Halepuna Waikiki:

How a City Hotel Became Hawaii's Best

Known as the "House of Welcoming Waters," Halepuna Waikiki is an oasis within the city of Honolulu. How did designers turn this urban hotel into a quiet, luxury escape?

The Halepuna Waikiki Hotel.

It’s 2020, a year of extremes, so of course it would turn out to be an unusually cold and snowy November here in Minnesota. But while it’s a frosty 29 degrees in Minneapolis this morning, 4,000 miles away in Honolulu, Hawaii, it’s sunny and 77°. With that contrast in mind, perhaps there’s no better time to escape to the islands and take a virtual vacation to the stunning boutique hotel, Halepuna Waikiki by Halekulani.

Halepuna’s elegant, harmonious design draws from the unique history of its location in Waikiki. According to legend, Waikiki was once home to four sacred healing sites. At each of these sites, healing spring waters were said to restore health and spirit, showing the interconnectedness of the Hawaiian people, land, and history.

According to legend, Waikiki was once home to four sacred healing sites. At each of these sites, healing spring waters were said to restore health and renew spirit.

In the past, these warm, natural springs were a destination of the Hawaiian nobility, who found the water restorative for their bodies, minds, and spirits. Today, the healing springs formed the inspiration for the Halepuna Waikiki resort hotel, a luxurious destination that offers guests the chance to reconnect with their senses and be renewed.

Known as “The House of Welcoming Waters,” Halepuna Waikiki is an oasis within the city of Honolulu. It’s spa-like atmosphere was designed to embody the warm aloha spirit and culture of the Hawaiian islands while also making the hotel an urban escape. It’s drawn the attention of two leading travel magazines, being recognized as the best Hawaiian resort hotel in Travel + Leisure magazine’s “2020 World’s Best” awards and the “#1 Resort Hotel in Hawaii” by Conde Nast Traveler readers. It was also awarded by USA Today as one of the best new hotels in the United States.

The Halepuna Waikiki Hotel.

Peter Shaindlin, Chief Operating Officer of Halekulani Corporation celebrated the hotel’s success,  “Witnessing the success and evolution of our legendary Halekulani brand, both in Hawaii and beyond, has been a gratifying experience and serves as a true testament to the dedication of our exceptional staff who work hard each day to create unforgettable guest experiences.” 

Rest Assured – Courtesy of SoundPly

Halepuna’s urban location in Waikiki posed a unique challenge for the hotel’s design goals. The city’s noise and pace were at odds to creating a restful, peaceful environment. How could designers overcome the clamor of city traffic, guests, and restaurant patrons?

The Halepuna Waikiki Hotel.

To reduce excessive noise, designers focused their acoustic efforts on the ceiling – the largest uninterrupted surface and the most effective choice for sound absorption; ultimately deciding on an acoustical wood product from SoundPly.

The micro-perforations of Lino Acoustic Planks are so precise and plentiful that SoundPly ranks among the most sound-absorbent materials available in the world.

SoundPly’s Lino Acoustic Planks ensured that the city’s pace and buzz of traffic was left at the door. Lino Planks capture noise through their nearly invisible perforations and into their sound-absorbing engineered core. The micro-perforations are so precise and plentiful that SoundPly ranks among the most sound-absorbent materials available in the world. 

Halepuna’s designers were able to browse through hundreds of wood species and finishes  before selecting a genuine white oak veneer. The dramatic white oak ceilings were the perfect choice, defining the entry, lobby, and dining rooms. Their light finish brings to mind the sandy beaches that wait outside, connecting the indoors with the beauty of nature’s shorelines.

If the lobby area is reminiscent of the beach, then the guest rooms bring you right to the water’s edge. Their soft blue ombre wallpaper is a near-perfect match to the ocean views from the balcony, making the room seem one with its environment – and one with the dreamy infinity pool, as well.

So today, why not treat yourself to a little virtual vacation and check out the “House of Welcoming Waters” over your lunch break? The photos alone will make you breathe a little easier – they’re a visual feast for the eyes and in 2020, we need all the good things we can get. Enjoy! 

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