Want the secret to the ultimate Oahu getaway this winter? Book a fabulous boutique hotel in the heart of Waikiki, so you’ll be central to the beach, shops, eateries, and area attractions. During my own recent getaway to Oahu, my stay at VIVE Hotel Waikiki proved to an incredible destination for its prime location and easy access to that famous beachfront.
Just steps from the surf at Waikiki Beach and Kuhio Beach, where you’ll find the famous Duke Kahanamoku statue, VIVE Hotel Waikiki makes your beach bum getaway super easy. The hotel offers complimentary guest use of beach chairs and umbrellas, towels and mats, and boogie boards. I loved being able to grab my sunshine gear and head down to the water for a quick dip multiple times each day. In addition to these amenities, VIVE also offers an amazing daily deluxe continental breakfast—with a major spread of fresh island fruits, pastries, juices, and all day coffee and tea.
What I loved about my experience at VIVE was that everything just seemed so easy. This boutique property is large enough to offer great amenities, but not overcrowded or so large that it takes extra time to get from one end to the other. The lobby and living room—a stylish space to kick back in—is warm and welcoming, and service at VIVE is top notch. From check-in welcome amenities to smiling staff every time you come back through those doors VIVE Hotel Waikiki feels like a home away from home, with extra perks like one of the world’s best beaches just outside the doors.
My junior suite offered views of the beach and Diamond Head just in the distance. The room was spacious and featured a modern coastal design with a king-size bed and large bathroom. Amenities included refreshing Archive toiletries with notes of grapefruit, green tea, rosehips, and lavender. I also loved having a mini-fridge and bar area to keep my beverages and snacks cool. On the main floor, there’s also a concierge desk to assist with rental cars, airport transfers, and local attractions.
One of my favorite things about the location of VIVE Hotel Waikiki was how close I was to the beach and water sport rentals. Just down the block is Moku Hawaii, a surf and boogie board rental shop I frequented for superb rental pricing. You can select from a variety of board sizes and styles, and they also offer lessons if you’re a first-timer or want to brush up on skills.
Away from the water, you’ll want to explore Waikiki’s attractions and VIVE offers a great starting point for exploring. Just down the road, start your stroll with the Waikiki Historic Trail, as the Princess Ka’iulani Statue is nearby at the corner of Kuhio and 150 Kaʻiulani Ave. Waikiki Aquarium is also a short distance away and easy to get to with The Bus. If you’re a cover lover, be sure to visit nearby Honolulu Coffee Experience Center. I loved exploring the interactive visitor center and sampling a variety of roasts.
Visiting Oahu on a weekend this winter? Pick up a day pass for Wet ‘n’ Wild water park! You’ll enjoy perfect water temperatures on a variety of slides and attractions for all ages. Take it easy in the Kapolei Kooler lazy river or go extreme on Da Flowrider, Hawaii’s only simulated surfing experience. Linger into the evening for the Chief’s Luau and enjoy an evening of fire-knife dancing, Polynesian culture, and an incredible buffet featuring slow cooked Kalua Pork.
Need to pick up some last minute gifts? From VIVE Hotel Waikiki, you’ll be within walking distance to International Market Place and Royal Hawaiian Center, in addition to the countless shops lined along Kuhio and Kalakaua Avenues. One of my favorite island treats to pick up for friends back home is cookies from Honolulu Cookie Company, and you’ll find their shops all throughout Waikiki.
Speaking of treats, be sure to peruse the new dining options at The Street Food Hall at International Market Place. During my recent visit I became a regular at Mi Almita Cantina for their simple, but savory street tacos, and Kona Coffee Purveyors for their serious espresso and decadent baked goods via b. patisserie (made famous by their San Francisco location). I highly recommend trying their croissants and Kouign-amann if you love buttery, flaky treats.
My time in Waikiki always seems too short, but that means I’m always looking forward to a return visit. If you’re looking for a centrally located hotel with boutique service, I recommend VIVE Hotel Waikiki for their location and value-packed amenities. Their proximity to area attractions, local eateries, shops, and the beach make this an ideal location for relaxing in the sun this winter.
Lori A. May is a Seattle-based travel writer. Follow her on Twitter at @loriamay.
A portion of the writer’s itinerary was made possible by GoHawaii.
Join VIVE REWARDS for the best deals, discounts on valet parking, room upgrades, and more.