Best Hotel in Waikiki ~ Moana Surfrider

Moana Surfrider

Moana Surfrider

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Front of Moana Surf

Front of Moana Surf

The Moana Surfrider, also known as the “First Lady of Waikiki” has been part of Waikiki since 1901. The Moana Surfrider is a Westin Resort & Spa. My first experience walking into the Moana Surf was during Christmas time and I could not believe the gingerbread houses decorated inside the lobby. The colonial hotel was decorated with poinsettias on every window. It was a true tropical, Christmas wonderland with guests rocking in chairs out front.

Westin’s well-being, healthy living was going on while we stayed over Spring Break. White tents popped up with various local, healthy food options including 100% fruit bars, smoothies, and yoga classes. Starwood’s six pillars of health promote: Sleep Well, Eat Well, Move Well, Feel Well, Work Well, and Play Well. Moana Surf opened the first open-aired day spa on Waikiki in 2008. The windows open up to views of Waikiki Beach while guests soak in hot tubs from high above.

Moana Surf is ideal for many reasons but most of all – LOCATION!!! We didn’t rent a car and were able to walk to an array of  shops and restaurants located along Kalakaua Avenue, and catch the Waikiki Trolley to Ala Moana Shopping Center. We walked to the Honolulu Zoo one morning and Wailana Coffee House another. It is conveniently located near the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center, PF Changs, The Cheesecake Factory, Honolulu Coffee Company, Kapiolani Park (Honolulu Marathon), and Waikiki Aquarium.

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The view

The view

The Rooms~ There are three different wings of the hotel, the Diamond Wing, Banyan Wing and Tower Wing. We stayed in the Banyan Wing which is the original building of the hotel. Experience the historical feel as you make your way down the long hallway with high ceilings. The walls are painted white with extensive woodworking and moldings. The rooms offer Heavenly double beds or a queen bed, flat screen TV’s, Royal Kona Coffee and granite bathrooms. Our room was very beachy with white wood rocking chairs looking out to the ocean view and light, beachy hardwood floors. Rock away to the oceanview each morning while sipping Royal Kona coffee in the morning. The chairs and beach table made it feel as though you were outside rather than in your room.

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Rocking Chairs

IMG_0240The Rocking Chairs~ Our favorite thing about staying at the Moana Surfrider is rocking in the chairs out front. Whether grabbing a coffee and rocking at sunrise, a cocktail at sunset or observing the rather interesting entertainment that comes to life after dark on Waikiki ~ the rocking chairs are the best place to see it all happen!

Honolulu Coffee Company is located at one end of the rocking chairs, so you don’t have to walk far to grab that cup of coffee. One evening we grabbed cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory and a coffee from Honolulu Coffee Company to sit in the chairs and eat our dessert. There are weddings happening constantly throughout at the day at the hotel. Sit in the rocking chair and observe the bride and groom head out to their limo and pose for pictures in front of the hotel.

 

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Pool at sunrise

Waikiki Beach

Waikiki Beach

Pool & Waikiki Beach~ If lounging is your thing, than Moana Surf is the perfect place to be.

Umbrellas for rent

Umbrellas for rent

The ocean side of the hotel has a pool, restaurant, bar and of course the infamous Waikiki Beach!!! Pool attendants come around and serve drinks and food while you lay out on the lounge chairs. There are umbrellas for rent on the beach for hotel guests at $60 per day. The one drawback about the pool is that it closes daily at 6:30 p.m. and there isn’t a hot tub. Due to the location on the beach, you can always jump in the ocean for a dip during sunset.

Sunset at Moana Surf

Sunset at Moana Surf

Since we live in Hawaii, the pool wasn’t anything exciting or new so the kids preferred to float on rafts near Waikiki Beach. Purchase a couple of inexpensive blow up rafts or tubes and float in front of the hotel. Hungry? Walk right back to your lounge chair and order lunch!

 

The Beach House

The Beach House

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Superfood Breakfast Wrap

We started our morning off at the Veranda at the Beach House restaurant and experienced a fabulous breakfast.

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Tahitian Vanilla French Toast

The Beach House offers many healthy options, listing “super foods” throughout the menu. The local ingredients offered at the Veranda at the Beach House are supplied by local partners including: Twin Bridge Farms, Waipoli Hydroponic Greens, Hamakua Springs Country Farm, Nalo Farms, and Ho Farms.

We enjoyed watching the hotel guests take hula lessons on the Veranda as we ate our amazing breakfast. Find healthy items such as an egg white omelette,  steel-cut cinnamon scented oatmeal, acai bowl, chicken apple sausage or turkey maple sausage, tropical fruit smoothies and much more!

Sitting outside with the ocean view while under a veranda makes for the perfect breakfast or brunch setting.

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Bin 1901

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Bin 1901 is the perfect place to relax after a long day of shopping or walking in Waikiki. Tucked away in the historic wing of the hotel by the Grand Staircase, is a great place to sip wine, sake, handcrafted beers or a cocktail, order pupus (horderves) or even dessert.

We were sure to stop off at Bin 1901 every evening on the way up to our room. The furniture alone is SO inviting. I ordered a glass of wine and my daughter went through her bags reviewing all of the shopping she had done each day. Bin 1901 is also a piano bar, pictured above.

It is open every evening from 5:30 pm – 10:00 pm with live piano entertainment from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm

At one end of the lounge you can view the nightlife on Waikiki and on the other side watch guests dining at The Beach House for dinner. It is a lively experience.

Bin 1901

Bin 1901

IMG_0524After all of the laying around being lazy in the sun and eating food and drinking cocktails, it’s time to work out!!! Moana Surf has a great facility overlooking Kalakaua Avenue on Waikiki. At the Westin Workout Fitness Facility located in the Tower Wing- watch tourists walking and shopping up and down the street while you work out in a nice, air conditioned facility.

We really liked the ice-cold, wet wash cloths stored in a refrigerator within the gym.  A very refreshing treat after a long, hard, hot work out. The gym includes exercise machines, mats, floor to ceiling mirrors, bands and exercise balls.

View of Waikiki from Moana Surf

View of Waikiki from Moana Surf

5wheelsto5star was featured in the March 2014 issue of Destinations Travel Magazine

 

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