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“Pro Bowl weekend, Pro Bowl Hotel.....”
Review of Halekulani Hotel

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Halekulani Hotel
Ranked #8 of 84 Hotels in Honolulu
Certificate of Excellence
San Antonio, Texas
Level Contributor
41 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
“Pro Bowl weekend, Pro Bowl Hotel.....”
Reviewed February 3, 2014

We took a group of clients to HNL for the Pro Bowl. It was our first extended stay on Oahu and the Halekulani made it memorable. Great welcoming staff, terrific, ocean view rooms. and a concierge staff that never failed to perform. And we really tested them !!
The on site restaurants were beautiful with open patio seating and ocean breezes to enjoy with any meal. I preferred the less formal 'House without a Key'. They have a fabulous roast pork hash to pair with eggs on the buffet line. We ate at Orchids on occasion but avoided the dressier La Mer. I'm sure it is very nice if you like 'Island Formal'
There is nothing you can do about the traffic in Honolulu but having the Halekulani to retire to makes it better.
The staff, once again , made the hotel even better. Friendly, informative, engaging...just what we would always hope for in a Hawaiian vacation.
I give the Halekulani 3 pineapples out of 3. It's where we will stay from now on........

Room Tip: get an ocean front villa...great ocean view
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled on business
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Helpful?
3 Thank Dave R
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Canada
Level Contributor
8 reviews
8 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed February 3, 2014

In my heart I really want to give this hotel 5 stars. Wouldn't be fair to 5 star hotels though. I'll dispense with the nits first: the beach in front is tiny, the outer halves of the balconies are not private either for sight or sound, no in-room coffee or expresso maker, room carpeting possibly has overstayed it's welcome. None of these were bad; I make these comments in context of the room being $900 a night.

The positives? The staff throughout are outstanding. Perhaps not as spit-and-polish as I've experienced say, in Four Seasons Tokyo, but exceedingly trained and caring. There's the usual 5 star reception - you generally don't stand in line to be summoned to the next wicket; they come out from the counter and walk you back; they later walk you to and tour your room, etc. That your stay be an outstanding experience appears genuinely important to every one of these people. If it's just an act, it's a good one. We did comment to the front desk about the coffee maker (we thought maybe it was just missing); a hot water dispenser was in our room when we returned. In the middle of booking a helicopter flight with the concierge we joked we didn't know our exact weight because our bathroom scale wasn't working, and we were happy it wasn't. "I'll note that," she said. It was fixed when we returned from breakfast. I asked the server to take our picture - I apologized for interrupting his work (I asked for lots of pictures). "This is my work", he said. I could go on - nuances of attention and attentiveness repeated daily. We had booked 4 nights; we extended to 9.

Some reviewers have dissed the hotel's dress code. Don't be fussed. The place is not the least pretentious. If want to walk through a hotel public area in a thong, do it in a different hotel; you'll look like a rube here. The guests are tasteful – quite different from the beach-chair-backpackers you'll find trekking through Hilton Hawaiian Village. You can dress as you wish in the more causal "Room without a Key" poolside/beachfront restaurant; food and service are excellent.
Pool is perhaps on the smallish side, but never busy. There are more than enough lounges to accommodate all comers - and do so with ample space. And if it isn't obvious from the hotel's location, major shopping and dining starts just across the street.

The hotel hosted small weddings in the courtyard almost daily. Made for nice pictures for us actually. Conferences or receptions almost nightly; never noisy or intrusive on our stay; hardly knew they were there.

Based on advice of another TripAdvisor review, we booked a Diamond Head view. Loved it. For the second part of our stay we moved to a room closer to the ocean. Better view (less obstructed the by the Sheraton Hotel), but the view from the first was great. Worth the money? I can't rationally justify it, but we thought so.

By the way, my wife raved about the spa. "Never been served a snack after a massage", she said, "Seated overlooking the ocean too. The whole atmosphere was elegant." Maybe we're just peasants; surely lots of other places in the world do this. But my wife has been to countless spas.

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
4 Thank ASimpsonCanada
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
24 reviews
14 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 14 helpful votes
Reviewed January 30, 2014

We have been to Hawaii on several occasions, and we love Hawaii. First time stay at the Halekulani and we cant praise it any higher. From the greeting on arrival and being escorted to our room and explained the room and the hotels features, we were made to feel very welcome. The room was terrific, roomy and clean. The hotel is spotless, the staff very friendly. We had an ocean view room and the view of the ocean and beach was superb. We watched one day the whales frolicking in the sea.
Each night the turndown service left a small gift on the bed, it was a great touch.
Wednesday nights the hotel has a cocktail party for guests, it was fun and the managers attend and chat to guests, it was very enjoyable.
The hotel is located in the heart of Honolulu, and it is very surprising the lack of noise from busy Honolulu. It is only a 5- 10 min walk to the main shops.
The only problem we had was no tea or coffee making facilities in the room.
Otherwise I cannot fault the hotel and this will be our first choice when we return next.

Room Tip: High up ocean view or Diamond head view. The sound of the sea at night is very relaxing.
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
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Helpful?
Thank Steve K
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
austin,Texas
Level Contributor
242 reviews
35 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 62 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2014

Older property, welcoming staff. Beautiful grounds, rooms, setting.not to disappoint this hotel is Hawaii at its finest. Great breakfast in orchids. Great bar in lewers lounge. Concierge staff very helpful. Explore honolulu, great Restaruant scene. Thank you for the ocean front room. I highly recommend this hotel for luxury.

Room Tip: Ocean front, higher floors
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
2 Thank austin_TexasLkd
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Belfast, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
57 reviews
28 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 84 helpful votes
Reviewed January 29, 2014

A year before this trip, my fiancé and I decided to go to Hawaii, I researched every hotel in Waikiki and thought I was sure about Kahala, that was until I started reading reviews on TA and the all advised that if you want pure luxury then Halekulani is the place. My fiancé was hung up on the expense but as this was going to be a one-off splurge, I convinced him to go for it!. Well, we fell totally in love with Halekulani and couldn't have chosen a better hotel, worth every single penny. So much so, that last year we made the long trip from Northern Ireland to take my parents to experience the Hawaii and of course the Halekulani!. I did ask my fiancé where he wanted to stay this time and he said he would NOT stay anywhere else!. Forget the cost!

As we pulled up to the hotel, the door was graciously opened and the staff member said Welcome to the Halekulani Miss Anderson! How was your flight from Las Vegas Wow, impressed!! The bags were whisked away to the rooms and check-in was completed by the fantastic Jerome, who throughout our stay helped us, answered our questions and made us feel very welcome. He is a major asset to Halekulani.

This hotel is serene. calm and beautiful, you are in the centre of Waikiki with restaurants, bar, Waikiki beach and fabulous shops (Tiffany's, Macys etc) on your doorstep yet the hotel is quiet and relaxing. The pool area is perfect with great attendants to help you with your sunlounger. Each night there was a lovely little present left on our bed at turndown, the rooms were pretty, bright and clean.

We were lucky enough to have both breakfast and brunch at Orchids which were both out of this world with regards to food, setting, atmosphere and especially service. Our particular waiter Aga, was outstanding. He was polite and there exactly when you need him without being intrusive, each time we got up to go to the buffet he had the table cleared and brushed!, before we returned with another course!.

There are regular weddings happening at this hotel but they are small and do not interfere with any aspect of your stay, in my opinion they actually add to the whole atmosphere and you can see why people would want to celebrate such a happy occasion in these surroundings. Also, the manager holds a little evening on one of the terraces during the week which serves complimentary food and drinks looking over Waikiki Beach at Sunset.

The Halekulani employs lovely people who understand the true meaning of customer service and are always friendly, polite and willing to help. The Halekulani has given us wonderful memories that will stay with us forever. We will definitely return.

Room Tip: Ask for a pool view, you won't be disappointed.
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  • Stayed June 2013, traveled as a couple
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Helpful?
3 Thank 5starUk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
8 reviews
5 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2014

My fifth trip to Hawaii and my partner's second. For the first time we decided to explore Oahu and find a hotel in Honolulu. We did a lot of research and found only two or perhaps three hotels in the true five-star category. On several recommendations from friends we settled on the Halekulani. This is a beautiful, well located hotel, with a gorgeous lobby and common area, a nice spa, and nice, albeit austere, guest rooms (we took a Diamond Head Suite). The area shopping is perfect, with all the high end brands as well as local shops just steps away. The hotel hosts many weddings, which is perhaps one of the reasons for its MAJOR drawback:

It is formal and full of rules that hamper your relaxing vacation experience. Don't come here expecting island-causal, lounging in flip-flops, taking a drink at a pool bar and strolling with that drink back to your room. The hotel has strict rules: No carrying drinks from a bar to your room; there is no pool bar you can sit at (only table service) and no "bar" open until 6:00 pm, and that one is an indoor, wood-paneled, formal one (beautiful, by the way, like you'd see in a New York business-oriented restaurant) where the guests are expected to be dressed the same; it closes at 1:00 am, however, we saw at least one couple refused service at 12:25 am, saying "sorry we've already had 'last call'; and pack some dress slacks and business shirts because--get this--the hotel's restaurant doesn't any permit jeans you might have, no matter how nice they are. We made reservations at the hotel restaurant and were walking to our dinner when a hotel employee stopped us saying ah, ah, ah.. "if you're going to the restaurant you'll need dress slacks." My girl was in a Roberto Cavalli dress she bought for the trip, Christian Louboutin shoes--both sexy and informal--and I was in brand-new Kiton Jeans, a designer silk shirt, and leather Gucci slip-ons that were suitable for any boardroom. No soap--we weren't "properly attired," as I had on jeans. No business casual for your Hawaiian vacation here! Steve Jobs could run the largest company in the world in nice jeans, but he couldn't get a meal at the Halekulani's restaurant dressed that way. To add insult to injury, the hotel then directed us off-property to a Denny's-style Thai restaurant a good walk from the hotel. My date was insulted, and with good reason.

A very nice hotel manager listened patiently to my complaints, sympathized, but confessed there was little he could do. He called Nobu at a "sister property" and asked if our "poor-man's" attire would be okay, and nicely informed me that the coast was clear--we could eat there in jeans. Good grief. This is a vacation destination?

Finally, if you figure, well we'll just be casual with a drink in the room from the minibar, sorry, no minibar. They took them all out, a hotel employee informed us. You'll have to call room service even to order a Mai Tai or a glass of wine; and room service is quite slow--about 35 minutes for two drinks.

This hotel appears to have a dedicated clientele and for good reason: It's nice. But it is NOT relaxing, and it is not the place to go to experience island casual and have a relaxing vacation where you leave your formal clothes for the office back home.

Room Tip: If you're all packed with a business clothes and ready for a vacation at Halekulani, ask for a D...
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  • Stayed January 2014, traveled as a couple
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
14 Thank Dantes910
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
11 reviews
6 hotel reviews
common_n_hotel_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed January 25, 2014

Halekulani is the best hotel in Waikiki; we have stayed at a lot of the hotels in Waikiki and this place is special. Service is attentive yet unrushed; food was very good and the property is beautiful. We hadn't stayed before but would be happy to return

  • Stayed January 2014, traveled with family
    • Value
    • Location
    • Sleep Quality
    • Rooms
    • Cleanliness
    • Service
Helpful?
1 Thank dtovancouver
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Additional Information about Halekulani Hotel

Property: Halekulani Hotel
Address: 2199 Kalia Road, Honolulu, Oahu, HI 96815-1988
Phone Number:
Location: United States > Hawaii > Oahu > Honolulu > Waikiki
Amenities:
Bar / Lounge Beach Business Center with Internet Access Fitness Center with Gym / Workout Room Free High Speed Internet ( WiFi ) Restaurant Room Service Spa Suites Swimming Pool Wheelchair access
Hotel Style:
#3 Business Hotel in Honolulu
#3 Romantic Hotel in Honolulu
#4 Family Hotel in Honolulu
#5 On the Beach Hotel in Honolulu
#5 Spa Hotel in Honolulu
#6 Luxury Hotel in Honolulu
Price Range (Based on Average Rates): $$$$
Hotel Class:5 star — Halekulani Hotel 5*
Number of rooms: 453
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
Halekulani has been hosting visitors to Waikiki Beach for nearly 100 years. Today its reputation for gracious hospitality, impeccable service and magnificent cuisine is unequaled on Oahu and renowned, throughout the world. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Halekulani Hotel Honolulu
Halekulani Hotel Hawaii/Honolulu

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