Best Hotel Rooms in Waikiki

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Visitors to Oahu will encounter all varieties of room sizes, styles, and amenities. We know. We slept in more than 90 beds across the island to come up with these top picks. To choose the best rooms, we favored hotels that created distinctive, up-to-date spaces, rather than defaulting to the traditional prints and lackluster fabrics of a bygone Hawaii. To make this list, the hotel room must be spacious, stylish, and sumptuous.

  1. The Kahala tops our list of best hotel rooms with spacious, recently renovated rooms that are expertly decorated (we wish our homes were this tasteful and elegant). The d├ęcor -- earth tones, stripes, and florals paired together, and a dark-wood, two-poster bed -- strikes a classy note. Enormous bathrooms are well-appointed with soaking tubs, walk-in showers with rain showerheads, and bath products by Floris of London. The hotel offers 16 different types of rooms and suites, and for a princely sum you can have one that overlooks the dolphin lagoon or sits right on the beach.

  2. Steering clear of the standard Hawaiian florals and polyester blankets, rooms here stand out for their sophisticated, urban design. Dark wood paneling and slate floors provide a sharp contrast with the white linens and white desk, and colorful accents like the orange blankets and red-trimmed mirror brighten those neutrals. The "Miami bachelor pad" feel carries over to the mounted flat-screen TV and the sleek, modern bathroom.

  3. The one- and two-bedroom condo units here are the newest in Waikiki, and their spiffy appliances earn them a spot on the top Hawaii room list. The fully equipped kitchens have GE appliances, including a full-size fridge and dishwasher. The spiffiness continues with tech perks like free Wi-Fi, two 37-inch flat-screen TVs with about 500 digital channels, a DVD player, and surround sound. Each suite has a Bosch washer and dryer too, making these rooms especially attractive for families on long stays. You can count on sleeping soundly on beds with six pillows, pillow-top mattresses, and high-thread-count linens.

  4. The appeal of guest rooms at the Halekulani rests in their simple, classic design. In keeping with the look of this iconic hotel, the spacious rooms are understated, decorated in white and other soft neutral tones. They come with balconies big enough for a table, two chairs, and a lounger, and large, luxurious bathrooms with soaking tubs. With free Wi-Fi, super-plush beds, and a 40-inch flat-screen TV, guests may be tempted to stay indoors.

  5. While rooms in the Tower Wing come across as bland and dated, the recently renovated (in 2008) rooms in the Historic Wing of this iconic 1927 hotel are whimsical and romantic. Striking red-and-gold wallpaper covers the walls, while the floors are carpeted in an olive-and-green Florentine pattern. Somehow the mix-and-match colors, florals, and stripes all mesh beautifully, and the result is the feel of understated class. Bathrobes, slippers, and a fancy hair dryer are nice perks too.

  6. Decorated in bright blues and greens - with a few contrasting red accents - rooms at Best Western are among the brightest and most creative on Oahu. Details like lamps and headboards are contemporary and funky, and we appreciated the use of circles everywhere (including the carpet, blanket, and headboard). Free Wi-Fi, small kitchenettes, and comfy pillow-topped beds are welcome additions to the cheery decor.

  7. The Lotus was formerly a W hotel, and that past life is still evident in the stylish and comfortable rooms. The light neutral color scheme and teak furniture give the spacious rooms an airy, beachy feel. The balconies overlook nearby Diamond Head, the ocean, or both. Plush featherbeds, enormous bathrooms, and a very reasonable price tag solidify the Lotus' spot on our best rooms list.

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