Ultimate renewal

Just steps from the ocean, Hotel Renew, a peaceful little boutique hotel with killer views and impeccable attention to detail, has got to be Waikiki’s best kept secret

I wasn’t sure how I’d feel returning to the bustling streets and packed beaches of Waikiki after a week and a half of living the easy life in ultra-mellow Maui. Then I stepped into Hotel Renew. From the second I was greeted at the front desk with a glass of fresh pineapple juice and a cool lemongrass hand towel I knew this would be the perfect place to wrap up two weeks of down-time in Hawaii. After all, the reason we started our trip here in Hawaii was to relax before taking on Asia.

Hotel Renew is a chic, affordable little 72-room boutique hotel tucked in amongst a bevy of mega hotels about a block from the beach (the photo above is one that I snapped out of our hotel room window when we arrived yesterday…before the weather took a turn for the worse).

Situated on one of the city’s quieter streets and outfitted with one of the comfiest hotel beds I’ve ever slept in (it actually rivals my own, which I have nicknamed “The Cloud”), this isn’t the type of place you ditch your bags and leave. It’s the kind of spot you settle into. And thank goodness for that because today, for the first time since we arrived, it’s kind of a crummy day weather-wise – rain, howling tropical winds, etc.

On days such as this you find the time to appreciate the little things that make a place such as this special: the healthy (free) breakfast, which was much needed after nearly two weeks of HEAVY eating, the newsletter, which fills you in on the happenings around town, the bedside dimmer switches, that mean you don’t need to move to turn out the lights as you’re falling asleep, the robes (a true luxury, especially when you’re living out of a backpack), the free boogie board rentals, beach towels, and the stack of board games in the lobby (pictured below), which transforms into a bar from 5:30pm until 7:30pm.


The hotel is even helping me set up some surf lessons with Gone Surfing Hawaii for tomorrow so that I can complete the first item on my bucket list!

So while I wait for the weather to clear up I’ll be kicking back with Clue and cocktails. Hopefully by the time I finish my second mojito and figure out whether or not the culprit was Colonel Mustard in the library with the candlestick, the storm will have blown over.

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