Hotel Review – Aston at the Waikiki Banyan
This hotel is one of the many hotels in the Aston chain and also goes by Aston Banyan Waikiki. On Trip Advisor, it is rated as 3 stars. This is the second time that I’ve stayed at the Banyan.
One thing I learned about Oahu hotels is that is doesn’t matter if it’s 4 stars or 5 stars, the hotels are out dated and old. Turtle Bay Resort, Royal Hawaiian, Hilton, etc. are 4 stars and above and I can tell you that their standard rooms are similar to 3 stars hotels along the strip. Only exception is the Halekulani… hope to one day be able to stay there but I was lucky (and gutsy) enough to sneak in and catch a glimpse of the hotel.
There are many reasons to why I returned to the Banyan. They are:
- super kid friendly – playpens, cribs are available to rent at no charge (please tip though!). Upon arrival, kids get a sand bucket/shovel and a Kids Eat Free card at participating restaurants.
- parking – no valet, parking is charged by the day or week with in/out priveledges.
- kitchen – fridge, kitchen utensils, there are even BBQ grills in the lounge area to use.
- fast elevators – I’ve heard complaints about how slow the elevators for Tower I are but I’ve stayed at the rooms in Tower II and their elevators get me to my floor quick… even when I’m on the 36th floor.
- free internet – it’s not wi-fi, but there’s a cable included.
Booking for both trips had its own hiccups. But it wasn’t anything that couldn’t be resolved. Both times, I asked for King size beds and was given Queen size which I swear it’s a bit smaller by Canadian standards (closer to full/double). Both times, we had to switch rooms to get the bed that we wanted. The staff are friendly but they work on Hawaiian time and very chilled.
Some of the rooms are actual condos for rent but you won’t know until you arrive. It doesn’t make a difference in terms of housekeeping but the decor gives it away. Especially when the owners loves whales… lots of whales… (our friend ended up with the whale lovers condo lol).
When I called Housekeeping to get a playpen, the woman on the phone told me they ONLY have metal cribs. But my friend got a playpen on the first day so I told her. Then she said that they didn’t have anymore. So I explained that Little Patch’s been hitting his head on the metal crib and causing injuries (which was true) and a playpen was brought up immediately. I didn’t know why she had to lie. That was not cool.
If having free internet, in/out parking and a kitchen really matters to you, then I don’t even have to recommend Aston Banyan because that’s pretty much the only hotel you can find that’s walking distance to the beach.