Embassy Suites opens doors on Waikiki Beach Walk


The Embassy Suites -- Waikiki Beach Walk, a down-to-the-concrete rebuild of the former Ohana Waikiki Village and the Ohana Waikiki Tower, is up and running. The hotel sits at the heart of the Waikiki Beach Walk, an eight-acre redevelopment program created by Outrigger Enterprises for this central portion of Waikiki, introducing brand-name accommodations, shops and restaurants.

Although the property is owned, staffed and managed by Outrigger, Embassy Suites was selected to provide the property with a high-recognition brand and reservations system, with Embassy Suites-mandated elements incorporated into the hotel's design. The resort is the only Embassy Suites property in Hawaii. 

"We sought out the company that best suited the product," said Outrigger Enterprises CEO David Carey.

"We had a lot of choices open to us, but we saw Embassy Suites as the pre-eminent brand for what we had in mind, so we went with them."

The "best" at the Embassy Suites -- Waikiki Beach Walk translates into spacious one- and two-bedroom suites, with tropical decor, local artwork and playful touches like hula-girl lamps.

The property succeeds at providing a pleasant base in the heart of Waikiki. Only one, temporary caveat: Agents should check that construction of the nearby Trump International Tower, another component of the Waikiki Beach Walk development, will not inconvenience guests.

With two towers, named Hula and Aloha, the property offers many booking options, with views of surrounding high rises, ocean and mountains.

The property is located across the street from the Fort DeRussy section of Waikiki Beach and convenient to the shops and restaurants of Waikiki, including the soon-to-be-completed remake of the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center.

The Waikiki Beach Walk's shops, restaurants and promenades feed into those of this reconfigured shopping complex along Kalakaua Avenue. 

Attention to comfort plays out in plush beds, high-count cotton sheets, nicely appointed bathrooms and multiple flat-screen televisions -- two in one-bedroom suites and three in two-bedroom suites.

Additional in-room entertainment is provided in the form of Game Cube video-game systems.

The Embassy Suites also has free breakfast, in-room microwaves and minirefrigerators.

Add an expanded bed count -- four in a one-bedroom, six in a two-bedroom -- and a booking comes with real value for families or groups of friends traveling together.

Free local and mainland calls, 30 minutes of free Internet time (all rooms are hard-wired, while public areas are wireless) and a daily general manager's pool deck reception round out value-added perks.

  "We're part of the new look of Waikiki," said Sun Bee, the Embassy Suites' director of sales and marketing.

"Part of that is providing a travel option in Waikiki that appeals to a new generation of travelers. That was specifically the reason we included two-bedroom suites. They were designed to tap new markets." 

Lay of the land

On-site facilities include a pool, hot tub and large lounge deck with a poolside bar that offers a limited midday menu. 

The adjacent breakfast buffet area, with plenty of outdoor seating, leads to the Aloha Tower, which faces central Waikiki. There are also 24-hour fitness and business centers, with shops and restaurants -- including Roy's, Yard House and Ruth's Chris Steak House -- at street level and on the large mezzanine that rises above Lewers Street.

The Lewers Street extension of the hotel is the Waikiki Beach Walk's most stylish architectural element. The property is well integrated into the setting, with the Waikiki Beach Walk converting narrow and shabby Lewers into a wide, landscaped promenade. 

Nightly rates for the Embassy Suites start at $399 for a one-bedroom suite and $549 for a two-bedroom unit.  Those prices are being discounted on a space-available basis throughout 2007 at $249 and $399, respectively.  The daily parking fee is $25.

Travel agent rates start at $189 per day. 

"As part of the Hilton family we reach agents via hiltontravelagent.com," Bee said. "We see our challenge as creating market awareness for a product that is well-suited to today's travelers." 

For more information or to make reservations, call (800) EMBASSY. Or visit www.embassysuiteswaikiki.com or Hiltontravelagent.com.  

To contact reporter Allan Seiden, send e-mail to [email protected].

JDS Travel News JDS Viewpoints JDS Africa/MI