Aqua Forms New Hotel Group

Aqua Boutique Hotels comprised of select Waikiki properties

By: Dawna Robertson

Aqua Hotels & Resorts continues to respond to changing market trends in a style that benefits both agents and clients. Mike Paulin, the company’s owner and CEO, has announced the creation of Aqua Boutique Hotels group. A veteran of Hawaii’s visitor industry and pioneer in Waikiki’s condotel market, Paulin has been actively moving the company in this direction for many months.

“Several of Aqua’s properties offer an intimate and contemporary style that is more consistent with the boutique classification than they are with their condotel designation,” explained Paulin. “The implementation of Aqua’s Seven Pillars of branding earlier this year supports the boutique product, and each property is in the final stages of enhancing the services and lifestyle amenities expected by many of today’s travelers.”

Variations cover an edgy surfer theme at the 202-room Aqua Aloha Surf, a soft Balinese theme at the 93-room Aqua Bamboo & Spa and a trendy Tommy Bahama theme at the 260-room Aqua Palms. The three properties will remain open for business during their conversion to boutique status.

The recently established Seven Pillars has refined the “Aqua Brand” by including key amenities and services that upgrade property facilities, increase value and enhance the guest experience.

The Seven Pillars include:

AquaSPA Poolside cabana offering massage therapies, body scrubs and facials AquaFIT Fitness center with a variety of exercise equipment 

AquaFRESH Like-new accommodations

AquaKIT Microwave, refrigerator, coffee maker, wet bar

AquaCONNECT Wi-Fi or Hi-Speed Internet Access 

AquaSTART Daily continental breakfast

AquaPROMISE Around-the-clock direct hotline to Mike Paulin

According to Paulin, the Seven Pillars program means greater flexibility for agents.

“These lifestyle features are meant to provide agents a choice in both price and comforts directed to clients on a budget, but still desiring such in-room features as plug-and-play Internet, kitchenette, flat panel TVs, and freshly renovated rooms in gentle themes depending upon the Aqua selected.”

As for an additional advantage, clients have 24-hour access to Paulin personally if problems arise during their stay.

“My cell phone is on 24/7, and the number is provided to guests in each room to encourage them to call should they find any expectation not met,” he said.

Paulin added, “Aqua plans to add additional properties to its Aqua Boutique Hotels collection and become Hawaii’s first boutique hotel chain.”

Through Dec. 20, Aqua on Sale includes such complimentary services and amenities as a one-hour massage at the AquaSpa, Metro Passbook filled with two-for-one or 50 percent discounts to popular island restaurants, daily continental breakfast for two, daily newspaper and Tihati’s Luau (two-for-one offer).

Nightly rates are from $113 for a standard room at the Aqua Aloha Surf, from $149 for a moderate room at the Aqua Bamboo & Spa and from $178 for a moderate studio at the Aqua Palms. A minimum three-night stay is required.

“Our fall special is a tremendous ‘value-added’ program plus a room discount that offers wonderful amenities and savings for the traveler,” said Cara Okawa, vice president of sales and revenue management for Aqua Hotels & Resorts. 

“Historically, fall has been a soft period for Hawaii, but that’s the real beauty of it,” she commented. “The weather is still perfect but the beaches are less crowded, there’s almost no standing in line or waiting your turn for attractions or restaurants, and terrific travel bargains are available for visitors.”