look into one of the resorts on the north or west ends of the island.

Room Tip: High floors are quieter and will have a better view.
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
9 Thank oaktoncc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hhvguestservices, Manager at Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, responded to this review, March 7, 2013
Aloha oaktoncc,

We hope you enjoyed the Pro Bowl in Hawaii and Mahalo for choosing the Hilton Hawaiian Village! We thank you for taking the time to share your feed back from recent visit. We apologize for the confusion, and thank you for pointing it out about the wristband. We temporally discontinued the wristband, and adopted a new towel system. We are very sorry to hear about the AC in the room. We have Guest Service team available 24 hours to assist guest, as we are committed to providing comfortable accommodations. Please accept our sincere apologies for the unpleasant experience with our concierge, and the front desk team. We will definitely share your comment with our teams for improvements in guest service. We are so happy to hear that our Housekeeping, and Valet team was able to share the aloha spirit with you! We hope you return to our resort and provide us another opportunity to share the aloha spirit from every team member in the Village.

Mahalo Nui Loa
Hilton Hawaiian Village Guest Services Team
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Washington
Level Contributor
27 reviews
15 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 98 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013 via mobile

I stay at the HHV a couple times a year. It's my favorite hotel on the planet. So, here's what you need to know:

The Good:

1. The staff at the hotel is fantastic.
2. The hotel is located on the beach. So whether you want to sit by the pool or on the beach, it's your option.
3. There's a Starbucks on the property.
4. There are a bunch of food options.
5. Beach/pool towels are provided to you.
6. If you're a HH member, you can almost always get an upgrade.
7. They have an excellent day camp for kids.
8. The business center is perfect for all of your needs.
9. The Ali'i tower has a private pool with cushioned lawn chairs. It's nice and quiet. But it is restricted to those staying in that tower.
10. They have live music at one of the restaurants on most days and nights. They stop at about 10 PM which is nice.

The Bad:

1. The food is expensive.
2. It's not very close to Waikiki and the trip can't get costly day after day. It's a long walk. To me anyways.
3. Sometimes, the main pool closes early for special events.
4. The resort hosts conventions from all over the world. When they're happening, it's busy with people.
5. Hotels are now required to charge a $25 a night fee. This is not quoted in the booking price.
6. Parking is expensive.
7. The pool, while nice, needs to be swept of debris more often.

Advice:

1. Book in advance and attempt to get a room in the Rainbow or Ali'i tower.
2. I don't ever rent a car and save a ton as a result. It's a $10 shuttle ride from the airport.
3. Get to the pool early in the morning to get a seat. 10 AM or so works for me.
4. If you have a flight later in the day, you can reserve a room to shower etc. Before leaving. They will also store your bags for the entire day.
5. Although there are a multitude of food options, expect about $20 a person for lunch. It's easier to get sandwiches at the ABC store that's located on property.
6. I rarely leave the resort. Everything you need is right here.
7. Schedule your ride to the airport to pick you up about 2.5 hours before your flight. The hotel is typically the last stop before the airport for most shuttle which can be nice. With that said, you are also the first to be dropped off from the airport.

  • Stayed February 2013
    • Value
    • Location
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
12 Thank GreenNeptune
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
North Salem, IN
Level Contributor
52 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 22 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013

EVerything you could want in a hotel on Waikiki. Beautiful facility and views. Fairly crowded in the elevator lobby at times--the automated system is at times great and at times a pain. Staff very nice, all kinds of restaurants in the complex, many activities you can sign up for. LOTS of shopping---can get in real trouble there! Pool very nice though water was a little cool in February. Easy walk down the beach was fun and very accessible to many other things, i.e. the convention center a pleasant 15-20 minutes walk (NOT 7 minutes as advertised unless you speed walk and hit all the lights green).

Room Tip: Rainbow tower is the best!
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  • Stayed February 2013, traveled on business
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
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    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank DBPTNT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Longview, Texas
Level Contributor
16 reviews
3 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013

Wow. I'm surprised by such mixed reviews! Let me tell my story
I went in September of 2011 with my parents and sister as a "my husband is deployed, I need a treat" vacation. I got amazing deals. I flew for free because I was airline crew, and I got the room at a steal with my crew discount combined with the already discounted prices for renovations. I stayed in a beachfront room in the Rainbow tour in a newly renovated room, per my request. Everything went as smooth as butter. Check in was flawless, we found our room easily and our view was unbeatable.
As I said, they were doing renovations in the tower, so the elevators were as slow as Christmas! This is not a complaint! We are healthy, active adults, so we took stairs. Simple solution; no need to get bent out of shape (as some did). We knew there were renovations and those renovations got us our discounted price so we didn't dare complain. We stayed 5 nights- walked into town every day and had dinner, but other than that we stayed around the resort. We were as happy as clams! We checked out, flew home, and counted the days until we could revisit.
So 1 year later the renovations were complete, I no longer had a crew discount of free flights, but because our first experience was so phenomenal, we decided it was absolutely worth it to do the exact same thing, only stay for 7 nights in our oceanfront room in the Rainbow.
This time we rented a car, hiked Diamond Head, explored the North Shore and do some water activities. Again, a flawless experience with the hotel; I loved every minute!!
I recommend this hotel! I also recommend spending the extra cash to stay at least a week and grab a rental car so you can explore the island. It really is amazing and my favorite part of the vacation was just driving around! (If you're already spending a few thousand dollars, what's a few hundred more for so much more experience, right? :)

Room Tip: Rainbow Tower oceanfront is the way to go!!!
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  • Stayed September 2012, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
3 Thank my123_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Waupaca, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013

We stayed at the Hilton Hawaiian Village in January as our first trip to Hawaii after 33 years of marriage. The elevators were being worked on the entire time we were there in the Rainbow Tower. There were 6 elevators and the first day we were there, we started our journey down from the 31st floor to the lobby and the elevator stopped and the doors didn't open. It was just my husband and I on the elevator at the time and I am extremely chlostrophobic so I went into a real panic and my husband sounded the alarms, etc. After a couple minutes and no one responding, my husband pryed open the door and we were at the lobby. As a result, management offered us free entrees at one of their restaurants. I was devastated by this and when people ask how was your Hawaii trip, my response is "We got stuck in an elevator", all my friends know how this has been a fear of mine all my life. Otis elevator company was working on the elevators off and on during our 5 day stay. So, if you have problems with small spaces, try to get a room on a low level and walk the stairs.

Room Tip: Long lines for elevators that don't work properly. I'd recommend a low floor and walk, whic...
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
Thank kpdoula
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
hhvguestservices, Manager at Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort, responded to this review, February 28, 2013
Aloha kpdoula,

Thank you for choosing to stay at the Hilton Hawaiian Village! We are pleased to hear that your first trip to Hawaii was at our resort. We are very sorry and extend our sincere apology with the challenges that you experienced with our elevator. We appreciate you taking your time to write a review as we are continuously striving to improve in providing the best customer service to our guests. We hope you return to our resort and provide us with another opportunity to service you.

Mahalo,
Hilton Hawaiian Village Guest Services Team4
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
LI, NY
Level Contributor
11 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
Reviewed February 11, 2013

I stayed at this hotel with my sister 1/30/13-2/2/13 as a stop over to the Big Island. I have always wanted to stay here & finally got the chance. My sister who was with me had stayed here almost 30yrs ago & things have changed. When she was originally here there were only 2 towers, now there are 7. We stayed in the Ali'i Tower. I would definitely recommend staying here. You have your own private check in & concierge service. It is situated close to the beach & has it's own private pool for ali'i guests only, with beautiful views of the ocean & surrounding areas from the pool deck. The beach is beautiful but my suggestion - bring water shoes to wear into the water as there are alot of rocks. We ended up wearing our flip flops in after the first time. There are shops right outside of the tower doors, as well as a small place to get food & drinks anytime of day (panini's are excellent). Next to that is Tropics Bar/Grill with dining inside or outside where you have a lovely view of the ocean and there is also music nightly. Rainbow Review show with fireworks on Friday night is spectacular. Lots of shopping & dining in the village. There's an ABC store where you can buy food, drinks, souvenirs, etc. I would definitely recommend going into Honolulu Cookies, they are out of this world. Staff is terrific, you can sample all the varieties of cookies they have (coconut with white chocolate are devine). For a fee you can ship anything you buy home to the states but its worth it so you don't have to pack them in your luggage & take the chance of crushing them. The staff is wonderful, very friendly & helpful. My sister left her camera charger in the room when we checked out to fly over to the big island. I called there later that day and spoke with Sam in security. I gave him my cell # & later that night he called saying he had found it & would hold onto it till we got back to the island. When we returned we called him on the hotel phone & he brought it right to us. Definitely a place I would like to return to.

Room Tip: Definitely choose the Ali'i Tower
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  • Stayed January 2013, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
2 Thank redshoes64
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort

Property: Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort
Address: 2005 Kalia Road, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu > Waikiki
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#12 Top resorts Hotel in Honolulu
#16 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#18 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
#24 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
#24 Business Hotel in Honolulu
#25 On the Beach Hotel in Honolulu
#33 Family Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$
Hotel Class:4 star — Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort 4*
Number of rooms: 2900
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Located on Waikiki's widest stretch of beach, the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort is nestled on 22 oceanfront acres offering the best value with more amenities than any other hotel in Waikiki. Imagine five spectacular pools and the largest beach front Super Pool, best waterslides in Waikiki, surfing lessons, Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon for kayak and stand-up paddleboard fun. We have the only pier on Waikiki Beach which provides easy access to catamaran rides and Atlantis submarine adventures. The resort is home to Waikiki's only 5 night a week Waikiki Starlight Luau, a full-service, award-winning children's program for kids ages 5-12. Mandara Spa and over 20 restaurants and lounges, 90 shops and services, daily cultural activities, nightly entertainment and lush tropical gardens, and waterfalls. Every Friday night we light the skies with our Friday Night Fireworks Spectacular! ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Hotel Honolulu
Hilton Hotel Honolulu
Hilton Honolulu
Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort Hawaii/Honolulu

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