by Courtney Elko
The Queen Kapiolani Hotel offers families an ideal location when visiting Oahu and Honolulu, no matter what activities you want to enjoy during your stay. The hotel sits directly across the street from the Honolulu Zoo, Kapiolani Park and Waikiki Aquarium. Queen’s Beach is just two blocks away and there are numerous restaurants and shops surrounding the area.
At the hotel’s outdoor pool area, families can enjoy a cool dip in the water while marveling over the Diamond Head volcano views. With a restaurant, bar and fire pit steps from the pool, it’s a great place for the family to hang out all day. Or visit the Living Room lobby that has a cool retro-chic vibe and plenty of couches to lounge on after a long flight, or high-top tables to play board games on.
The guestrooms and suites keep that cool and modern vibe going and feature a mini-fridge, free Wi-Fi and city or ocean views.
Following its $35-million dollar renovation in 2018, Queen Kapiolani gives off that old Hawaiian Aloha vibe with modern amenities and plenty of things for families to do.
Our Editor Loves
- Rooftop pool
- Walking distance to beach
- Ocean and Diamond Head views
- Water Sports
- Free Wi-Fi
- Onsite Dining
Find the Best Price for Your Stay
Complimentary Wi-Fi can be found in all of the guestrooms and suites, along with air conditioning and a private lanai with city, ocean or Diamond Head views.
The guestrooms feature one king or two double beds, a mini-fridge, flat-screen television and a shower/tub combination in the bathroom. USB outlets can be found by the bed and there is a Bluetooth clock radio.
The suites feature a king bed and small sitting area, a flat-screen television and a shower/tub combination in the bathroom. USB outlets can be found by the bed and there is a Bluetooth clock radio. The suites also feature a kitchenette with a microwave, mini-fridge, sink and coffeemaker.
I have learnt not to expect too much from hotels in Waikiki - they are generally not great value compared to other holiday destnations but the Queen Kapiolnai was ok value wise - clean and newly refreshed. Great location away from the crowds and close to the beach. I upgraded my booking to a junior suite but don't think it was worth it particularly as we were given a room on the 7th floor which was noisy as its directly over the restaruant deck. However if you like watching another guests wedding go for it.
Nice hotel, good clean facilities, however be aware of resort tax (a lot of USA hotels have this) we had additional costs of almost $130 dollars at the end of our 4 day stay (that we knew nothing about but which seem to be fairly common) these fees were for use of pool, towels & wifi. One strange thing was our room had nowhere to hang clothes only a couple of shelves. Restaurant a bit pricey but again this typical of Hawaii
Pool and Deck
The hotel’s pool is located outside on the third floor and is surrounded by the Deck restaurant area. Look out onto the Diamond Head views as you take a dip and maybe catch a glimpse of a rainbow, too! Several lounge chairs surround the pool and reef-safe sunscreen is provided, along with water and pool towels. The pool is open from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily and restrooms and showers are available poolside.
The hotel offers a weekly list of free or additional-cost activities that guests are welcome to enjoy. Live music is played by the pool and Deck area on select days. Surf lessons or water sports can be arranged at the hotel. Things like hula fitness classes, running clubs and cocktail making classes are also offered at the hotel on select days, so be sure to check the weekly schedule during your stay.
The Honolulu Zoo, which is free for children under 2, is situated directly across the street from the hotel. The 42-acre zoo is filled with sloths, zebras, monkeys, lions, giraffe, birds and more and is also situated within Kapiolani Park, the second oldest park in all of Hawaii. The 300-acre park, at the foot of Diamond Head, features walking and hiking trails, tennis courts, ponds, picnic tables and tons of open space to run and play. The Waikiki Aquarium, filled with marine life and a Hawaiian Monk Seal Habitat, is located within Kapiolani Park as well. All of this, plus the beach, are just steps away from the hotel.
Only a short, two-block walk from the hotel are the white sands of Queen’s Beach. This popular Waikiki beach can get crowded at times, but is less congested than Waikiki Beach up the road. There is a breakwater wall here, so the waters are consistently calm and protected from the surf. However, on the other side of the Waikiki seawall, body boarders or boogie boarders can have their fun. Beach volleyball courts can be found here, as well as a giant movie screen where free outdoor movies can be watched at dusk on the weekends. Umbrellas, boogie boards, and chairs (the hotel can provide beach chairs and towels) can be rented along the beach. Lifeguards and restrooms can be found in the area as well.
Located on the third floor next to the pool, this open-air restaurant serves breakfast, lunch and dinner. Families will love to start and end their day at Deck. There is table seating, as well as more lounge-like seating around a fire pit or overlooking the Diamond Head views. The pool is also right there, so you’re welcome to sit poolside while enjoying your snack, meal or cocktail. Deck is open from 6:30 a.m. to 11 p.m. Monday through Saturday and until 10 p.m. on Sunday.
Knots Coffee Roasters
Located off the Living Room lobby, Knots has much more than coffee to offer its guests. Coffee drinks are of course on the menu, along with wine, cocktails and beer. But there is also an extensive grab-and-go section for families looking for a quick breakfast or a picnic lunch for later. Bagels, breakfast burritos, salads, sandwiches and wraps can be found here. There are also several bakery items, and cool treats for dogs, too. Knots is open from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m. daily.
In-room dining from Deck’s menu is available from 11 a.m. to 9:45 p.m. Monday through Friday and from 4 to 9 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday.
Technically not part of the hotel, but situated among the retail shops in the Living Room lobby, is this ice cream shop. The Dole Whip ice cream is a must after a day at the pool or beach. Island chocolates, gift baskets, local honey and more can also be found here.
Planning & Tips
All About the Extras
Complimentary Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel.
Valet parking is available for an additional fee.
- Fitness Center
A fitness center, with weights, cardio machines and yoga mats, is available for guest use 24/7.
The onsite retail stores, located off the lobby Living Room area, features a surf shop, clothing store, art gallery and ice cream shop.
The Best Time to Visit
Rainy season on Oahu runs from November through March and dry season runs from April through October. There are typically less crowds from about mid-April through early June and between September and early December.
The Daniel K. Inouye International Airport, the main airport on Oahu, is situated about 25 minutes away from the hotel. The hotel offers discounted rates for specific airport shuttle services.
The hotel is situated in the Waikiki section of Honolulu, at the base of Diamond Head. Families can walk to numerous restaurants and shops that surround the area. The Honolulu Zoo and Kapiolani Park are directly across the street from the hotel, and Queen’s Beach is just two block walk away. Paved, wide sidewalks surround the city streets, so it’s easy to maneuver a stroller. Parking can be limited, but there are parking garages and street parking around the area.
A rental car is needed if you plan to explore Oahu. Traffic can be quite congested in Honolulu so give yourself plenty of time to get where you're going, especially when going to the airport. Taxis, while expensive, are readily available at the airport and hotel.
The adults can find deliciously crafted cocktails, wine and beer at both of the hotel’s restaurants/bars.