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The Hyatt Centric Waikiki: A brand new trendsetter for tourism

The Hyatt Centric Waikiki: A brand new trendsetter for tourism

It still smells new at the Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach. Located at the corner of Seaside Ave. and Kuhio Ave., there could not be a better more central location in Waikiki. In January 2015, Hyatt Hotels Corporation introduced Hyatt Centric, a new, full-service lifestyle brand designed for business and leisure travelers.

 

Mark Hoplamazian, president and chief executive officer, Hyatt said in January 2015: “Hyatt Centric travelers are looking for a cosmopolitan vibe in the center of the action, so we worked to test various elements in real time, in real hotels over the past two years. Hyatt Centric is the culmination of that work.”

The Waikiki Hyatt Centric is located one block from the famous Waikiki beach, and in the same building complex as the famous and brand-new reopened International Market Place.

The new International Market Place opened August 25, 2016 featuring more than 75 retailers and Hawaii’s first Saks Fifth Avenue.

The Grand Lāna‘i at International Market Place offers outdoor seating at seven signature restaurants, the largest concentration of dining options in Waikiki. The history and culture of Waikīkī are woven throughout the architecture of International Market Place with its flowing water features, lush landscaping, and the iconic banyan tree that is more than a century old.

Within one block, Hyatt Centric guests can also explore the famous Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center with establishments to include the Cheesecake Factory, P.F. Chang’s, the Apple store, Wolfgang Puck Express, and dozens of other restaurants and shops. The Duty Free store is also just one block away.

After dark, visitors find entertainment venues including the popular Yard House, country western bars, discotheques, karaoke lounges, late-night shopping – all within 1-2 blocks from the Hyatt Centric Waikiki.

The Hyatt Centric is located in the Kuhio Avenue area. This avenue is home to a number of lively LGBT venues, which include gay and lesbian bars, clubs, restaurants, and dance clubs.

The only LGBT nightclub open until 4 am is “Fusion” right across the street from the hotel.

Marc, a guest from Los Angeles staying at the Hyatt Centric, told eTurboNews: “I love the pool deck, it feels like getting away from everything, and it feels like being in the middle of everything at the same time. I often stayed in West Hollywood at the Andaz Hotel (also part of Hyatt). The Andaz West Hollywood is a very popular hotel frequented by Hollywood stars and the hip scene in Hollywood, including the large LGBT scene. All the ‘action’ is on their rooftop pool deck.”

“The Hyatt Centric in Waikiki also has what it takes to become this place where everyone famous or those that are part of the scene would want to be seen.”

The pool at the Centric is not really a pool, it’s a wading pool less than 3 feet deep. The jacuzzi at the end of the wading pool with it massaging jet is not really a jacuzzi – the water is cold.

The cabanas are attractive, along with the lounge chairs, the cozy outdoor fire pit, and the open-air bar.

A small business space next to the pool with two computers adds to the open-air atmosphere of the hotel.

The Lanai restaurant features American cuisine crafted in a tapas format, with an island-casual vibe, and guests enjoy dining as part of the pool area. Lanai is the Hawaiian word for veranda or porch.

The hotel has 230 guestrooms and suites on 20 floors.

“The view from my room on the 20th floor was breathtaking,” says eTN Publisher Juergen T Steinmetz, who stayed at the hotel this last weekend.

Views from the ocean-facing rooms at the Hyatt Centric include the Royal Hawaiian Shopping Center, the Royal Hawaiian Hotel, and Waikiki beach.

“Living on the North Shore, the other side of the island of Oahu, I planned on hitting some night clubs. I had dinner at a new trendy restaurant at the International Market Place next to the hotel, came back to my room, and fell asleep missing all the night excitement in Waikiki. I felt wonderful this morning, though. The beds at the Centric are so comfortable. Nine hours of deep sleep – I feel great!”

Trying to find some drinking water in the guest rooms is a BIG NON-EVENT. There was a refrigerator, but it was empty. Two empty plastic bottles were placed on the counter. The front desk explained the plastic bottles are part of the resort fee and for the guest to take home. Filtration stations are located on several floors free of charge.

Next to the hotel was the first Starbucks Reserve in Hawaii. Starbucks only has 14 reserve stores.

“My morning coffee was simply excellent, followed by a very tasty breakfast at the Lanai restaurant in the hotel. You’ve got to check out the Kalua Pig Eggs Benedict.”

The staff was dedicated and wonderful. Everyone from the doormen or women to the front desk manager, the hotel maid, and the bartender – everyone was smiling, and everyone was pleasant. The “aloha spirit” was everywhere.

“I am a strict opponent to ‘mandatory resort fees,’ but I understand almost every resort in Hawaii is taking this approach, and this includes the Hyatt Centric as well as the Hyatt Regency in Waikiki,” Steinmetz said.

The $25 resort fee is a mandatory per night fee added to the room bill. Someone booking this hotel at hyatt.com is only discreetly shown the resort fee and may not notice. Analyzing the final rate and the breakdown for taxes and fees is important before pushing the “Book Now” button on the hyatt.com website.

However, when searching the Hyatt Centric website, there is a page dedicated to resort fees.

Here is what the Hyatt Centric includes in the mandatory $25 per night surcharge.

Premium Internet: When asked, there was no premium Internet, only basic Wi-Fi. Basic Wi-Fi, according to the hotel brochure, was already complimentary throughput the property.

The Internet speed was 9.39 MBPS download and 9.55 MBPS upload, which is acceptable. Top speed on Oahu by Oceanic Cable is 200 MBPS download and 20 MBPS upload.

Resort fees included pool amenities and beach towels, as well as blankets, beach chairs, and toys. Visible in the pool area were the pool towels.

The $25 resort fee included a “Hawaiian Welcome” drink: The drink was watered-down pineapple juice which some guests may have received at check-in. Such drinks are usually a given.

The resort fee also includes use of the fitness center: Shouldn’t this be part of the room rate anyway?

The hotel brochure promised a pristine fitness center offering all the equipment one needs to match your workout routine at home, and it’s open 24 hours a day.

The gym was small and offered very basic equipment. The hotel brochure explained the gym as basic comparing it with gym equipment many have at home. The brochure did not mention a fee to use it, except on the resort fee page.

Also included in the fee were two gifted sports bottles: These were the empty water bottles in every room.

Strangely, the hotel brochure and website say: Guests enjoy bottled water and Internet as well as local calls in their room complimentary.

On the separate resort fee web page, the hotel all the sudden made these free items part of the $25 resort fee and left the delivery of bottled water out altogether.

Another resort fee items is the press-reader, offering a choice of over 4,000 electronic newspapers and magazines: Most Hyatt hotels offer this without charge worldwide to avoid buying and delivering newspapers to the room. Why is it part of a mandatory fee in Hawaii? The press reader page did not display this information when connecting to the hotel Internet provider.

As for the included afternoon pool delights: I actually took advantage of them. I was served two small bite-sized pieces of apple on a plastic toothpick.

There was also a cultural hour included, but I did not notice a cultural hour on Saturday or Sunday.

Don’t get me wrong. I loved the hotel, and would have booked a room for $25 more without question.

The hotel brochure says each of the 230 contemporary guestrooms and suites at Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach immediately whisks you away to island luxury. Rooms are well-appointed and complemented by modern amenities and features such as rainfall showers, floor-to-ceiling windows, Smart TVs, Dry Bar® hair dryers, and deep-soaking tubs (available in some rooms).

Many rooms feature stunning views of the Pacific Ocean or Diamond Head, immersing you in the beauty of the Hawaiian islands. For beachfront elegance, Hyatt Centric Waikiki Beach offers a refreshing and rejuvenating stay in Honolulu.

“My room did not have a rainfall shower or deep-soaking tub,” Steinmetz noticed.

“The bathroom has motion detectors keeping the lights on when using it. Great idea to conserve energy, but be prepared to take a longer shower in the dark.”

“I stayed at the Centric Hotel in Miami South Beach before and found a clear window between bedroom and bathroom taking all privacy in the bathroom away.

I was happy to see the Hyatt Centric in Waikiki still had the window, but it was possible to close the blinds.”

Electrical outlets were readily available in the room, even though I had to crawl under the desk to plug my computer in. The only plug on the side of the desk was used by the desk lamp, Steinmetz said.

The beautiful big-screen plasma TV was just above the desk which made watching TV while working a challenge.

Overall my stay at this ultra-modern and friendly hotel was great, and I plan to be back again and again.

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