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I am a New York-based writer, travel lover, and author of The Drive North and Destination Paranormal. I have several other books in the works, including fiction.

Hawaii’s Sheraton Princess Kaiulani

I struggle on what to think about the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani. On one hand, it is situated in a fantastic area of Waikiki Beach – just a short walk across the street to the beach and the ocean – has comfortable rooms, and commands a fantastic view of the ocean and up the beach. But, on the other hand, I had a few poor experiences that also put me off and would make me think twice about giving it an absolutely glowing review.
Moving over from the Holiday Inn Beachcomber – where I first stayed during my sponsored trip by the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau – I checked-in, but was unable to get to my room because I was ninety minutes early. I wasn’t bothered by this, since I was the one who was early and there was plenty I wanted to do in the area during the afternoon. What did bother me, though, was when I was directed to leave my bags with the bell desk only to be sent back to the reception counter; they couldn’t hold laptops.
This bothered me for two reasons: One, the reception clerk should have asked me about it before sending me to the bell desk; And two, it implied there had been or could be issues with theft. So, after standing in line a second time at the reception desk, and thus wasting the time I could have spent out exploring, I left my bag to be held in the manager’s office. Finally, I was then free to head out for the afternoon, albeit slightly annoyed.
A similar issue of non-communication arose the next morning when I tried to leave the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani’s parking garage in my rental car. Valet service was not offered at the hotel, as I was told when I tried to drop it off upon check-in, so I had to instead use a nearby parking ramp. When I tried to leave the morning after checking-in, the parking ramp attendant informed me that I needed to have obtained a parking permit from the reception desk.
So, for a second time, the reception clerk was not forthcoming with information or asking the right questions in order to better accommodate me during my stay. Instead, I had to return to the desk a third time to get the pass. Thankfully, though, the parking attendant was helpful and allowed me to leave that time without paying, seeming to have dealt with such issues before many times.
The final issue I experienced was while returning from a late night out on Waikiki Beach. I walked into the lobby, saw hotel staff vacuuming, so I went back out to knock sand off my sandals and brush it from my legs. As I stood outside doing this, I was beckoned by one of several prostitutes in front of the hotel who said she’d be happy to let me brush sand off at her place. As flattering as this offer was, I declined; later I found out they’re a somewhat regular fixture in the area, despite a police substation practically across the street.
On the other hand, as I said above, my room was quite comfortable and commanded an oustanding view of Waikiki Beach and the hotel’s pool below. Yet, because of the three issues I mention above, I would not recommend staying at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani if you are on vacation with your family. The price is right, the location is fantastic, and there are several fun activities – pineapple-slicing, for example, as well as lei-making and hula lessons – offered throughout the hotel that help create a fun atmosphere for friends or couples getting away.
My time spent at the Sheraton Princess Kaiulani, on the whole, was very satisfying and comfortable. Sure, I had a few issues here and there, but it was nothing that kept me from having a great time and enjoying a very friendly atmosphere. And my only regret in staying there is leaving, particularly after waking up to such a fantastic view.

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