The island of Oahu should be named the “Rainbow Island,” because every time I visit the third-largest of the Hawaiian Islands, it’s rains once or twice and rewards its residents and visitors with a colorful rainbow.
Like the colors of the rainbow, the diversity of Hilton Hotels in Honolulu and Waikiki Beach offers accommodations for every budget. One of the most iconic luxury vacation destinations is the Rainbow Tower at the Hilton Hawaiian Village Waikiki Beach. Set on 22 acres, the beachfront rooms and suites are located near tropical swimming pools, a salt-water lagoon, 20 restaurants and bars and the Mandara Spa. Each room in the Rainbow Tower offer picturesque views of the Pacific Ocean and the Honolulu coastline from both sides of the building. This is the largest Hilton property on the island and very family friendly. Guests staying on a Friday evening will enjoy the Hilton Hawaiian Village’s firework display from the beach.
One block away is the more boutique Doubletree by Hilton Alana Waikiki Hotel Beach. The friendly staff at this 21 story hotel offers a signature chocolate chip cookie as a welcoming gift. The pleasing decor in the main areas, and soothing colors in each guest room and suite add a bit of sophistication. All rooms feature the Sweet Dreams by DoubleTree sleep experience, an oversized walk-in “rain shower” in the bathroom and private lanai (balcony in Hawaiian).
Guests staying in guest room 1421 have two lanais offering 280 degree mountain, city and ocean views. Stepping out onto the larger lanai, you might just capture a rainbow touching one of the Hilton Hawaiian Village towers after a light rain.
The heated tiled swimming pool offers a relaxing and quieter atmosphere than many of the larger hotels. It’s located adjacent to the 24-hour fitness center and near Trees Restaurant & Bar. This onsite restaurant is bright and airy, offering a selection of island-inspired breakfast, happy hour and dinner favorites. Near the full-service bar, live entertainment performs twice a week.
While this locations is within walking distance to the largest open-air shopping center, Ala Moana Center, and one block from the widest stretch of the beach in Waikiki, a visit to the Ko Hāna Rum distillery for a tour and rum tasting is one of many Oahu ecotourism experiences.
Guides lead visitors on a short walk through acres of sugar cane fields while sharing the history of this land. All sugar cane needs to grow is water and sunshine in the red volcanic soil. Near the mountains, there have been many rainbow sightings. This is also where Japanese war planes flew over the nearby mountains and above the former Del Monte pineapple fields, before bombing Pearl Harbor on December 14, 1941.
Kō Hana Agricole Rum is meticulously crafted from farm to bottle. Inside the tasting room, visitors sip freshly pressed sugar cane juice, plus three distinctive rums. The last rum called Kokoleke is enhanced with local cacao and honey to create an ideal after-dinner drink, or pour over ice cream.
There is an outdoor patio with a wood fired pizza and salad for visitors to stay and enjoy a light lunch before exploring another part of the island.
Returning back to Waikiki, I walked into the Hiking Hawaii Cafe known for their organic paninis, wraps, gluten-free options and acai bowls made from scratch. Located on the ground floor of The DoubleTree by Hilton Alana Waikiki Beach, this cafe offering healthy cuisine, also organizes outdoor hiking adventures.
This is ideal for the active traveler who doesn’t want to hike alone, or would like to meet people with similar interests. Group hikes include Diamond Head, Manoa Falls, Makeupu’u Lighthouse and a North Shore Tour. Families and groups can also book a private and custom tour. If it rains while on a hike, the rainbow you might see when the sun peeks through the clouds will be spectacular.