Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk
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What a great place to celebrate our birthdays!
How has this hotel rated in the past?
- Room service
- Free High-Speed Internet
- Swimming pool
- Wheelchair accessibility
- Fitness/Health center
Historical Traveler Reviews Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk Honolulu
We just spent 3 nights in this hotel (Feb 22-24) and had a wonderful stay. Having read the negative reports earlier, I was concerned and called the front desk prior to our arrival. I explained I was concerned about the noise reports.The very nice hotel clerk acknowledged there is a lot of construction in the area and that there had been complaints about the noise. She also acknowledged they had had some problems with the key cards for the elevators. I asked if there was any way we could be assigned a room on an upper lever that had minimal noise. She said she'd see what she could do. To my delight, upon arrival we learned we'd been upgraded and had a beautiful corner room on the 11th floor with a good view of the beach from both rooms, and 3 lanais (2 from living area and 1 from bedroom area). We were able to sit outside on a lanai one evening and watch the firework display along the beach. We had absolutely no problems with excessive noise, although I can understand that guests who are assigned to rooms on the lower floors may have different experiences. Although the Trump Tower will block some of the views and no doubt will create additional noise during construction, currently there is nothing happening in that area... just a big hole in the ground.
Check-in was fast and efficient and included being treated to fresh juice while seated at front desk across from hotel staff. Valet parking is expensive ($25 daily) but this is typical for hotels in major cities and destination points. Auto drive-in IS adjacent to the check-in lobby but we detected no gas smell as previously reported by another rev iewer.
Concierge/Activities desk is nearby and is staffed until 8 p.m. Personnel there were very helpful in booking tours and providing excellent suggestions and directional information.
The full breakfast, including made-to order omelets, was good and included live entertainment. Seating area was nice but very busy. Staff were busily clearing tables for the next guests. Manager's reception located in same area, also with live music and entertainment. Liked the openness of this space... it's on the 4th floor away from hustle and bustle of street activities and is adjacent to the attractive pool area. Some people have commented about the pool being small. Looking down from our 11th floor suite, I could see other hotel pools in the area, none of which were as large as that of the Embassy Suites.
Elevators are accessed by one's room key to provide extra security for hotel guests. Occasionally, there were minor problems but nothing of great concern... just insert the room key, pull it out and see if the green light comes on to indicate the key is accepted. If not, insert it again... similar to what sometimes needs to be done to access the door to one's room. Personally, I appreciate the extra security.
Housekeeping staff were excellent, efficient and friendly. In fact, ALL staff were incredibly friendly.
Suite size was not overly small as someone reported... it's about the same size as most Embassy Suites... although there WAS a lot of furniture in the room. True, there are no built in closets... Embassy Suites uses an armoire instead. The 2 LCD tv's were quite nice. Furnishings were attractive and comfortable... lots of pillows. The daily newspaper was delivered to the room in an attractive cloth bag... not a typical plastic bag.
We didn't eat at the new restaurant... Yard House... it was way too noisy to suit us. But a variety of restaurants are within walking distance and just a few blocks away is street lined with upscale shopping. No one had mentioned the Denny's Restaurant that is nearby...it's open 24 hrs. Nice to find an inexpensive eating place in expensive Waikiki. Also, there are several ABC Stores nearby where one can purchase snacks, sandwiches, soda, clothing, drugstore items, gifts... just about anything one might need... actually there are 26 ABC stores in Honolulu so they are very hard to miss.
If you sign up for a tour for which hotel pickup is provided, you will need to walk about 1/2 block to the Sheraton Hotel shuttle lobby. This is a centralized pickup point for all hotels in the area; I wish more cities had centralized pickup points so as to minimize the amount of time one spends on the bus going from hotel to hotel before beginning the actual tour.
My recommendation is to call the hotel and ask for an upper level room... they will probably accommodate if possible.
Sometimes just going into a situation knowing the potential problems aids one in dealing with them.
We would definitely return to this hotel.
A very pleasant hotel stay
I'll keep this short: stayed at E.S. Beachwalk February 18 - 23. I was anticipating a lot of construction in the area - it turned out to be very little. The Trump Tower is just a hole in the ground with nothing happening. There was some street work going on, nothing inconvenient, but loud at times. I was in the Aloha Tower on the 15th floor facing east. When out on my lanai, I could see the ocean in the distance and the Beach Walk development below. About 1/3 of the stores were open and the Yardhouse restaurant had just opened. I ate there one night - wouldn't go back - the food was good but the bar area was so loud. Probably a good place for people in their 20's and 30's who want to party. I'm 55, don't drink, and like to be able to hold a conversation without yelling.
Back to the hotel: the a.m. breakfast was one of the nicest I've had at E.S. There was entertainment every morning in the eating area. The 'happy 2 hours' in the late afternoon always had some pleasant local entertainment and the drinks were fine. The chips and salsa snacks were sadly lacking.
The suite had a nice bathroom and housekeeping left me extra goodies daily. I also tipped them $3/day. I had a lanai off the living room and another off the bedroom. Everything was very clean. I might have been the 1st to stay in the room.
The walk to the beach was brief - a short 1 1/2 blocks away. I didn't us the pool (small) much, but the pool area was lovely with lounges, tables and chairs. Always enough for everyone.
The staff bent over backwards to be helpful and everyone I passed always smiled and said hello. I'd stay there again knowing the shops in the area will be open by the time I return. My only hesitation would be when Trump starts building his tower across the street.
Overall an above average to excellent stay.
Just an okay stay!!
My family and I stayed at the new Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk for two-nights during Martin Luther King Junior Weekend as a short weekend trip to Honolulu. This was our fourth trip to Honolulu. The previous three times my family and I stayed at the Hyatt Regency. After much long debate of trying to choose a different hotel to stay at during our 2-night visit to Honolulu, we chose the Embassy Suites due to the fact that this hotel was brand new, an all-suite hotel that included a free breakfast and manager's reception. We took the Roberts airport shuttle to the hotel, which was unable to let us off at the Embassy Suites because of the construction. Therefore, we were dropped off at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach, which is across the street from the Embassy Suites. However, it was difficult to walk to the hotel with all of our luggage in a construction zone. The lobby is drive through. However, when getting dropped off by a shuttle bus it is somewhat inconvenient. When checking in we were given a cup of orange-pineapple juice, which was a very nice touch. There are two towers, but only one is open as the second is still undergoing construction. I felt that this hotel was a somewhat further away than across the street from the beach. There are a quite a few hotels in front of the Embassy Suites blocking the view of the beach. The second tower that is not open yet seems as it is even farther away.
The room was very much standard of most Embassy Suites, consisting of a kitchen sink and microwave, living area with pull-out sofa and a LCD television, and a bedroom with a second LCD television. The suite we stayed in was on the end of the hotel. Therefore, we had a larger lanai, one in the living room and a second one in the bedroom.
The breakfast was excellent. There were a numerous choices that included hot and cold items.
The manager's reception included a band that played Hawaiian music with dancers. The only negative about the free drinks and snacks was when getting drinks from the bar the glasses had water stains on them and my mom found pieces of hair in her potato chips.
There was a business center with three computers and a fitness center that are located within the second tower that is not open yet.
There is a wading pool within the swimming pool, which was standard size. I did enjoy the hot tub as it was rather large.
The friendliness of the staff was mediocre. I did think that everybody at the pool and maids were very nice. However, I did believe that the front desk workers and managers were completely unhelpful.
Returning home our flight did not leave until 10:15p.m. Therefore, I inquired about the latest we could check out. I was told the absolutely latest my family and I could check-out was 1:00p.m., which is 2-hours after check-out time because they needed the room as the hotel was completely full. The hotel offered us a courtesy room to clean-up in before heading to the airport. However, the condition was that we only had 10-minutes per person to use the room because other guests would need to also use the room, which is not much time for 3-people. I was very disappointed by this and asked to speak to a manager, who was completely rude and unhelpful. Thus, the only other option was to keep the room until at the latest 9:00p.m. for half of the room rate, this ended up being $139.00 extra. When I checked-out I asked the customer service agent how full the hotel was and she said they had plenty of rooms, without letting her know I was told earlier that the hotel was full. I questioned to her as to why I was told the hotel was full and that is when she claimed the hotel was actually full.
Therefore, my family and I will again be visiting Honolulu in August of 2007 and have already decided that we will NOT be staying at the Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk, but rather the Hyatt.
Great breakfast, nice pool for kids
We stayed for a week in early Feb. in a 2 bedroom suite at the Embassy Suites Waikiki Beach Walk. The suite was located in the Hula Tower (Aloha Tower not scheduled to open until later in Feb. according to the Front Desk staff). The suite's master bedroom with king bed was roomy as was the bathroom. The living room was on the smaller side compared to other Embassy Suites properties we've stayed in. The table could only fit 3 chairs around it as the space for the 4th chair was taken up by a pillar. Therefore only 3 people could sit at the table at one time. No big deal if you don't plan to eat in your room (there is no room service) or if your kids don't mind eating at the coffee table.
Our 9th floor suite faced east (towards Diamond Head) and had a view of the hotel property across Lewers Street. Yes, it was a bit noisy in the early morning hours (from 5:30 a.m.) due to garbage trucks, tour buses, motorcycles, etc. The sheer density of Waikiki means that sound travels upwards. Noise will be a potential problem no matter where you stay in Waikiki. The other side of the Hula Tower faces towards Fort de Russy with the Trump Tower being built next door. Not much was going on with the Trump Tower construction while we were there - still just a huge, cavernous pit. However, there is currently construction on the streets around the Embassy Suites - on our last morning the loud jackhammer noise from street level below the Grand Lanai (on 4th floor) made breakfast less than enjoyable. I don't know how long it continued but anyone in the pool area would have been bothered by the noise (unless you are partial to the incessant sound of jackhammers!).
The suite was clean and well-kept as one would expect from a new property. The second bedroom had 2 queen beds in it (as we had requested) and also had its own microwave, safe, coffee maker and minibar-size fridge. Strangely, it was connected to the living room by adjoining doors as one would find in connecting hotel rooms rather than in one two-bedroom suite. It also had its own door to the hallway and a separate room number. All suites appear to have a lanai (balcony) with chairs and very small table. If your room is in the Hula Tower on the 4th floor facing west (towards Fort de Russy) then you will have tall cement planters outside your lanai to separate you from the pool area.
As others have commented, there are no closets in the suite. The armoire and dresser drawers in each bedroom plus the drawers in the living room were sufficient for us (3 adults, 2 children).
Cafeteria-style breakfast is comprehensive and is served 6:30 - 10:00 a.m.. The food service area is very clean and there are always bus persons around clearing trays and dishes. There were high chairs although we ended up bringing our own Wet Wipes to breakfast to wipe down the high chair and sometimes the table. About ¾ of the seating area is covered. On busier days people had to sit at tables that weren't under cover - which could be a problem if it rains in the morning. Keeping in mind that only 1 of the 2 towers is open, I think there is potential for overcrowding and long line-ups/waits for food when the Aloha Tower opens. At times the kitchen could not keep up with the demand for food and people had to wait around for more food to be brought out. The breakfast is very good and was one of the most significant factors in deciding to stay there. However I do wonder how they will manage when the hotel is fully operational and booked to capacity. I don't think there is enough seating to accommodate that many people.
The pool area currently (February) does not get sun until around 11:30 a.m. There is a bar but no food available for purchase whatsoever. The pool is 4 ft. deep at the deepest part and one small area has been built up to be 18 inches deep and is extra warm for very small children. This worked well for our kids (1 & 4 years old). There is the equivalent of a giant hot tub attached to the pool - the controls are back on the rock wall which most people seemed to miss.
The managers' reception from 5:30 - 7:30 p.m. is a terrific concept that just needs a little work. The drinks flow freely and there is pop and coffee as well. However, the "snacks" consist of potato chips, tortilla chips and salsa. That's it. At the Embassy Suites in La Jolla where we stayed in Oct. 2006, they also served pretzels. There is live music during the receptions - some days it was too loud and served as a deterrent to staying longer. We sometimes brought our own snacks to eat (i.e., macadamia nuts, Maui onion chips) and once even did a Quizno's take-out (on Kalakaua & Lewers) and made dinner out of the reception.
Construction is fast and furious along Beach Walk Street and when done will look very nice. Most of the shops & restaurants inside the Embassy Suites complex are not yet open (e.g., Ruth Chris Steakhouse and Roy's Restaurant). About 75% of the street level shops along Beach Walk are open. You can buy coffee, snacks, gelato, sandwiches and salads, as well as t-shirts, jewelry, swimwear, etc.
We would stay at Embassy Suites again only after first considering other locations that are more central. It is about a 15 minute walk to the central Waikiki beach area (Hyatt/Marriott hotels) where the sand is nicer and the beach area is wider. There is also a lagoon area across the street from the Marriott Hotel which is perfect for very young children as it isn't more than 3 feet deep and has no waves. The Embassy Suites isn't exactly "steps to the beach" as the Hyatt or Marriott hotels are. Yes, you have to cross the street but then you have to walk in between the neighbouring hotel properties that are beachfront. The beach area there is very small/narrow. You can walk along the beach a little ways towards Diamond Head past the Sheraton where the beach area is wider - but the trek is too difficult to manoeuvre with a stroller.
Since there are almost no hotels that offer 2 bedroom suites, if you want to keep your family together then the Embassy Suites is currently probably your only choice. Otherwise you're looking at booking two separate rooms elsewhere at the equivalent or probably higher price. We had also looked for a two-bedroom condo but there weren't any available. Most have to be booked well in advance of your travel dates and/or rent out only on a monthly basis. The Embassy Suites was pricey compared to their other locations in California, but overall, Waikiki is an expensive place to visit anyways.
Embassy Suites Waikiki Beachwalk was not completely open when we checked in on January 13. Only one tower (Hula tower) was open; shops and restaurants in the complex were still in progress. Compared to other Embassy Suites (Maui, San Diego, etc) this one was less appealing. The best part about it was the fact that everything is brand new. The worst part about it was the size; the rooms are scaled way down. The living room and bedroom were crowded with furniture and there are no closets (only an armoir with hangers/shelves inside). Families with children will undoubtedly feel the need for more space, as the "suites" are barely larger than a big hotel room.
Parking is expensive ($25 per day). There seems to only be one attendant on duty, and we had to wait for him to show up so we could get our car. The elevators require a room key to get to any floor, and the keys don't always function properly. We encountered other guests in the elevator having problems.
The pool area is small, but pleasant. The breakfast is fairly standard for Embassy Suites; the cocktail reception could use some more creative snacks than chips and salsa.
Service was OK--check in was slow, maid service was spotty (coffee maker not cleaned, coffee supplies not replaced, burnt out light bulbs not replaced). Restaurant personnel were polite, but not terribly enthusiastic. There is the feeling that there aren't quite enough staff to accommodate a hotel full of guests.
The new Trump tower being built across the street will obliterate much of the view towards Fort DeReussy Park, and the construction of this building starts quite early in the morning. We were on the 18th floor--nearly at the top--and the garbage trucks beeping and construction-related noises awakened us each morning around 5:30am.
The "ocean view" is actually seen between buildings. When the construction in this Beachwalk area is complete, it will be a nice enough place to stay; the beach closest to the hotel has lots of sand and food and rentals--but overall, the location of this property is a bit too far removed from the center of Waikiki for my taste. I would probably not choose to stay here again.
I live on the island of Oahu and had seen the Embassy Suites advertise in our local paper.
Before I booked a night I decided to drive there and check out the hotel before hand. There is only valet parking here. Trump Tower is just being built right next door so the construction and noise in the area is intense. I checked with the concerige to ask about the hotel but when I told him I was not a guest but a local and wanted to check out the hotel he simple handed me a brochure and walked away acting like he was busy. To check in, you use valet parking and go to the desk, all in one section with a few comfy chairs to sit on. Smells like car gas and new carpet. The pool area is very small with a large amount of chairs by the pool to sunbath. So many chairs to sit that its difficult getting to the pool. After todays viewing I have decided not to stay here and stick with the Hilton Waikiki where Im a regular with its vast grounds.
Not Worth the High Price Tag
We stayed here New Year's Eve, but the prices were not much different from other times. We had a 2 bedroom suite on the 20th floor. The room actually was comprised of a 1 bedroom suite and a second adjoining bedroom. Frankly, the space was very small. There were no closets at all. I cannot see how the adjoining bedroom could ever be called a suite; it was really nothing more than a smallish standard hotel room.
The rooms had balconys which were nice, unless, of course, you have vertigo. They are rather narrow and if heights bother you, stay on a lower floor.
Check in is odd since you drive right into the lobby. All parking is valet, so bring some small bills for tips. The reception allows you to sit at a desk which is an attempt to copy truly upscale hotels. It doesn't really succeed since the check-in process was still a bit cumbersome.
There are two towers to this massive hotel and I believe that only one was open when we were there (they only opened in mid-December 2006) If both towers were full, I anticipate that the facilities will be strained to the breaking point. While the breakfast area is nice, it was slow even with less than a full house. The pool also seems small for such a large number of guests.
The cocktail reception was nice and there was a band. The only problem was that the snacks were served on regular china dishes and if you sat too close to the pool, security or the wait staff shooed you away since no breakables are allowed in the pool area. This is really dumb planning - if the reception is near the pool, get unbreakable plates, for goodness sakes! The glasses were all plastic, so somebody had at least half a thought about breakage.
The staff certainly was nice and friendly, although I expect that the "shake down" period continues. Our room keys did not all work when we checked in.
The elevators require the use of your room key, but that fact is not clearly communicated so the first trip or two is an adventure. Additionally, the card reader is very sensitive and requires multiple attempts before the green lght appears allowing you to select your floor. Several riders missed their floors when I was there.
The ongoing construction in the immediate area is an issue and will only get worse as the Trump building goes up. It will also significantly reduce the ocean views.
We originally had booked two standard rooms at the Sheraton and canceled them since this 2 bedroom suite was about the same price - I'm sorry that we did.
Brand New Embassy Suites Waikiki
Overall the hotel is very pretty. It is located in an urban setting with no grounds to speak of. Also, although there are views of the ocean from the higher floors, it is not directly on the beach, but across the street. The section of beach closest to the hotel is a little rocky at the shore.
One of the biggest drawbacks is the fact that there is major construction going on around the hotel. We were on the 16th floor and still heard a lot of street noise which started early in the morning with the beeping of garbage trucks backing up. Construction has just begun on a new Trump tower which is directly across the street. The restaurants and most of the shops that will be part of the hotel complex are still under construction. Actually there seems to be quite a bit of construction throughout the Waikiki area so it may be hard to avoid. There are some street closures in the area, but that didn't seem to cause too many problems. Valet parking in the hotel is $25 per night.
When we first arrived on Oahu we happened to get a taxi driver who had no knowledge of the hotel which had opened only days before. When we gave him the address he claimed that there was an empty lot there where a building had recently been demolished. He might have been thinking of the area on the opposite side of the street. In fact, we stopped just past the hotel without knowing it and were about to call for directions when we spotted it. The lobby is open and cars can drive through.
The room we had was a one-bedroom suite consisting of a living area and separate bedroom. Since the hotel is new, everything is clean and fresh from the carpet to the sheets and towels. There are no closets anywhere in the suite which made it look cluttered with no place to stash shoes and coats (as you can see from my photos.) Overall the two areas are long and narrow. Rooms are available with either two queens or one king bed. The bedroom was good sized with a hutch that held a tv and a few drawers. The living area was about the same size including a queen-size fold-out couch which was very comfortable for a sofa bed and another tv. There is also a kitchen area with a small refrigerator, microwave and sink but no utensils are provided. There were two narrow terraces, both with beautiful ocean views.
The pool is located on the 4th floor. It was very narrow with a kiddie pool connected (sharing the same water.) It was also shallow with a maximum depth of 5 feet. We noticed one of the restrooms near the pool area remained very dirty for over 24 hours. Also located on the 4th floor is a self-service breakfast with made-to-order omelets, a juice and coffee bar, fresh fruit, cereal, toast, French toast, bacon and sausage. Wait staff were very attentive in refilling coffee and clearing dishes. This is offered every morning from 6:30-10 am. Every evening from 5:30-7:30 pm is the managers cocktail party with an open bar and light snacks. Live entertainment was usually provided.
Service is definitely a strong point. Everyone was very friendly and eager to help which was the case throughout the two islands we visited; Oahu and Maui. There was a mixup when we checked in at Embassy Suites regarding the ocean view room we had reserved but the person at the desk was able to resolve it after a few minutes. When we first went to the room we had trouble getting the door open. Within minutes three workers were there to fix it. We were always able to get in but throughout the three days the door lock remained tricky. We asked the housekeeper for an extra pillow and that was delivered within 10 minutes. The staff had mentioned a turndown service to get the sofa bed ready for the evening which never happened. It was easier for us to do it ourselves so we never bothered to call them about it.
Since the hotel is new, they are offering discounts off what will be the regular prices. They have even better deals for residents of Hawaii to encourage them to stay at the hotel and spread the word.
Embassy Suites - not worth it
I read the mixed reviews for Embassy Suites and went with it anyway - thinking the space, breakfast and cocktail hour would be worth it.
For the money, I would now go somewhere else. While our stay wasn't horrible, it wasn't worthy of the cost. I guess my feelings are that if you are going to pay $300+ per night you deserve quality - not ho hum. The suites are spacious, but how much time are you going to spend in your room? The beach is good but better on the south end of the island. The food was fair (for buffet) but didn't like having to bus my own table to have a place to sit. For an oceanside resort with a casual atmosphere, they are a little too strict on the shirt & shoes requirement for their "cocktail hour". (A swimsuit top does not count as a shirt.) Bottom line - they don't pay attention to details. You can spend less and get the same quality elsewhere.