Hotel Review: Holiday Inn Express Waikiki

When entering the breezy, open-air lobby of the new Holiday Inn Express Waikiki, clients can’t help but feel enveloped by the proverbial aloha spirit. With a waterfall, a koi pond, plenty of light and comfortable seating, the laid-back lobby emits a relaxed vibe, and modern decor invites travelers to soak in the casually understated Hawaiian ambiance. Ideal for those seeking a centrally located, budget-friendly option, Holiday Inn Express Waikiki is an easy three-block walk from iconic Waikiki Beach and steps away from major shops, bars and restaurants.

Opened in July after undergoing a multimillion-dollar renovation, the high-rise property is the largest Holiday Inn Express in the Americas and the third InterContinental Hotels Group property in Hawaii. Formerly Maile Sky Court, the newly refurbished 44-story hotel features 596 overhauled rooms with a contemporary design and state-of-the-art amenities. 

Standard rooms are cozy yet light-filled, as generously proportioned windows offer island views stretching from the mountains to the ocean. Ranging in size from 190 to 245 square feet (with eight suites available at nearly 400 square feet), all rooms are air-conditioned and include flat-screen high-definition televisions, Keurig coffeemakers, minifridges and microwaves. Featuring the brand’s new “design solution,” which was created to provide a comfortable and productive living space, the rooms include multifunctional seating, noise-reducing headboards and rolling and adjustable desks. Bathrooms have backlit mirrors and extra counter space. Tech-savvy travelers will appreciate the free, fast Wi-Fi access available throughout the property and ample, easily accessible electrical outlets and USB charging ports in guestrooms.