Halekulani Hotel in Hawaii

Looking back to my recent travels around Caribbean island of San Andres and the island of Hawaii in the Pacific, I came across some stunning hotels with amazing history.  The Halekulani hotel in Hawaii, is one of the most interesting hotels that I have found in Hawaii.

An off-white island of tranquil elegance in the midst of bustling Waikiki, the new Halekulani opened late in 1983, replacing a legend. A sea captain’s two-story home once stood here on the point where Waikiki Beach begins its graceful sweep toward Diamond Head. It became a small beach hotel in 1907, the Hau Tree Hotel, and was acquired by Clifford Kimball and his wife in 1917. They renamed it Halekulami, house befitting heaven. Natives had called the sea captain’s house that out of gratitude for being allowed to keep their canoes under his hau trees.

Over the years, the Kimballs improved and expanded the hotel, adding cottages around the property. New main buildings replaced the original house in 1931, which has been carefully restored and is the focal point of the new hotel. Nearby is a new open-air lounge, the House Without a Key, replacing the original. Author Earl Derr Biggers, a frequent visitor to the old Halkulani, introduced Charlie Chan in 1925 in the House Without a Key. The Halekulani now is the state of the art in elegance; polished marble and terrazzo, pure wool carpets, the finest cotton sheets and towels.  And the views from the lanais toward Diamond Head are spectacular. Actually comprised of five buildings, ranging from two to sixteen stories, on five acres, the 456 room hotel gives a remarkable sense of unity. It truly is a house befitting heaven.

From the main part of the hotel the new House Without a Key presents a graceful profile against sea and sky. The Presidential Suite, is a study in elegance. There are special robes for guests, and tiny gift wrapped seashells are placed on the pillow each night. Kanoe Miller, a former Miss Hawaii, dances the hula each evening at sunset in front of the century old kiawe tree, a Waikiki landmark. Glistening at the bottom of the pool is a cattleya orchid, symbol of the hotel.