Trying to decide which Waikiki hotel to stay at? Here's our review of our visit to the recently renovated Kaimana Beach Hotel on Oahu. We have the pros, cons, tips and everything you need to know!
Where Is Kaimana Beach Hotel?
Kaimana Beach Hotel is located on the edge of Waikiki. Locals call this eastern end of Waikiki the Gold Coast.
The majority of Waikiki hotels are centered in the heart of Waikiki. From that center, hotels taper out to both the western and eastern end.
The hotel is about a 30 minute drive from Daniel K. Inouye International Airport (HNL), maybe a bit more or less depending on traffic.
The hotel location is very convenient. You can easily get to all other areas on Oahu with a car. If you don't have a car, you can also walk to all the shopping and dining in Waikiki.
You're also a short walk to the famous Monsarrat Avenue, packed with lots of great food options like da Cove Health Bar, Hawaii Sushi, Pioneer Saloon (for a Japanese take on the local plate lunch), Diamond Head Market & Grill (famous for pumpkin crunch and lemon crunch!)
You can also walk to many famous eating spots along Kapahulu Avenue like like Ono Seafood (super fresh poke), Leonard’s Bakery (for malasadas), and Tonkatsu Tamafuji (the oyster katsu here is amazing).
Who Is Kaimana Beach Hotel Ideal For?
The hotel is a great fit for many types of travelers:
- People who want to have a hotel right on the beach.
- People who want to stay in Waikiki, but not in the center of Waikiki. But still within walking distances to good shopping/dining.
- Families and friends looking to accommodate all different budgets.
- Locals looking to do a staycation (that's us!)
- Someone looking for a nice and comfortable, but not luxurious hotel.
- People look for a photogenic hotel. The decor, art, and design make this hotel very photo friendly.
Note: Some travelers like to be in the center of all action when on vacation. If that's the case, then you should book a hotel more in the "core" of Waikiki.
Others like to be close to the center, but have a more peace and quiet in the immediate hotel area. If that's the case, then Kaimana Beach Hotel is in the ideal location.
There's no right/wrong or "best location," because it's mainly about your personal needs and preference.
What Makes Kaimana Beach Hotel Special
Kaimana Beach Hotel was originally the New Otani Kaimana Beach Hotel. It was built in 1964. Before that it was the private oceanfront residence for the McIrney family.
Like the nearby Queen Kapiolani Hotel (see our review from a recent stay), Kaimana Beach Hotel was an older hotel that was recently renovated. It was renovated 2021 renovation and has new life as a very modern and trendy hotel.
For people who have lived their whole lives in Hawaii, this is a huge change! We used to dine at Hau Tree when it was still the New Otani (the restaurant was called Hau Tree Lanai) and still marvel at all the changes each visit.
Learning a bit about the history of a hotel makes the stay so much more exciting and "complete" feeling. Like you can tie it to a time and place. It also makes me appreciate each stay much more.
One of the biggest changes in the renovation was the lobby and common areas. The new lobby is gorgeous! Tons of bright and colorful art and decor. It was definitely made for lounging and taking photos. It's a great place to meet up with friends (think morning coffee, afternoon drinks at the open air bar).
Rooms At Kaimana Beach Hotel
The rooms are comfortable and welcoming. It's a good value for the price.
Even with renovations, you can tell this is an older hotel, especially once you take the elevators up to the rooms and see the indoor courtyard area.
There are many different room and suite options, based on size and view. I always feel view is important, especially if you're in Hawaii and at an oceanfront property. They have city, mountain view (Diamond Head), and ocean view.
We got an ocean view room and it was perfect for our stay. If you want to go all out, they have oceanfront rooms and suites as well.
Room and bathroom was nice and clean, pretty straightforward. Toiletries are L'Occitane.
Our room has a small sitting area and balcony. Coffee maker in the room.
We had breakfast here one day which was peaceful, especially during early morning time. Fun to see the beach and watch early birds come in for a swim before it gets crowded or too hot.
Dining At Kaimana Beach Hotel
There is one restaurant at the hotel and it is called Hau Tree. It serves classic beach food with local Hawaii touches.
Hau Tree is divided between an indoor (but still open air) bar area and a formal dining area that is right on the beach. It's beautiful, bright and breezy. Oceanfront dining here always puts me in a happy-on-vacation mood.
The location is incredible. It's about as close as you can get to being on the beach without literally sitting on the sand.
The food is fine. Expect hotel pricing, you are in Waikiki after all. You'll find classic burgers (and ahi burgers), always with good fries.
They also offer jook/congee on the brunch menu!
For dessert we always order the toasted coconut cake! It's a Hawaii thing. And you also know how much we love banana bread in Hawaii right? You can purchase a whole loaf of banana bread to take home, it comes wrapped and ready to go.
You can take a look at the Hau Tree menus here.
Kaimana Beach / Sans Souchi
The beach that fronts the hotel is called Kaimana Beach. Locals also call this beach Sans Souchi (which means, without care). This beach is beloved by locals because not only is it beautiful, it's also less crowded than the beach areas in the center of Waikiki.
We can still find street parking and walk over for a no fuss and easy beach day without dealing with crowds. So if you stay here, take advantage of the fact that you're at a beach that's still a *sort of* secret among locals.
Tips and FAQ
They have on site valet parking for $40/day.
There is also plenty of metered street parking across the street from the hotel. The parking spaces run along Kalakaua Avenue. It's pretty easy to get parking there on weekdays but can get crowded on weekends so budget time accordingly.
I'll valet if staying overnight, but if I'm just meeting friends for lunch/dinner at Hau Tree it's better to find metered street parking.
The hotel often have several ongoing deals and promotions, check their website here. We booked a weekend staycation using one of these promotions and it was a pretty good deal.
The hotel has 122 rooms.
The concierge and really everyone work at the hotel is super gracious and so help with activities and sightseeing ideas. They also offer a range of activities and excursions you can book with the hotel. This includes a mix free activities like lei making classes and yoga on the beach, and paid activities like island tours, atv tours, and morning sails.
The hotel has no pool, but the beach is right in front of the hotel (less than a minute walk from the hotel lobby).
Kaimana Beach Hotel: Info
- Kaimana Beach Hotel | 2863 Kalakaua Avenue, Honolulu, Hawaii 96815 | 808-796-5463 | kaimana.com