Overlooking the Ala Wai Canal, this reasonably priced boutique hotel is fun and family-friendly, offering lots of special events, games, and activities for guests. All guest rooms and suites are bright and inviting. Views from your lanai include the canal and its paddlers by day and the lights of Honolulu's skyline by night. A complimentary Continental breakfast is served in the lobby overlooking the hotel garden. It's a three-block walk to the beach.
YOU SHOULD KNOW If you’re visiting before April 30, 2019, the hotel will be under construction. Lanais will be inaccessible during the improvements, and there may be some construction-related noises during business hours. Try giving the hotel a call directly to book your room and see if there are completed rooms available.
Rooms range in size from cozy queen rooms to more spacious (nontraditional) suites, with either mountain or Waikiki views. They include free Wi-Fi, lanais, air-conditioning, Kona coffee, and wet bar/kitchenette/kitchen (depending on room size). Décor is clean, bright, chic, and modern, combining for a fun environment.
Mountain view rooms are where it’s at with this hotel, so opt for that if you can.
Bathrooms are small, but bright and cheery. They have tub/handheld shower combos, small vanities, and an array of toiletries, including the oft-forgotten Q-tips.
The hotel lobby is large and bright, with plenty of open areas for lounging, working on a laptop, or waiting for group members. There are also long and circular dining tables where guests can enjoy breakfast in the morning. The oval check-in desk is in the center of it all, welcoming guests as they arrive.
The small, bean-shaped pool is heated and surrounded by a small, tiled sun deck with lounge chairs and a few tables.
There are no on-site restaurants, but the hotel offers a daily continental breakfast with waffle maker, as well as complimentary popcorn, tea, and coffee in the lobby. There are also outdoor grills available for use.
Waikiki (and surrounding areas) are easily reachable from the airport by cab or rideshare. There is plenty to do in these areas without ever leaving (walking, biking, taking the bus, or hailing a car), so a rental car is only necessary if you want to explore other parts of the island.
Have a picky group with you? Stop by Honolulu’s newest Whole Foods Market Queen (12-min drive) to pick up a variety of groceries, or stop by one of the variety of eateries inside this two-story complex. Options include their classic salad and hot bars, a banh mi counter, poke bar, and a non-dairy frozen banana stand. Don’t leave without loading up on ice cream mochi from Bubbie’s -- but good luck making out of the store before eating all of them! Pro tip: Though you can find Bubbie’s all over the island, Whole Foods manages to keep it perfectly stored so that the mochi exterior is as soft and luscious as possible. Try as many as you can here, you’ll fall in love with most of them.
You may find the staple Hawaiian food poi cooked many different ways during your travels, but you’ll rarely find it in as intriguing and utterly satisfying a form as in the donuts at Liliha Bakery ( 20-min drive). Sadly, once you try them, you’ll regret every morning that you don’t wake up to these chewy, sweet purple treats. If you’re in the mood for something besides donuts for some reason, find some incredible offerings for breakfast, lunch, and dinner at their coffee shops. Pro tip: Grab a dozen poi donuts to take home – one of the locations is between Waikiki and the airport.
While Tiki’s Grill and Bar (7-min drive) has a pretty delicious Pacific Rim menu, you don’t need to go much further than the bar to have a good time. The drink menu is full of fun, tropical cocktails, including the memorable Son of an Itch. This tasty treat comes in your choice of glasses to take home, is served with a bamboo backscratcher, and the best part – it has dry ice in it, so it’s as playful as it is yummy. Live music helps make this popular place even more fun.
If you’re in the mood for a bit of Irish aloha, Irish Rose Saloon (4-min drive) has nightly live music and that great pub feel that you’re looking for. It’s a true favorite among locals and visitors.
WHY WE LIKE IT
Coconut Waikiki Hotel takes the concept of boutique hotel and makes it unique to families and other fun-loving travelers. Adding a bit of whimsy with game rooms, a sand pit for play, and events like trivia nights, Jenga competitions, and sandcastle building challenges. Prices are very affordable, and rooms can work in a variety of configurations based on group size.