Happy Tuesday, everyone! I’m popping in today feeling refreshed and relaxed after a beautiful long weekend stay at the Sheraton in Waikiki. Dane and I love a good staycation, so when Sheraton graciously offered to host us for our anniversary, we jumped at the chance. A Starwood property located directly on the beach in downtown Honolulu, Sheraton Waikiki boasts 1,636 guest rooms, two pools and ocean views at nearly every turn. One of the pools in an adults-only infinity pool and bar, The Edge of Waikiki, and has the coolest floating bean bag chairs that offer views of Diamond Head while you float around in the pool. We had a relaxing stay and enjoyed being able to play tourist in our own town. If you’re interested in a big recap with lots of photos of our Sheraton Waikiki vacation, today’s post is for you 🙂
Our Stay At Sheraton Waikiki
Friday was a state holiday, so Dane and I both enjoyed a leisurely wake-up, followed by dropping off the dogs with their nanny ($30 Free To Rover.com) and heading down to Honolulu to check-in. It was a popular weekend in Waikiki with Duke’s Oceanfest, Best of Hawaii Festival and the Nakoa Wounded Warrior Regatta, not to mention it being a holiday weekend, so we weren’t surprised when the check-in line was wrapped around the lobby. When we finally got to the front, the receptionist told us they were booked solid the entire weekend — YOWZA! In any case, our room was ready so we were able to head right up, drop our bags and settle in for our weekend!
I fell in love immediately, because the view from our room facing Diamond Head Crater looked like something you would find on a postcard – it was absolutely unreal and I think I squealed in delight! Here’s a quick clip of walking into the room…
I mean seriously – does it get prettier? We were a little bit hungry, but I had packed snacks (hello – I pack snacks for everything!), so we enjoyed a bit of homemade guacamole and salsa on the balcony before changing into our swimsuits and heading down to the bar at RumFire for some cocktails. Our first cocktails of the trip were a Skinny Colada and a Lilikoi Margarita – so delicious and refreshing. We just got brand new dive masks and underwater camera housings so were eager to test them out in the notoriously clear waters of Waikiki so we grabbed towels from the concierge and headed out to the sand.
Unfortunately, the visibility in the water was really bad (boo!), so the trip into the ocean was short lived. We kept thinking it might be because the catamaran charters were leaving directly off the beach and some storms had happened, so perhaps the waters were a bit churned up. That said, we still enjoyed hopping into the water and testing out our camera gear!
On our way back up to the hotel, we washed off and grabbed some seats the pool to enjoy golden hour as it swept across Honolulu and of course – to enjoy happy hour!
Dane and I were getting pretty hungry, so we enjoyed the rest of the sunset for our room as we got ready for dinner. Waikiki on Fridays are especially fun, because there are always free fireworks and lots of people out and about. We also realized that the wonderful staff at Sheraton Waikiki had dropped off a yummy fruit plate for us to enjoy during our stay – we chowed down on all the fresh fruit!
We had decided early in the day that we had been craving sushi, so we had picked Doraku for dinner (right next door at 3rd floor of the Royal Hawaiian Center). As much as we tried, we just didn’t get ready in time for happy there (I blame the delicious cocktails at The Edge Bar), but we still enjoyed splitting 5 different rolls before getting cheesecake from The Cheesecake Factory to go and eating it in our room while watching Dateline. LOL!
Dane and I are very much “up with the sun” types of people and that is partially in part to our dogs who wake up at 4:45AM like clockwork, so although we had really good intentions of getting up early and working out, sleeping in sounded so much better. Why does sleeping in on vacation feel so good? I’ll never know. I’ll also admit that our stomachs were hurting us pretty badly, which is 100% our own fault for indulging in cheesecake, but you only life once! One of the perks of our hotel stay was free coffee coupons for the always-delicious Island Coffee shop located in the lobby, so we put our swimsuits on and headed downstairs to capitalize! How perfect is this banana leaf wallpaper?
Friends of ours from the mainland were racing in the Na Koa Regatta Canoe Race for Wounded Warriors, so we walked toward them once we had our coffee. We got to give them a big hug before we watched a single heat of the race. It’s such an incredible event and one I’m glad we got to witness! You can learn more here.
Afterward, we flew our drone a bit for some amazing skyline shots (some are available to buy in my print shop), and then headed to the infinity pool for the rest of the afternoon. Admittedly, we figured we would only relax at the pool and eat lunch for a few hours, but we were having so much fun “doing nothing” and just relaxing we ended up laying poolside/lounging in bean bag chairs for almost 7 hours!
After seeing the pool – can you blame us? That salad above is incredible! It’s the Kahuku Corn Quinoa Salad and it has the perfect amount of crunch and sweetness. I ordered it with avocado since it normally comes with tomatoes and I just wasn’t feeling those. We also met some of the funniest and coolest people and laughed our butts off while drinking endless Long Island Iced Teas + frozen Mo’o drinks (kind of like a frozen and mega boozy mojito…but better!). Hi to Tommy + BJ if you’re reading 🙂 We were meeting some friends for appetizers at neighboring Il Lupino Wine Bar, followed by dinner at Buho Cantina (one of our faves and just down the street!), so after realizing we were going to be late, we skedaddled out of the pool area, showered off as fast as possible and quickly pulled ourselves together!
How cool is that watermelon drink we ordered from Buho? We’ve never been with enough people to enjoy it before and since there were 4 of us, it was about 3 drinks per person. It worked out really well and the drink was delicious!
We ate so much food – oh my goodness! We started with some appetizers at Il Lupino (calamari, gnocchi, a giant meatball and tartar) then followed it up with tacos, enchilada, burritos, chips, guac and more. You could say we were completely stuffed, so we said goodbye to our friends and walked back to our room. One thing that’s funny to note is that Dane and I love a good daytime party, because once 8:30PM – put us to bed! I think we were in our room, changed and passed out by 9PM. I was determined to catch the sunrise the next morning and it did not disappoint – such beautiful colors over Diamond Head and the city. Dane and I were headed to Lulu’s for breakfast (19 Brunch Spots You Can’t Miss In Honolulu), but were afraid of crowds due to all the events happening in town, so we motored over there pretty early and even stopped to watch a bit of the surfing en route.
Breakfast was absolutely delicious, per usual, and we both ended up getting a Benedict of some sort — mine with avocado and Dane’s with pork. We were feeling pretty full and it was starting to get so hot, so we hustled back to the hotel to change in our swimsuits. We had sun chairs (chairs that are pool front and reserved) booked for the day and didn’t want to waste a single minute! I made sure to pack my Hydro Flask full of water, because it was truly so, so hot. I’m struggling to put into words how hot it was, but one of those situations where you just needed to be in the water or shade at all moments. So plenty of water (particularly while drinking alcohol) was important. I loved that my Flask matched the water view from our room 🙂
Our chairs were ready for us and we wasted no time getting comfy and relaxing, but it wasn’t long before we both looked at each other like – okay, we need to get in the pool, because we are baking!
We spent more time floating, chatting, laughing and enjoying cocktails before we decided to get out and grab food. We went all out – poké flatbread and wings for Dane and that delicious Kahuku Corn and Quinoa salad again for me, but I added grilled mahi mahi this time. Such a solid choice! In my opinion, the food selection at The Edge is better than RumFire, so I’m glad we chose to eat there two days in a row!
We wanted to sit in chairs at a table to eat, but halfway through our meal, we were both like – nope, this is too hot, so we opted to have the poké pizza delivered to the reserved chairs. Such a good option, because I could wade in the pool and cool off while I watched Dane eat his food, LOL! When I tell you that we spent the next 6 hours eating and drinking and floating on bean bags, I know that sounds ridiculous, because — didn’t you get bored? But no – we had the best time just relaxing, because we don’t do something like that very often. We were in the pool constantly, so we didn’t have our phones and just kind of lost track of time. IT. WAS. WONDERFUL. Admittedly, we had every intention of going to the other family pool, but didn’t get the chance to, because we just got comfortable going to the adults-only one. Plus, I really liked the floating bean bags! But – the other pool is below (as photographed from our room).
I wish I could say the rest of our time was spent going on some big, grand Waikiki adventure, but I would be lying. We really, really enjoyed just relaxing at the Sheraton Waikiki property – happy hour on our balcony while reading our library books, walking out to the small beach alcove and watching the catamaran, strolling the beach, watching the sunsets and just…being. Here are a few more snaps from our stay:
All too soon, we were waking up and checking out — but checking back in to reality! The best part about staycations is that even though you are on total vacation mode, you aren’t terribly far from home. So “going home” doesn’t mean going too, too far. But it definitely meant saying goodbye to the sweet vacation life at the Sheraton, which made us sad! We are already looking forward to our next stay!
Thank you so much to the team at Starwood Hawaii + Sheraton Waikiki for this fun weekend away!