The Hawaii Prince Hotel Waikiki overlooks Ala Wai Yacht Harbor. // © 2012 Prince Resorts Hawaii
Hawaii vacations are not always thought of as inexpensive and, with the rising cost of airfare, clients have to find ways to save once they arrive. Hawaii Prince Hotel Waikiki and Golf Club, a Honolulu favorite since 1990, is making a point to pack in the value. Not only did it complete a $5 million room refresh in October of last year, the property is also offering several attractive packages to entice visitors this fall.
“Guests must absolutely return to see our new product. We’ve modernized the guestrooms with flat-screen televisions, artwork and furnishings to emulate a contemporary yet local island feeling,” said director of sales, Susan Uyetake. “Also, we are adding terrific values into our higher category of Oceanfront rooms, such as complimentary self parking, Internet access, local phone calls and a food discount at some of our outlets.”
As a guest on the 31st floor, I stayed in a newly renovated Ilima Club Room that featured upgraded bedding, new carpeting, a generous selection of Aveda bath products and a complimentary welcome amenity of locally made jams and Kona coffee. Guests on the Ilima club level can surf the web for free in their rooms (although, I had connectivity issues during my stay) or at a computer in the Ilima Club lounge on the 31st floor.
The Ilima Club, a private executive lounge, was introduced in March as part of the Hawaii Prince’s recent renovation. Guests staying on the 31st floor in either tower can take advantage of its complimentary continental breakfast, light snacks in the afternoon, non-alcoholic beverages and concierge service. The lounge is open from 6:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. daily and can be booked in other room categories for an additional $40 per night.
“The Ilima Club is a great added value for families since everyone staying in the room can take advantage of the continental breakfast and other amenities,” said Uyetake.
The hotel also upgraded its exterior by restoring its signature 25-foot-tall waterfall on Ala Moana Boulevard. Its new design is eco-friendly, minimizing water and energy consumption. According to Uyetake, the hotel has plans for more refreshments although it hadn’t officially announced any at press time.
Until then, there are several other ways that the Prince is enticing guests. Through Sept. 30, the hotel is offering a third night free when booking two consecutive nights in an Oceanfront Marina room. Rates start at $235 per night, which is a great value for the location. The 521-room hotel overlooks Ala Wai Yacht Harbor and the Pacific Ocean, flanked by Ala Moana Beach Park and miles of jogging trails. During my summer visit, I loved that the property was located on the sleepier side of Waikiki, away from the hustle and bustle but easily accessible to all the action via the hotel’s complimentary shuttle service or a leisurely morning stroll. The building is also adjacent to my favorite restaurant on the island, the Chart House Waikiki, owned by legendary surfer Joey Cabell.
Families will love the Prince’s Kids Eat Free and Kids Play Golf Free promotions, which are valid through Sept. 30. Children ages 12 and younger can eat free at Prince Court, Hakone and the Bird of Paradise restaurants when ordering from the children’s menu. And, for the golfing family, children and teens ages 6-17 can play free with their parents at the Hawaii Prince Golf Club on Oahu, the only course on the island designed by Arnold Palmer. The 27-hole championship course in Ewa Beach is a 45-minute drive away, so guests should plan their tee times accordingly.
Those who want to golf, but don’t want to deal with lugging their clubs from the mainland (and paying extra baggage fees) will want to book the Player’s Choice promotion. Good for travel through Dec. 31, the package includes a round of golf, bottled water, complimentary shuttle service and TaylorMade rental clubs for $109 per person.
Without a doubt, travelers have plenty of hotel options in Waikiki. But, when it comes to matters of the pocketbook, the Prince delivers — quite handsomely.