On our second trip to the beautiful Hawaiian islands, we decided on Oahu in October. Waikiki is a district within the city of Honolulu, on the island of Oahu. The resorts are a 30 minute ride from the Honolulu airport by taxi or car. The locals say that it is very hot in Hawaii in the summer, so October is a good time to visit because of the mild temperature. During our visit, the forecast showed rain everyday. Although it did not rain, it was a little humid. The temperature ranged from 70-80 degrees. We stayed at the Marriott Beach Resort and Spa, Waikiki Beach, for the first part of our trip.
The Marriott Beach Resort and Spa, Waikiki Beach sits directly across the sandy beaches, overlooking the beautiful ocean, for an amazing view. At check in, as Marriott gold members, we were given complimentary wifi, breakfast and Mai Tai (or other choice beverages) vouchers, discounts to their resort restaurants, and chocolate covered macadamia treats. Our upgraded Oceanview room was a great start to our vacation. The resort had two swimming pools with friendly poolside food and beverage service. After a long flight from the east coast, it was great to be able to decompress in the warm weather, poolside. The courtyard of the resort had a small mall with many Hawaiian specialty shops including a Starbucks! Across the pool deck we found a large fitness center (open 24 hours) in addition to a few resort restaurants.
During our stay we dined at three of the resort restaurants. When we first arrived, we lunched at Moana Terrace, casual restaurant with bar. We found a great Oceanview table (by the way, great place to watch the sunset — but get there early if you want a seat). Each morning, we dined at the Kuhio Beach Grill for our made to order omelettes. We noticed the large buffet spread included kimchee and rice. Something for everyone! On our last evening, we checked out the sunset on the beach. As far as you could see, there were surfers riding the waves as the sun set behind them. We dined at the Sansei Seafood Restaurant and Sushi Bar. For dinner, we started with the signature Panko Crusted Ahi Roll as we enjoyed our last evening at the resort!
Close to our resort, we found the Diamond Head Tennis Center, at the base of the Diamond Head trail, part of the dormant volcanic Diamond Head (which is also a popular hiking area). We were very excited to play tennis in Oahu, and even happier to have found a public tennis court facility, not far from our resort (5 minute Uber or Lyft ride).
Diamond Head Tennis Center had several tennis courts, surrounded by beautiful Hawaiian flowers and trees. At the welcome area, there was a wall with clocks (showing what time that court started playing) associated with each court adjacent to a waiting area complete with numbered benches.
As we walked around the facility, we ran into a tennis player. We asked him which court we should play on. He pointed to the prime courts in a shadier area. When we walked on to our court we realized we had forgotten our Penn tennis balls. Rookie mistake, they must have fallen out of the bag in our room at the resort. We needed tennis balls to play tennis! William walked over to the other courts to see if anyone had extra tennis balls. When he returned with tennis balls, he shared with me that a couple of people asked if we would like to play mixed doubles with them.
We warmed up our game before joining the others in a mixed doubles match. We were very pleased with the great Hawaiian hospitality. Not only did we have fun, but we ended up having a very competitive tennis match at Diamond Head Tennis Center, close to our resort.
Our resort’s concierge set up a wonderful excursion to Pearl Harbor, the USS Arizona Memorial and the USS Missouri, day trip with Discover Hawaii Tours. Our tour guide was Jorge, who had a great sense of humor and went over the top to make sure each tourist had a great time (tip: utilize the tour companies because it is difficult to obtain tickets to the venue’s shows, due to advanced booking). This trip was solemn and thought provoking. The tour bus driver was also our guide. It was interesting to hear about the history of the island, as well as some island customs. A phrase I learned from him was wiki wiki, which means quickly. I’m planning on using the phrase wiki wiki when teaching tennis in my junior tennis clinics.
As we prepared to fly Island Air (tip: sign up for Island Air Miles (Star Alliance partner) to receive a discounted checked back charge – half off!) to Maui, Hawaii (our next destination), we were reluctant to leave Honolulu. Honolulu provided us with the balanced vacation: from playing tennis with new people, staying at the beautiful resort of Waikiki Beach Marriott Resort and Spa to visiting Pearl Harbor, USS Arizona and USS Missouri. Honolulu is a wonderful vacation spot. We had an awesome experience. Please share this post with others and feel free to like and comment on the post and share your own experience such as where you stayed. Aloha!