Seeking a luxury getaway that is the perfect combination of relaxation and tropical locale? Look no further than these two high-end properties in Oahu, Hawaii.
The Royal Hawaiian, A Luxury Collection Resort
Nestled behind the busy Kalakaua Avenue in Honolulu sits The Royal Hawaiian Hotel, an iconic pink resort that has become synonymous with the Waikiki Beach horizon line. This historic oceanfront resort features 528 rooms, including 33 suites, 18 of which have oceanfront views.
The opening of The Royal Hawaiian in Honolulu ushered in a new era of luxurious resort travel to Hawaii. The hotel, a six-story structure on initial build, was built at a price tag of $4 million and fashioned in a Spanish-Moorish style, popular during the time period and influenced by Hollywood legend Rudolph Valentino. During WWII, The Royal Hawaiian was leased exclusively to the U.S. Navy as a rest and recreation center for the Pacific Fleet. The hotel reopened to the public in February 1947.
The “Pink Palace of the Pacific” underwent a complete renovation in January 2009 and an addition was added in April 2015, allowing the resort to emerge as one of the world’s elite collection of hotels for luxury and romance. The distinctive architecture and rosy hue remain, as do the elegant details in a nod to the hotel’s storied past, but 21st-century upgrades meld old with new creating an abundantly chic atmosphere.
Exclusive amenities offered to guests of the resort include complimentary daily professional photos, a one-day GoPro rental, instructional classes that include surfing and lei making, as well as a bag of signature baked goods from the Royal Hawaiian Bakery.
Four Seasons Resort Oahu at Ko Olina
Tucked away from energetic Waikiki Beach within the resort community Ko Olina, meaning “place of joy,” sits the beachfront Four Seasons Oahu overlooking the leeward coast of the island. A pristine architectural aesthetic designed by Edward Killingsworth greets guests making way for Kama’aina-style open air public spaces and 371 light-filled rooms and suites.
FS Oahu at Ko Olina, formerly the J.W. Marriott Ihilani built in 1999, was given a complete makeover in 2016, when it was rebranded as a Four Seasons hotel and remains a cornerstone of the master planned, 650-acre Ko Olina Resort that boasts four white sand lagoons and two other big name resorts within the property. Highlights of the hotel include an adults-only infinity pool, private beach lagoon, four gourmet restaurants and a 35,000 sq. ft. state-of-the-art spa and wellness center, Naupaka.
Executive Chef Martin Knaubert oversees four gourmet restaurants and one indoor/outdoor lounge, Hokulea, with culinary curiosities ranging from seafood to Italian, Pan-Asian and more, with something to please even the pickiest of palates.
Located on Oahu’s west side and about 35 minutes from downtown Honolulu, Four Seasons is adjacent to the Lanikuhonua, meaning “where heaven meets earth,” Cultural Estate and nature preserve, as well as Paradise Cove – two of the most magnificent places on the entire island to watch the sunset with a Mai Tai in hand.
Regardless of which luxurious hotel option you choose, couples and families looking to sneak away from the hustle and bustle of “The Gathering Place” should look no further than The Royal Hawaiian or Four Seasons Oahu at Ko Olina. ■