Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators
A large, uninspiring high-rise on the water -- but not on the beach -- and roughly 10 minutes from restaurants.epicenter, the Prince appeals to its largely Japanese client base with , a bilingual staff, and two seafood
In most places, 578 rooms in two 28-story towers would make you a pretty imposing player in the local hospitality industry. In Hawaii. Instead it overlooks the Ala Wai Yacht Harbor, in the northwest corner of Waikiki, across the canal from the closest beach., it puts you in the middle and, if you play your cards right, in the thick of the competition. The problem with the Hawaii Prince -- the main problem, anyway -- is that it's nowhere near the thick of things. Worse still, it's not even on the beach -- a problem if you're a hotel in
The hotel's two seafood restaurants, plenty of , and bilingual staff provides some character -- and also some truly delicious food. But the mood is still quiet and subdued. The lobby, beautiful though it is, is quiet and often empty. Ditto for the lobby bar, the Promenade Deck, and the pool.
Isolated from the beach and the heart of convention center, but convenient to the
The Prince is nestled in the far northwestern corner of Ala Wai Yacht Harbor meets the Ala Wai Canal (the unofficial border of Waikiki). You have to hike a bit once you've gone to reach the restaurants and shopping centers on , Waikiki's main drag. They're a healthy 15 to 25 minutes away by foot (or a quick taxi). The nearest beach, in Ala Moana Park, is a five- to 10-minute walk (see Beach, below). Basically, it's as far away from the action as you can get while still remaining in the general vicinity. Unless you have business at the Hawaii Convention Center, staying at the Prince could very well make you feel like you're missing the party., where the
Five- to 10-minute walk to the nearest beach, Ala Moana Beach Park
The distance from the beach is probably the biggest drawback of the Prince. Unless you're here for a convention, you're most likely coming to Hawaii to spend some time on the beach. The Prince doesn't have one. Your best bet is to walk along the yacht harbor for 10 minutes till you hit the manmade lagoon at the Hilton Hawaiian Village. It's a nice little spot with tons of activities, especially for kids, but for a "real" beach, you'll need to walk five minutes further, to . It's not as picturesque as its famous neighbor to the southeast, , but it's far less crowded. The water is shallow, warm, and calm, making Fort DeRussy a decent place to swim, especially for kids. But the ocean bottom is a bit rocky, so tread gingerly. Lifeguards monitor the beach throughout the day.
For a more sedate beach experience, walk northwest on Ala Moana Boulevard, across the canal, to Ala Moana Beach Park. There you'll find decent sand, calm water, and more locals. There are no concession stands, though, so bring your own food, drinks, and equipment.
Large, but outdated; generic and balcony-less
The rooms at the Prince are spacious (standard rooms are about 425 square feet) and well-appointed with a bench, desk, and multiple stuffed chairs, and feature decent views of the yacht harbor and ocean beyond. A very soft renovation to the Prince was completed in late 2011, adding new rugs, desk chairs, and lamps to the space that have brightened things up a bit, but plans for a major renovation have not yet been finalized. Overall, they get the job done.
The usual selection, plus some nice bonuses
The array of amenities is, along with the service, the best reason to stay at the Prince.
Not great for families
There's not much focus on kids here.
Clean, but the hotel needs an update
The Prince's last renovation was in 2005, and that was only a partial update (some furniture and technology, etc.). The hotel underwent a soft renovation in late 2011, but no major renovations have been planned so far. Although there were no disturbing cleanliness issues, this is a case of an older, slightly understaffed hotel.
I hope you like seafood. The Prince offers both a sushi place and a seafood buffet. Other than that, there's not a whole lot more here or in the nearby vicinity.
This bland, 578-room high-rise 10 to 15 minutes from the main restaurants, but its worn, outdated rooms need a renovation. Newer rooms at lower prices and closer to the beach can be found at more than a few other area hotels.action -- and, alas, its beach -- features strong service and two good