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Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort Wins Best New Resort/Major Renovation in Hawai‘i


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HONOLULU – The top-to-bottom enhancements at Outrigger Reef Waikiki Beach Resort earned it the title of Best New Resort/Major Renovation in Hawai‘i at the TravelAge West 2021 WAVE (Western Agents’ Votes of Excellence) Awards Ceremony held October 7 in Marina del Rey, California.

The premier beach resort brand proudly accepted the accolade for the $80 million investment which transformed the flagship resort into a contemporary beachfront retreat rooted in Hawaiian music and culture. Sophisticated property enhancements include upscale residential-style rooms and suites, chic poolside experiences and a fully reimagined Kani Ka Pila Grille and stage – the home of Hawaiian music.

Expansive resort grounds include three distinct accommodations: the Ocean Tower, the Pacific Tower and the Diamond Head Tower – a five-story oceanfront building that will be converted into 23 brand-new, spacious rooms/deluxe suites, including a lavish Diamond Head Ocean Penthouse, raising the key count to 658. The exclusive Navigator Floor includes five bedrooms that can sleep up to 18 people, totaling 3,750 square feet plus the largest private lānai in Waikīkī at 4,000 square feet. A strategic footpath called the ‘Ae Kai, runs the length of the resort and connects the property elements in harmonious balance.

Monkeypod Kitchen by Merriman will be the resort’s anchor restaurant in a 12,000 square-foot beachfront space, which is anticipated to be finished by the second quarter of 2022. With celebrated Chef Peter Merriman at the helm, the handcrafted restaurant is poised to deliver a world-class experience at the premier beachfront location. Monkeypod Kitchen is a modern, casual, chef-driven concept founded on a passion for the art of craft. Each item on the menu demonstrates a commitment to high-quality local fare, creative preparations and impeccable execution.

The resort design was led by Hart Howerton, an award-winning firm of architects and designers renowned for thoughtful and innovative work in extraordinary spaces. With input from esteemed Hawaiian cultural practitioners, the architects seamlessly merged the unique splendor of Hawai‘i’s past with today’s contemporary comforts. From the impressive canoe-hale arrival experience lit by traditional fishing-basket lanterns to the artfully appointed accommodations, the resort design emulates an elegant Hawai‘i beach house, warmly welcoming guests home.

Accepting the award (L-R) Chris Riccardi, SVP, Global Sales; Geri Harvey-Gundlach, Global Account Manager; Sean Dee, EVP and Chief Commercial Officer; and Bob Froio, Director of Sales and Marketing – North America

“This award is the result of an incredible team effort – from the talented architects at Hart Howerton to the construction crew on property and our Outrigger hosts who continued to provide heartfelt island hospitality in a truly challenging year,” said Sean Dee EVP and chief commercial officer for Outrigger Hospitality Group. “Being recognized by our peers as Hawai‘i’s best new resort/major renovation is the ultimate honor.”

Outrigger was selected by more than 3,500 travel professionals throughout 15 Western states and readers of TravelAge West who voted on the best of the best from a list of Editor’s Pick award recipients. Review methods included product analysis, on-site visits, a survey of a select group of travel advisors and online research.

“We were so thrilled to be able to once again celebrate the WAVE Awards in person,” said TravelAge West Publisher and Editor-in-Chief Kenneth Shapiro. “This has been the hardest time in the history of the travel industry, and advisors were very excited to be able to acknowledge the companies that not only supported them throughout the pandemic but provided their clients with great vacation experiences.”

For more information or to book a stay at an award-winning Outrigger property, please visit

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