Oyster Hotel Photos
Oyster Hotel Review
There's not much to the Outrigger Regency on Beachwalk -- just 48 fully kitted condos plus a lobby that's no bigger than an oversize walk-in closet. Hotel literature calls it a "resort condominium," but there's zero by way of a "resort," unless you count the access guests have to the pool at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach, less than a block away, or the proximity to the Ft. DeRussy section of Waikiki Beach, a two-minute walk away.
In its former life, the building was an amalgam of apartments before Outrigger, a Hawaii-based chain with properties all over the Pacific, renovated and converted it into condo units ranging from 650 to 900 square feet, all with full kitchens and balconies. The units are privately owned, and there's a tiny Outrigger sales office off the lobby, but there's no hawking going on.
The units here are on the small side compared to those at the newly renovated, 32-story Hilton Grand Waikikian, which also have access to all of the amenities at the massive Hilton Hawaiian Village, but the Outriggers' are equally clean, modern, and fully up-to-date: stainless-steel kitchen appliances, rain-fall showerheads, and two flat-panel TVs. There are a few salient downsides, however: the units can get loud with street noise and the only ocean views in this nine-story building are from the 8th and 9th floors -- and even then, it's only a partial view. Most folks have to settle instead for a view of the street -- or of the new 38-story glass wonder, er, Trump Tower, which opened in November 2009.
Located on the western edge of Waikiki less than five minutes to Ft. DeRussy beach, and steps to some of the area's best shopping.
The Outrigger Regency on Beachwalk is located on the western edge of Waikiki on the eponymous Beachwalk Street, a one-way, single-block-long street off Kalakaua, one of Waikiki's two main drags. It's one of the mellower areas in town, and tends to attract more older couples and families than young, partying college kids. Within the immediate vicinity is the Embassy Suites, Outrigger Reef on the Beach, Halekulani, and the Trump Tower. Beachwalk is generally a quiet street, but traffic can bottleneck fast and most likely has become more of a problem since the nearby Trump Tower opened in late 2009. Within a block of the hotel is Ft. DeRussy Beach Park.
A few blocks away is Kalakaua Avenue, a touristy, milelong stretch of shops, restaurants, and high-rise hotels that runs along Waikiki Beach on Oahu's southeast coast, offers a curious blend of mainland creature comforts and local flavor. On the sidewalks, Japanese tourists intermingle with tanned locals, surfboards under their arms, on their way to the beach to catch a few waves after work. On both sides of the street, high-end retailers -- Tiffany, Cartier, and yes, even an Apple store -- are interspersed with indoor malls and streetside vendors hawking cheap seashell jewelry and T-shirts. Seemingly every mid-market chain restaurant can be found here -- Cheesecake Factory, California Pizza Kitchen, Tony Roma's -- along with more than a handful of Starbucks and fast-food joints. And towering above it all: 40-story, thousand-room hotels dotting the landscape like pins in a cushion.
- Wide variety of shopping, dining, and drinking -- all within walking distance
- Beachwalk runs parallel to the closely named Waikiki Beach Walk, a shopping/retail/dining stretch on Lewers Street.
- The International Market Place and Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center are less than a 10-minute walk down Kalakaua.
- Kapiolani Park, an oasis of (relative) calm for people-watching and local flavor, is 20 minutes by foot.
- Honolulu Zoo, is 20 minutes by foot.
- Cheap and easy to get around Waikiki via "The Bus"
- Honolulu International Airport is a 15-minute cab ride.
Less than a block from Fort DeRussy Beach
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 Regency on Beachwalk is located about 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
- 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
A former apartment building that was fully renovated in 2006 and transformed into 48 condos, the Outrigger Regency on Beachwalk has units slightly smaller than most in the area -- 494 square feet (plus a 145-square-foot balcony) in a one-bedroom and 693 square feet (plus a 217-square-foot balcony) in a two-bedroom. But they're some of the cleanest, most modern, and fully up-to-date in Waikiki. All have full kitchens and large bathrooms. The only Waikiki condos that beat out these are at the newly renovated Hilton Grand Waikikian -- though they're farther from the Waikiki action, they're bigger and have access to many more on-site amenities at the massive Hilton Hawaiian Village.
- Views are disappointing: partial ocean view only from the 8th and 9th floors, views of street or nearby Trump Tower from others.
- No king beds or rollaways -- you're stuck with a queen and a sleeper sofa.
- More modern kitchens than most area condos: stainless-steel GE appliances, four-burner electric stove, full-size refrigerator, dishwasher, microwave, knife block, garbage disposal, dishware and pots and pans
- Basket under the sink with extras -- dishwasher detergent, sponge, mini box of Tide -- is a nice touch.
- Hard beds with standard-fare sheets for Waikiki condos (60% cotton/40% poly-blend)
- No tubs in large bathrooms, just showers with rain-fall showerheads and a wonky shower curtain
- Wall-mounted Fujitsu AC doesn't cool entire condo; fortunately, two-bedroom units have two A/Cs.
- 35" LG flat-panel TV, safe big enough for laptop; Ethernet cable for free Internet (fast, but not blazing)
- Free daily copy of the Honolulu Star-Advertiser
Rooms and Rates
With the exception of its spacious and well-equipped one- and two- bedroom condos, this is a pretty barebones operation.
- No pool or gym on-site; guests can use the pool (not the gym) at sister hotel, Outrigger Reef on the Beach down the block.
- No Wi-Fi, but wired Internet is free and relatively fast
- Convenient 24-hour, coin-operated laundry; two free mini boxes of Tide in condo
- No computers; next-door Internet cafe/convenience store Nihau offers per-minute Internet
- 21 first-come-first-served parking spots with in-and-out privileges (charged daily)
Okay for families, with some drawbacks
Units with full kitchens, and amenities like an on-site laundry and kids' welcome gifts, make this a popular spot for families, but the lack of an on-site pool is a major drag, plus the beach is a short walk away. Families can do better in the larger units at the Grand Waikikian, and at the same time have access to lots of children's activities and the pools of the Hilton Waikiki Village.
- Easy to sleep whole family in two-bedroom units with two queen beds and a pullout couch
- Super-convenient full kitchens with electric ranges, full-size refrigerators, toasters, coffeemakers, pots and pans, plates, cutlery, and dish soap; Costco within a 20-minute drive
- No on-site pool is a drawback; guests can use the pool at the Outrigger Reef on the Beach, less than a block away or visit the less-crowded Fort DeRussy section of Waikiki beach just beyond the pool
- Two convenient, 24-hour, coin-operated laundry rooms
- Not many movie or cable options for kids other than the major networks and Nickelodeon
Super-clean rooms and public areas
The hotel opened in February 2007 and has been immaculately maintained. Other than a little mildew in the shower, one could walk barefoot all over the unit without acquiring so much as a speck of dust on the feet. The public areas (though there aren't many other than the open-air hallways) are equally clean.
Three on-site restaurants featuring Japanese and Italian cuisine
With such up-to-date kitchens and so many restaurants within a two-block radius, it's almost irrelevant that the Outrigger Regency has no on-site dining options.
- The Tonkatsu Ginza Bairin, the Hawaiian outpost of a Japanese restaurant, serves the best tonkatsu (pork cutlet) this side of the international dateline
- Arancino serves Italian cuisine in a cozy setting
- Matsugen is a Japanese soba-ya buckwheat noodle restaurant that serves fresh soba prepared daily on site
- A next-door branch of the ubiquitous ABC chain sells basics -- milk, fruit, cereal, brand-name liquor
- Food Pantry, a full-service grocery, is a 10-minute walk.
- Branches of Sam's Club, Walmart, and Foodland are within a 10-minute cab ride
- Two blocks away, Eggs 'n Things, offers a delicious, hefty brunch
- Nearby chain restaurants include Cheesecake Factory, Tony Roma's, and Denny's
Transport to / from Hotel
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Separate Bedroom / Living Room Space
|Address||255 Beachwalk, Honolulu, HI 96815|
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