Outrigger Reef On The Beach Rating: 4.0 Pearls
Waikiki, Honolulu, Oahu

Oyster Review Summary

Photos and Review by Oyster.com Investigators

Pros

  • Direct beach access
  • Fun Shore Bird Restaurant; coveted sunset views
  • Great pool deck; comfortable lounge chairs
  • Classy, modern guest rooms
  • Nice spa with reasonably priced treatments
  • Free phone calls to U.S. and Canada
  • Free Wi-Fi in all rooms

Cons

Bottom Line

This hotel, located directly on Waikiki Beach, has many admirable features: a great pool deck, three affordable restaurants with vibrant atmosphere, a spa, artwork and activities that get visitors in touch with Hawaiian culture, and spacious, tastefully decorated, tropical-themed rooms. In short, one of the best Waikiki choices in its price range.

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Oyster Hotel Review

 Scene

A $110 million renovation in early 2009 gave this moderately priced beachfront resort a casually elegant vibe and turned it into one of the freshest-looking properties in Waikiki.

The pool
The pool

The tastefully executed nautical theme, characterized by a century-old Hoaloha koa canoe suspended from the lobby's high ceiling, garnered a coveted Keep It Hawaii hospitality award in 2008.

But it's not an old boat that's boosted this property's profile and value; rather, it's the pleasant pool deck, the state-of-the-art fitness room and business center, the spa, daily activities (like hula dancing and ukulele playing), cocktail-hour entertainment, plus spacious, well-appointed rooms with both tropical and modern touches -- all of which was renovated in 2009. The hotel also cut the overall number of rooms from 900 to 639 in order to expand even the standard ones.

This Outrigger is a decidedly quieter and more intimate version of its popular sister property, Outrigger Waikiki on the Beach, just down Kalia Road. Still, the Shore Bird Restaurant and the Ocean House draw solid crowds -- after all, tables with a sunset ocean views are hard to come by on Waikiki Beach.

In fact, everything at this Outrigger is a distinct cut above average, except the level of service, which is competent but not particularly impressive. Nevertheless, this fresh, beachfront property is one of the best values among midpriced hotels in Waikiki.

 Location

Directly on the beach, this Outrigger is located on the quieter, western side of Waikiki, but close to the shopping and dining.

The Outrigger is on the western end of Kalia Road, directly on the beach, next to luxury properties like the Halekulani and with the 38-floor Trump Towers across the street. The immediate area is decidedly mellower than the other end of the main strip, yet plenty close to the shopping and restaurants the area is known for.

Across the street, there's the newly finished Waikiki Beach Walk,an eight-acre, double-level retail and restaurant shopping center. A five-minute walk will get visitors to the center of Waikiki, with attractions like the International Market Place and Kalakaua Avenue, a touristy, milelong stretch of shops, restaurants, and high-rise hotels.

  • Wide variety of shopping, dining, and drinking -- all within walking distance
  • Next to Fort DeRussy Park, home to the city's Army Museum
  • Cheap and easy to get around Waikiki via "The Bus"
  • Honolulu International Airport is a 15-minute cab ride

 Rooms

Hawaiian-themed decor and lots of modern touches

City View Room
City View Room

Spacious rooms, with extremely comfortable beds, 32-inch flat-screen TVs, clean, and well-appointed bathrooms with marble countertops. During the renovation, the hotel decreased the number of rooms from 900 to 639 in order to expand the size of the rooms -- even the standard ones, which range from 340 to 400 square feet.

  • The least expensive rooms, so-called moderates, are spacious but have no balconies.
  • All suites and multiple-room units include a pullout couch.
  • Locally made (though hotel-branded) toiletries
  • All rooms have a mini-fridge and a coffeemaker.
  • Alarm clock/radio can hook up to an MP3 player.
  • All phone calls made to the U.S. mainland, Canada, and locally are included at no extra charge.
  • Free Wi-Fi in every room

 Features

Pool and spa; a small fitness center; bare-bones business center; Hawaiian cultural activities; group wedding-renewal ceremonies

Serenity Spa
Serenity Spa

The thoughtful renovation included the lovely pool deck, which has comfortable lounge chairs and three whirlpools, and the spa. The hotel also offers daily activities like lei-making and hula dancing. Plus there's a twice-weekly traditional Hawaiian vow renewal ceremony for couples.

  • Kidney-shaped pool is fairly big for Waikiki.
  • Lounge chairs are comfortable and plentiful (at many properties you have to fight for them).
  • Three Jacuzzis on the pool deck.
  • The Serenity Spa does not have a sauna or steam room, but treatment rooms are pretty. The spa menu offers several affordable treatments, like the Hawaiian Lomi Lomi massage or three-hour spa packages.
  • The fitness center has nice equipment -- two treadmills, three elypticals, two bikes, weight machines, and free weights -- but it's small and windowless and has an unpleasant rubbery smell.
  • The servicable business center has three PC stations and one printer.
  • Onsite Hertz Car Rental desk.
  • Daily Hawaiian cultural activities, including lei-making, ukulele lessons, and hula dancing lessons; all are popular with kids.
  • More than 4,000 couples have renewed their wedding vows here during a free, early-morning ritual conducted Tuesdays and Fridays at 8 a.m. by a nondenominational Hawaiian kahu (or priest).

 Beach

Situated on (not across the street from) one of the world's most famous beaches; Fort DeRussy Beach is the closest subsection.

The beach
The beach

Located on Kalia Road, Outrigger Reef on the Beach is as beachside as one can get in Waikiki. This is a real luxury -- at most Waikiki hotels, it's a haul to go from pool to beach; here, they're a few steps apart.

Loosely speaking, the entire 1.5-mile stretch of sand alongside Kalakaua Avenue is known as Waikiki Beach. In reality, it's more like three separate beaches, the borders of which vary depending on whom you ask. The Outrigger Reef on the Beach is located a block from the Fort DeRussy section, which is far less crowded than its more famous neighbor to the southeast, Queen's Beach. The water is shallow, warm, and calm, making Fort DeRussy a decent place to swim, especially for kids.

  • Public beach
  • Ocean bottom is rocky, unlike neighboring Queen's Beach
  • Lifeguards monitor the beach throughout the day
  • Free towels, provided by the hotel from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Umbrellas and lounge chairs must be rented from one of the many Star Beach Boys stands
  • Water-sports equipment, like surfboards and boogie boards, available for rental at the Star Beach Boys stands

 Family

Located directly on the beach, this Outrigger is a very good choice for families.

The beach
The beach

With daily activities, kid-friendly food, spacious rooms, and a beachfront location, this hotel is very good choice for those traveling with kids.

  • Guests ages 17 and younger can stay in a room at no extra charge
  • Cribs are free
  • No rollaway beds, but suites and multiple-room units have full size pullout couches
  • All three restaurants offer kids' menus
  • The beach in this area is mostly coral bottom, but it has a lifeguard

 Cleanliness

Clean rooms and common areas

This hotel gets high marks for cleanliness, especially in the guest rooms, which still have a barely-been-used feel. Some sand can be seen at the beachside entrance near the restaurants, but that's a small price to pay for having the ocean so close -- and staffers diligently sweep the entranceway several times a day.

 Food

Three decent and moderately priced restaurants, plus a Starbucks on the premises.

Ocean House restaurant
Ocean House restaurant

Three restaurants -- two of them with sunset views -- and a Starbucks

  • The casual and constantly busy Shore Bird Restaurant serves up a buffet and a la carte menus three meals a day. Breakfast and lunch buffets. A la carte options for lunch include ahi tacos, mahi mahi sandwiches, burgers, and turkey clubs. For dinner, guests find it fun to select their surf or turf and grill it themselves on one of the grills out back.
  • The more upscale Ocean House specializes in local seafood dishes.
  • Kani Ka Pila Grill, next to the pool, serves a sit-down breakfast, lunch, dinner, evening pupus, and some inventive cocktails. The restaurant features nightly live entertainment from award-winning Hawaiian musicians.
  • Kani Ka Pila Grill provides the room service
  • Starbucks, located near the hotel's entrance, opens at 5 a.m., just in time to give the early morning surfers a java jolt.

 Bottom Line

This hotel, located directly on Waikiki Beach, has many admirable features: a great pool deck, three affordable restaurants with vibrant atmosphere, a spa, artwork and activities that get visitors in touch with Hawaiian culture, and spacious, tastefully decorated, tropical-themed rooms. In short, one of the best Waikiki choices in its price range.

Things You Should Know About Outrigger Reef On The Beach

Address

  • 2169 Kalia Road, Honolulu, HI 96815

Hotel Is Also Known As...

  • Honolulu Outrigger
  • Outrigger Honolulu
  • Outrigger Hotel Honolulu
  • Outrigger Reef Beach

Room Types

  • City View Room
  • Four Bedroom Oceanfront Suite
  • Moderate Room
  • Oceanfront Room
  • Ocean View Room
  • One Bedroom City View Suite
  • One Bedroom Oceanfront Suite
  • One Bedroom Ocean View Suite
  • One Bedroom Partial Ocean View Suite
  • Partial Ocean View Room
  • Three Bedroom Oceanfront Suite
  • Two Bedroom Oceanfront Suite

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Hotel Features

Number of Rooms: 872
Pool: N/A
Fitness Center: Yes
Spa: Yes
Cribs: Yes
Jacuzzi (in room): N/A
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Hotel Information

Location: Waikiki, Honolulu
Address: 2169 Kalia Road, Honolulu, HI 96815
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