Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort vs Hilton Hawaiian Village

outrigger-waikiki-beach-resort-vs-hilton-hawaiian-village

We must admit that it feels a bit crass to do a “versus” comparison between two of Hawaii’s most famous resorts. However, we’re here to serve the people, and data tells us that a large number of future visitors are online and searching “Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort vs Hilton Hawaiian Village” as if there were an up and coming UFC bout between the two. Price is easy enough to compare, as you can simply reference the booking feature for your preferred dates on their respective websites. Amenities (in-suite kitchenettes, etc.) are also contingent upon the room or suite you book. However, there are many other items that will better help you deliberate, such as location convenience, along with access to great dining, shopping, activities, and more. Who wins in the battle of these heavyweights when it comes to what matters most? Let’s review.

Side-by-Side Comparison Between the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort and Hilton Hawaiian Village


Convenient Location

The Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort is located at 2335 Kalakaua Avenue. The Hilton Hawaiian Village (HHV) is at 2005 Kalia Road. Drop those two addresses into Google Maps (Outrigger vs Hilton), zoom out, and you‘ll find that the Outrigger is located right in the heart of Waikiki, whereas the HHV is on its outer edge. If you want to be in the mix without having to take long walks to/from your hotel in the AM, afternoon, and evening, then Outrigger is your pick. The hotel property is a two to five-minute stroll from the main beach along with the shops and places to eat/drink that you came to Waikiki for. View more on these criteria below.

Winner: Outrigger Waikiki

Food & Drink

Fun Things to Do in Waikiki Beach - dukes
image: @dukeswaikiki

Given the sheer square footage of the resort property, the Hilton Hawaiian Village has a greater number of places to eat and drink. Tropics Bar & Grill is a highlight, but the rest of their fare appeals to those in search of mainland familiarity, such as CJ’s New York Delicatessen, Fresco Italian, and Roundtable Pizza. Is that what you came to Hawaii for? The Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort however, is home to the place that honors Hawaii’s favorite son, and the Godfather of Surfing – Duke Kahanamoku. Duke’s Restaurant & Barefoot Bar is the single best place to eat and drink in Honolulu. But it doesn’t stop there, as the resort also has on-site another top authentic Hawaiian dining establishment at Hula Grill on the second floor. The hotel is also home to the south shore’s extension of The Sunrise Shack, which may very well be the coolest little cafe on the island. And as alluded to above, as soon as you step outside of the Outrigger Waikiki and on to Kalakaua Avenue you will find every imaginable variety of places to eat and drink.

Winner: Outrigger Waikiki

Shopping

There is a decent number of shops that sell authentic Hawaiian and island lifestyle goods within the resort property of Hilton Hawaiian Village, including Martin & MacArthur, Honolua Surf Co, Honolulu Cookie Company, Volcom, and Kona Mountain Coffee (retail, not cafe), and SoHa Living to name highlights. However, the same retailers (aside from Kona Mountain Coffee) and more are found just outside of the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort. Plus, on site, the Outrigger has a Malibu Shirts and the new (2021) Aesthetic Hawaii gallery which has some pretty amazing Polynesian-pop artisan wares.

Winner: Outrigger Waikiki

Activities

There’s no denying HHV on this one. As the largest resort property on this side of Oahu, activities are bountiful. For one, they have the best luau in Waikiki and host weekly fireworks every Friday night. On site, guests have immediate access to Atlantis Adventures, which offers underwater submarine adventures in addition to cocktail cruises at sunset. They also have a large number of beach rentals which you may enjoy with the kids at their on-property Duke Kahanamoku Lagoon. While it’s true that the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort’s convenient location puts them in close proximity to the Waikiki’s most fun things to do, HHV has nearly everything a Waikiki vacationer could ask for, all rolled up into one.

Winner: Hilton Hawaiian Village

Special Events

We included HHV’s Starlight Luau and Friday night fireworks under Activities, but they absolutely belong in the Special Events category too. The property also hosts art exhibits and movie nights on the village green. The Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort may not have as much space to work with when it comes to hosting events but they do have Blue Note Hawaii, which is the Hawaii branch of the iconic NYC music venue. As a result, the Outrigger Waikiki features big-name jazz and blues musicians as well as local artists. Blue Note also plays host to Hawaiian music festivals and even standup comedy tours.

Winner: Tie

Authentic Hawaiian Experience

outrigger-waikiki-beach-resort-vs-hilton-hawaiian-village
image: property of @yahglobal

If you’ve spend enough time exploring our website, then you know that our mission is to connect you to the real Hawai’i. With a few small exceptions (such as airport hotels) the resorts that make the cut in our Accommodations section must honor the culture of the island in the most authentic manner possible. Both hotels do a great job of this. They each offer hula, ukulele, and lei making classes, and adorn the walls, halls, and suites with Polynesian flare. However, one really stands out to make the list of the Most Hawaiian Hotels on Oahu – the Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort. From the moment you step within you’ll note the paintings, tapestry, koa canoes (outriggers, of course), ti-leaves and flora, and vintage collections behind ornate display cases that speak to the culture. Then there are the distinctly Hawaiian dining establishments, including Dukes and Hula Grill. The smaller stature of the property (compared to HHV) also creates a warmer, tighter knit, and aloha-filled atmosphere which stands in contrast to a much larger and therefore less personable Hilton Hawaiian Village. We certainly can’t fault the Hilton for the latter, as its magnitude makes the property accommodating to households of all shapes and sizes. But in the end, if you want to stay in a hotel that is unmistakably Hawaiian, the Outrigger Waikiki takes the cake – or should we say Hula Pie?

Winner: Outrigger Waikiki


OVERALL WINNER: Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort

The Outrigger Waikiki Beach Resort “wins” over the Hilton Hawaiian Village by a score of 4-1-1.

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