From spectacular ocean views to rooftop infinity pools and great restaurants, these are the best luxury and boutique hotels in Waikiki.
World famous Wakiki Beach is the beating heart of Hawaii. Located in Honolulu, its calm waters and white sandy beaches have been a surfer’s paradise for decades. Today, it’s the perfect location for a romantic getaway, wedding celebration or family holiday.
There’s so much to do in Waikiki Beach too. Visitors can try surfing, paddle boarding, outrigger canoeing with sea turtles and scuba diving along the coral reefs. When you see the colour of the water, you’ll definitely want to dive straight in – I did!
Waikiki’s main street, Kalakaua Avenue, is home to lots of luxury hotels. It’s a great area to stay in as you’ll be close to all the action! There are plenty of restaurants close by, as well as the top shopping malls including the Royal Hawaiian and International Market Place. Overlooking Waikiki is Diamond Head Crater, an extinct volcano, and an easy hike from town. You can read more about visiting in my guide here.
If you’re looking for a smaller, boutique hotel in Waikiki, there are several of those too. The best part? Nothing is far from the city’s key attractions such as Honolulu Zoo, Pearl Harbor and the Waikiki Aquarium. The hardest bit will be deciding which to pick, but hopefully that’s where I can help!
I’ve rounded up some of my favourite hotels in Waikiki so that you don’t have to spend hours trawling booking sites and reading reviews. I hope my guide helps you – let me know where you end up!
The Best Luxury and Boutique Hotels in Waikiki, Hawaii
It’s a plethora of pink at one of the finest luxury hotels in Waikiki! A Luxury Collection resort with a 5 star rating, the Royal Hawaiian Hotel has the nickname, the ‘Pink Palace of the Pacific’.
You might recognise the hotel’s chic retro look too, as ‘Mad Men’ was filmed here! Rooms have authentic mid-century styled furniture and romantic ocean views. All of course, come with pink fluffy bathrobes!
The outdoor swimming pool offers guests pink lounge chairs to relax on, while the bar and restaurant serve cocktails right on the beach. Other 21st century amenities include private poolside cabanas with attendants, a spa and a fitness centre.
If outdoor yoga in 22 acres of tropical gardens sounds amazing, then welcome to one of the best luxury hotels in Waikiki. The Hilton Hawaiian Village is a beach resort with amazing grounds, five swimming pools (with slides!) and nine restaurants.
There are cultural experiences too, such as lei making and hula classes. It’s also worth enquiring about their ‘love and romance’ package, which includes luxury spa treatments and romantic dining experiences.
At the Ritz Carlton Residences, you’ll find beach resort condos right in the heart of Waikiki. You’ll have all the amenities you’d find at home, but with fantastic 5 star additions too, including restaurants, rooftop infinity pools and ocean views from your balcony.
Listen up shoppers! The Carlton Residences are 200m from International Marketplace and next to Luxury Row mall. If you shop till you drop, perhaps the resort’s spa can help you recover with a volcanic stone or rainforest leaf massage?
One of the best boutique hotels in Waikiki, at the Shoreline Hotel, they provide anything from free morning coffee to yoga mats!
The hotel has a fun, funky design but food is taken very seriously. Guests are provided dole whip (pineapple ice cream) on arrival and the restaurant has a pledge to only use locally sourced ingredients from farms nearby.
For chilled days in the sun, there’s a rooftop pool, where you’ll also be able to enjoy some quirky artworks while you relax. Other art displays include leaf installations, an ombre-effect wall and the brightest of colours everywhere you look!
It’s very democratic at the Prince Waikiki―every room and suite has an ocean view! Located in west Waikiki Beach, right in front of the marina, this property is about 10-minutes walk to Ala Moana Beach.
Locals love the 100 Sails restaurant (the buffet with crab and ribs is not to be missed) and Katsumidori Sushi, which blends Japanese cuisine with Hawaiian touches.
Need to unwind? Try the spa, yoga classes or saltwater pool with hypnotic ocean views. This is one of the best boutique hotels in Waikiki to watch the sunset too. What better way to round off a day in paradise?
Okay, so one of the best boutique hotels in Waikiki, the ‘Alohilani Resort, comes with a 5 star rating, an Iron Chef restaurant and an amazing spa, but that’s not the biggest thing to get excited about.
This beach resort has its own Oceanarium, located right in the lobby, filled with Hawaiian fish. It’s a Waikiki attraction in its own right, and is probably best viewed from the O Bar, right beside it.
The resort has also committed to becoming Hawaii’s first fully carbon-neutral hotel. The ‘Alohilani hopes to become one of the greenest luxury hotels in Waikiki, verified by an international inspection body.
If you’re looking for one of the most luxurious hotels on the island, definitely take a look at the Four Seasons Resort Oahu. It’s not in Waikiki itself, but you might enjoy being a bit further away from the action when you see how spectacular this resort is. It’s particularly popular with golfers as it’s moments from Ko Olina Golf Club is just 5 minutes away. The spectacular 18-hole course has three tiers, an amazing fusion restaurant and even a waterfall!
At the Four Seasons, you’ll find 5 star luxury rooms and suites with balconies showcasing beautiful mountain or ocean views. There’s also a spa, five restaurants and three pools, one of which is a romantic adults-only infinity pool. Unique guest experiences include guided ocean trips from the bay resort’s private beach, or joining a chef at a local farm for a cooking experience.
At one of the quirkiest boutique hotels in Waikiki, the mosaic floor of the swimming pool says it all: ‘wish you were here’. Taking its style cue from vintage sixties Hawaii, the Surfjack Hotel offers eclectic bungalows and suites with artwork created by locals.
Rooms have hand-made furniture and private balconies, and there’s free lemon water all day in the lobby. Diamond Head Crater is 15 minutes by car or you can walk to the Royal Hawaiian Center in five!
One of the best located luxury hotels in Waikiki has to be the beachfront Lotus Honolulu Hotel. Honolulu Zoo and Waikiki Aquarium are just steps away. Oh, and wait until you see the views of Diamond Head Crater! It’s just incredible.
Take your pick from sleek, modern balcony or patio rooms. Fancy dinner and craft cocktails with views of the magnificent crater? They’re available at the on site restaurant, which serves classical French cuisine style.
Many boutique hotels in Waikiki offer fun activities, and at Lotus you could join one of the weekly wine tastings or hop on a bike for a tour of the island.
Looking for a great afternoon tea in Waikiki Beach? Go straight to the Moana Surfrider in Oahu, a beach resort affectionately known as ‘The First Lady of Waikiki’.
The Lady is one of the oldest boutique hotels in Waikiki, and first opened her doors to visitors in 1901. Since then her old fashioned elegance has embraced modern amenities such a beachfront spa and six on site bars and restaurants.
There’s also an outdoor pool, a romantic wine bar and plenty of water-based activities on offer. Rooms and suites come with balconies and all have city or ocean views.
It’s all about that 1960s vibe at The Laylow, one of the most fun of the boutique hotels in Waikiki. You’ll learn that from your welcome basket, which contains snacks and Laylow ‘slippahs’ (flip flops)!
Set around a thriving garden, the hotel’s next door neighbour happens to be the International Market Place. Don’t blame me if you shop until you drop!
All of the bedrooms have king-sized beds and lanais, and the saltwater pool provides loungers, private cabanas and fruit to snack on. If you get peckish, you can head to The Hideout, which only serves the freshest local ingredients, and features live music on its lanai. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a few holiday cocktails or Hawaiian craft beers.
Fancy a dolphin play date? You’ll love this fun boutique hotel located a short drive from Waikiki! The 5 star, private beach resort of Kahala Hotel has its own lagoon, where Atlantic Bottlenose dolphins live!
This romantic hotel is located on its own beach and provides yoga in the fitness centre, a spa, two pools and four restaurants to keep you relaxed. Retail therapy is close by too, with a regular shuttle bus to the Ala Moana Shopping Centre!
I hope this guide helps you choose the perfect hotel for your trip to Honolulu! If you’re looking for more tips and advice for your time in Hawaii, I’d recommend reading my guides to visiting Diamond Head Crater and the best adventure activities in Hawaii.