HONOLULU At first glance, the entrance to Aston Waikiki Beachside
Hotel seems to get lost in the shuffle amid the more elaborate
porte cocheres of Kalakaua Avenue. But don’t let its understated
exterior fool you. The 79-room, 12-story Waikiki boutique hotel
overcomes its small size with a big emphasis on guest satisfaction.
For instance, there’s no restaurant on-property, which might
have been a problem for clients like me who don’t like to travel
far for good meals. But the Beachside has turned that shortcoming
into an asset by providing guests with free continental breakfast
each morning. I found more than enough sustenance to start my day
during the 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m. repast, with its fresh fruits,
juices and baked goods.
Breakfast is set up on the Beachside’s mezzanine level, which
features comfortable arrangements of tables and chairs in an
open-air courtyard enhanced by palms, soft music and trickling
fountains. The courtyard is a refreshing place to relax on a warm
The mezzanine provides an equally pleasant setting for the
Beachside’s afternoon tea service on Saturday and Sunday afternoons
from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Available at $20 per person, it’s a
high-class, three-course affair with such goodies as scones, finger
sandwiches and sherry cake served on delicate plates, accompanied
by a variety of freshly brewed teas.
When I wanted to eat in my room, the Beachside staff provided me
with information about a meal-delivery service from a variety of
Oahu restaurants. While there isn’t any on-property parking at the
Beachside, Aston has come up with an easy solution. After dropping
off my bags with a hotel staff member in the lobby, I drove around
the corner to the garage at Aston Waikiki Beach Tower, where
registered Beachside guests can park for $9.50 per day.
At 200 square feet, the average size of a Beachside guest room
is relatively small, but I found my accommodations to be smartly
designed to maximize space. Well-placed mirrors and views from the
lanai opened up the room considerably. The Beachside lives up to
its boutique hotel status by paying extra attention to its guests.
Several times I was greeted by name in the hotel lobby. The
concierge was on hand round-the-clock to answer questions and take
care of individual requests.
It’s hard to beat the Beachside’s location, steps away from
Waikiki Beach and four blocks from Kapiolani Park. Due to the size
of the rooms, I wouldn’t recommend this hotel for a family
vacation, but it’s a good option for couples who want a cozy base
of operations in the heart of Waikiki.
The Beachside is a suitable business hotel as well, with such
amenities as in-room voice mail, complimentary local newspapers at
breakfast and a mezzanine-level computer terminal for e-mail and
Internet access. When it’s time to head downtown, the property is
easily accessible to the H-1 freeway, which also leads directly to
Honolulu International Airport.
For a small hotel, Aston Waikiki Beachside makes a big
impression, right down to the pair of Godiva chocolates placed on
the pillow at turndown each night.