DoubleTree Waikiki Renovates

DoubleTree Waikiki delivers big on recent upgrade By: Dawna L. Robertson
Guestrooms have been tweaked to make working on the road more convenient. // © 2012 Doubletree by Hilton Alana Waikiki
Guestrooms have been tweaked to make working on the road more convenient. // © 2012 Doubletree by Hilton Alana Waikiki

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The Details

DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki
808-951-7275
www.doubletreealana.com

Through Dec. 31, nightly rack rates start at $159, based on double occupancy. A Plug and Play Package covers accommodations and use of a GreenCar Hawaii Leaf from $234 nightly.

When the 317-room DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki capped off a recent $16 million comprehensive upgrade, it went beyond refreshing the property with a rich color palate of blues, beiges and browns. It also added a heavy dose of green.

Situated on Ala Moana Boulevard near the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort at the western entrance to Waikiki, the chic AAA Three Diamond boutique hotel has debuted GreenCar Hawaii, which features four 100 percent electric Nissan Leaf vehicles and two Level 2 commercial charging stations.

“We wanted to make sure that our renovation had a Hawaii feel while incorporating green aspects to support our global brand’s sustainability initiatives,” said Michael Wilding, who serves as DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki’s general manager. “Our project designer brought Hawaii colors and schemes into our makeover to refresh the property with a cool, contemporary and inviting look and feel.”

Bringing the eco-concept front and center is its GreenCar option, which makes DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki the first hotel on Oahu with an entirely green fleet.

“With our Leaf vehicles, we’re making another contribution to Hawaii’s clean energy goal and providing our guests with a simple and convenient alternative to traditional car rental,” said Wilding.

The cost of renting a GreenCar vehicle is $15 per hour or $95 per day.

The revamped design of DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki’s 340-square-foot guestrooms focuses on relaxation, sophistication and functionality. Clean lines and soft curves emulate the surrounding landscape through color schemes, vivid patterns and tactile textures. The furnishings of the guestrooms are at once functional and appealing.

I especially appreciated how the technology in my guestroom was so user friendly. Since the hotel sees a high level of bookings from business travelers, rooms have been geared to make working on the road more convenient. At a teak ergonomic work station with a brushed-glass desktop, I was able to tap into wireless Internet, multiple outlets for my electronic devices and a multimedia console that connected my laptop directly to the new 37-inch, flat-panel plasma television. My room also included the Sweet Dreams by DoubleTree, a bed that felt like pure heaven.

The property’s 43 suites, including lovely accommodations on the 19th floor that open to a rooftop patio, are furnished with a private bedroom, a separate living area with a hide-a-bed and a 42-inch plasma television. These tasteful retreats range from 464 to 567 square feet.

Bathrooms extend the sleek and stylish look with light stone materials and bold accent colors. All bathrooms have a walk-in glass shower with an adjustable oversize rain shower head, while suite baths add a separate soaking tub. Those on the 19th floor kick it up another notch with whirlpool spas.

The lobby and public areas have also been transformed with new furnishings, carpeting, wall coverings and window treatments. As I eagerly awaited my warm chocolate chip cookie that is a delicious DoubleTree check-in tradition, I noticed how the hotel’s guests seemed to gravitate to the area more than I remembered from previous visits.

With natural light filtering through blue-hued window sheers into the multi-level atrium area, this gathering place is a natural for reading and accessing the complimentary wireless service.

What struck me as an especially engaging touch in the reception area was “The Hawaii Wall” by Jun Kaneko. The eight- by-16-foot ceramic tile mural consists of 133 tiles that were individually handmade, glazed and fired. You would have to visit Helsinki, Finland, to find its matching mate created by the internationally celebrated artist.

The final upgrade phase of the DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki covered meeting and banquet rooms, along with the Bistro restaurant. The former downstairs eatery has been reallocated as function space, upping the total to 9,200 square feet. Breakfast and dinner are now served at the Bistro’s new lobby level home, where booths have been replaced by tables that allow a more airy feel.

On the hotel’s mezzanine level, guests have access to a 24-hour Hilton Brand Standard fitness center with Precor equipment and outdoor deck with heated swimming pool.

Another choice amenity is DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki’s affiliation with the neighboring Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach Resort.

“It is a bonus to have the resort across the street so that our guests can enjoy the lagoon, beach area and signing privileges at Hilton’s Mandara Spa,” said Wilding.

With its new look and expanded green focus, the DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki has a feel that’s both fresh and familiar. Maybe it’s that distinctive aroma of those coveted chocolate chip cookies.

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