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A new boutique hotel in Waikiki combines luxury quality with a tropical setting and just a dash of Hawaiiana to produce a truly unique experience. The Waikiki Edition opened recently just past the end of the beach near the Ala Moana boat harbor. It is the first of a new hotel concept with additional hotels planned for locations such as Istanbul, Barcelona, Mexico City, Bangkok, London and South Beach. The Hawaii hotel lists luxury amenities in its spa for leisure travelers, services for business travelers such as a business center, and electronic gadgets for everyone. In that sense, it adds to Waikiki a luxury boutique hotel similar to those in other major cities.
The difference is that the Edition brand wants to reflect each specific environment. “Each hotel with its rare inpiduality, authenticity, originality and unique ethos will reflect the best of the cultural and social milieu of its location and of the time.” (editionhotels.com)
What does that mean for Hawaii? The hotel is aiming to re-create the feeling of an exclusive Hawaii beach house. At the entry is an art installation of surf boards from Hawaii legends, many of whom will stop by to add an autograph. The gift shop offers hula figurines along with high-end jewelry. You can buy a full-sized surf board, straw hat or casually sophisticated resort wear. It offers products unique to Hawaii, yet different from most local hotel shops in both concept and content.
The guest rooms continue the theme with luxury touches I expect in a room listing for several hundred dollars a night: top-quality linens, large comfortable beds with oversized pillows, and top-shelf room bar offerings (including a martini shaker). Along with providing a robe (and umbrella), the rooms come with several colorful pareos (sarongs) that serve as decoration for the room or for your swimsuit on a trip to the pool.
Another feature not found in many boutique hotels is the capacity to host events: in meeting and board rooms, a ballroom, a hospitality suite or the upper pool deck – one of the five bars in the hotel.
With designer touches and island attitude, the Edition hotel reflects Waikiki as a unique experience for travelers on a Hawaii luxury vacation.